I’ll never forget lunch on the first Tuesday in October 2001. It was my first volunteer committee meeting, my first time at the London Hunt Club and it was the first time I’d heard Ron Logan utter the words, “Well, that’s just marvellous!”
When I arrived at the club, I was nervous, out of my element and completely oblivious as to the new path my life was about to take.
By the end of the meeting, thanks to Ron and his sidekick in the Music Reigns charitable initiative, the infamous Angus McKenzie, I was made to feel comfortable and part of the team.
That feeling encouraged me to return the next month and the next and the rest, as they say, is history.
After Ron’s death Jan. 2, a few friends and I reflected on the effect he had on many of us involved in the Music Reigns committee and the lessons we learned from this larger-than-life man.
Though the fundraiser for Orchestra London and King’s University College Foundation was just one of Ron’s many contributions to the community, it was the committee where many of us got to know him.
Andrea Halwa of the London Arts Council remembered when Ron and Angus took her for lunch years ago to ask her to co-chair the fundraiser as part of her role as a King’s foundation board member.
“I felt like a little kid, standing in the doorway with her dad’s shoes on with no idea how I was going to fill them. They had left such big shoes to fill as the former co-chairs and founders of the event.”
Along the way, Ron coached from the sidelines. Among the most valuable lessons for Andrea was to be solution-oriented. “It was inspiring how energized Ron would be about an idea and how he would work tirelessly to see results.”
Karen Try of M.E.K. Dental gave hours each year to Music Reigns and Ron ultimately mentored her in other parts of her professional life as well.
“You could call him just to get a blast of positive. His brain was just wired that way, to make you feel motivated about life every time you talked with him.”
The two of the most important pieces of advice Ron offered Karen were: “Always be professional at work, don’t cross the lines and turn it into personal, because you can’t go back. People earned respect and deserve it.”
Plus, Karen used his management advice daily. “He taught me that when you have to deliver unpleasant news, always start by recognizing a positive.” This was how he approached everything he did.
Justine Zavitz of Zavitz Insurance experienced this positive approach. “Even when we weren’t selling enough raffle tickets, he would make you feel like you were doing the best job in the world before he’d ‘encourage’ you to sell more. When he introduced you to new people, he would make you feel like a superstar.”
Making others feel like superstars was just his and wife Annabelle’s way. He offered others unsolicited doses of positive energy that inspired youth to get involved and contribute to the community. Now, it’s up to the rest of us to continue to contribute and pick up the reins.