Astra Client spotlight features our clients and their words so that we can gain more insight and learn from each other.
Meet Astra member, Rory Willis
Astra Client Spotlight
Tell us a bit about yourself:
Having played with Lego and Meccano growing up I always had a fascination for construction and building things.
After Graduating from the U of S, I worked for a contractor for several years before moving over to the Ministry of Highways in 2006.
Since then I have been working in the bridge office overseeing the design, construction and preservation of Saskatchewan’s Bridge network in Southern Saskatchewan.
I enjoy being involved in the planning, design and execution of the bridges we build but in the past few years my favorite part of my job is the mentoring of our Junior Bridge staff.
There is nothing more satisfying than sharing the knowledge that one does not learn in University and teaching them the importance of accountability and fiscal responsibility.
I live in Regina with my dog Chloe and when I am not working I enjoy spending my spare time being active outdoors and travelling the world.
I choose skiing, wakeboarding, surfing, and biking over going to the gym. When I need more of a rush I explore Saskatchewan on my Street Legal Dirtbike or my snowmobile.
When I want some downtime I travel across Canada and the USA with my ‘91 4runner that has been heavily modified to access the hardest to reach places. My friends have dubbed me to be an adrenaline junky and my Dr. once told me I needed to slow down a little bit but in the end I just want to enjoy life to the fullest.
What’s the first thing you remember saving up for & buying?
Growing up my family didn’t have much. We were small time farmers and dad worked hard to provide for us. We lived rather simple compared to the way I do now.
My spending money came from my winnings at the annual Fair through my baking, gardening and crafting skills. That money went into a savings account and was later used to purchase some cows when I was 16. The profit from selling the cows was later invested and it wasn’t touched until I graduated University and it was time to pay of my student loans.
But, I did still treat myself from time to time when I was younger. My first paycheck from my first “real” job went to outfit my car with a HUGE stereo….to which I was later scolded for doing.
Favorite Place you’ve travelled & why?
This is a question that I get asked all the time and I have a really hard time picking just one place.
I have travelled to dozens of destinations in over 10 countries with return trips to both Costa Rica and Thailand. I spent a week in an Ashram learning yoga in India from a Guru, bungee jumped off a bridge in Costa Rica and eaten mystery soup in Vietnam. I’ve dined under the Petronas Towers and motorcycled around Langkawi Island in Malaysia.
But the one place that I will probably return to again and again is Thailand. The country has so much to see and do and the people are kind and generous. It is very affordable and safe to travel. I just got back in January after travelling Southeast Asia for 6 weeks.
My favorite part of Thailand is Northern Thailand and a small village called Pai. It is 150kms north of Chiang Mai and it takes about 5 hours to get to it on scooters. The ride is so enjoyable, the scenery is just breathtaking and there is so much to do.
What would you tell your 20 year old self knowing what you know now?
I guess the one thing I would tell my 20 year old self would be to follow my gut more. Many people don’t realize how valuable it is in providing direction and making decisions. Over the years I often just ignored it and I am just learning now that if I had sat back and really listened to what it was trying to tell me, I would be in a much different place than I am today.
Thank you Rory! We are excited to be a part of your financial path and success.
“Wealth is the ability to fully experience life.” – Henry David Thoreau