BLC: Have you coached any stand-out players who have gone onto big things with the sport?
LG: We have lots of stand-out players—there’s the big ones, of course, like Holly Phillips who was named to the 24-player roster of the Canadian women’s Under-18 national rugby team, while she was part of our club in Grade 11, and has since played for elite team at university England. Then there’s Ashah Payson, who has played for the Prairie Wolf Pack, and is now with The Vikings in Victoria, BC—probably one of the best university sides in the country right now. And the list goes on, with girls playing in university and all around the place. Our current group seems very keen to continue after graduating high school, which is fantastic.
BLC: How long have you been working at Wild Bill’s? What do you enjoy about your role?
LG: It will be six years with Bill’s in September 2018, and it’s been a blast. I love meeting new people every day, hearing stories about what they’ve done in the National Park and what they love about it, while I serve them. It’s a fun job and you meet people from all walks of life.
I love the people I work with, too—from those who have grown up in Banff, to those like me from all corners of the globe. It’s about coming together and putting out a great product, and often it doesn’t feel like “work”! When we’re busy, I love the challenges we work through—it’s “head down, work hard”. We have a great bar team, and we serve huge numbers of people—some nights with very small teams—and we do it well!
BLC: How do your roles as Bar Supervisor and Rugby Coach complement one another?
LG: Some of my coaching seeps into my work at Bill’s. Like in rugby, you’re only as strong as your weakest link the workplace, too. Since I have a good amount of hospitality experience, I like to help my co-workers learn new techniques, and give them ideas that can help us get even better. Just like out on the pitch, I’m happy both teaching and listening. I’m grateful to work with two excellent teams.