SHIFTer of the Month
My name is Anuar and originally, I am from a country called Kyrgyzstan, born in its capital city Bishkek. At the age of 9, I immigrated to Toronto, Canada with my immediate family, including my mother, father, and my sister living here for 8 years together. I spent another 4 years of my life in Toronto prior to reconnecting with my family in Thunder Bay. During those years I had the opportunity to work closely with a few small business owners who inspired me to pursue my curiosity in the business world.
I graduated from Confederation College with an advanced diploma in Business Accounting – Administration and thereafter from Lakehead University with a Bachelor of Administration in Business. Currently, I am pursuing my designation as a Chartered Professional Accountant.
While attending College, I worked in their Finance Department starting as a summer student and soon after as an Accountant Assistant. During my third semester at the College, I had a co-op placement at the Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre as an Accounts Payable Clerk which matured into an Accounting Assistant and later a Junior Accountant position for the 3.5 years prior to taking on a position at Grant Thornton as an Accountant.
I am currently an Accountant at Grant Thornton. Mostly, I spend my time working with our Assurance clients and seldom with Private Held Business clients. I enjoy my time at Grant Thornton because I am provided with the opportunity to grow and expand my potential as an accountant and a business advisor. I am honored that I have worked amongst such talented individuals dating back from my experience in Toronto, at the College and at the Hospital. I continue to feel this way at Grant Thornton, conquering new challenges every day.
Grant Thornton truly wants to move Thunder Bay forward. We have developed partnerships with various organizations committed to bringing Thunder Bay’s economy forward by looking out for the community. This year, the Grant Thornton’s Thunder Bay office was chosen out of all the offices across Canada to receive a pallet of toys to donate to a worthy cause as part of the GT Foundation Gift Giving Initiative. We are thrilled to announce that we have donated over 200 toys to the Dilico Christmas Wish Campaign!
Every year our Grant Thornton office collaborates with the Children’s Aid Society to “adopt” a family in need and previously we raised enough funds to help a family of 9 get clothing, household goods, food and toys.
We also sponsor the “Conquer the Tower” Event to support “Pro Kid’s Thunder Bay” who help kids get active and involved in our community. Our staff raised additional funds for two of our brave team members that volunteered to jump off a 10 meter platform at the Canada Games Complex.
To help make Thunder Bay streets a little cleaner, Grant Thornton rounds up teams to participate in the Stash the Trash Cleanup event put on by EcoSuperior. Each year we dedicate an entire day on the weekend to this event.
Lastly, this past year we introduced a new service line of cloud accounting, which is an innovative new offering that combines personalized accounting advisory services with the latest accounting software and applications from leading providers. Our Grant Thornton advisors help to automate and organize client data and processes such as invoicing, cash receipts, accounts receivable and payable tracking, generating accounting records and collecting customer information more efficiently and accurately. Cloud accounting is a more effective, efficient way to deliver accounting and business advisory services.
I was always interested in becoming a member of shift and now am truly honored that I was chosen to be SHIFTer of the month. To me, SHIFT means doing something out of your comfort zone, sharing experiences and keeping up to date with new trends and events all with the intent to move Thunder Bay forward. I appreciate this network as it reminds me of a family that supports one another to keep thriving, keep growing and evolving to become better than we were yesterday.
My mother, for example, was an Anesthesiologist in Kyrgyzstan but was not eligible to practice here in Canada without a local medical license and had to start the medical licensing process from scratch. This created many challenges that my family and I had to face, but with everyone’s efforts we were able to provide the support for our mother and for each other to get where we are today.
After approximately eight years of hard work and dedication, with English as her second language, my mother finally completed her path to becoming a Family Doctor. The reason why I am giving such a back story of my mother is because if it wasn’t for her, my family would not be where we are today.
Not too long after, my father and I had graduated from Confederation College. My father with a Medical Radiation Technologist Diploma and myself with the Business Accounting – Administration Diploma. My sister was inspired by our mother’s path and also chose a career in medicine. She was recently accepted to a Medical Residency Program specializing in Psychiatry at the Schulich School of Medicine, Western University in London, Ontario. I believe we all thrived from my mother’s success and I would proudly say that she is our SHIFTer. With that being said, I believe that “if there is a will, there is a way”, just recognize your own SHIFT that motivates and inspires you to become one for yourself and others.
Relocating from a big city like Toronto, I’ve learned that Thunder Bay creates a great city/outdoor balance for me. I feel that I can truly enjoy the outdoors with our long summer days and hit the hills during our heavy winters, all in short proximity. This city has a great downtown district, crawling with bars and restaurants. The district makes great efforts to collaborate with the community, for example, with Operation Red Nose which in turn makes for eventful nights during the holidays. But most of all, I appreciate the variety of outdoor activities that Thunder Bay has to offer, and that I have yet to try.