StakeholderRelations.com

 What Others Say ...

 

 








NATURE CONSERVANCY OF CANADA
"StakeholderRelations.com was able to bring conservation and development interests together on Pelee Island to create a win-win solution after years of entrenched polarization amongst various interests.
The result was the Nature Conservancy of Canada being able to advance our conservation mission on Pelee, while bringing certainty, clarity and a new era of trust between the conservation community, local island community and business interests.
As a result, there has been a historical environmental net gain on the island, and there is a movement of cooperation which is a model for other challenged communities.  Thanks StakeholderRelations.com for everything you made happen."  James Duncan, Vice President,  Ontario Region


JOHN TORY, MAYOR OF TORONTO
As Leader of the Opposition, "George got me away from the briefing books of Queen’s Park and down to Pelee Island so I could see their challenges, hear its people, and host a Town Hall meeting.
With this simple visit, George demonstrated to the islanders that their concerns would be heard by those in power; sent a message that the Government could either work with the islanders, or answer to them through the Legislature; and repositioned the politics of the island’s issues from those of a remote island to a file the Premier’s Office  had to monitor since it could become an issue on a moment’s notice.
Two weeks later he did the same thing with Ontario’s Environmental Commissioner Gord Miller with a three day visit to the island. 
A month later the first Minister of natural Resources to ever visit the island, had his turn at the tour and standing in front of a town hall meeting. 
Two years later, the Government passed a new Endangered Species Act which addressed many of the concerns of the island, including a special amendment specific only to Pelee Island.
Inclusive, empowering – results!   Addressing today’s urgency while laying a foundation for sustainable working relationship into the future. 
Bottom line: he is smart, he takes a personal, engaged approach with people, he builds crucial relationships for his clients and he gets results."
John Tory, Former Leader of the Official Opposition


FEDERAL AND PROVINCIAL ETHANOL AGREEMENTS
StakeholderRelations.com was engaged by a major Canadian oil company to troubleshoot the process of securing a provincial ethanol manufacturers' agreement with a provincial government, as well as to re-negotiate the terms of the National Biomass Ethanol Program (NBEP).  Both initiatives involved working with the offices of the Prime Minister, Privy Council, Premier, Cabinet Office, Cabinet Committees and Ministers of Agriculture, Finance, Energy, Environment, Natural Resources, - as well as MPs, MPPs and industry stakeholders.  In the words of the lead Vice-President, " You did it !!! You absolutely lived up to your promise !  Thank so very much.  I’ll call you tomorrow to close the loop on some of the last items.  Seriously …. I’m so grateful to you.  You’ve single handedly made my Team look very good and more importantly, we’ve delivered the goods !  Vice-President, Suncor Energy Products

 

MACDONALD REPORT ON THE FUTURE OF ONTARIO HYDRO
Release of the Macdonald Report on the future of Ontario Hydro.  Brought in to a challenging situation in the Minister’s office, George over saw all aspects of the province-wide release of the Macdonald Report including media and stakeholder relations.
At a critical time in my ministry when we were weeks away from the launch of the MacDonald Committee Report on the future of electricity in Ontario, I brought in the highly recommended problem solver George Paisiovich to “support” my ministry in this critical initiative.  George possesses an incredible skill set which is as effective with the civil service, as it is with the media and stakeholders. 
In t
he face of intense media scrutiny, on an major issue of ground breaking public policy, where powerful stakeholder interests were sharply divided, and with only weeks to work in, George was able to chart a critical path which allowed us to be one of the few, if not the only major electricity announcement which was well received through the media in the past ten years or more.  Plus because somehow a major newspaper received a strategic “pre-release backgrounder” the night before, the morning paper’s front page headline set the tone for how the issue ended up being interpreted by others the day of the report’s release.
I would encourage, as I have, any organization to utilize this innovative, focused, and results drive professional, who is an absolute pleasure to work with, and amazing to watch in action. Hon. Brenda Elliott, Former Minister of Energy and Environment

 

OFFICE OF THE PREMIER - PEOPLE AND TEAM DEVELOPMENT BRANCH
George Paisiovich was contracted by the Premier's Office to undertake a series of stakeholder assessment workshops with over 40 key provincial organizations.  The outcome of these mutually beneficial groundbreaking sessions resulted in improved conflict resolution, identification of going-forward best practices and healthier working relationships.” 

Angela Ross, Manager, Ministers’ Staff Human Resources. Management Board Secretariat


FORMER MAYOR OF PELEE ISLAND
"As the former mayor of the Township of Pelee, I had the pleasure of working with George Paisiovich of StakeholderRelations.com, when our township was headed down a very dark path, with no hope of change in sight. 
George is a great listener, with a keen ability to appreciate other people’s points of view.  It wasn’t long before he organized not only town hall meetings, but also organized and chaired roundtables bringing together for the first and only times, diverse interests  - municipal council, Nature Conservancy of Canada, the Conservation Authority, planners, engineers, Ministry officials from Natural Resources, Transportation and Municipal Affairs, farmers, sportsmen, developers, cottagers, and more – all around a common table with a simple agenda of “what are each of us doing and how can we help each other?”
If you are not open to a solution do not talk to George,  but if you put your faith in a totally honest man, and approach things the way he says you will get a solution,  which will make every stakeholder happy. While George and I have also had healthy differences of opinion, I have worked with many people over my twenty-four years in politics, but there is only one I would trust with my life and that is George.
Bill Krestel, former Mayor of the Township of Pelee

 

MINISTRY OF NATURAL RESOURCES SUCCESS
"It was very perceptive of the previous municipal council to understand the need for an outside consultant to act as a liaison for all provincial ministries.  I know that you were instrumental in improved communications between MNR staff and the islanders and also responsible for helping both to understand roles, responsibilities and challenges.
As the representative for Pelee Quarries, you worked with many MNR staff to resolve an outstanding OMB which led to the issuance of the first ESA permit under the new ESA, 2007.  This was a  very difficult and arduous process which was made easier by your facilitation.
I have had the privilege of working with you and participating on many tours which you have graciously arranged and hosted.  I commend you for providing a 'one window' liaison for my staff, for your professionalism and integrity, and for your ability to add clarity to difficult situations.
I believe that the current situation on Pelee Island is significantly improved and that is due to your participation and persistence.
Thank you again for assisting my staff and allowing us to have a renewed relationship with landowners, the new municipal council and industry partners."
Ray Bonenberg, Regional Director, Southern Region, Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources
























GOVERNMENT-WIDE ANALYSIS OF STAKEHOLDER RELATIONS OF MINISTERS’ OFFICES

“George Paisiovich of Stakeholder Solutions was contracted by the Premier’s Office to complete a government-wide analysis of the stakeholder relation dynamics of Ministers’ offices; design an interim government-wide stakeholder database to standardize the methodology used to respond to the thousands of multi-ministerial stakeholders government; to incorporate this knowledge into a series of workshops and best practises towards a “one stakeholder – one government” response capacity.

George produced the most ground breaking work in the realm of government stakeholder relations in Ontario, and probably Canada as well.  I would highly recommend this  multi-disciplined stakeholder authority.”

Louise Harris, Director  Office of the Premier


"JUST WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON IN OTTAWA?"
“That night I attended the first all-candidates debate and walked into a hostile room filled with people wearing buttons for other candidates.  Things did not go well.  When I got home, I told my wife I had just made a huge mistake and went to bed.
The next morning George Paisiovich called me, offering help.  That night we met, he signed on, and then George disappeared for three harrowing days.  When he finally came back he presented his strategy, complete with organizational and activity charts, volunteer recruitment kits and other papers with lots of empty boxes drawn on them.  He said he had it all figured out.
George was relentless, disciplining me, scheduling every minute of the day, telling me who to call, where to go and even what to eat.
In the end, I won the nomination on the second ballot and convinced George to stay on as my campaign manager for the general election.  He did, and with the same kind of open-access campaign, put together a team which delivered 54.6% of the vote – the best showing for any Tory in Ontario."  Hon. Garth Turner, MP, in his book, "Garth! Just What the Hell is Going on in Ottawa?"


MINISTRY OF NATURAL RESOURCES REGARDING PELEE ISLAND

“I had the pleasure of working with George Paisiovich of StakeholderRelations.com in a multi-discipline/multi-party environment to resolve and bring to a celebrated conclusion an unique situation involving Species at Risk, land use and resource planning and economic development agendas on Pelee Island.
Through effective stakeholder engagement, Mr. Paisiovich was able to clearly define the real issues, seek facilitate understanding of the objectives of the various parties, re-establish communications and community relationships and mentor and steer the parties to a successful conclusion, which resulted in compromise and a win-win situation for all.  
I encourage the parties to showcase and share their experiences widely as the lessons of this Pelee Island story are applicable to many situations across Ontario.”

Craig Selby,  Former MNR Aylmer District Manager


ONTARIO CORN PRODUCERS ASSOCIATION
“At a time when the relationship between the Ontario Corn Producers and the Ontario government was at a bitter all time low, we brought George Paisiovich of StakeholderRelations.com in to help us chart a new working relationship.  George was a 24/7 source of advice and encouragement as we crafted and implemented a cooperative campaign which resulted in a 180 degree turn for the better in our relationship. Literally within weeks we went from bitter isolation with one minister, to freely calling the new minister at home on weekends.  George worked with our board members to help us craft the right balance of cooperation and advocacy both politically and within the civil service. 
For any association facing crisis, serious change, or wanting to grow their organization, I would strongly encourage them to engage this innovative and results driven professional.”  
Dennis Jack,  Past President, Ontario Corn Producers Association
               

 

QUARRY+NCC+MNR  =  WIN-WIN-WIN
“After 17 years  not being able to operate our quarry with a Minister’s permit, I engaged StakeholderRelations.com to help achieve a collective agreement with the Ministry of Natural Resources (MNR) and environmental groups so that we could once again operate our quarry on environmentally significant Pelee Island.  George helped drive a process which resulted in us playing an important role in establishing new Endangered Species legislation; a fair price for land exchanged; and a precedent setting land use management plan which results in a net gain for the environment while allowing us to once again make aggregate resources available for the island’s infrastructure needs.

A quarry, MNR, Nature Conservancy and a local community – working together for a more sustainable environment, community and business after 17 years of polarizing conflict. Imagine.
Facilitator, trouble-shooter, fixer – whatever, I highly recommend George Paisiovich as a professional with the street smarts, integrity and people skills to respect and accommodate the stakeholders towards a larger collective gain, probably greater than what they  may have imagined originally.
J. Randall Koop, Erie Sand & Gravel

 

RED CROSS WORKERS PAY EQUITY CRISIS
In the fall of 1998, the Ontario Division of the Canadian Red Cross Homecare faced the tragic possibility that over 14,000 Homecare providers would have to be laid off at Christmas time as pay equity requirements on January 1st would virtually render the organization unable to meet the massive +40% payroll increase. 
StakeholderRelations.com was brought in to help trouble shoot the crisis.  Long story short - those workers still kept their jobs, and Red Cross became designated as in compliance with the Act.  "Thank you so much for the critical role you in developing and implementing the strategic plan coordinating our non-profit organization, a government regulator (Pay Equity), the union, elected officials and ministry personnel and media and our clients.  What a Christmas present this has turned out to be!"         Allan Prowse, President, Red Cross, Ontario Division

 

TOGA - THE ONTARIO GREENHOUSE ALLIANCE
The Ontario Greenhouse Alliance (TOGA) is a new  vehicle to bring together the historically silo operations of various Ontario greenhouse industry stakeholders onto an equal playing field to achieve those outcomes which they less effectively achieve by their independent approaches. TOGA’s vision was to provide an infrastructure and approach that will integrate all the current resources and future potential of the Ontario greenhouse stakeholders into a community and international marketplace presence, with the synergy and standards to be a world leader in greenhouse operations. 
"George Paisiovich  and StakeholderRelations.com was absolutely critical to TOGA coming together and getting $5 million in start up money.  His passion and expertise in managing the stakeholder relations of the industry and government into a mutual vision and commitment was simply amazing. 

A few years on, and StakeholderRelations.com saved Ontario’s greenhouse industry from a pending regulatory requirement which was based upon a severe lack of understanding of how our industry operates.  At the 11th hour we brought George in, he completely revamped our industry’s approach to crafting a new regulatory proposal in collaboration with trade, insurance and regulatory representatives which would result in greater sustainable, measurable and predictable safety for many years to come.  
The fact that it saved the greenhouse industry millions of dollars annually was also greatly appreciated.
What I respect most about George is that he could be thrown into the middle of a technical issue he had no background in, and not only effectively represent our interests,  but also ensure that the other stakeholders involved also came out ahead.
Recommend George Paisiovich?  Highly, completely, and with great appreciation.” "           
Founding Chair, TOGA, Cole Cacciavillani

 

CANADA'S LARGEST ETHANOL PLANT
As strategic advisor, George Paisiovich was brought in to break the three year impasse of government support, and develop a strategic plan to over come opposition, secured federal and provincial guarantees.
"At a point where we had done the huge community parades and demonstrations, and worn out pairs of shoes visiting politicians, we were put in touch with George Paisiovich.  Literally, within days George had put together a strategic plan which incorporated a regional partnership of CFPL TV, OCPA, MP's, City of Chatham, ag groups, renewable fuels groups and more, into a coordinated plan which resulted in a one hour television program which re-positioned our situation from one of corporate handout to that of rural economic renewal and environmental friendliness.  George followed up on this renewed momentum with a government relations game plan which lead to our long sought guaranteed protection from a change in government's excise tax policy.  This was the final piece for investors to give the ethanol plant the green light.  To top it off, George put together the arrangements for Prime Minister Jean Chretien to officially open the plant.  Bottom line -  George Paisiovich was one of the best investments we ever made.”      Doug MacKenzie, President, Commercial Alcohols  1997                          


 INDIAN-MCGREGOR CREEK FLOODING
“In 1983, 17 of 18 municipalities, politicians and the Ministry of Natural Resources, were all set to spent $millions to put a dam near the mouth of Indian Creek.  The only problem of course was that all the water from 17 miles of tiled, flat agricultural land would have no where to go except to flood a bunch of us out.  We had talked to the politicians, lawyers and engineers until we were blue in the face, but no one would budge from their unworkable plan.
Then we got introduced to young man who didn’t like wearing shoes, drove a TR-6 sports car with a guitar and kites in the back of it all the time.  This guy we were told was our last great hope, which initially had us thinking that we really were toast.
But they say you can’t always judge a book by its cover so we gave him a chance, and soon he was hurting our heads with “cross relational charts”, “critical decision paths” ,and the like.
Well, after a year of an absolutely fascinating experience to witness, we ended up with 18 of 18 municipalities, the politicians and MNR all agreeing to a different, better and more expensive project – which would actually work.
So today, if you are ever in Chatham-Kent and see the Indian/McGregor Creek Flood Control Scheme, you will see a project which ended a century of problem flooding.  And largely, though not exclusively, because of two farmers, a principled Reeve, an engineer and a hippie strategist who didn’t know that they couldn’t do what they did.
Whatever else he may be, George Paisiovich is certainly the most innovative, persistent and enjoyable trouble-shooter I have ever had the pleasure of knowing.”  Len Harwood, Farmer  Raleigh Township

”HE CAN MAKE ME LAUGH, WHILE MAKING ME WISE”
"George was incredibly innovative, self-schooled and experienced.  I enjoyed being at the front of the room, while he loved working the corners.
The man is brutally honest, straight-forward and can irritate the hell out of me because he refuses to hide other points of view even when he knows I don't want to hear them.
But George has consistently been a friend, putting the physical and emotional health of Dorothy and I above the ceaseless demands of being an MP.  Best, he can make me laugh, while making me wise."   
Hon. Garth Turner, MP, in his book, "Garth! Just What the Hell is Going on in Ottawa?"

PELEE COUNCIL MOTION OF APPRECIATION
"Council and the residents of the Township of Pelee extend their heartfelt thanks to George Paisiovich and StakeholderRelations.com for his invaluable assistance in dealing with municipal concerns over the past year and a half." 
Passed by Township of Pelee Municipal Council

AGRICULTURE ON PELEE ISLAND
As someone who has served many years as Deputy Mayor, and whose family has had one of the largest farm operations on Pelee Island for over a century, I am very familiar with the island’s needs and potential.
Before George arrived a few years ago, we were being strangled by environmental regulations out of control, with the island a virtual war zone of anger and suspicion between environmentalists and islanders.  It was so bad that islanders bought and posted hundreds of anti-MNR signs (Ministry of Natural Resources), investment was scared off and we were at a polarized stalemate – neither side able to move forward.
Into this crisis situation George Paisiovich of Stakeholder Solutions was engaged by the municipal council I served on for a 3 month contract to try to help us out.
And within that 3 month period, George organized what could have been an explosive town hall to laid a foundation of understanding, respect and cooperation which continues to grow. 
After the first town hall meeting, he organized a workshop so everyone could understand all the challenges we faced as an island – infrastructure, new Official Plan, transportation, regulatory compliance, environmental stewardship and economic investment, and more.  It helped us to understand ourselves better as one inter-dependant island community – where one cannot succeed without the other, and encouraged us to work out our differences on the island so we could go to government with “one voice”.
Two years later, we still have problems like every community, but now we have more confidence in our ability to solve our problems, we have a plan, and we have much stronger partnerships with those whom we were once polarized with.
George didn’t do this himself, and we don’t always agree.  But we are unquestionably better off because of him, we appreciate him going beyond the call of duty to continue to work with us, and for reminding us to work together and rally to the goal of lets , “get ‘er done”.    And that is something you can count on with George – he’ll “get ‘er done” through trust, partnership and plain hard work.

Grant Crawford

COUNCILOR, PELEE ISLAND
"In the winter of 2005, Pelee Island was on rough times.  We had over 400 anti-MNR signs posted as a result of our frustration with the Ministry of Natural Resources.  Our Co-op was facing closure, we got hit with a $30,000 fine over drinking water, our draft Official Plan was rejected, and that’s about the way we all felt too given these and many other problems.  Then I heard about George’s work with the greenhouse industry and their regulators, and invited him over to meet with council. From day one George has been upfront, and Council was informed daily on all activities.  Within two months, most of the signs came down and we have progressively rebuilt a working relationship with our environmental and government partners. 
We put our total trust in him and were amazed with the results. The important people he brought to the island were very impressed with our new found direction to speak and be heard with 1 voice and 1 goal to stay on course.  He held a regular series of town hall meetings to keep people informed and part of an open and transparent process.
He came to me highly recommended and he has always gone above and beyond what he was asked to do.  While we don’t always agree on things, if he ever needs a good letter of reference, I will be first to write one up." 
Larry Gervais, Councilor, Township of Pelee (Island)

SPORTSMAN FROM PELEE ISLAND
"As a volunteer with different, mainly small and rural, community groups such as the Pelee Island Sportsman's Club, my first contact with George was from the back of the bus; well out of the danger zone. 
George’s ability to head east when the rest of the world is heading west is a good thing.  His challenging “the norm” style isn’t for everyone; just the people who are willing to see success though a different set of glasses.   
I dare you to tell George it can’t be done.  Thank you!" 
Dave Dawson, Pelee Island  

 

BOLTON ENTERPRISE 1988
"The former Financial Editor of the Toronto Sun also enlisted the services of George Paisiovich as his campaign advisor.  As most of you know I have been allied with all those so-called experts who ran the Big Blue Machine and I can tell you the Atkins, the Camps and the Goodman's couldn't hold a candle to George Paisiovich, he is that good."  Columnist Leo Beckett, Bolton Enterprise 1988

 

ONTARIO GREENHOUSE INDUSTRY ISSUES RESOLUTION STUDY
“In my role as the MPP for Chatham-Kent, George Paisiovich was of tremendous value to me in establishing a working relationship with the local greenhouse operators and advancing their issues.  The Minister’s exemption for boilers is but one example where his counsel was critical.
When I was approached to undertake the Ontario Greenhouse Industry Issues Resolution Study, he was first person I consulted before agreeing.  George was invaluable in assisting me in designing an approach criteria, designing and implementing an on-line survey, and most importantly, reviewing the mass of information in a variety of formats and helping to merge them into a coherent position paper.   
George’s passion and commitment to the greenhouse industry is contagious, his insight is sound and imaginative, and his ability to take a mass of disconnected facts and chart them into a critical path and plan is impressive to witness.
In my opinion, George Paisiovich is the best investment the Ontario greenhouse industry could make in addressing the issues and challenges that my report identified.                
  Jack Carroll, Author   Ontario Greenhouse Industry Issues Resolution Study

O' CANADA FOUNDATION
As strategic advisor to the O' Canada foundation, George was instrumental in helping to bring the vision of the revitalization of our national anthem by many of Canada's leading musicians to Canada's 125th birthday celebrations on Parliament hill, as well as a one hour CTV special.


If you have any questions, please contact us at:
GetResults@StakeholderRelations.com