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Totem Pole finally comes home

The Vancouver Island chapter of Advocis, the Financial Advisors Association of Canada, has been awarded the national organization's top prize, the Totem Pole Award. It's the first time the award has been handed over to the Island chapter since 1927.
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From left, Carol Cooper, Vic Skaarup, Jared Webb, Steve Edmison, Linda Yanagisawa and David Webb proudly display the Totem Award, won by the Vancouver Island chapter of Advocis, the group representing the Financial Advisors Association of Canada. The Island has not won the award, which was crafted here in 1916, since 1927.

The Vancouver Island chapter of Advocis, the Financial Advisors Association of Canada, has been awarded the national organization's top prize, the Totem Pole Award.

It's the first time the award has been handed over to the Island chapter since 1927.

The award, which last year was won by the Peterborough, Ont., chapter, is determined by which chapter achieves the best results in six areas - membership, program, education, communication/public awareness, advocacy and fellowship. Award points are earned through the year based on the level of service provided by the local chapter to its members.

The award was first donated to a predecessor of Advocis, the Life Underwriters Association of Canada (LUAC), in 1916, and is a reproduction of a totem that contains a sample of every metal mined in B.C. as of the turn of the 20th century. The impressive trophy was made in Victoria by jeweller Boris Peetz, who went on to fame for his durable Peetz fishing reels. The company was started by Boris Peetz, a master jeweller who emigrated to B.C. in the early 1900s. Peetz had been operating his jewelry shop in Victoria and began making sterling silver lures for local fishermen. He died in 1954, but the Peetz reel company still operates today on Rock Bay Avenue.

The trophy was originally the award for a competition between LUAC and its U.S. counterpart, but the totem never left this country and it has since become an award for competition between Canada's 40 Advo-cis chapters.

Advocis, which boasts more than 11,000 members, is the oldest and largest voluntary professional membership association of financial advisers and planners in Canada and is considered the voice of Canada's financial advisers.

The award was presented to the Island chapter at its annual Christmas luncheon on Friday.