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2013 Atlantic Journalism Awards Finalists


Date Aired or Published December 2013
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Short explanation of the story and how it developed:

Our profile of Francis McGuire was inspired by his winning Ernst & Young’s 2013 Atlantic Entrepreneur Of The Year Award. When we sat down as an editorial team, Progress and Quentin Casey, to figure out how we wanted to shape the profile, at first we weren’t sure what angle to take. The goal is always to inspire and teach our readers, other entrepreneurs in Atlantic Canada. There have been many stories written on Major Drilling over the past few years but few have really focused on McGuire himself. So the focus became to know more about McGuire and his tenure at Major Drilling—a period that has seen the company expand around the globe and become a leader in its field. The result is an interesting and revealing profile that ultimately outlines the reasons behind Major Drilling’s rise, as well as McGuire’s unusual road to the CEO’s chair—not many bureaucrats end up running successful publicly-traded companies. His story illustrates that the strengths of business and government aren’t as disparate as we like to think; there are elements of each that can compliment and improve the other. It also showcases a company and CEO that has managed to find tremendous success and wealth by growing its client base in countries all over the world. Unexpectedly though, Casey reveals that McGuire really doesn’t consider himself an entrepreneur, which is remarkable considering his success. As the feature develops, there’s an uncovering of what makes an entrepreneur an entrepreneur, and how McGuire’s approach to business is particularly unique. At the same time, Casey finds a way to tell the story without overlooking, or sugarcoating, the company’s ups and down. By revealing his whole story, the successes mixed with the struggles, Casey creates a perfect illustration of what is possible from a region seen as an economic laggard. We believe this profile, and the Major Drilling story, showcases what is possible in this region: success in global markets, rapid growth, and truly competitive companies. And those stories, we believe, need to be told more often.

Resources of the newsroom (money and time) available to complete the story:

Time: 30 days Cost: $1000 (Confidential)

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