Jan is the son, of the father-son partnership that began in 1978. Born into a family of craftsmen, he inherited his family’s appreciation and skill with wood. Born in Denmark, Jan has lived on the Saanich Peninsula since 1974, and intends to call North Saanich home; not withstanding the frequent trips to Mexico and abroad.
Lars is Jan’s brother and born in Quebec; raised on the BC coast where he acquired a great appreciation of the sea while living on a boat with his parents. Boats have factored largely throughout Lars’ life, as even his marriage took place aboard his 1947 Chris Craft. Lars is committed to his family; his newest project – another boat, and sustained personal growth.
Shelley is Jan’s wife. A true BC’er born and bred, she has been part of the West Wind team since 1978. A true family business, their daughters Olivia and Anna have occasionally lent a hand. Shelley thrives with West Wind’s successes and sees no early retirement… perhaps just a few more extended holidays with Jan. Those many hours of Spanish lessons and homework will not be in vain!!
Joel is our wood-flooring expert becoming the icon of West Wind’s flooring expansion. He is thoroughly knowledgeable with all aspects of our brand name and custom floors. Joel started some years ago as a part-time student coming highly recommended by his woodworking teacher at Parkland Secondary.
Danny is our Milling Manager. He has been with us since 2004; coming highly recommended by his woodworking teacher at Stelly’s Secondary. Danny has a passion for the forest and the working with the wood that comes from within. As a ticketed joiner, Danny heads up the production department at West Wind Hardwood creating custom floors, countertops, and much more!
Ethan is a Parkland grad… of course. He has developed a passion for woodwork and design. Ultimately, his goal is to become an architect. In the meantime, he likes long bike rides on and off roading; loves photography and capturing cinematic beauties. His current fave wood is American black walnut.
Hailing from the bustling metropolis of Vancouver. Now she is enjoying the simple, married life in Sidney with her husband. Britney has a background in fashion and is excited to bring in a bit of style to the website and marketing materials. Being a talented seamstress, Britney creates bridal and other attire in her spare time.
Building Supplies/School Sales
Gordon graduated from Stelly’s where he played rugby. He is a Formula One fan, Arsenal fan and of course, the Canucks. He is still figuring out what he sees himself doing in the future.
Jorden is also a Parkland grad who came with a glowing recommendation from his shop teacher. He started work at West Wind filling orders, stocking, making invoices and helping out customers in the warehouse. Now he lends a hand in the Milling department.
Tyler Strank is another Parkland Secondary Grad that has developed a passion for woodwork AND wants to become a joiner. His favourite wood is poplar for its wide colour range.
Will Jens is a Vic High Grad, and from further afield than most of our employees. And although his dream is to become an electrician and not a woodworker or carpenter, he is still a hands-on kind of guy and a great asset in our Milling Department.
Jan Nielsen, Carpentry
Danny Schaftlein (Milling Manager) – Joinery
Joel Radford (Flooring Manager) – Joinery
Lucas Koessler (Milling Assistant) – Joinery
Tyler Strank (Milling Assistant) – Joinery
Apprenticeship Start Dates
Employees that have begun their woodworking journey.
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Current Employment Opportunities