Clean Air Yard Care was founded in early 2010 in Victoria, British Columbia by Barry McLean now Founder and Chief Operating Officer (COO). Barry has an extensive background in business and agriculture being raised on his family’s farm and learning to care for the land and its natural resources.
Raised on a thriving and successful organic family farm in Canada’s grain belt, Barry continues to live by his grandfather’s motto “take care of the land and it will take care of you”. Barry worked side-by-side with his grandfather, ACL and grandmother Rose McLean, as they planted and harvested a variety of organic seeds and vegetables. ACL himself planted and harvested 75 years of crops using organic farming techniques. The McLean’s were ahead of their time. As a fourth generation Canadian farmer, Barry continues his family tradition to love and respect the land.
“Being an innovator and the first to a market such a creative and necessary service is an exciting challenge”, said Barry McLean.” I think of myself as a pioneer, just like that of my great grandparents who immigrated to Canada to take up the challenge of a new beginning. They came here for hope of a better life and I continue that tradition for all of our families and our environment.” Barry is referencing the other side of his family as his great-father, John Lezun and Barry’s great-grandmother Mary, were immigrant farmers from Ukraine who, for their lifetime, cared for and loved the land. With strong family roots, traditions and values that respect the land and environment, it is with pride that Barry carries on his strong desire to make a difference.
When the opportunity came for Barry to start a new business it was a natural transition to continue to work on the land and protect the environment. Clean Air Yard Care, a full service yard care business powered by renewable solar energy was born. Originally the company was called Clean Air Landscaping but soon thereafter changed its name to better reflect total yard care.
At the outset, the company’s business model was innovative and supported his practices and philosophy to be environmentally responsible. Barry started the company independent of incentives. Although government agencies and clean air advocates recognized the need to address the concerns in the landscaping industry, start-up funding was not available to support companies that infused renewable energy sources into delivering the traditional service of yard care that is best known for excessive air and noise pollution.
Clean Air Yard Care after much research and financial investment was born as the first business model to acknowledge the “green gap” in lawn & yard care services in Canada. Teasing remarks about “solar rakes” were the initial reactions from traditionalists in the yard care industry. These individuals were soon proven wrong when the company received its first of several environmental awards only one short year after the company opened. Barry accredits the awards to the recognition of Clean Air Yard Care as a company that cares about Canadians quality of life as it relates to climate change, environmental health concern, soil degradation, air & noise pollution, water drain-off and ground contamination.
Recently, the business brought on the expertise of franchise entrepreneur and business coach Richard Larkin, now President and CEO in July of 2012 to grow the business brand as a national franchise. Together Richard and Barry bring a perfect balance of business knowledge, franchising, work ethic and environmental responsibility to the future of the yard care industry in Canada. Today, the business is continuing to break new ground in lawn and yard care services delivering responsible and organic services to a broad range of environmentally conscious customers.