Meet Dave Stevens

Dave Stevens playing his guitar at a concert

This summer, Dave followed the path of a number of earlier Farberites, making the trek from South Africa to Toronto. “I’m still adjusting to the move,” he admits, “and getting the lay of the land. The people at Farber have been very welcoming and show a genuine interest in me as a person.”

In his role at Farber, Dave is part newbie and part veteran. While Farber and Toronto are new to him, he actually has a fifteen-year history with Farber’s Circle & Square business unit, having worked with founder Barry Pokroy in the practice’s South African office.

A people person

Dave found his way into the emotional intelligence space from a career in corporate facilitation and project management. “It seemed to me that the people side of projects was the most fascinating part of the job.” Now he concentrates his efforts on assisting people, and organizations, as they realize their human potential—through executive coaching, leadership training and facilitation.

Scary things

“Scary” depends on your perspective. Dave once did one of the largest bungee jumps in the world, off Bloukrans Bridge in South Africa. “Not sure what the distance was (216 metres, apparently) but it felt like a lifetime of freefall. I’ve actually done scarier things, though,” Dave claims. In that category, he includes playing professional soccer and touring in an indie pop band. “I played guitar in the band for eight years and we tried to make a go of it playing throughout South Africa.”

f mark multiple coloursSongs and stories

If there’s one aspect of the pop band experience that’s stuck with him, it’s the desire to keep writing and playing music. Along the way, Dave managed to record an album that’s still getting air time in South Africa and even a small royalty cheque every so often. “I look for pockets of time to do song writing and just follow my creative interests.” While he doesn’t perform, except around the house, he does record his work and uploads it into a SoundCloud. And there’s a bigger project Dave has in mind, which is to write an entire musical—theatrical production and all!

It’s not just tunes he loves to write. He’s also a novelist, with three books to his credit. “I got my start working in journalism, but I found my real love was writing fiction.”

How does a garden grow?

“If I had the time, I’d love to learn to garden,” Dave muses.  As with so many of us, Dave gets the urge to connect with the land the way our ancestors did. “But the other part is that I find myself totally reliant on others to feed me. If there were an apocalypse, I’m not sure how I’d look after myself.”

Family first

Above his many interests, family life is Dave’s passion and priority. “My daughter is two and a half and that pocket of time only lasts so long. What matters for me most is creating an environment where my relationships with my wife and daughter can go the distance.”

So far, their new life in Toronto is showing promise. “I’m not a big traveller, says Dave, “but I’m an adventurer in my own backyard.” Together, the family has done a good job of “unpacking Toronto,” and settling into their new surroundings. “I just got my first parking ticket which is something to treasure.” Welcome to Toronto, Dave!


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