Baldish Sunner Singh – or to anyone who has ever lived in Williams Lake, Bob Sunner – is our feature for this our issue about decks. It’s not too far of a stretch, as Bob, in his capacity as a furniture salesman extraordinaire, does sell furniture that you can put on your deck. He also fits well, as some people may remember his brief foray on stage with the Williams Lake Studio Theatre as a pirate captain, where I shared a deck with him as a Captain of a merchant ship turned cruise ship in the Roy Teed farce called Har, the Pirate Play.
Bob was born and raised in Williams Lake, leaving very briefly, for a year working at his father’s store in Quesnel, and then to study at UBC for a year, taking courses for Pre-Commerce, then to Kamloops at UCC for a year of Business Admin, then finally to SFU where he received his Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration.
Bob returned to Williams Lake to help run the family business that Dad had started in 1971, turning down an offer for a career with Revenue Canada. At that time, Laketown Furnishings was situated on Mackenzie Avenue, where the gymnastics club is currently located. His father bought the current building as an investment in the late 80s, and after some renovations, decided to move their furniture store into it in 1993. Once Bob was back and actively working in the store, his Dad slowly retired and has since moved to the Lower Mainland. According to Bob, he hasn’t had a serious holiday since 1994, “In 1993 My Dad said we would discuss holidays when he came back to Williams Lake from Surrey …he hasn’t been back since.”
In 2001, his Dad asked if Bob was still living in his house. “I told him yes, and he said ‘then you need to buy it,’ so I did.”
Not only is Bob what I would consider a workaholic, but he is heavily involved in our community. He, again, is on the Executive for the Downtown Business Improvement Area. He is the current Vice President of the Hospice Association, and was a member of the Seniors’ Housing task force. His main volunteer time goes to Community Policing, where for the past 12 years, he has helped with bike patrols, vehicle patrols, walking patrols, directing traffic for special events, the stampede parade, KidSport and grad. Bob says he suffers from a medical condition that makes his hand go up whenever anyone is asking for volunteers – that is one medical problem I wish more people had.
When Bob is not busy with all his volunteer activities, he can be found on his motorcycle touring around; practicing Budo Taijitsu, a martial art in which he holds a black belt; or working to become a baptized Sikh.
In conclusion, I give you our personality for the month of August, an amazing man that does a lot for our city, and I challenge you to maybe find a few minutes of your month to volunteer as well.