Over nearly a century, Adams + Miles has been home to some of the best professionals in our industry. All have left their mark, but few have done it quite like John Warren. Our team is very sad to share the news of John’s recent passing after a two-year battle with cancer.
John’s illustrious career with our firm began in 1988—at that point we were known as Adams Masin & Tilley—after a chance encounter. When we requested that a practicing accountant perform our regular practice inspection, John was assigned to the task. Shortly thereafter—at a time when he was seeking new business opportunities—John contacted former Managing Partner Chris Masin, sparking a series of conversations that eventually led John to amalgamate his firm with ours. It was the beginning of a long and very prosperous relationship.
John quickly distinguished himself as a valued team member and partner. He was well-versed in Canadian accounting standards and was a pioneer of both condo legislation and financial management. He would often assist his colleagues in the interpretation of accounting and audit standards and was instrumental in introducing several future partners to the firm, including current condo group partners Brian Antman and Christina Ajith-Brandford.
While he began his work at Adams + Miles in general practice, John saw new growth opportunities emerge with the condominium building boom that was occurring across the Greater Toronto Area throughout the 1980s. He understood that condo communities required specialized accounting services and built our condo group practice to meet their requirements. That meant spending countless hours speaking with various stakeholders across the Toronto condo industry including property managers, lawyers, engineers and his fellow accountants. It involved attending and speaking at industry events, writing articles for condo industry trade publications—analyzing topics such as financial, audit, investment and reserve fund issues—and joining the Canadian Condominium Institute-Toronto and Area Chapter (CCI-Toronto) and the Association of Condo Managers of Ontario (ACMO), among other organizations.
One of his most meaningful contributions was as the long-time director and past president of CCI-Toronto. Throughout his tenure, John worked diligently to develop the organization’s educational programs, encouraging joint participation with other industry groups to organize informative annual condo conference sessions. He also volunteered on various CCI committees.
When John set out to grow our condo group, he applied his trademark diligence and determination to deliver an exceptional client service experience—enhancing Adams + Miles’ industry reputation every step of the way. John became so respected, and his expertise was so valued, that he served as a co-writer of the condominium industry auditing guidelines commissioned by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Ontario. He also provided input to the Ontario government during the development of legal standards for the wider condo industry. After John’s retirement as an active partner, he continued to deliver invaluable services to our condo group including mentoring partners, reviewing files and offering higher-level counsel on unique files. He was awarded a Fellowship to the Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants in 2017.
An icon in the industry, he was well respected by his peers. As one condo property manager that worked closely with John put it: “What struck me about John was his integrity, quiet credibility, patience, mentorship and simple kindness. He instilled in me the critical importance of condo managers’ fiduciary responsibility.”
As another senior property manager, who benefited from John’s mentorship and saw first-hand his contributions to Canada’s condo industry, reflected: “A big part of who I am today both professionally and personally is because of John—and he leaves this world a better place than when he arrived. He had a positive effect on millions of Ontarians and Canadians that have never heard of him.”
Perhaps most importantly, John was a beloved husband and father. In his spare time, he was an avid sailor and member of the Queen City Yacht Club. Always generous, he and a group of fellow club members once offered their boats and boating skills for a staff outing and introduction to sailing. At another staff event, we canoed across Toronto harbour for a staff dinner at the QCYC. John was also active in the community as a member of the board of directors for a Toronto nursing home and as a leader with Scouts Canada, where he attended several annual jamborees.
John wasn’t only one of the best accountants in the business, he was a wonderful colleague and friend. He was always available to provide assistance and was often the sharpest mind in the room. We’re proud that he was (and always will be) a member of the Adams + Miles family and for the many contributions that he made to our collective success—along with that of our clients.
Tony Sokic, Managing Partner