Family-run businesses important to community

The holiday season is a time to spend quality time with family, but for Ron and Greg Boyce, spending time with family has become the norm.

— Kevin Underhill

The holiday season is an excellent time to catch up and spend quality time with family, but for Ron and Greg Boyce, spending time with family has become the norm.

Ron Boyce owns Diamond Optical Eyecare, which has four locations on Vancouver Island, and is the manager of the downtown Victoria location while his son, Greg, runs the Foul Bay branch. Ron, 72, will be entering semi-retirement shortly, leaving the business to Greg, but can’t bring himself to fully leave the job.

“I’ll probably stay around a couple days a week at least,” he said. “I enjoy working too much and I’d miss my customers.”

Ron has been in the optician and eyecare business for more than 50 years and a large part of his recent enjoyment comes through seeing his son take to the industry so well. Ron said family businesses aren’t as common anymore and feels grateful to be so close with his family.

“We’re very close knit and we’ve worked very well as a team,” he said. “We even commute in and out from work together.”

The two get plenty of quality time with each other as they also co-own property.

Greg said working with family can get hectic at times but family operations are important to the city.

“People like supporting the family-run independent places rather than the big-box stores,” Greg said, adding that despite family businesses being fewer and further between, the service is unrivaled.

In a time where more department and mega stores are threatening to take all the business, Diamond Optical Eyecare is an example of a thriving family business.