PBMA is pleased to introduce our newest Mechanic of the Week, Ryan Gardiner, of Westwood Cycle in Port Coquitlam, Vancouver BC! Ryan started out working as a mechanic in his native Australia before settling in Canada, and he is the first international mechanic to be nominated for #mechanicmonday. He said he is “honoured” to be featured today, but truly the honor is ours!
PBMA is still developing as an organization, but MOTW is a cornerstone of what we believe in and what we aim to do; we are mechanics supporting fellow mechanics. Even behind the scenes, MOTW is supported by mechanics; the awards are presented by one of the best in our business, Jason Quade, a.k.a. the Abbey Bike Tools Friar.
When we interviewed Ryan for this feature, we found that his own goals and motivations are incredibly similar to PBMA’s. Westwood Cycle headhunted Ryan from Australia for his technical expertise, and he moved from being the Service Manager of one store to the Service Director for the entire company within a year and a half. In that time, Ryan worked (and continues to work) tirelessly to help grow the mechanical profession throughout Canada. He is actively involved in the design and instruction of pre-apprenticeship courses through his shop and local high schools, which serve as stepping stones into the cycling industry. As if bridging the gap between his community and our industry isn’t enough all on its own, Ryan is also working with the owners of Westwood Cycle to help Canada bring in a formal certification program for cycling mechanics.
Ryan got his start in cycling by riding BMX as a teenager in Australia. He started working in a bike shop at 16 years old, and he’s worked at least one day a week in a shop ever since. For the past 17 years, Ryan has worked with sole owner-operators, family-owned businesses, and high-volume stores. As a BMX racer, Ryan had the opportunity to travel throughout Australia and the United States. He and his teammates shared their cycling culture with people in both urban areas and remote country towns, by performing demos and holding BMX clinics. Ryan’s relentless pursuit of excellence – “Never stop getting better at whatever it is that you love to do!” – ultimately led him to settle in British Columbia, where he’s found his niche at Westwood Cycle and out on the local trails, skate parks, and dirt parks.
In Ryan’s own words, “cycling people are the best people.” We couldn’t agree more, and we are certain that Ryan is one of those “best people.” He was nominated for MOTW by his colleagues, who said that even when he has to be their boss, he is still their friend; combine that with his technical expertise and generosity, and you’ve got the definition of professionalism.
We are proud of the work that Ryan has done and the community that he’s created in Vancouver, and it is our privilege to feature him today. On behalf of the entire PBMA community, we encourage all of you reading this at home to join the #MOTW conversation in 2017: Post a picture of YOUR favorite mechanic and tag us @probicyclemech, #probma, or #mechanicmonday, or nominate him or her to be featured in next week’s post.
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