Member of the Month – Grant Alsop


Please share a bit about yourself.

I was born and raised in Winnipeg. It was cold in the winter and full of mosquitoes in the summer, but fun. Every Winnipegger knows what socials are and they were a blast. (Might be a good event for TCC; all you need is stale popcorn, rye and coke,
picnic tables, and a dance floor.)

My first job was mowing lawns and shovelling snow, but my first official job with a pay cheque was working in a factory on Sundays when I was about 15.

After graduating from the University of Manitoba I had an opportunity to do a one-year training program with an insurance company in Vancouver. I intended on moving back to Winnipeg to join my father’s business but I loved it here so much from the moment I arrived that I stayed and became a commercial insurance broker, which has been a great career.

I eventually met my wife and we now have three young kids. My wife is from Mexico so we visit frequently. Everyone knows it’s a culture of fun, sun, history, and great food. My father-in-law is a fantastic tour guide; we have many friends and family there so it’s a real cultural event when we go.

Describe your proudest personal or professional accomplishment.

I’m happy with my family and career so that feels like an accomplishment. There are also a lot of things I still want to do personally and professionally so that I think is also pretty good. Delving into Spanish has been an achievement for me. I spent a lot of timetrying to be the class clown in French class and had no interest in learning the language so I think my teachers would be absolutely shocked that I took the time to learn a language now. I speak what I would call okay Spanish but my kids are fluent.

How do you spend your time when you need to relax?

Vancouver has changed into a really interesting city that still has all of the natural recreation around us. As a family we do a lot of skiing and biking. We also use the beaches and ocean in the summer and visit Whistler, Vancouver Island, and the Okanagan. Once a week, I really enjoy cooking. I usually take on something way above my level and make a huge mess— it’s a bit of an issue with my wife and I.

What are you currently reading?

I have two on the go. I’m a big fan of Leonardo Da Vinci and I’m reading the biography by Walter Isaacson. I’m also reading and really enjoying Steve Martins’s biography, Born Standing Up.

Do you collect anything?

I think I might have the best tequila collection in Vancouver.

Tell us about a hidden skill or talent that most people don’t know about.

I make a great paella.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

I wanted to be the quarterback of the San Francisco 49ers. I had to choose another career when I was about 10 years old.

What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever heard?

My grandfather always said, “Keep your head down in golf and drink good alcohol straight.” My father also treated everyone really well and I try to do the same.

Why did you decide to become a member of Terminal City Club? What have you enjoyed the most about the Club so far?

I knew some members and liked the idea of a place to conduct meetings, exercise and meet new people. I have a busy work and family life with three young kids. Terminal City Club gives me an hour many days to come in, exercise, and spend some time with friends between work and a different kind of work at home. It’s also a great place to conduct meetings and business lunches. My kids enjoy coming down on weekends for squash, the pool and dinner at the Grill.