In November 2019, Kevin Doherty stepped into the role of President & CEO of the International CCS Knowledge Centre, albeit, on an interim basis. Kevin brings with him a formidable background that crosses private, public and not-for-profit sectors. To read his bio, click here. However, to get to know him, below are a handful of questions posed to Kevin and his responses.
What brings you to the world of carbon capture and storage and the International CCS Knowledge Centre?
From the time that I spent as Vice President of Corporate Relations at SaskPower — during which the decision was made to advance with CCS on the Boundary Dam 3 Power Station (BD3) — and through my time in government, I have been interested in the fact that Saskatchewan was willing to take the risk to be the first jurisdiction in the world to build a CCS system on a commercial scale at a coal-fired generating plant.
When Mike Monea, the founding CEO of the Knowledge Centre, stepped down, I was approached completely out of the blue from one of the Board Members asking to have my name put forward for the role on an interim basis. I am very interested in the work of the Knowledge Centre and how I might contribute to its success.
What specific interest do you have in the work? Why does it matter to you?
The BD3 CCS Facility is a game-changer in the world of GHG emission mitigation and therefore needs to be celebrated and shared throughout the world, not just in electricity generation, but in many other applications as well. Saskatchewan has always been a pioneer in innovation because of our major industries (agriculture, mining and oil & gas) and when you combine that pioneering spirit with a company like BHP, who is truly a global company that really cares about climate change, I think you can help provide some of the solutions needed to reducing GHG emissions.
What are your primary goals for the International CCS Knowledge Centre? What are you hoping to achieve while at the helm?
For the first three years of existence, the team at the Knowledge Centre has been busy travelling the world to bring awareness of CCS and to share the experiences and lessons learned of BD3 (along with great support from SaskPower). The mandate has been to advance the understanding and use of CCS as a means of managing GHG emissions. We are now at a point where we have a lot of “irons in the fire,” if you will, and I look forward to working with the team as we focus on these initiatives. We want to continue to build our brand, develop partnerships, enter new markets, and then assist those interested in applying the technology to help clean up their emissions, whether that be by company, sector, or jurisdiction. We have several projects on the go right now and we want to bring them to fruition.
How would you describe your leadership style?
I am not a technical person in this space, so I rely on the experts in their respective fields to manage that side of the business. I do believe that I bring years of experience in the private and public sectors whereby I can contribute to an even more collaborative team environment to most effectively intersect our internal and external pathways with each other to deliver on some very specific goals. I have always tried to be a collaborator where I want people to speak up, challenge each other, put their ideas out there, and let’s discuss and debate, but at the end of the day, a decision has to be made and action taken. I try to foster an environment of trust, accountability, respect, fun and meaningful, purposeful work. Communication is key and I believe in every member of the team understanding what is expected of them and having their work validated as meaningful.
Anything else that you’d like to add?
I have been here for about two months now and I really enjoy the professionals that I get to work with and the fact that they are engaged in very meaningful work. We get terrific support from our founders, SaskPower and BHP, and I am fortunate to be able to engage with the leadership in those organizations.