Troy Archuleta on the Tigris River in Iraq (left), and at the Cortez mine in Nevada (right).
Growing up, Troy Archuleta always knew that he wanted to serve his country—similar to his grandfather, who was in the U.S. Army as a radio operator from 1951 to 1953.
“Ever since I was a kid, I wanted to be a Marine, so I knew that would be the direction I would be going in,” he says.
That aspiration became a reality in 1997 when Archuleta, at 18 years old, enlisted with the U.S. Marine Corps. After training, he served with the Combat Service Support Group 3 in Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii, and the 1st Tank Battalion in 29 Palms, California.
Archuleta worked as a motor vehicle operator, where he oversaw daily maintenance of various military vehicles. Given his strong performance, he was promoted to corporal (non-commissioned officer).
Throughout his service, Archuleta developed a strong work ethic and leadership skills, which he would later carry into his second career at Barrick.
“I think the leadership, people management and logistics that are learned in the military are definitely a bonus. They have helped me out quite a bit,” he says.
Although he left the Marines in 2001, because of family commitments, Archuleta wasn’t ready for civilian life.
When he got wind of the news that the U.S. might deploy troops to Iraq, he quickly called his old unit to see if he could join them overseas. However, they only had an administrative position available at base.
Through his connections, Archuleta found other units that were deploying to Iraq, including one in Utah. In December 2002, he signed up with the 1457th Engineer Battalion Army National Guard unit.
In early 2003, he headed to Iraq with the 1st Armored Cavalry Division as a Combat Engineer. In that role, he trained the Iraqi Coalition Forces on security measures, including how to search for and dispose of improvised explosive devices.
“It’s a brotherhood,” he says of what made him return to the military. “It’s looking out for each other. I figured that with the training I had, I could take the place of somebody who wasn’t as trained.”
Once Archuleta returned home in 2004, he kept himself busy by working at coal mines and studying business at the College of Eastern Utah.
In 2011, he crossed paths with Barrick recruiters at a career fair in Price, Utah. He joined Barrick soon after. Archuleta, who recently remarried, first worked as a haul truck driver at the Cortez mine, before becoming a lead utility technician and then a shift supervisor in 2015.
Asked how he felt about Barrick hiring veterans, Archuleta says the military invests a lot of time and money into training veterans “to do the very best job that they can. Barrick benefits from that by hiring veterans that have the experience to walk into jobs. I think it’s absolutely great.”