After spending his early years working as an Electronic Technician, Willard (Willi) Fortier decided to get his Red Seal Electrical Certification in 2011, graduating in 2014. After working in Alberta and BC, he pursued self-employment alongside business partner Mike Finch, forming Blue Thunder Electric. Blue Thunder Electric specializes in full service residential, commercial, and Industrial electrical services.
Willi is a strong advocate of his community, Simpcw First Nation, and is continuously giving back by mentoring and teaching his knowledge of the trade. Indigenous Youth Builds Canada (IYBC), which helps unleash the intelligence and positive energy of young Indigenous people to transform their lives and rebuild their communities, is one of the organizations he is involved with. Helping youth learn the trade programs and teaching them firsthand is very important to Willi.
Alongside community involvement, Willi is a Relations Lead for Indigenous People in Trades Training at Thompson Rivers University, School of Trades and Technology (TRU – STT) and Mike teaches electrical courses at TRU - STT. Mike’s senior level understanding within the electrical field is instrumental to his teaching and business practices. Mike’s future endeavours are assisting youth by mentoring them in math upgrading. Math is one of the biggest obstacles to get into the electrical trades program and Willi and Mike would like to help make this more accessible.
Blue Thunder Electric is currently working on the BC Hydro Extension project in the Vavenby Log Sort Yard for Simpcw Resources Group (SRG) and a laydown in Barriere for SRG. They are working to secure additional industrial electrical projects, and plan to use those opportunities to grow their business capacity.
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