“Penticton Top 40 under 40 is presented by Prospera Credit Union in partnership with the Penticton & Wine Country Chamber of Commerce and JCI Penticton, with support from White Kennedy LLP Chartered Accountants”
As Penticton’s Top 40 Under 40 wraps up, the final recipient, Mark Melissan, offers advice to up and coming entrepreneurs, “Work harder and smarter than everyone else. If you think you can make it without the sweat equity, start buying lottery tickets.”
Mark has been General Manager and the Managing Partner at the Wildstone Group of Companies since 2007. The company is comprised of General Contractors, Builders, Engineers and Construction Managers. As an infrastructure specialist they provide services throughout Western and Northern Canada. The company is located on Main Street here in Penticton. Humble about his success, Mark comments, “I am not one for seeking out personal recognition because we are a company that operates as an integral team. Most of our success and achievements are kept within our group and we generally operate under the radar.”
“Competition is construction is fierce”, says Mark, of overcoming obstacles within his business. “Not to say everyone can do it, however, the interior is home to as many of the “big guys” as any of the larger city centres. We overcame it by embracing diversity and by building a great team.”
One project Mark shared was a remote Water Treatment Plant Wildstone built last year in a First Nations’ community inside the Arctic Circle. The project was one of, if not Canada’s most northerly filtration plant and to top it all off it was only accessible by air. The logistics of planning C-130 Herc aircraft loads, finishing in one summer season and the project was being recognized with an Engineering Excellence Award was proof that Wildstone “had made it”. According to Mark, it took the entire team to do it, including the Vuntut Gwich’in people of Old Crow. “If we could build there, we could do it anywhere!” Says Mark about the project, “We have such a good group at Wildstone, both here locally and in our Whitehorse branch; I’ve never been more optimistic and excited for the future.”
Mark is most definitely an entrepreneur, at the age of 21 he ran his own marketing company, which paid the bills while he went to college. After spending a year in Australia between 2000-01 he brought back an action sports (skateboarding/surfing) clothing line and distributed and marketed it.
As a Director with the Penticton Chamber of Commerce, Member of the Mining Association of BC Membership Committee (MSABC), Local Members Chair for Southern Interior Construction Association, Local Public Construction Committee Chair (SICA), member of the SICA Under 35 Leaders Group and Owner Rep with the Downtown Penticton Revitalization Committee Mark is active in the Penticton community as well as the Interior’s construction community. In his free time Mark spends time with his wife and three children. He says he wishes he golfed more, but seems to prioritize his time to dirt-biking and wake-surfing.
Mark’s daily inspiration affects his out-of-work life as well as in his business, “Surrounding myself with great people, whether in business or my personal life is key. My family is also a clear inspiration as it drives my ambition.”