Many companies are justifiably proud of winning an award; there are many handed out throughout a year. But Adam Pekarsky is especially proud for Pekarsky & Co. to be awarded the distinction of the ConnectFirst Credit Union Small Business of the Year.
His company is truly a small business, with a staff of 10, but the Calgary Chamber of Commerce recognized it as having “demonstrated significant business achievement, sustained growth and the potential to become a true pillar of our city; a leader in Calgary’s business community.”
Pekarsky says, “Winning the award is a wonderful public recognition of something my team and our clients have known for nearly 15 years; that we do things differently around here, that we are not afraid to be totally authentic and community-minded, at times a bit irreverent, even cheeky, and that it is possible to take your work seriously without taking yourself too seriously.”
A native of Edmonton, Pekarsky says his entrepreneurship came naturally from his grandfather, Henry Singer, who launched his first menswear store in 1938. Haberdashery was not Pekarsky’s interest, and he became a lawyer before relocating to Calgary in 1998 to the legal firm of Milner Fennerty.
He co-founded his executive search firm in 2009 and began “punching above his weight” in a business that has no degree to teach how to be successful in it. Yet, he has been able to compete against the global search firms as a boutique offering, steadily building up relationships that have lasted.
Good communication and having a significant presence and involvement in the Calgary community have been foremost in the company’s achievements.
Partners Ranju Shergill and Cameron McDonald are both good examples of people who work hard but are willing to be involved in ways to help this city be a better place to live.
Shergill is a former board chair of the Calgary Immigrant Women’s Association and currently serves on the board of the Calgary Telus Convention Centre.
McDonald serves on the executive committee and chaired the nominating committee of the Top 7 over 70 Awards, and led the charge in the firm’s support of the recent Calgary National Bank Challenger tennis tournament.
For 15 of its years in business, Pekarsky has published The Ampersand, his E-newsletter exploring issues of the day that affect our community, which now boasts more than 170 publications. He is also a sessional instructor at the University of Calgary on career management and relationship building, primarily with second and third-year law students. His board memberships include YMCA Calgary and Calgary Municipal Land Corp.
The company has enjoyed working out of character space above the former Alberta Hotel building on the corner of Stephen Avenue and 1st Street S.W. for the past 15 years. Now it’s time for a change, and Pekarsky & Co. is moving next month. The staff are looking forward to working out of a more collaborative space only a block away in the office tower adjacent to the Le Germain Hotel on the corner of Centre Street and 9th Avenue S.W. Purposefully, there are no visitor chairs in offices but lots of hangout spaces to “look each other in the eye” — and another attraction must be the wonderful viewing windows looking down onto the Stampede parade.
Although Pekarsky says he is happy with the size of his company, the extra 1,300 square feet will be plenty should a smart young person desire to join him.
BioAro, a Calgary-based biotechnology company, is on a mission to facilitate access to microbiome testing and services for individuals worldwide, ensuring they receive tailored treatment for Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). Co-founded by registered dietitian Raman Kapoor and Dr. Anmol Kapoor, the company has opened its first virtual and in-person BioGut clinic downtown in Calgary Place 1 on 5th Avenue S.W. The clinic has been meticulously structured to offer a three-month transformative journey specifically to address the complexities of IBS. BioAro has strategic plans to establish additional facilities in Europe, the United Arab Emirates and United States.
David Parker appears regularly in the Herald. Read his columns online at calgaryherald.com/business. He can be reached at 403-830-4622 or by email at [email protected]