I was never sure of my exact career pathway. I knew I loved acting, entertaining, writing, and speaking to a captivated audience. About what? Where? How? When? These were all unknowns and would only be discovered in stages.
The first stage was through York University where I worked for the Excalibur Newspaper, studied Creative Writing and Philosophy, and developed an appreciation for the publishing industry.
Using the skills and knowledge I acquired from the Excalibur, I lead a team in developing Canada’s First Environmental Magazine, Recover. The motto “Reduce. Reuse. Recycle. And Recover” won the approval of Canadian Literary Hero, Farley Mowat, and my favorite cartoonist, Calvin & Hobbes who both provided content.
The second stage came after I enrolled in the CGA program to study accounting. At the time, I figured that this added knowledge would be an asset for the publishing industry and/or any other career pathway I may chose. During my studies, my father offered me a job in the family business. I remained there for four years, however, my heart just was not in it.
Feeling something was missing, I chose to take time off and reflect. I returned to the gym and a new passion was ignited. I felt there was something special about lifting; about stacking the weights; about becoming more knowledgeable about my body; and about shaping it with intention. As a result, I entered into the next stage of my ‘discovery process’, when I studied personal training, performance nutrition, and massage therapy. At this point, I still did not know the ‘what, where, how, and when’ of my career pathway, although I did know that its base was in fitness.
Then, one fateful day, while doing cardio at the gym, a bodybuilding competition happened to be playing on TV. That’s when it dawned on me that if they could sculpt their physique to seemingly perfection, so could I! “I want to be the biggest name in bodybuilding!” were the words that automatically flashed through my head. With out understanding what that meant exactly, why that was, how to accomplish that, or even where to begin, I decided that I was ready to take on the task.
Within two years I was invited to be the Head Judge and main Officiator for the very TV event that ignited my passion. I also competed in three competitions and gained experience as an athlete. However, I soon realized that competing alone was not my passion. Cleaning up the contest stage – and providing opportunities and exposure to natural athletes – was.
The following year I fell in love at first sight with my soon-to-be best friend, business partner, confidant, role model, mentor and wife , Mindy Blackstien. Together we launched and developed the World Natural Sports Organization, the Drug Free Sports Association, the FAME World Tour, FAME Media Group, FAME Magazine, the Body Proud Challenge, the bodyPROUD concepts, values, social networking community.
Along the way, I applied the skills and knowledge that I had acquired through the initial stages of my discovery process. I wore many hat sduring this time -- business manager, administrator, financial director, sales person, media spokesperson, visionary, seminar leader, and entrepreneur – and was successful, together with Mindy, in creating a movement, positively impacting people’s lives, and introducing natural athletics to individuals – and regions – around the world.
Today, I am is ready to wear one only one hat: that which suits me best and is the best fit. I am most interested in sharing my experiences; being a visionary; helping others to bring bodyPROUD values and the Sport of Bodybuilding and Fitness to improve many elements in mainstream society and family homes. I have also returned to my love of writing and plan to finish some of the projects that I began over 20 years ago.
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