There is no better investment than in our future leaders,” says Greg Bavington. He should know. Greg was appointed Executive Director of the Queen’s Innovation Connector in November 2012. His latest innovation challenge follows five years as President and CEO of KN Rubber LLC and roles helping to design smelters in South Africa and GM’s modernized assembly plant in Oshawa. Greg was also exposed to several high-profile engineering projects, including the English Channel Tunnel and the SkyDome roof. He is an elected member of Queen’s University Council and an alumnus serving on the Queen’s Engineering Society Board of Directors. Greg also serves on the board of several private companies, income trusts, trade associations and not-for-profit organizations.
With a career spanning consulting, finance, mergers and acquisitions, corporate strategy and client management, all within the mining sector, Gordon Bell, Sc’80 (Mining Eng) has developed some pointed ideas on what it takes to be a winning leader: “Set an example for others; always do the right thing; make the tough decisions; and put the interests of the team ahead of your own.” It’s a philosophy that has served him well. Since joining RBC Capital Markets in 1989, Mr. Bell has managed relationships for many of the firm’s North American and international mining and metals clients, culminating in his current role as managing director and head of the global mining and metals group.
Martha van Berkel (Garriock), Sc’00 (Math and Eng) has this challenge for other Queen’s young engineering alumni: “Prove that you believe in your school.” Ms van Berkel did just that this year with a leadership gift to the Innovation and Global Leadership Program, a cornerstone priority of the Campaign for Queen’s Engineering. The senior manager at Cisco is also the founding chair for Queen’s Young Engineering Alumni (QYea!), established in 2011 to help new grads become innovative leaders, reconnect with old classmates and reignite their passion for Queen’s. “My contributions are me saying I believe in this school and I’m willing to put my foot forward to help keep Queen’s among the best engineering schools in Canada.”
Evan Hazell, Sc’81 (Chem Eng), doesn’t define accomplishment by career alone. The recently retired investment banker and petroleum engineer prefers to measure his life’s worth by what he’s given to business and community. Over 20 years as an investment banker, Mr. Hazell completed mergers and acquisitions, and financing assignments for domestic and international oil and gas clients. He also served as director of many non-profit organizations, including Calgary Opera, the Centre for Affordable Water and Sanitation Technology and the Calgary YMCA. “I have been very fortunate to have worked with and been inspired by some great business leaders,” he says. “That balance of business and community effort is what I truly admire.”
Over 16 years in the petroleum and investment banking industries, Greg Heath, Sc’96 (Geo Eng) has done his fair share of interviewing and hiring. More often than not, says the managing director in the RBC Capital Markets energy investment banking group, it’s the Queen’s graduates who stand out. “I think that the spirit, quality and reputation of Queen’s attracts motivated and ambitious students, and that the environment and curriculum of Queen’s promotes independent thought and leadership. It’s a fantastic combination.” These very characteristics have fueled Mr. Heath’s own success at RBC, as author of industry guidelines related to the coal-bed methane and oil sands industry, and as an Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench expert witness in oil sands matters.
Tom Kennedy is living proof that a Queen’s Engineering degree can prepare you for most anything. The 1973 Queen’s mining engineer is founder and managing director of Toronto-based investment firm Kensington Capital Partners. He also serves on the advisory boards of several private equity funds and on the Board of Directors of such wide-ranging organizations as Crestline Coach Ltd., Lise Watier Cosmétiques Inc. and the Regent Park School of Music Foundation. Prior to Kensington, Mr. Kennedy spent a decade in operational and management positions with Consolidation Coal Co., Alberta Energy Company, Bunting Warburg Lancaster, and TD Securities. Following his studies at Queen’s, he earned a Doctor of Business Administration from the University of Edinburgh.
When the Government of Canada sold its remaining 19% stake in Petro-Canada for $3.2 billion in 2004, Tim Kitchen watched every step of the transaction unfold. The 1986 Queen’s chemical engineering grad and then managing director of CIBC World Markets was one of the bright minds behind the sale, which he still counts among his most memorable career moments. Mr. Kitchen has led many other notable transactions since, as head of Lehman Brothers’ Calgary Investment Banking and as the current managing director and head of investment banking in Canada for Barclays Capital. He also spent two years at Shell Canada as a reservoir engineer.
Inspiring support for engineering is a role Julie Lassonde takes very seriously. The 1996 Queen’s civil engineering alumna has played a role on the fundraising committee for Inspiring Greatness: The Campaign for Queen’s Engineering and she sits on the board of the Canadian Engineering Memorial Foundation, founded to attract women to the engineering profession and honour the lives of the 14 female engineering students who died at L’École Polytechnique. Julie has more than 14 years’ experience in financial and engineering fields, most recently as CEO and executive chairman of Shear Diamonds Ltd. Previously, Ms Lassonde was a civil engineer at SNC-Lavalin and an investment banker with Macquarie Bank Ltd. in Australia and the United States.
As the former deputy chairman of RBC Capital Markets, Michael Norris, Sc’75 (Civil Eng) knows that it takes a team to succeed in business. As chair of Inspiring Greatness: The Campaign for Queen’s Engineering, he knows that the same adage applies to his alma mater. “We can’t be great on our own,” he says. “I invite you to invest now in the Campaign for Queen’s Engineering.” Mr. Norris retired this fall after 25 years with RBC. He credits Queen’s with helping to launch his own successful career, which included roles as head of RBC’s global investment banking and head of RBC’s energy business, and executive portfolios at Mobil Oil and Gulf Canada.
The next time you’re buried in a page turner on your Kobo e-reader, remember to thank Mike Serbinis, Sc’96 (Eng Physics). Mr. Serbinis’ vision for a global electronic reading service was the inspiration for the Kobo, founded in 2009 and named “one of the three powerhouses in e-reading” by Time magazine. Mr. Serbinis started his career as a rocket scientist at NASA and an engineer at Microsoft before launching one of the world’s first search engines, Zip 2, which sold for $300 million. He was also the founder and chief technology officer of DocSpace. In 2006, Mr. Serbinis returned to Canada as chief information officer at Indigo Books and Music. He is currently the president and CEO of Kobo Inc.
A career built on degrees in engineering and law has made Andy Shaughnessy one of the most sought after intellectual property litigators in Canada. This summer the partner at international business law firm Torys got the chance to share his skills with Queen’s students. Mr. Shaughnessy, Sc’87 (Chem Eng), LLB’91, was a presenter at the Queen’s Summer Innovation Institute, a program that brings together Queen’s engineering and business students to drive innovative and learn vital leadership skills. While inspiring others to succeed, Mr. Shaughnessy remembers the advice of his late father, a chartered engineer who encouraged those around him to stick with it and get the job done: “Now that we’re down this deep, we’re not coming up until we blast!”
Entrepreneurship has given Jeff van Steenbergen, Sc’77 (Civil), an insider’s perspective on the vision, determination, passion, values and integrity it takes to succeed — skills he says took root at Queen’s.
The co-founder and general partner of KERN Partners, a Calgary-based energy sector private equity firm built his business on his civil engineering degree and wide-ranging experience in the oil and gas and energy sector as a private equity investor, investment banker with JP Morgan and through operating and operations management roles with ExxonMobil and Schlumberger. He says: “The Queen’s experience challenges individuals to develop as leaders in business, in community and in life.”
How do you top a 40-year career in the petroleum industry culminating in the role of executive vice-president of Suncor Energy? If you’re Barry Stewart, Sc’64 (Eng Physics), you volunteer. Over four decades at Imperial Oil, Petro-Canada and Suncor, and since retiring in 2001, Mr. Stewart has served on the boards of countless industry associations, professional societies, not-for-profit groups and industrial/research organizations. He is chair of the board of Newalta Corporation, on the board of Pengrowth Energy and founder of the non-profit Center for Affordable Water and Sanitation Technology. Mr. Stewart is also the author of Across the Land . . . a Canadian Journey of Discovery and Drake’s Dilemma, a historical novel about the exploits of Sir Francis Drake.
From a list of stand-out awards that includes Canada’s Top 100 Most Powerful Women, Kim Sturgess is decidedly proud of her Queen’s University’s Distinguished Service Award (1999) and Alumni Achievement Award (2004). “Queen’s taught me many things and continues to teach me today,” she says. Ms Sturgess, Sc’77 (Eng Physics), is founder and CEO of Alberta WaterSMART, a not-for-profit water management services organization. It is the latest in a long line of technology-based start-ups the Queen’s grad has managed throughout her career in the oil and gas, pipeline, and industrial product and service sectors. “If Canada is going to be successful, we desperately need creative and inventive engineers to build the technologies and products that will drive us forward.”
“Courage is one of the most endangered leadership characteristics in business today,” says Mary Ann Turcke, Sc’88 (Civil Eng). The fact that she has it in spades is what helped propel her onto Canada’s Most Powerful Women Top 100 list two years running (in 2009 and again in 2010), and into a leadership role at Bell Canada. Since graduating from Queen’s Engineering in 1988, Ms. Turcke has worked in construction design, at a management consulting firm and with a high-tech firm in Palo Alto, California. As head of Bell Canada’s field operations, she currently oversees a team of 10,000 and is responsible for the delivery of telecommunications services to all of Bell’s residential and business customers.
“Queen’s can proudly take its place on the top steps of the engineering podium. Queen’s Engineering inspires and graduates some of the finest engineering minds in Canada, many of which, through their day-to-day work, enrich our intellectual lives at Hatch.”
Dr. Bert Wasmund, Sc ’61 (chemical), MSc ’63,
Executive Director, hatch ltd.
After earning a mechanical engineering degree from Queen’s University in 1983, Read Gomm travelled across the ocean to pair his iron ring credentials with an MBA from the London Business School. He never looked back. After working at Schroders, Citigroup and Lexicon Partners in London and Hong Kong and in the Canadian oil industry, he landed his current position as senior managing director at Evercore Partners in London, England. Evercore is a leading independent corporate finance advisory firm, where Mr. Gomm specializes in advising on mergers and acquisitions, and capital-raising for utilities, infrastructure and renewables companies, and financial investors, including pension funds, sovereign wealth funds and infrastructure funds.
“I am proud to stand with Queen’s to support the enhancement of a world-class institution. The pace and complexity of the demands and issues that will face mining professionals in the future require that they receive the most comprehensive, progressive education possible. My investment is inspiring Queen’s Engineering to continue doing what it does best – foster the industry’s next generation of leaders.”
Robert M. Buchan, MSc ’72 (Mining Engineering),
Mining Entrepreneur and Philanthropist
As one of Canada’s most powerful women, Susan Riddell Rose, BSc’86 (Geol Eng) is in some pretty impressive company. But managing outstanding people and companies is something she knows plenty about. Ms Rose is president and CEO of Perpetual Energy Inc., an independent energy company launched in 2010 through the corporate conversation of Paramount Energy Trust. She brings to the role more than 25 years’ experience in the Canadian oil and natural gas industry, including roles with Shell Canada and Paramount Resources Ltd, and she is an active board member in the corporate and non-profit sectors. Ms Rose was named one of Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100 by the Women’s Executive Network in 2011.
Assessing people and places is something Michelle Lalonde knows plenty about. Ms Lalonde, Sc’95 (Civil Eng), is the global knowledge manager for the CEO and Board Practice at Russell Reynolds Associates, a global executive search and assessment firm. She previously served as a consultant in the firm’s consumer sector, conducting senior-level search assignments for retail and consumer packaged goods clients in Canada and the United States. Ms Lalonde started her career in a different kind of assessment entirely— as an environmental engineer at Golder Associates, providing environmental site assessment and remediation services to North American clients. She also worked for eBay Canada and A.T. Kearney Management Consultants.
"My Queen’s Engineering degree has been significant in opening up my life to amazing opportunities. It helped to have graduated from such a well-known and well-respected university and Faculty. Queen’s Engineering and Applied Science was a challenging program that tested far more than my intellect.”
Edythe "Dee" Marcoux, Sc ’70, MBA ’76, PhD ’97
former President & cEo, Ensyn Energy inc.
Canada’s Most Powerful Women list (2003)
When Dr. John Wesley “Jack” Beaver, Sc’49 (Elec Eng), DSc’79, was sent home wounded from World War II in 1944, he turned his veteran’s allowance to good use — to study engineering at Queen’s. After graduating, Dr. Beaver’s career as a consultant to the power industry took off, but he never forgot his connection to Canada’s First Nations communities. Until his death in 1989, he acted on his belief that education was essential to the success of the Aboriginal population. He contributed to the development of the Indigenous Studies department at Trent University and Ontario Power Generation honoured his legacy with the John Wesley Beaver Award for Aboriginal students.
“I have found that the problemsolving abilities I acquired at Queen’s in the Mechanical Engineering program have enabled me to quickly analyze problems and turn them into solutions. I could not think of a better foundation for my profession than an engineering degree.”
Brad Lamb, Sc ’84
President & Ceo, Brad J Lamb Realty inc.
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Over more than 100 years, Queen’s University’s Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science has attracted promising students and delivered the knowledge, skills and experiences to help them thrive. With unrivaled excellence and renowned spirit as our foundation, we are launching the largest fundraising effort in Queen’s Engineering’s history. The $85 million Inspiring Greatness: The Campaign for Queen’s Engineering, part of Queen's Initiative Campaign, will ensure we continue to grow, evolve and deliver the innovative learning experiences that inspire greatness.
JUNE 9, 2014
Design team competes on 'Mars'
A group of Queen’s students got to experience Mars last week without leaving Earth. After working for a year to build a functioning space rover, the Queen’s Space Engineering Team (QSET) flew to the Mars Desert Research Station in Hanksville, Utah, ...