After 30 years with B.C.’s Independent Contractors and Businesses Association (ICBA), Phil Hochstein decided to step down as president after seeing several of his peers were doing the same.
B.C. construction association contemporaries such as Jack Davidson, Greg Baynton and Manley McLachlan made 2016 their exit year, heralding somewhat of a changing of the guard.
"Many of my colleagues were retiring. It was the right time for the organization and me," said Hochstein, 64. "I gave a year’s notice," adding that he was not asked to leave.
Hochstein had realized that with the launch of ICBA’s ambitious Grow The Economy campaign, the organization was moving in a new direction.
"We were changing the perception of ICBA from labour to pro-development," said Hochstein, whose specialty was the labour side.
"The job was all-consuming. I need a little time for myself. I was rarely home at night."
But Hochstein, well known for his fervent open shop stance, will remain as a consultant to the ICBA until the end of 2018, providing "strategic advice" to his replacement, Chris Gardner.
When he isn’t having lunch with Davidson (the retired president of the B.C. Road Builders and Heavy Construction Association), serving on the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority board or chairing the B.C. Turkey Marketing Board, Hochstein might be found walking in Stanley Park, playing pickle-ball, doing yoga or reading. The father of three grown daughters, Hochstein, and his partner, also plan to travel.
Despite his work with the construction industry, Hochstein won’t be building shelves in his spare time.
"I was never able to tell the difference between a hammer and a nail," he said with a laugh.