The Borealis Group

Strategic Advisors

The People

Allan Nixon

Allan has worked in both the public and private sectors delivering projects in the transportation and resource industries. Most recently Allan led a diverse team within Yukon Highways and Public Works responsible for delivery of a transportation network connecting Yukoners to each other and the world. In this role Allan managed more than 350 employees and Capital/O&M budgets averaging $130M+ annually. In addition, Allan led development of the Yukon Resource Gateway Project proposal, a multi-party $468M resource road development plan, bringing it from concept to Agreement in Principle for funding with the Federal government. A strong negotiator and solution creator with exceptional media skills, Allan brings a systematic and forward looking approach to every challenge building a successful path forward. Allan holds an MBA from Queens University.

  • 2018 - Present. President, The Borealis Group
  • 2009 - 2017. Assistant Deputy Minister Transportation, Yukon Highways and Public Works
  • 2008 - 2009. Director Transportation Maintenance Branch, Yukon Highways and Public Works
  • 2007 - 2008. Executive Council Office Yukon Government
  • 2003 - 2007. Manager Environmental Affairs Transportation Engineering Yukon Highways and Public Works
  • 2000 - 2003. Land Claim Negotiator Executive Council Office Yukon Government
  • Previous experience includes environmental consultant specializing in monitoring  pipeline construction and forestry operations in western and eastern Canada

Leslie Anderson

Leslie has more than 25 years of management experience in the public sector, working primarily in the areas of strategic decision support (policy, governance, finance, communications) and performance management, with a focus on developing procurement and contract management policies, programs and tools. Leslie’s recent projects include developing a Procurement Planning Handbook for Major Capital Projects for the Yukon government, and developing the policy, intellectual property regime and a new financial framework for sharing and commercialization of digital resources for the BC government’s Strategic Partnership Office. Leslie holds a Master of Laws in Public Procurement Law and Policy as well as Masters’ Degrees in Public Administration and Biology, and a Bachelor’s degree in Economics.

  • 2012 - Present. Principal Corvid Management Consulting. Clients included: 
    • Government of Yukon
    • Government of Nunavut
    • Government of British Columbia
  • 2007 - 2013. Assistant Deputy Minister Corporate Services, Yukon Highways and Public Works
  • 2012 - Assistant Deputy Minister Executive Council Office, Government of Yukon
  • 2003 - 2007. Corvid Management Consulting. Clients included:
    • Yukon First Nations
    • Government of British Columbia
  • Previous experience includes working in management and policy roles with both Government of British Columbia and Crown Corporations. 

John Burdek

Over a career spent working in three different governments (First Nation, Yukon and Federal) John has built a reputation as a strategic thinker who can quickly find common ground and build on those commonalities allowing parties to move forward together. His experience in these different organizations gives him a unique insight in to the challenges each one faces and the constraints they operate under, allowing him to create lasting solutions across entities.  As Chairperson of the Ta'an Kwach'an Council First Nation, John led his First Nation in the negotiation and implementation of a comprehensive land claim and self-government agreement with Canada and the Yukon. A respected leader in the Yukon, John is active in First Nation business entities and public boards. 

  • 2015 - Present. Principal  J. Burdek Consulting
    • Board of Directors  - Deisleen Development Corporation Teslin Tlingit Council 
    • Board of Directors  - Mundessa Development Corporation Ta’an Kwach’an Council     
    • Chair  - Yukon Fish & Wildlife Management Board  
    • Elders Council  - Ta'an Kwach'an Council 
  • 2007 - 2014 Assistant Deputy Minister Executive Council Office Government of Yukon
  • 2005 - 2007 Director of Governance, Indian and Northern Affairs Canada
  • 2003 - 2005 Director of First Nations Initiatives, Yukon College
  • 2001 - 2003 Chairperson Ta'an Kwach'an Council First Nation
  • Previous experience includes various management roles within Fisheries and Oceans Canada.

Mike Johnson


Mike brings decades of experience in delivering infrastructure projects in a northern environment both in the private and public sector. Mike has successfully delivered critical infrastructure projects throughout the north in various sectors including mining, roads, airports, municipal, as well as commercial and institutional buildings. In his various roles as Deputy Minister, director, project engineer, project manager, general manager, owner and consultant Mike has developed a sharp insight into the challenges of delivering major infrastructure in a northern context and a keen eye for the opportunities that these challenges present. In his time in the private sector Mike was involved in the development of six separate First Nation joint ventures in mining and construction projects. In his more than eight years as Deputy Minister of Yukon Highways and Public Works, Mike was responsible for close to 900 employees  and delivery of over $200M in Capital projects each year in vertical, horizontal and IT infrastructure as well as overseeing procurement processes for the Yukon Government. Mike holds a degree in Civil Engineering from Queens University and is a registered Professional Engineer.

  • 2016 - Present Principal M.F. Johnson Consulting. Clients include:
    • Government of Yukon
    • Total North Communications
  • 2007 – 2015. Deputy Minister Yukon Highways and Public Works.
  • 1997 – 2007. Private Contractor
    • Whitehorse Canada Games Center construction project - General Manager
    • Beaver Creek Bridge construction
    • Vuntut Development Corporation Construction Partnership
    • McMurray Industrial Services - Civil Contracting in the Oil Sands
  • 1993 – 1997. Director Transportation Maintenance Branch, Yukon Community and Transportation Services
  • 1978 – 1993 – Private Contractor
    • Tagish Bridge Construction and numerous other bridges throughout Yukon
  • 1976 – 1978 – Peter Kiewet and Sons Ltd.  James Bay Hydro Development 

Ray Wells

In a career spent almost entirely within the Yukon, Ray has developed a reputation as a go-to person for business development strategies and corporate governance. With his extensive experience in all aspects of the business development cycle from business case development and analysis, through to product launch and operations, Ray brings a critical eye and an evidence based approach to his thorough and thoughtful strategic analysis. Developing business strategies is one thing, delivering on them is another and Ray also has extensive experience as a senior business manager as well as roles as Director and Chair of private and public corporation boards. In these roles Ray has been responsible for ensuring the plans that have been developed are executed on in a fiscally sound manner following accepted corporate processes and procedures while meeting all regulatory requirements.  In addition to his corporate experience, Ray also gives freely of his time and skills to the not for  profit sector bringing a businesslike approach to the operations of volunteer boards including the Mental Health Association of Yukon, Yukon United Way, and the Yukon Chamber of Commerce. Ray holds an MBA from Queens University.

  • 2009 - Present. Principal Wells Consulting. Clients include:
    • Champagne Aishihik First Nations Renewable Energy Project
    • White River First Nation Development Corporation Establishment Project
  • Corporate Board  Experience includes:
    • 2011 - 2016 Chair Kilrich Industries
    • 2006 - 2014 Chair - Northerm Energy (RAB Energy)
    • 2004 - 2009 Director  -  Northwestel Cable
    • 1993 - 1998 Chair - Yukon Development Corporation
    • 1993 - 1998 Chair - Yukon Energy Corporation
  • Volunteer Board Experience includes:
    • Chair Mental Health Association Yukon
    • Chair United Way Yukon
    • Chair Yukon Chamber of Commerce
  • 1995 - 2009  Vice President, Northwestel 
  • Previous experience includes various management positions within Northwestel