Patrick Haney

Vice-president, Keir Surgical Age: 35

Patrick Haney has found a way to merge his love of science with business.

After completing an undergraduate degree in genetics, he started out at Keir Surgical as a territory manager, responsible for making sales and managing accounts.

Now as vice-president and as a partner in the company, he remains passionate about the products Keir Surgical sells: from the humblest operating room scissors to a cutting-edge tumour removal system.

“Our products are the tools to the trade for the people that actually do the business,” he said. “It’s kind of like the hammer to the carpenter.”

Since becoming vice-president at age 29, Haney has been primarily responsible for tripling revenues and transforming the company from a regional distributor to a national player. Keir Surgical recently opened an office in Montreal to handle sales in Eastern Canada.

Haney has also reworked compensation for sales staff to encourage growth and introduced a parental return bonus, an employee emergency loan program and donation-matching. Keir’s relatively small size has enabled him to “wear a lot of hats,” including finding innovative ways to improve employee compensation.

“We can’t do some of the things that the big, big employers in town can do in regards to pension programs and that kind of stuff,” he said. “But we can do some of the small things that make an impact on people’s day-to-day.”

After being diagnosed with hemochromatosis in 2010, a hereditary genetic disorder in which iron accumulates in the body, Haney began volunteering with the Canadian Hemochromatosis Society and became president this year. In March, Haney participated in a surgical mission to Guatemala organized by B.C.-based Project HANDS. He continues to help the organization source medical supplies. •