David Kosub, Project Coordinator: 22 years at UBC before riding into retirement

David Kosub started his career at UBC 22 years ago as a cabinet maker. Since then, he has worked with many teams at over 100 academic buildings across campus.

David’s Harley with a note that says “I retire in 3 days!”

As he prepares to embark on the next chapter of his life after retirement — spending time with his family on Vancouver Island, riding his Harley, and travelling around the world with his wife — we invited him to share his experience working as part of UBC and within the VP Finance & Operations (VPFO) portfolio.

Known for his humour, meticulous eye for perfection, and robust knowledge of the UBC campus, many have worked with David on various renovation projects. David first noticed architectural features at age seven and has loved architecturally designed buildings ever since. He joined UBC in 1999 as a cabinet maker, then was shortly promoted to senior estimator. In 2011, he joined Infrastructure Development as Project Coordinator with Project Services — working with external contractors and teams across the Facilities Group to enable building shutdowns and coordinate project logistics.

From working with Project Managers on 115 million dollar projects, to coordinating with faculty and staff with moving-in and out of their spaces, David takes an attentive and logical approach to his work. In 2017, the Henry Angus Tower was due for seismic upgrades, which required moving 300 faculty and staff out of the building for over six months.

“I brought in a moving crew to take photos of every single shelf, put academic books in boxes, label and store them. When the work was done, we took the pictures out and put all the books back. At the end of it, all we did was scratch one monitor,” he says, proudly. “That’s what coordinating means — bringing in the people and figuring out a plan.”

David was featured as one of the campus personalities on the UBC website in 2017, greeting new and returning visitors with his big smile.

In a campus as large as UBC, renovations happen often to keep up with students, faculties and staff’s need — that, however, can create a lot of waste. Therefore, David works closely with Facilities Planners in Infrastructure Development to look at furniture that can be salvaged and passed onto departments with less funding, and find spaces to store them.

To David, the people and work culture are what make him come to work with joy every day for 22 years.

“Make friends with everyone in your office. Try to meet as many people as you can. At lunch time go for a walk — check out a different building every day!” David lights up. “UBC is a beautiful campus where exciting things happen.”