Tuesday, August 16, 2016

#NahanniTeam2016: Robert Safrata

The Nahanni is unique amongst mountainous rivers. It formed long before the mountains ever existed, establishing a winding course typical of prairie rivers. As the mountains rose around it, the Nahanni maintained its course, cutting steep canyons into the land.

Our next #NahanniTeam2016 paddler is passionate OBC supporter Robert Safrata from British Columbia.

Robert Safrata is entrepreneur experienced in acquiring, building and growing companies by delivering a triple bottom line.

In 2000, Safrata acquired Richmond, BC-based courier company NOVEX out of receivership. The strategy included being a leader in sustainability practices with the addition of hybrid vehicles to the company’s fleet of over 100 vehicles and in 2010, the company added Canada’s first 2 all Electric Trucks to its fleet.  NOVEX wins awards for raising the bar and setting new standards of environmental ethics in a business historically not known as being environmentally sensitive.
More recently, Safrata purchased West Coast Sightseeing in 2009 – a 30 year old Vancouver based tourism business.  The first initiatives at West Coast were walking and bike tours and a partnership with the BC Breast Cancer Foundation donating $1 per visitor on the Big Pink Bus Tour; in keeping with triple bottom line business practices.  The company is now the largest bus tourism business in Vancouver.

As an industry leader and speaker, Robert has delivered Al Gore's "An Inconvenient Truth" to audiences across North America and regularly shares the story of NOVEX's transformation from a high-carbon business into an industry leader as a certified B-Corp and the greenest courier company in Canada.

Robert served as an inaugural member of Vancouver's "Greenest City Action Team" helping to guide economic development leadership towards the goal of making Vancouver the greenest city in the world by 2020.

Robert believes strongly in giving back to the community. He is a member of the Young Presidents Organization and past Chairman of Outward Bound Canada; organizations he continues to actively support.  He also served on the Board of Tourism Vancouver and was past Chair of the Audit Committee where he was instrumental in guiding the organization towards greening its investment portfolio to achieve greater returns.

As a member of the Canadian Alpine Ski Team from 1973 to 1978, Robert competed in the 1976 Olympics in Innsbruck, Austria.  The discipline and drive of competitive sport continues to guide his triple bottom line approach to business.

Robert is married to Jacqueline Koerner, a former chair of Ecotrust Canada and who is currently completing her PhD.   He has 2 daughters and 2 sons who have now completed their post-secondary education and making their own way in their chosen disciplines.

You can help support Robert's fundraising efforts here.

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