Gary Reavie, CMA
What does a private-sector management, finance and information systems career have to offer APEGGA? Plenty, says new Administration Manager Gary Reavie, CMA, who comes to the Association after more than 20 years in an array of private industries.
“We have to keep developing our information technology, our accounting and our other administrative services to meet the expectations of customers. A lot of organizations forget that – and then they wonder why their customers go elsewhere,” said Mr. Reavie.
Those core, market-driven values carry over to APEGGA, even though engineers and geoscientists in Alberta are required to register if they want to practice legally. “Members are customers,” said Mr. Reavie, a former vice-president of finance and administration at Canspec Group Inc., now Aucren Group Inc., in Edmonton.
“You have to provide value for members. And you have to let them know about it, too, so communicating what you have to offer is also an important part of the package.”
Most recently, Mr. Reavie was chief financial officer of Saxby Foods Ltd. in Edmonton, the position he held after leaving Canspec. He spent six years in Peace River as the manager of information systems with Daishowa-Marubeni Pulp Ltd., two years in Mackenzie, B.C., as senior operations accountant and divisional controller at TimberWest Forest Ltd., and four years with Centra Gas in Victoria, moving from supervisor of plant accounting to manager of geographic information systems. Mr. Reavie has also held positions with Magnesium Company of Canada in High River and Alberta Natural Gas Company in Calgary.
In addition to customer service, one of his major areas of attention will be information technology. Mr. Reavie promises to keep looking for ways to make incremental improvements.
“People are always saying, ‘If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.’ Well, my philosophy is sometimes you should break it just to see how it can run better.”
Improving the member data-base and the systems that operate it are high on Mr. Reavie’s list of priorities. The trick will be isolating the major and most critical needs in each APEGGA department, and addressing those first.
“I’m really big on setting priorities. Otherwise, you can spend a lot of time and energy on things that aren’t really that important.”
After about a month on the job, Mr. Reavie is confident he’ll find support within APEGGA, across departments. “Everyone’s been really good to me so far. People are easy to get along with and willing to work as a team. I don’t see the silo mentality going on here; people are willing to work together.”
Outside of the work world, Mr. Reavie’s interests lie mainly in the sports and outdoors realms. He likes camping, skiing, hiking and photography, and has volunteered his time to the Calgary Olympic Games, the Victoria Commonwealth Games and the Peace River Arctic Winter Games.
Mr. Reavie is recently married. He and his wife of two years brought five children to the marriage, ranging in age from eight to 22.
Mr. Reavie takes over a position left open by Ginny Nicholson, CMA, who also managed Human Resources. Nancy Toth, CHRP, Manager, Professional Development, has accepted the HR role.
Said Len Shrimpton, P.Eng., Director, Internal Affairs: “I’m very happy to welcome Mr. Reavie aboard and I’m confident that his skills and perspective will be important as APEGGA continues to improve its administrative systems. Also, with Ms. Toth’s background in HR, shifting those responsibilities to her was a natural fit for the organization.”