When John Wilson retired as the President from the Capilano Faculty Association, they wrote a song about him. They sang about all of the things that John has done for them including an improved pension plan and a unique flexible benefits plan. They further honoured him by renaming one of their awards for retired faculty the John Wilson Award.
So what was it that made him so respected in Capilano?
His door was always open. He worked hard. He took time to explain what was happening and why. He helped secure many improvements for members, both individually and collectively.
John was the chief negotiator for at least four collective agreements and the chief steward for the Capilano Faculty Association for more than 15 years. During that time his attention to detail and passion for helping others allowed him to influence real change. John's approach starts naturally with “being sincere about what you're trying to do, leaving your ego at the door, and recognizing you are there for the benefit of the people or organization that you serve." John believes that people recognize sincerity and respond positively to it. Then you spend time learning and listening to the opinions of members, and involving them in the process of setting goals and establishing principles.
He also believes in a culture of collegiality where collaboration is essential. "If you don't maintain your culture [of collegiality], what you built in the past gets eroded in the future."
I'm a collectivist. I believe that organizations are stronger when they make collective decisions.
John is proud to have helped people through his teaching, bargaining, stewarding, and his membership on governing boards of Capilano University, St. Mary’s Hospital, BC Pension Corporation, BC Investment Management Corporation, and Shiloh–Sixth Avenue United Church.
He began his career as a chartered accountant working as a general practice manager and computer auditing specialist. John joined the School of Business of Capilano University (then Capilano College) as an accounting instructor. He had discovered during professional training events he ran that he enjoyed teaching and helping people directly. His favourite clients were a small business.
His interest in using his skills to help people led the Federation of Post-Secondary Educators to appoint John to the College Pension Board of Trustees. John completed ATMS (Advanced Trustee Management Standards) certification for pension trustees, and also pioneered crown corporation boards encouraging formal training in board governance and became an ICD.D (Institute of Corporate Directors Director).
Why does he consult after retirement?
“I enjoy using my skills, knowledge, and experience to help people. Consulting allows me to also have time to pursue other more personal activities during retirement. APSA has been a great organization to work within accomplishing its pension goals.”
John has been an incredible resource to our Pension Committee. His bargaining and stewarding experience and collegial approach will make him an asset for the upcoming Salary and Benefit negotiations.