From Sault Ste. Marie Roots to Serial Entrepreneur

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Chuck Cartmill - Dominican Republic
As part of a Government of Canada led trade mission to the Dominican Republic and Haiti, the Honourable Bernard Valcourt participated in a special event acknowledging the success of Halifax’s LED Roadway Lighting (LRL) in securing a multimillion dollar supply contract in the Dominican Republic. LRL will convert existing public lighting fixtures in Santo Domingo and other urban areas in the Dominican Republic to Satellite Series™ LED technology. Pictured from left to right: Minister Valcourt, Marilyn Brito, project coordinator of Corporacion Dominicana de Empresas Electricas Estatales and Chuck Cartmill, CEO of LED Roadway Lighting Ltd.

Chuck CartmillIn 1974 (at the age of 25), Charles (Chuck) Cartmill started his first business, C.S.A. Enterprises Ltd. (www.csarep.com), a technical sales and marketing company in lighting and industrial products. In the late 1980’s Chuck developed the first ISO certified sales and marketing system. C.S.A is still the leading electrical manufacturer representative in the Atlantic Provinces. Several key employees have been made partners in the business.

In 2002, as part of his plan to build LED street lights, Chuck purchased an empty 55,000 sq. ft. building in Amherst Nova Scotia and with no customers, employees, or government money – started C-Vision Ltd (www.cvision.ca) which he built into a world class state-of-the-art electronics manufacturing company employing over 100 people with sales of $20 million dollars. C-Vision was one of the first companies in North America to develop an environmentally friendly, lead free soldering process for which it received an NRC technology award and received the new exporter award for its lead free product sales into the European market. Chuck gave 20% of the business to the management team of 6 at no cost to them. In 2006, Chuck was selected as the Ernst & Young Manufacturing Entrepreneur of the Year and overall Entrepreneur of the Year in the Atlantic Region.

Chuck Cartmill - Confederation Bridge
Confederation Bridge is Canada’s longest bridge and the world’s longest bridge over ice-covered waters. The 8 mile (12.9 kilometre) long, 2-lane roadway, spans the salt water Northumberland Strait connecting Prince Edward Island (Borden-Carleton) with the mainland province of New Brunswick (Cape Jourimain). The fixed link officially opened to traffic in the spring of 1997 with a total construction cost of $1 billion and is considered one of Canada’s top engineering achievements of the 20th century. Approximately 4000 vehicles traverse the bridge on a daily basis. LED Roadway Lighting Ltd. was pleased to have been chosen for this large scale LED conversion project in which 315 High Pressure Sodium (250W) luminaires were replaced with SAT-96M (280mA) luminaires on the bridge span and an additional 35 luminaires installed on approaching ramps for a total conversion of 355 luminaires.

In 2007, Chuck realized a lifelong dream of creating his own product when he formed LED Roadway Lighting Ltd (www.ledroadwaylighting.com) of Halifax (Head Office) and Amherst (manufacturing) Nova Scotia. LED Roadway Lighting Ltd has created the most energy efficient highest efficacy light emitting diode (LED) street light in the world.

Chuck has multiple patents in his name for both LED lighting and hot water heating systems. Best described as a serial entrepreneur, Chuck is currently CEO of the following other companies he has launched:

  • Solar Global Solutions Ltd. (Halifax, NS), a leading edge renewable energy microgrid (solar, storage & CHP) and off grid lighting manufacturer;
  • C-Therm Ltd. (Fredericton, NB), a thermal conductivity company which exports to over 60 countries;
  • Think Tank Water Heaters Ltd. (Fredericton, NB), a designer of water heater controllers for use by utilities in reduce and shift demand programs.

Chuck was born and raised in Sault Ste. Marie and graduated from Sault College in 1969 as a Certified Electrical Technologist.

Chuck serves on Minister Chrystia Freeland’s SMEAB (Small Medium-Sized Enterprises Advisory Board) where advice and recommendations are made to the Minister of International Trade. Chuck also serves on the CME (Canadian Manufactures & Exporters) regional advisory board and on its Energy Committee.

Chuck enjoys spending time with his family and grandchildren, in the great outdoors and traveling (including annual return trips to the Sault).

Chuck will share his expertise on building a business from the ground up with attendees at the January 20th ‘Business Mentorship & Hearing from the Expert’ workshop hosted by the Business Services division of the Sault Ste. Marie Innovation Centre.

Further information and registration is available at www.ssmicbusinessmentorworkshop.eventbrite.ca