Q: Shawn, thanks for taking part, can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
A: I was born and raised in The Pas and have an older brother and older sister. My Dad was a Senior Electrical Technician for Manitoba Hydro and my Mom was an EA for the schools in KSD. I've lived in The Pas except for 3 years where I finished high school in and college in Caronport, Saskatchewan in the year 2000. After completing my education I worked as weekend and night manager of Donuts and Deli uptown. When it shut down I received a phone call from my old competitor, Eric Sanderson of Tim Hortons to drop by and work for him. I worked as Supervisor/Assistant Manager for 6 years mainly working night shift. During my last year there I started dating my now wife, Tamara and besides being a stepfather, we were expecting a baby in August of 2011. At that point I decided to try to find something new because working night shifts and being a family man was wearing me out. I then worked for Shanes Music Uptown as a Senior Customer Rep for Sears and MTS. After helping out there I received a phone call from my old boss, Lorna Zolinski, asking if I wanted to manage Donuts and Deli in the Otineka Mall. I jumped on the opportunity. During then my daughter was born. In October of 2010 Tamara and I got married and bought a house in The Pas to completely get rooted in The Pas to raise our own family. In February of 2014 we had another son. During all of this I have been very active in community out reach with the Living Waters Church and Thomas Ranville to help people out and help make our communities a better place.
Q: Can you tell us a little bit about your business?
A: The Lions-Dish started as an idea from my friend/former business partner Jody Linklater and I in late 2014/2015. When Mrs. Tooley (Bonnie) passed unexpectedly, the mall wanted to know if we wanted the location after seeing our business plan. After much thought and prayer I joined forces with Jody to create a new restaurant. During this Jody started a new job in a different community so I moved over from Donuts and Deli to join Tamara running the store. We officially opened in May of 2015. It's been a lot of hard work and slowly fixing it up as time goes by but has been worth it. Our family, friends, church, OCN/The Pas and surrounding First Nation communities have been an enormous source of support.
We serve breakfast all day, 100% all meat burgers supplied by Berscheid's Meats, home-made soups, hot and cold sandwiches, wraps, fries and various appetizer and fried foods.
Q: What role do you feel does local businesses have in the success of our communities?
A: In our area local businesses need to help each other out to continue to survive. We take care of our own. It sometimes may cost a little extra but you will help local owners keep people employed and have a personal touch to it. With the added business they can grow and employ more people. It also breaks down barriers as you interact with people you may not other wise have anything to do with.
Q: What's your outlook on The Pas, OCN and the RM?
A: I see so much untapped potential in our area. We have extremely hardworking and knowledgeable citizens that just need to be given the shot to follow their dreams. I believe our communities could be a major hub for activity. I also love how close all three communities are and how they help each other out. I am proud to call this area home.
Q: Any final words for our readers?
A: Thank you to Jesus, my wife Tamara and our three kids, our family, friends, church, OCN/The Pas for your never-ending support and believing in us. If you have a dream, never ever give up. You may be a cashier or something right now but keep working hard, opportunity will knock if you don't give up. It took me 15 years working for someone else before my dream of opening a restaurant came true. It's like what Eninem says in the song Lose Yourself. "Look. If you had one shot or one opportunity to seize everything you ever wanted in one moment. Would you capture it? Or just let it slip?"
You can learn more about Lion's Dish, on their facebook page.