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Guest Services Manager, Lake Louise, Canada
Hometown: Maui, Hawaii
Six-word bio: Striving to be humble, grateful, fearless.
Fun fact: Has lived in seven countries on five different continents, most recently working as a dive master in Honduras.
Anya Whiticar grew up in Hawaii, but spent family vacations skiing. Strip away the obvious differences, she says, and beach and mountain towns are similar: outdoorsy people who love adventure. The dual citizen—her dad is Canadian—went to university in Montreal and migrated west from there. She landed at Lake Louise in Banff National Park four years ago.
Tell us more about how you got here?
After college I spent a year doing corporate real estate in Toronto and wore a suit to work every day. That got old fast. I traveled in South America for a few years, and then moved to Lake Louise. I was hired as guest services assistant here four years ago.
Does anyone report to you?
Yes, up to 25-30 people during peak Christmas time.
What’s your style of management?
Really hands on. If anything, too hands on, because I moved up the ranks within my department, so I know what it feels like at every level. I try to put my staff first, which pays off ultimately—it’s good to know you’re prioritizing what they need. For example, I want to make sure everyone gets to experience this place, which means working extra days if they want to go on a ski trip, etc.
A particularly proud moment?
The general nature of this job itself, because it’s so seasonal. Most people don’t come back after one season, so every season you’re training an entirely new crew.
In 10 years?
If I’m lucky enough, I’ll still be working within the industry. Lake Louise has just gotten its long-range plan approved to figure out where it can develop. Should be some exciting things happening here within the next decade, and I hope to be here.