UBC Reports | Vol. 50 | No. 5 | May
He d’ Man
By Chris Petty
Haig Farris is an early adapter. He's the guy who has the
latest breakthrough gadget before anybody else. He wore out
his first Palm Pilot before the rest of us even knew they
existed. When they morphed into all-in-one organizer-camera-video-audio-telephone-television-GPS-MP3
machines, he thought, “What's next?”
Maybe that's why he was drawn to venture capitalism. The
irresistible allure of “What's next?”
He’s considered an angel in the high-tech, start-up
world. When someone comes up with a surefire, killer business
idea that has a tech focus, Farris and his partners sit down
with the idea people, work out a business plan and provide
seed money. He has become a key element in Vancouver’s
high-tech sector, a man sought after as much for his desire
to foster new industry as he is for his uncanny business acumen.
In a recent cover article in BC Business, Farris was described
as someone who knows everyone who counts. With his network
of angels across the country, he has contributed significantly
to the country’s economy.
Farris is also a strong community supporter. He has served
as chair of the Science Council of BC, as a member of the
Premier’s Advisory Committee on Science and Technology,
as director of the Vancouver Opera and the Vancouver Playhouse.
He also served as president of the UBC Alumni Association,
and is one of the university’s staunchest advocates.
He was also a close friend of Cecil Green, who died in 2003.
Farris’ UBC connection goes back to his mother, Evelyn,
who was the first woman in Canada to be a member of a governing
board of a university. She also founded the University Women’s