Bob Olbrich

Working with PCL Construction is more than just a job for Bob Olbrich. He has in more than the usual sense dedicated his life to his work.

On September 7, PCL staff and many of Bob’s coworkers and friends celebrated Bob’s remarkable 60-year anniversary with the company.

Work tenure as longstanding as Bob’s is difficult to find. But age is just a number for the soon-to-be 77-year-old, who shows no sign of slowing down.

Bob began his career with PCL in 1958 when the company was known as Poole Construction. He was a second-year apprentice carpenter at the time. Bob recalls his first projects with Poole working on the construction of Grant Road School and St. Mary’s church in Regina.

Poole Construction/PCL is the only company Bob has ever known.

“I don’t really know how you’re treated at other companies because I have never worked for other companies,” he said. “But I know PCL treats you well and it’s a good company to work for. I like it here.”

Bob’s career is one of two loves in his life. The other, his wife, Genoveva, passed away 20 years ago. They were together for 42 years and married for 37. His wife’s death in a way inspired him to continue with his craft.

“There was nothing else for me to do anyway. Why not stay and work? I enjoy the work, so why not do it?” he said. “You have to like what you do. If you don’t like what you do then you should find something else.”

Sixty years on the job and Bob can drive around the city and marvel at some of the projects he has worked on. One of the prouder moments of his career came in 1981 when he was working in the SaskTel building. Bob’s primary duties were focused on the construction of the executive suites, where his woodworking skills shone.

Bob’s career took him away from Saskatchewan as well. He lent his knowledge and experience as a superintendent, for example, during construction of a high-rise tower at the University of Ottawa.  

These days, Bob is busy with the deconstruction of the Sears store at the Cornwall Centre.

As far as retirement goes, Bob says he’s not ready for that yet. “I haven’t really thought about it. I still like my work, so why would I leave?”

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Bob Olbrich – Superintendent​​