LETTER: Paying tribute to Pacific Insight

From reader K. Driedger

In another few days, the most recent layoffs at Pacific Insight, now Methode Electronics, will take effect and bring to an end to manufacturing operations in Nelson. The small group that remains will occupy only a small corner of a facility that, at its peak, employed over 400 people assembling electronics and wire harnesses for companies like Ford, GM, Polaris, and many others.

Countless bright, dedicated people put years of their lives into making PI so successful that it ultimately attracted the attention of a billion-dollar company. It is a rather bitter reward that as a result of their efforts many of these exceptional people are now looking for work. If you can, hire them!

It’s natural to point fingers and assign blame for what has happened, but as we process the loss it’s also worth remembering the good that PI brought to Nelson and how remarkable it really was. Companies like PI don’t just spontaneously appear in small towns. They need someone who loves the community, believes in it, and wants to invest in it.

In 1987 that person was Brad Smithson, who moved his newly formed company back to his hometown of Nelson and then guided it through steady growth over the next 20 years. At the time, some may have argued that moving to Nelson was not a good business decision, but Brad saw the potential here that may not have been obvious to others.

The rest is history. Over the years, almost 4,500 people have worked at PI Nelson, earning money and gaining valuable experience in a high-tech industry. The end is sad because we are mourning the loss of something that was good. I, like many others, would not have had the opportunity to learn what I did, nor to raise my family and live in Nelson if it was not for Pacific Insight. For that I am very grateful. Thank you Pacific Insight, and thank you Brad.

K. Driedger

Nelson

Just Posted

School District 8 names new international principal

Jann Schmidt has been an educator for 26 years

Passenger counts still rising at West Kootenay Regional Airport

Reliability rates also on rise in second quarter.

Last stop: The inside story of Queen City Shuttle and Charters’ closure

Former employees open up about the Nelson company’s final days

How the Queen City Shuttle and Charters’ closure affected you

Here’s what readers had to say about the company’s shutdown

Rich the Vegan scoots across Canada for the animals

Rich Adams is riding his push scooter across Canada to bring awareness to the dog meat trade in Asia

Body, burning truck found near northern B.C. town

RCMP unsure if the two separate discoveries are related

Couple found dead along northern B.C. highway in double homicide

Woman from the U.S. and man from Australia found dead near Liard Hot Springs

UPDATE: West Kelowna fawn euthanized, not claimed by sanctuary

Gilbert the deer has been euthanized after a suitable home was not found in time

BC Wildfire Service warns wet weather no reason to be complacent

Fire risk currently low for much of B.C. compared to same time over last two years.

Bank of Canada lowers qualifying rate used in mortgage stress tests

Home sales softened last year after the federal government introduced new stress test rules for uninsured mortgages

B.C. man pleads guilty in snake venom death of toddler

Plea comes more than five years after the incident in North Vancouver

Trudeau says Ottawa open to proposals for B.C. refinery as gas prices soar

Prime minister says he knows B.C. residents are struggling and the federal government is open to ideas

Clock’s ticking to share how you feel about Daylight Saving Time in B.C.

Provincial public survey ends at 4 p.m. on Friday

Most Read