A strong community can promote new ideas and ensure accountability. It can also act as motivation, support, and even provide a little friendly competition. The power of community is undeniable and the Okanagan tech community is no exception.
Our community is strong and growing with record speed and maintaining connection through a period of growth like this can be a challenge. Nobody panic, we’ve got a plan.
Introducing, The Faces of #OKGNtech. A showcase of Okanagan tech entrepreneurs, partners, supporters, and cheerleaders designed to fuel more connection, more growth, and more excitement. Follow along (on the blog and on Instagram @OKGNtech) to learn more about our growing community and what makes them awesome.
Meet Brad. Brad Dahl works on Government Relations and Special Projects for Bardel Entertainment — an animation studio here in Kelowna. When Brad isn’t brainstorming ways to improve the talent pipeline, you can find him working on the Kelowna paddle trail, enjoying the view from his patio, or wine tasting with his wife. We recently caught up with Brad to learn more about who inspires him and what he loves about the Okanagan.
Who inspires you?
“I try to read 5 books a year that have a positive message, that way I have positive information to share that with others. Authors that are positive and look at the world in a realistic, data-driven way, inspire me. I could listen to the media all day long and just get depressed about what’s happening but I like to keep things in context.”
[Editor’s Note: If you haven’t read anything by Steven Pinker, jump on it.]
Can you tell us about your role at Bardel Entertainment?
“My role has been figuring out how to contribute to the growth of the animation industry here in Kelowna. Lately, we’ve been working with School District 23 to launch a dual credit animation program that will allow kids to get a headstart on the program here.”
What do you love about #OKGNtech?
“I like what is going on in this town. There are so many little companies that no one has ever heard of who are being subcontracted by major global companies and working on large-scale projects. It is surprising and you kind of go ‘really?!’” #Itsallherenow
What do you love about the Okanagan?
“I was in Vancouver when the animation industry was just starting out and there were like 3 main studios, and maybe 300 animators working in the province. Now there is over 3000 animators here in BC…I don’t think most people realize the opportunity, there is real potential here in Kelowna.” #KELOWNAcartoons
“My wife was born and raised here in Kelowna on an orchard. Every time we had visited in the past I would work on her families orchard, so I’ve just associated the Okanagan with work. One day we came and we didn’t tell her parents we were here and I was like “Wow this place is kind of cool, I could live here”.
“Here in the Okanagan, you can make an impact. I am pretty proud I was able to establish 100 metres of beachfront access and now the paddle trail that stretches 27 kilometres. If I tried to get involved in that kind of thing in a bigger city centre… It wouldn’t happen. You can have more impact on the community, that has to be my favourite thing about the Okanagan.”
[Editor’s note: You can thank Brad for taking 20 metres of foreshore out in McKinley Landing and turning it into 100 metres of beach, as well as the new Kelowna Paddle trail, a trail that stretches from McKinley Landing to Bertram Park].
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
“The best piece of advice I can share is…. Listen, network, connect, repeat. My wife doesn’t seem to think I listen at all, but I listen, I’m constantly listening to people’s opinions, and trying to polish off ideas and figure out what the best course of action is to accomplish a task.”
What’s one word you would use to describe yourself and why?
“One word that I would use to describe myself would be innovator. I have been an entrepreneur all my life. I’m constantly listening to people and thinking of ways to fill the gaps.”
Have you seen the rest of the OKGNtech faces?
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