When Bill Hazlitt came to Sarnia in 1981, he discovered what so many local residents already knew: that Sarnia was not only beautiful, but that it had great people as well. Originally born in Toronto, but raised and educated in Montreal, Hazlitt had worked for accounting firms large and small before he joined Deloitte and transferred to Sarnia. “I got to know the partners from Sarnia at the national partners meetings and I really liked them,” he explains. “When they offered to relocate me here, my wife and I agreed to come down and check it out. We bought a house the first weekend we were here.”
While Hazlitt found success as a partner in the Sarnia office for Deloitte, economic changes meant that Deloitte no longer needed an office in Sarnia. In 1998 they made the decision to close the office in Sarnia. “I had the choice of moving to London and working with my clients from there, or staying in my house and travelling to London two or three days a week to see my clients there. I didn’t like either of these options,” Hazlitt makes clear. He wanted to stay in Sarnia and continue to offer accounting services locally. Brent Steeves, a tax manager from Sarnia who had moved to London to work with Deloitte, also wanted to return to family roots and settle in Sarnia. Together they opened a new firm, Hazlitt & Steeves Chartered Accountants, on September 1, 1998.