A self-professed night owl, Don stretches his creative limits by night and helps B. Riley Farber’s marketing department hum along by day—producing thought-provoking content and managing the firm’s social media platforms.
Outside of work, he’s an accomplished street photographer, self-professed carnivore, and ’90s hip-hop connoisseur. He also has a weird obsession with saving all his ticket stubs from past events. Some will say he’s a bit old school, but that’s perfectly ok with him.
“I started collecting my ticket stubs after I found one of my dad’s Blue Jays tickets from the ’80s. I thought it was pretty cool, so I decided to start saving mine. I’ll admit, there’s been a few washing machine casualties, but I have more than I can count. 20-years from now it will be neat to look back.” From sporting events and concerts to museums and old boarding passes, he saves them all.
Always looking for an angle
B. Riley Farber has a very entrepreneurial culture, and Don is no exception. Since the age of 10, he’s always been looking for ways to market and sell stuff. He once found a box of blank receipt paper rolls and started selling them to neighbourhood kids. He explains, “I threw them in the air and the paper started unraveling, mid-air, creating a cool twirl effect. All the younger kids loved it, so I charged them all $2 per roll.” He took that mindset to university, where instead of studying for exams, he decided to start a clothing company with a friend. “We sold a few shirts out of my trunk, but it was always just a fun way to procrastinate and make a few extra bucks.”
Exploring the other 9 to 5
“It’s not what you do between 9 to 5 that matters most, it’s what do you between the other 9 to 5 that defines you,” Don explains. That’s the time for him to build and refine his photography business, work on personal projects, and build for the future. “It’s not easy and, sure, I lose some sleep—but no one is going to do it for me,” he confesses.
If he’s not watching The Sopranos for the hundredth time, he enjoys napping, photo walks, graphic design, and crafting stories that make people think and question the status quo. He explains, “Luckily, I can take most of my passions to work and use those skills to help build the brand and tell the B. Riley Farber story.”
Hanging with Mr. Farber
Don’s been with B. Riley Farber for over five years, and the time has flown by. He admits 40+ years in business is an impressive milestone, seeing that most businesses fizzle out after only a few. He loves the people and appreciates the fact that he can get hands-on with the Founder, Alan Farber. “I mean, it doesn’t happen often, but it’s cool that I got the opportunity to work with him directly.”
At the same time, Don has worked for larger—and much older—firms where the founders are long gone and reduced to either initials or names that have lost all meaning. He explains, “I get to come into the office and work with the founder himself—the guy whose name is on the wall. I pass him in the hallways, chat with him in the kitchen, and see him in the elevators. He even knows my name—that’s wild. You won’t see that at any of the larger firms.”
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