Philanthropy For Lunch

The winners of Brett Wilson’s Vancouver Lunch Contest, do not need introductions to Brett, all ten of us recognize him instantly from The Dragon’s Den tv show, as he arrives at The Cibo Trattoria on Feb 28, 2014, wearing an animated Robert Graham designer shirt, accompanied by his lovely daughter.

Cibo Trattoria

Cibo Trattoria

He sits at the head of the table, entertaining us with anecdotes from his life, and sprinkles in highlights from the business conference he attended in L.A. the previous day. His enthusiasm energizes our eclectic group, in the stylish secluded room of the restaurant.

In his book, Redefining Success, Still Making Mistakes, Brett shares his story, and at Cibo, he invites us to share our stories, and gives us his full attention when we speak. The stories of our journeys go deep at times, and include “laughter and tears”, as Brett said.

Brett responds with a generous helping of wisdom, gleaned from years of experience working in the stratosphere of the Canadian investment banking scene, his role on The Dragon’s Den, and from his experiences with his family.

Sharing our stories is a cathartic release of emotion that bonds the group, despite our varied ages, genders, and professions.

It quickly establishes a rapport, which creates common ground between twelve people that were previously strangers.

Brett conducts the tempo of the luncheon like an expert, guiding the ensemble, as we enjoy a delicious lunch and friendship, and chat like a big family.

I feel grateful to be here, aware that tables for Brett’s fundraisers, like the one he organized under the sails at Canada Place in Vancouver go for $25,000.00 each, and high profile stars, like Gene Simmons from KISS, and wife Shannon Tweed are in attendance.

Ann with Brett Wilson

Ann with Brett Wilson

The lunch meeting was orchestrated so smoothly, as if Brett has been conducting luncheons his whole life. Witnessing that level of leadership will take me a while to process.

Before we head home to our various cities and communities, he autographs our books, and poses for pictures with us.

As I walk over to Richards Street, I try to figure out the meaning of the lunch for me, and the ingredient that bonded the lunch guests together.

As I walk in front of The Holy Rosary Cathedral on Richards Street, I have an epiphany.

The French Gothic style heritage building reveals the meaining of the luncheon.

art on Canadian stamp

Guido Nincheri art on Canadian stamp 1997 Holy Rosary Cathedral

This was my Mom’s church in the 1990’s, and when they needed a new roof, she donated $5,000.00 to the roof fund, which was a large sum for her.

Aha! It was about philanthropy. He did not preach to the congregation, he connected us, informed and entertained us, rewarded us with lunch, and empowered us to go change the world, by stepping up and spreading the seeds of philanthropy in the community.

“Example is not the main thing in influencing others. It is the only thing” – Albert Schweitzer

I had never realized that my mom was my original philanthropy mentor, when she took me on The Mother’s March as a child to raise money for the charity. Or, when I saw her giving bus fare to every hitchhiker she saw, so they would take a bus instead of getting in a car with a stranger. Sometimes small acts can change the course of someone’s life.

She gave either her time, or her talent, or her treasure, the three t’s, to express her gratitude for the gifts she was given.

To her, philanthropy would have seemed like a big word to describe it , but it takes a big heart to “love all of mankind”. I think she would have called it caring for others, or in a word ‘love’.

Copy this link to Read My Review of Brett’s book: http://annhoy.com/redefining-success-still-making-mistakes-book-review-by-ann-hoy/

http://www.holyrosarycathedral.org/stewardship/

photo by Clayton
photo of Cibo by Ann

Review of Week 4 – Going BIG With Going With The Flow

 

go BIG with the flow

Going BIG With The Flow

I went BIG with the flow this week, instead of pushing or trying to influence events, I was laid back, yet surprisingly productive.  I read the book “Redefining Success” by W. Brett Wilson, and learned about work/life balance, entrepreneurship, marketing and philanthropy, from one of Canada’s top business people. I will post a review of the book later this week.

I also went BIG with getting updated on those around me:

–          My youngest son discussed his plans after high school,  and we sent off his college application.

–          My middle son loves statistics and facts and  fun Superbowl facts.  He said that 17 of the last 20 Superbowls have been won by the city with the lowest unemployment rate.  People who are employed are more able to buy tickets to go to the games, and spend money on team merchandise to support the team.  I have seen individuals gain confidence by gaining employment, but I wasn’t aware of the impact of employment on the confidence of a team and a city!  It will be Interesting to see if Seattle will win with 5.7% unemployment, or Denver which has 5.8%.  Apparently, The Seattle Seahawks have never won the Superbowl.

–          My eldest son organized a hiking trip for him and five friends up a 2,000 foot rock face called “The Chief” near Squamish, B.C.   I helped him gather supplies to hike up to the summit with all their backpacks to camp overnight where The Peregrine Falcons nest.  They are the fastest flying birds in the world, flying at speeds of over 200 miles per hour.

Sources:

www.foxnews.com , www.defenders.org/peregrine

photo: photo pin creative commons

 

52 Weeks to Optimizing Yourself – Week 4 – Go BIG With Going With The Flow

 

Go BIG with the flow

Go BIG with the flow

For this week’s optimizing yourself exercise, I am going BIG with going with the flow…

I have a positive vibe this week, and I won a contest!!

I AM going to have lunch with W. Brett Wilson, formerly of The Dragon’s Den reality tv show, at an undisclosed location in Vancouver next month.  He is one of Canada’s most successful entrepreneurs and philanthropists.

I AM preparing a question to ask Brett at the luncheon, as are each of the 8 winners

I AM reading Brett’s book “Redefining Success” which I purchased this week, so I can review it on my blog

I AM preparing for my goal of taking my blog on a road trip in the next few months to interact with the community, and this is a great opportunity to do that.

I will let you know how this week’s going BIG with going with the flow goes next week.