26 Years Old
Class of 2020
“Personal success means practicing a healthy work/life balance – it’s so easy to get lost in your career here, and I’m lucky to love what I do, but it’s also incredibly important to take time to get out there and enjoy this amazing place that we call home.”
Tyler Cole didn’t know what to expect when he arrived in Wood Buffalo. After three years, he thinks that it’s one of the best decisions of his life. “Like many people in this community, I moved to Fort McMurray from Ontario,” he says. Not an unfamiliar tale told around these parts he was hot in pursuit of a career opportunity he couldn’t refuse.
Tyler is the Economic Development Officer responsible for Sports & Events with the Fort McMurray Wood Buffalo Economic Development & Tourism. “I’d never been here before, didn’t know anybody who lives here, and really didn’t know what to expect.” He has learned to ‘embrace’ the north and enjoy its splendour; the northern lights, outdoor ice skating, cross country skiing, getting out in the forests.
How did he kickstart this exciting career of his? “I’d always been keen on playing and watching a wide variety of sports as a kid, and I became more interested in the business side of sport while working for the UBC Thunderbirds Athletics Department as a student there,” he said. He studied the Business of Sports at Algonquin College’s Sport Business Management Program.
The people Tyler has met both in Wood Buffalo and across the country while working in the sports business is what keeps him doing the work he does.
“The sports and events community here in Fort McMurray is full of fantastic, hardworking people who have the same passion for hosting great events; so it’s really been my privilege to get to know them and work alongside them these past three years. I can’t wait to see what we can do together in the future,” he said.
“For me, working in the sport tourism sector was the perfect combination of being behind the scenes of those big events that get a city buzzing with excitement, and working with people who are committed to doing great things in their community. I had no idea that people actually get paid to go to sporting events, chat with people, and then do their best to bring those events to their community,” he said. When he is not having fun at work he volunteers with the Fort McMurray Food Festival, WinterPLAY, and the Fort McMurray Heritage Society.
When not working and volunteering, Tyler can be found exploring with Peggy, his SPCA rescue dog, walking the trails, taking photos, and hanging out with his girlfriend and their friends.