Ex­ec­u­tive search firm be­lieves in giv­ing back


Five years may not seem a long time in the life of a com­pany but those few short years since Pekarsky Stein was founded have given the bou­tique, high­per­form­ing search firm much to cel­e­brate.

Lawyer Adam Pekarsky and ac­coun­tant Terry Stein both de­cided to leave their pro­fes­sions to sat­isfy de­sires to own a com­pany and be­come their own bosses. They had met when their paths crossed at a search com­pany they joined and where they built up a good re­la­tion­ship.

Pekarsky hails from Ed­mon­ton and says he comes by his en­trepreneur­ship nat­u­rally — his grand­fa­ther Henry Singer launched his first menswear store in 1938 with only $300 in his pocket.

Pekarsky be­came a lawyer, mov­ing to Cal­gary in 2001 to get ex­pe­ri­ence with Mil­ner Steer. Later he joined Robert Half, a spe­cial­ized staffing com­pany where he led a team in the re­cruit­ment of lawyers and was able to ne­go­ti­ate a con­tract to con­tinue to re­cruit lawyers for his for­mer le­gal firm.

Stein is a Cer­ti­fied Man­age­ment Ac­coun­tant and Cana­dian Hu­man Re­sources Pro­fes­sional who also moved to Cal­gary from Ed­mon­ton to get cor­po­rate ex­pe­ri­ence in the fi­nance depart­ment of Tran­sAlta, where he worked for 10 years in sev­eral se­nior level fi­nan­cial po­si­tions. Hu­man re­sources and col­lec­tive bar­gain­ing there was his in­tro­duc­tion into the HR world.

He was in­volved in res­i­den­tial property for a time, de­vel­op­ing the 16-hectare Spring Wil­low Es­tates be­fore also join­ing Robert Half, where he met Pekarsky.

Pekarsky started his own search firm in 2009 and Stein joined him as a part­ner the fol­low­ing year.

Their ex­pe­ri­ences com­ple­mented each oth­ers as they worked to­gether to build the “We know people” bou­tique firm with Pekarsky con­tin­u­ing to con­cen­trate on the search for le­gal pro­fes­sion­als and Stein us­ing his ac­count­ing, fi­nance and HR man­age­ment strengths.

Ear­lier this year, Ranju Shergill, who has been with the firm since its in­cep­tion, was made a part­ner. The Cal­gary com­ple­ment also in­cludes prin­ci­pal Lisa Luedtke, as­so­ciate Brendan Wade, and Jes­sica Young, the new­est as­so­ciate im­ported from Mon­treal who holds a masters in com­mu­ni­ca­tions and me­dia from McGill.

They all op­er­ate un­der the watch­ful and help­ful eye of of­fice man­ager Patrick Malachi.

Last Novem­ber, an Ed­mon­ton of­fice was opened with Rick Vo­gel the part­ner along with prin­ci­pal Marie Iwanow. They plan to move into larger space later this year to be able to ex­pand their pres­ence.

But Stein says the firm will re­main as a bou­tique spe­cial­iz­ing in dif­fi­cult po­si­tions across mul­ti­ple in­dus­tries from man­ager level up to the C-suite, tak­ing on chal­lenges with a sense of pride, hu­mour and pur­pose.

That keeps the teams very busy but their core val­ues of trust and in­tegrity go be­yond of­fice time. All staff are in­volved in the com­mu­nity, sup­port­ing a num­ber of or­ga­ni­za­tions in­clud­ing the Al­berta Chil­dren’s Hospi­tal, Hospice Cal­gary, Tourism Cal­gary, Cal­gary Women’s Emer- gency Shel­ter and a favourite — the Pekarsky Stein Pro Bono Hockey team that has raised over $300,000 for Alzheimer’s re­search as part of the Gordie Howe Stick It To Alzheimer’s tour­na­ment.

Pan­cakes, bangers and beans are still a favourite Stam­pede dish but many events held dur­ing the 10-day — and more — ex­trav­a­ganza have gone in­creas­ingly up­scale with their food of­fer­ings.

The in­vi­ta­tion to last Tues­day’s grand open­ing cel­e­bra­tion of Mil­lion Air, the Fixed Base Op­er­a­tor fa­cil­ity at Cal­gary In­ter­na­tional Air­port for pri­vate air­craft, gave in­struc­tions for guests to wear “coun­try glam.”

The dress code went well with the dis­play of air­craft that guests were able to in­spect in­clud­ing a Gulf­stream 650, Fal­con 200, Chal­lenger 605 and Legacy 650 and a num­ber of lux­ury cars from Fer­rari Maserati of Al­berta.

Add the Giusti and Zor­cal wines served with Ital­ian cui­sine by chef Giuseppe Piruzza in the new 40,000-square-foot hangar and it was quite a grand Stam­pede week event.

The Mayor’s Break­fast for Sport will be held at the Telus Con­ven­tion Cen­tre on Sept. 10 and the Cal­gary Sport Tourism Author­ity will again present an award rec­og­niz­ing ex­em­plary lead­er­ship and ex­cep­tional con­tri­bu­tion to the at­trac­tion and de­liv­ery of a na­tional or in­ter­na­tional sport event to this city.

Nom­i­na­tions must be sub­mit­ted by Fri­day, July 25.

Stu­art Gradon/Cal­gary Herald

Ranju Shergill, right, was re­cently made a part­ner in the bou­tique ex­ec­u­tive search firm Pekarsky Stein with of­fices in Cal­gary and Ed­mon­ton. The com­pany was founded by Terry Stein, left, and Adam Pekarsky.

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