CCEO & Co-Owner of Bouchier, the Presenting Partner of this edition
YMM: Tell us about Bouchier and the work it does in the region.
Bouchier: Bouchier is a leading Canadian Integrated Site Services company, based in Fort McKay, Alberta. The company specializes in maintenance, construction and project management. Bouchier began operations in 1998 and is 100% Indigenous-owned. The company employs 1,000 people and prides itself on building its diverse workforce, including an Indigenous workforce target of 47%. Bouchier is committed to lasting economic and social impact ranging from hiring Indigenous and local suppliers to supporting Indigenous independence, culture and community, female empowerment, and youth and recreation. The company has been recognized numerous times for its leadership, quality and safety excellence.
YMM: At Your McMurray Magazine, we’re passionate about sharing the stories from our region, and of course, that includes sharing about the history, truth and reconciliation, Indigenous arts and culture, and so much more. Why was becoming the Presenting Partner of the Indigenous Wood Buffalo edition of Your McMurray Magazine important to you?
Bouchier: Bouchier takes pride in making purposeful impact in the community and we believe adding our voice to this special edition was critical to support truth and reconciliation but also to celebrate Indigenous people in the region. Representation matters today more than ever before. Indigenous people need to see themselves out there, the more they see us, the more Indigeous entrepreneurs will be inspired to do the same and believe, yes, that they can do it too.
And hopefully, this edition inspires everyone to buy local, hire local, support local. This edition raises awareness of so many incrediblee Indigenous busineses that are here thriving and contributing to making our region better for generations to come.
YMM: This magazine is hitting the stands on National Indigenous Peoples Day, a day to recognize the history, heritage and diversity of First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples in Canada. What do you think is the most meaningful way people can observe this day?
Bouchier: First, ask yourself what does it mean to you, take time to learn and understand our history (the truth) and reflect on what reconciliation means to you and/or your organization. The answers will be different for everyone. I truly believe it’s not a holiday, but a time to pause and reflect, learn something. There are so many ways to learn from attending an event, reading, to free programs at major universities or colleges to watching broadcasts or digital segments honouring the stories of Indigenous people affected by the residential school system. It’s a day to be aware, take action in your unique way – in order to make a difference.
YMM: As an Indigenous-owned business in Wood Buffalo, what words of advice would you share with others who are striving to be successful in our region?
Bouchier: Be willing to put in the hard work and time to build, and grow your business for success, embrace change along the way and celebrate the successes of others!
YMM: There are so many vibrant and successful Indigenous-owned businesses in our region. What are some of your go-tos?
Bouchier: Bouchier is committed to investing and supporting local Indigenous business in our region. We are proud of our work to establish lasting business relationships with our fellow Indigenous business. We have a local spend of 45% and an Indigenous spend of 15% of our total expenses.
Our list is long but one of our longest working relationships is with BME, another company local to Fort McKay that, like Bouchier, cares deeply about investing in the community and the people who work and reside here.
YMM: Is there anything else you’d like to share with our readers?
Bouchier: I would like to take this moment to thank the Your McMurray Magazine team, the contributors of this edition and of course YOU the reader(s) for being part of this important edition. The path of truth and reconciliation starts with us being open to learn and share our region’s Indigenous story. It is a critical part of this meaningful journey.