FOR DANNY CHASE, FOUNDER AND CEO OF CHASE OFFICE INTERIORS, GIVING BACK IS A FAMILY AFFAIR.
Since founding his company 16 years ago, along with his team, Danny has grown his dealership, Chase Office Interiors, into one of the largest in Canada. Family and community were the foundational principles on which Saul and David Feldberg built Teknion. These same values are the cornerstone of Danny’s business, drive his growth and connect him to his roots. Chase Office Interiors is Teknion’s only fully-owned and controlled Aboriginal dealership. On Chase’s relationship with Teknion Danny remarks, “We step up and support each other. The Community of First Nations is the same. It’s all about community and family. In fact, giving back is very much a family affair.”
Danny, along with his Cousin Larry Wilkins, are major supporters of Alberta’s only private Aboriginal high school, Mamawi Atosketan Native School. Mamawi Atosketan means “working together” and it serves four nations and four reserves. The school provides its students with a well-rounded education comprised of spiritual, academic and hands-on experiential learning to instill pride in their roots while giving them the future-ready skills they will need when they graduate.
Larry Wilkins is Danny’s mentor and inspiration, and was key to getting him involved with the school. Larry recalls, “I took Danny to the school’s open house, and when he met the school principal, saw the kids and saw what they were wanting to build, he was hooked.” Larry adds, “We all share a passion for our First Nations heritage.” Danny thought he was going to talk about a donation of equipment and computers, but what Gayle Wilton, the principal said was, “We really need a high school.” That led to Chase sponsoring a major part of the construction, including the state-of-the-art gymnasium. Gayle explains, “We’re a private school. Without donations we wouldn’t be here. We thought we’d be lucky if we got a few rooms, but we ended up with a whole school! We are proud to have a school that is culturally appropriate, that gives our students a sense of pride about who they are and who they can be. They have a place here.”
“My charitable work motivates me. I was given an opportunity, and I want to give back, and provide that to others. I can open the door so that the next generation can walk through it,” says Danny. Chase Office Interiors’ team is proud of what they have helped build. Concludes Danny, “It demonstrates there is a greater purpose and meaning to things than just dollars and cents.”