Fasken Partner Spotlight – Martin Denyes, Managing Partner (Ontario) at Fasken

I need to concede, right from the outset, that I am not a very good skier.  I need to do that because some of the people who read Raceline have seen me ski and have tried to teach me.  They are good skiers. 

 My children, however, are good skiers. In large measure, they are good skiers because they have pounded gates on the icy slopes of the escarpment.  Or they have done hundreds of repetitions.  I’ve seen the confidence that it builds.  I’ve seen the discipline that it builds.  I’ve seen the social connection that it builds.  And I’ve seen the joy that they get, as young adults, from a day on the runs, knowing they can handle what a hill or a mountain throws at them.  

My oldest dropped everything, in the middle of a pandemic just over a year ago to take a job with a fintech company in Berlin.  It has been a bit isolating and far more distancing than we would like.  A couple of weekends ago, he sent pictures from a mountaintop in the Alps.  He had travelled, by himself, from Berlin on a Friday night.  On Saturday morning, he was in his happy place, on the top of a glacier, sun beaming in.  I’m sure it was both foreign and familiar.  You don’t get that feeling without the confidence that comes from the time and the coaching that goes on all over the slopes of southern Ontario. 

So that is a big reason why Fasken’s association with Alpine Ontario makes me smile.  I’ve stood at the bottom of slopes, waiting for a kid to appear over a hill, hoping he makes that first gate.  I’ve run the coats down the hill.  I’ve stood on the steep slope of a hill, monitoring gates, trying to figure out whether both of those skis went around it.  I’ve been that parent.  I’ve also been lucky enough to stand at the top of a glacier occasionally and that is quite a feeling as well.

I know our association with Alpine Ontario makes a lot of our colleagues smile.  Some have been that skier,more have been that parent.  We are all fans of children and young adults achieving at a high level or simply doing their best, whether it is through skiing, another sport or through some other confidence and skill building endeavour.

As for “what’s next”, we at Fasken are very much looking forward to the Winter Olympics and Paralympics in Beijing. Our involvement with the Paralympics dates back to Sydney 2000 when one of our Partners, Marc-Andre Fabien jumped into action and supported now Senator Chantal Petitclerc retain the gold model she had won. In addition to his responsibilities as a Fasken Partner, Marc is also the current President of the Canadian Paralympic Committee. We have been only too pleased to expand our support of Canadian athletes by becoming the Official Legal Services Partner of both the Canadian Olympic and Paralympic Committees in recent years.  Our Fasken colleagues will be cheering on Canada’s winter athletes, across the sports spectrum, in the weeks to come.   

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