May 06, 2020
Local Heroes: John Gordon & Servco Canada Group
In times of crisis, help can come from unexpected places. Just ask John Gordon, CEO of Servco Canada Group, a local multi-service contractor based in Kitimat. On March 17, as the COVID-19 crisis was unfolding, John received an email from his late father’s business partner in China. Billy Maio had a surplus of surgical masks, the type commonly used by health care workers and now sought by others in the battle against the novel coronavirus. Billy was offering a large supply of his masks to Servco, at cost with no mark-up.
John seized the opportunity. His company purchased 20,000 masks, and donated half of the shipment to the District of Kitimat. Masks have already been distributed to the Haisla Nation, the Kitimat Community Development Centre, Tamitik Status of Women and the Kitimat Food Bank, among others. Servco donated another 1,500 masks to St. Boniface Street Links, a Winnipeg-based organization that helps the homeless and offers programs and support for people with addictions.
Servco’s efforts didn’t end there. One of its talented young millwrights, Devin Baer, used his own 3-D printer to design and produce straps that fit on the back of the surgical masks, relieving ear tension strain experienced by workers wearing protective equipment for hours at a time. He also produced special head supports that fit onto industrial face shield visors, for use in locations such as hospitals.
“I’ve been blown away by the selfless contributions made by our staff during this pandemic,” John says. “It goes to show that we can do great things when we put our minds to a task. We’re all in this together, and due to the strong community spirit in Kitimat, I’ve no doubt we’re going to get through this together.”