Canadian Business: How long have you worked for Michael Potter?
Natalie Quirt, executive assistant: I've been in this position almost a year. I took over for Malena, his executive assistant of 20 years, when she retired. She's incredible. It's fortunate that she and I still go out for lunch sometimes because she's a great source of information. Prior to that, I had a stint as the receptionist. That position was a matter of being in the right place at the right time. I took a temp job, and when I showed up, this is who I worked for.
What's the best thing you've done in this position so far?
Help with the grand opening of Vintage Wings, his collection of vintage aircraft. That's really Mike's passion these days. We spent a lot of time getting the whole thing organized–guest list, invitations, catering and setup. We had veterans and people from the community come in, and it was a big media event. It was a great day.
Tell us something about Michael Potter others don't know.
Well, it's never easy being a dad to three young girls, no matter what age you are. But especially being a little bit older, his taste is a little more mature and refined. He sometimes needs a little help with pop culture, so I get to fill him in on more current things, like “Who's Hilary Duff and is she a good role model?”
What did he get you for Christmas last year?
Christmas gifts change every year, but I can already tell you what this year's gift is going to be: a gift certificate to a spa and a box of Godiva chocolates. He picked the idea himself, with a little support. I suggested what I thought would be a good gift, and he agreed. That's for the women of the office. The men are getting a nice bottle of scotch. Last year, Malena chose a glass perfume bottle for the women and a pewter beer mug for the men.