The Ten Year Old CEO

 James F. Peggs. Remember that name because he is bound to change the world.

He’s a CEO, he works hard, he runs his own successful business and he just had his 10th birthday.

James moved to Yellowknife a few years ago with his family and noticed that there was lots of litter around the city. Yellowknife does not offer roadside pick up of recyclables. There are recycling centers but people are responsible for bringing (and sorting) their own items. James thought that was something he could help change, not to mention put a little money in his newly opened bank account. He put together a business plan and set out to make his mark. He presented his plan to his parents, who were very pleased and were willing to help him get started. The Recycling Guy was born. Two years later business is booming.

The Recycling Guy provides an amazing service. He charges $10/month for weekly pick up of all recyclables (no, you don’t have to sort them),  he provides you the bin to put the recycling in, and replaces it with a clean one each week. He is reliable, friendly, and accepts e-transfers (talk about convenience)! 

James can be found walking around his neighborhood in his high visibility vest and Recycling Guy hat, pulling his custom cart on Saturday afternoons. His parents happily and graciously donate their time (and gas) to drive James to the houses he can’t walk to with his cart. Once he gets home the sort begins in the family’s garage, which according to his dad smells less than enjoyable on those warm Yellowknife summer days. When he has everything ready to go, he heads to the Recycling Centre in Yellowknife. Due to the fact that he is so well organized, the crew working at the center often show off his sorting skills to other, less organized ‘knifers.

I had the chance to sit down with the 2016 Yellowknife Recycling Award winner and ask some of the burning questions that I thought the world must know about this pint sized CEO.

Favorite Food?  Marshmallows and Perogies (but not together)

Hobbies?  Lego, Soccer and Comics

Favorite School Subject? Gym and Math

What do you want to be when you grow up?? Pro Soccer player or an Author

Do you have any employees?  Sometimes I hire my 13-year-old brother Sam

How do you keep track of customers and payments?  My mom taught me how to use spreadsheets.

What is a negative about the Recycling business?  When people put old food in the bin. One time someone put his or her leftover pot roast dinner in there.

What do you do with all the money you make?

  •    10% of my earnings go to charity
  •    10% goes to my retirement
  •    Most goes to my car savings account
  •    I tip the guy who helps me at the Recycling Centre
  •    I always have a few dollars of walking around money just in case I find something in my travels worth buying

Have you ever found anything interesting in the bin? I like to collect bottle caps and I use the wine corks to make Christmas decorations for my customers and one time I found a skeleton arm, which I used to scare my dad.

What kind of car do you plan to buy (6 years from now)?  A Camaro or a Mustang.

Finally the most burning of questions……

What does the F in James F. Peggs stand for? My middle name is Fremont.

Speaking with James it was clear that his parents are doing a wonderful job of raising a respectful, polite and kindhearted young man. The world could use more kids like James, of that I have no doubt. If young Mr. Peggs is any indication of what the future has to hold for Canada I would say we are in very good shape. 

If you live in Yellowknife and would like to hire The Recycling Guy he can be contacted at the following email

He can also be contacted for one-time pick-ups after that big summer BBQ or backyard wedding.

Photo credit: Riley Veldhuizen

More of Rileys (amazing) photos can be found on her Instagram and Flickr pages!

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