If Nelson native Dale Donaldson had been looking for validation on a decision he made several decades ago, the latest installment came on June 15. It was then that the proprietor of Mallards Source for Sports in Castlegar and Nelson was honoured as the Business Person of the Year by the Castlegar and District Chamber of Commerce.
Having been named “Business Person of the Year,” Donaldson was a prime candidate for a brief profile and was quite willing to chat about his relative success on June 27.
The young entrepreneur had moved to Castlegar in 1984 and started up the store and added the second store in Nelson in 1986.
“I spent a lot of time at Selkirk (College) but I started the stores at 22 so I didn’t have much time for more formal education.” Donaldson has actually been involved in the world of sporting goods since making a decision at the age of 15.
Dale has benefitted along the way by associating with veterans of the commercial scene.
“I grew up in Nelson so those mentors were here, as opposed to being in Castlegar,” he related from the Nelson location. The names of Maurice and Pat Renwick came to mind as he was asked about specific influences. “Maurice passed away but Pat’s still around… long-time Nelson businesspeople,” he related.
“One thing we said we would …do is to look after our customers as best we can.
“I would like to say we have really great staff, and that’s the major part of our success,” he says. “Our customers for the most part tend to love our staff, and so do we.”
Donaldson is also quick to share any credit for for business success to his wife Michelle.
It’s not all work for Donaldson, he’s involved with the Rotary Club and is a past president. He’s coached a lot of minor hockey over the years and is still closely connected with the local association. There are two younger Donaldsons in the picture as well – son Alex, 22 and daughter Casey, 20, both in university.