BIV is proud to recognize Travis McPherson, senior vice-president of NexGen Energy Ltd., and 39 exceptional business leaders with 2022 Forty under 40 Awards.
Each recipient is featured in BIV's annual Forty under 40 Magazine, and will be celebrated at an awards gala Feb. 22. Profiles of each award recipient – originally published in the magazine – will be available at biv.com in the days ahead.
Who or what is responsible for your work ethic?
My grandma, who always spoke about wartime and the sacrifices made during those years. This had a huge impact on me in terms of what I viewed as hard work. Everything seemed easy compared to those efforts and sacrifices made.
What drives you?
My family and in particular my children. I want them to be proud of who their father is and have doors open – not close – for them in life.
A favourite book you would recommend?
Indian Horse and Ego Is the Enemy.
Now that you are (or are close to) entering your 40s, what goals have you set for yourself?
To help the mining industry become an industry that attracts the world’s most talented people. The mining industry, when done right, can impact lives (particularly remote communities) positively and generationally more than any other industry. I want future generations to bring the industry forward.
What was your childhood career dream?
To make an impact. Working at NexGen to develop the world’s largest uranium mine – which will remove 70 million cars worth of carbon dioxide annually – is my childhood dream realized.
What was your toughest business or professional decision?
When the mining markets got tough in 2010, staying in the mining industry wherever and however possible. I had lots of opportunities to leave for better pay, however I fell in love with the industry and this proved to be the right call.
What advice would you give your 20-year-old self?
Don’t be different for the sake of it, but be okay with being different in doing what’s right over the long-term.
What is your best habit?
Perspective. I’ve worked on ensuring everything can be put into perspective so that nothing becomes overwhelming and therefore anything becomes possible.
Tell us one improbable fact about yourself.
I love design – furniture, fashion, colours, architecture, cars, etc.
Best piece of advice ever received?
Things don’t happen to you, they happen for you. Making the conscious choice to take the positives away from any situation (good or bad) has changed my life for the better.
What career highlight are you most proud of?
Seeing students in high school in northern Saskatchewan come to site and then advance through university and change the trajectory of their lives for the positive. Thinking about the chain of events that can happen as a result of those young people’s choices.
What’s left to accomplish?
Lots! Raising compassionate, intellectually curious, honest children. Using mining to create awareness and voices for those that, perhaps, otherwise wouldn’t be heard.