Joe Dickstein, described as being an example of kindness, empathy and inspiration as well as an insightful thought leader and mentor of the insurance industry passed away August 12 at the age of 90.

In a note sent to members of the industry, Jim Burton, executive chairman and CEO of PPI, called Dickstein an integral partner, savvy business colleague and an insightful thought leader at PPI.

Dickstein received his Bachelor of Commerce degree at McGill University and an MBA at the Wharton School of Business, ran an agency at Crown Life, then later founded and became President of Westmount Life. As President of Dickstein Insurance Agency, he joined Prairie Pacific Insurance.

PPI continues to thrive because of Joe Dickstein

“PPI expanded under Joe’s counsel as President and Director of PPI Financial Group (Eastern), and today, we continue to thrive because of his legacy,” writes Burton.

Dickstein was seen as a person full of good humour, a genuine listener and a master storyteller, warm and empathetic to both colleagues and clients.

“In 2013, Joe retired at the wonderful age of 83 but never truly left PPI, remaining a continual supporter and a source of inspiration throughout our journey. Joe enriched lives, made a difference and created opportunities and his contribution to the industry, and to us as individuals, is a legacy that can never be replaced,” says Burton.

“Thank you, Joe, for the lessons and laughter.”

Scholarships named after Dickstein

In 2013, Dickstein was honoured during a gala luncheon at the Canada Sales Congress in Toronto. Three scholarships were named in Dickstein’s honour – one sponsored by For Advisors Only for a student enrolled in the Seneca College Financial Services Practitioner program. The following year, PPI began sponsoring two other scholarships for students enrolled in Canadian financial services courses whose goal was to work in the insurance industry.

Speaking at the gala luncheon in 2013, Dickstein impressed on financial advisors the importance of their connection with clients.

“As long as we can maintain our relationships with the clients, I think we’ve got it made. No matter what the companies do at the top level back and forth, whatever [financial] results come out, it’s our relationship with the client that is the basis for the whole industry.

“[Clients] need us for our judgment, our experience and our reputation. Most clients would rather play golf than study three or four hours a week about financial planning and insurance. So we are more important than we ever were to the clients.”

Click here to read more about Joe Dickstein in this article published in the Insurance Journal in 2013.