Meet Tim Vermeulen

Tim Vermeulen

As the expression goes, “You never know until you try.”

Tim subscribes to the belief that we all have hidden talents that might not surface until we give them a chance. Take singing, for example. A few years back when Tim got a new laptop, he realized it had Garage Band installed on it, allowing him to record his own music. Having had a little training on piano, and a mother who sang in amateur productions, “I called up YouTube, picked a song, pressed record and started singing. I was curious to see what my voice sounded like and it was actually OK.”

After taking a few lessons and playing around with some more recordings, he gathered enough confidence to put his tracks online. “A tribute band found it and called me to audition as their lead singer, and I made it to the final round.” Though the audition didn’t result in Tim changing his career, he’s kept up his singing. “Now I know what I would do if I retired,” he says.

Hidden hockey talent
Tim’s talent as a net-minder was also latent. “My parents put my brothers into hockey and they both quit. As a result, I didn’t get the same encouragement. But I found hockey naturally,” says Tim. “I played road hockey, then got skates. I joined a house league and played forward for a couple of years before getting the nerve to try goalie.”

Two years later, he was a starting goalie for a minor midget Triple A team that became Ontario champions in the years after. “Maybe if I’d started earlier, I would have gone further,” he ponders. At least it led to Tim starting at goalie on the Farber team. Not quite the NHL, but pretty close.

f mark multiple colours

Lions and elephants and baboons, oh my!
There’s an adventurous side to Tim that’s taken him to faraway places. “My Dad was South African, so I’ve been to Africa 10 or 12 times.” Johannesburg has been the usual stop, but he’s also been to all of the southern countries on the continent, including Mozambique and Botswana. “It was eye-popping to see the wild animals there and hear elephants at night wandering close to my tent,” Tim recalls.

On one safari, he left an extra stash of luggage in the jeep and baboons stole it when the door was left open. Apparently, the guides felt responsible and chased after the baboons to recover it. “Seemed a bit much to risk life and limb for a pack of underwear and socks,” Tim laughs.

Giving back
On the philanthropic side, Tim became a Rotary Club member in 2012 and has remained active ever since. “My father was involved when I was younger that’s how I got the urge to join,” says Tim. He currently has an executive role as chair of membership. “I felt it was important to give back to the community and Rotary pursues projects at both the local level and internationally, often in the areas of health or education. And it’s great to be able to help out through a group that is proactive and collegial.”

Tim joined Farber over two years ago and claims “It’s the best group I’ve worked with.” He speaks from experience, having worked many years in banking, some in more rigid environments. He also spent three years with an asset management company in the British Virgin Islands, which was a great experience, but the limited opportunities for career advancement led him back to Toronto. “I’m glad to have gained the experience I did, but now I prefer the collaborative setting at Farber where new ideas are encouraged and there is a dynamic of creating.”

He also considers the 40-year legacy of Farber as evidence of stability, trust and credibility. “I’ve had clients bring it up in conversation and they take real comfort from that.”

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