|Wally McIntosh: Portrait of a Leader|
Wally McIntosh is remembered by his colleagues as a man who lived life to its fullest. A high achiever in the construction industry and founder of McIntosh Mechanical Inc., he brought a unique vibrancy to OSM serving as its president in 1982. Larry McDonald now president of McIntosh Mechanical, remembers him vividly, “He worked hard; he played hard; he was a great guy.” McDonald speaks with particular since authority given that he served his apprenticeship at McIntosh Mechanical working for none other than Wally McIntosh. A licensed plumber and sheet metal journeyman himself, McIntosh was dedicated to apprenticeship programs, indeed, to all aspects of learning in the trade. McDonald remembers being impressed with his passion for learning, “He always encouraged apprentices to go to night school and then he encouraged apprentices to get additional qualifications. ‘Be the best you can be’ he would often say.”
McIntosh was interested in improving more than his own business that he founded with his wife Leone and later his daughters Jan and Connie. He was instrumental in creating the high school training program working cooperatively with the union local in Sarnia. “He expected good quality workmanship and did all he could to promote this ethic, says McDonald who carries on the tradition at McIntosh Mechanical today.
Long time OSM member, likewise a OSM former president, McDonald’s personal commitment to his mentor’s set of values is evidenced through his own many years of service as chair of the OSM Education and Training Committee. In fact, McDonald has served as a judge for more provincial and other apprentice competitions than he can count. Taking up the reins of president at McIntosh Mechanical following the death of its founder, McDonald says it was an easy decision to carry his former employer’s commitment to education by promoting excellence in apprentice training on the job and with OSM.