David Quist, past President of the Peterborough Local, received the honorary title of Life Member at the March 2012 Presidents Conference.
The award and the life member ring were presented by Robert Campbell, National President.
In the photo: Robert Campbell, David Quist, Jean-Pierre Fraser
Toronto born David (19/12/50) grew up in Burlington, Ontario from 1955-1969, leaving to attend Trent University in Peterborough, from 1969-1973 securing a Bachelor of Science degree with a Psych/Bio major. After Trent, and a few "interim" jobs (bar service / janitorial / supply teaching) David accepted term employment with the Federal Government in November 1973 with what was then, Unemployment Insurance Canada (UIC). Disillusioned with the government treatment of the unemployed, he quit in September 76 to represent the unemployed and pursue graphic arts work.
Having recognized that one does not burn bridges with those who may later play a role in the future, he secured employment with the Federal Government (Customs & Excise) in January 1981. His role as a Customs Inspector shortly thereafter had him working at Pearson International Airport, the Cobourg Customs Office and the Peterborough Customs office. In 1983 he took on the role as a shop steward – winning his first 2 grievances - David found his niche in the union role. In 1993 with the amalgamation of Customs & Tax, and the downsizing of the local Customs office, David moved over to the Peterborough Tax Services Office and soon after became involved with the Union of Taxation Employees, elected as local president in 1995. He continued his involvement in the union as a member of the executive and occupied the presidency role again from 2001 until his retirement in July of 2011.
David represented many members over the years with grievances as well as harassment charges, not to mention his own grievances (matters of principle and collective agreement infringements) and harassment charges. Pre agency he had filed a complaint with the Public Service Commission achieving a positive outcome.
As the Local President, Peterborough regularly ensured Presidents' Conferences never lacked in items for discussion as well as promoting resolutions for consideration of the Presidents and Executive Council. Items of note brought forward to name just a few: opposition to MG bonus leave prior to contract; re-affirmation of the UTE stance on referral agents as well as selection board participation. David was well known for his exhaustive research on all items submitted as well for his willingness to bring forward creative and contentious issues to ensure proper debate regardless of support or outcome. David willingly spoke for the silent.
David served as the President’s representative on the National Harassment Committee for one term (2002-2004) and the National By-Law Committee for two terms (2004-2008). His contributions to these committees are well recognized and well respected. His interest in by-laws had him on the Convention By-Laws Committee in 1999,2002,2005,2008 & 2011. Triennial Conventions always had resolutions from the Peterborough Local – some of the National by-laws and regulations as well as direction are result of his efforts. He demonstrated perseverance, conviction and willingness to test the changing union times and faces for some of his resolutions. He helped to shape the union it is today.
David was a willing contributor and supporter of the Union News with keynote articles on Poor Designate Contributions during the 2004 strike (April 2007) and a review of the considerations of percentage union dues versus a flat rate dues structure and a Principle of Fairness (December 2010).
David never stopped stepping up to the plate to try and make changes locally, regionally and nationally. David’s employment with the Federal Public Service lasted 33 years and 133 days and covered roles from enquiry clerk, board of referees clerk, customs clerk, customs inspector, collections officer, client services agent and taxpayer relief officer – these were but a means to an end, as his true career and passion was his involvement with the Union. As one long time Union brother had commented re David’s union activism: “The Lone Wolf walked with a huge shadow”.
Brother Quist was awarded Life Membership in the Union of Taxation Employees in March 2012.
David and his wife Rose own and operate Northview Gardens ~ Outdoor Wedding Venue ~ in Peterborough. With a successful business and a wonderful wife celebrating such joyous days, retirement is busy … and Life is Good!