Science an Technology
2008 ALBERTA SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
LEADERSHIP FOUNDATION AWARDS GALA
Alberta Science and Technology Leadership Foundation
126 Alastair Ross Technology Centre
3553 - 31 Street NW
Calgary, Alberta T2L 2K7
TABLE OF CONTENTS
2 Dinner Menu 33 ASTECH Foundation Special Award
3 Program 34 Distinguished Patrons
4 Master of Ceremonies 41 Awards and Reception Hosts
5 Featured Entertainment 43 Adjudication Panels
6 Message from the Gala Host 44 Nominators
7 ASTECH/Alberta ScienceFair 45 Awards Gala Committee
Foundation Featured Student,
46 ASTECH Foundation Board of
9 Message from the Foundation
47 Previous Recipients
11 Finalists and Recipients
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY IMPACTS YOU! 1
SALAD DINNER WINES
Wedge of Boston Lettuce Sparkling Wine:
Paul Zinck Cremant d’ Alsace Brut
APPETIZER White Wine:
Paul Zinck Pinot Gris
Achiote Rubbed Hot Smoked Salmon
Schug Sonoma Coast Pinot Noir
Medallions of Veal and Prawn Mousse
with Pinot Noir Glace Potato-Squash
Purée, Baby Carrots and Spinach Terrine
Triple Chocolate Mousse and Crispy
2008 ALBERTA SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY LEADERSHIP FOUNDATION AWARDS GALA
VIP & Main Reception
Sponsored by IBM
Master of Ceremonies
Greeting from the ASTECH Foundation
Ed Knash, Cha
Greetings from the 2008 A ECH Gala Host
Conematic Heating Systems Ltd
ASTECH/Alberta ScienceF Foundation
Sponsored by Alberta Ingenuity
Dinner and Presentation of Awards
Hosted by Cyb
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY IMPACTS YOU!
MASTER OF CEREMONIES
Mary Walsh, the winner of numerous Gemini awards for her work on CBC’s
wildly popular take on current affairs, This Hour Has 22 Minutes, Mary Walsh
Open Book and her new series Hatching Matching and Dispatching, has revealed
her hilarious Newfoundland bent on politics and current affairs to comedy fans since the
award-winning CODCO troupe hit the stage 20 years ago. From CODCO to This Hour Has 22
Minutes, which Mary created (and now in its 15th year), her roles and variety of characters
have earned Mary critical acclaim and numerous awards.
Mary has also starred in the highly rated television mini- Jane Curtin in Geraldine’s Fortune, co-wrote the popular
series Random Passage and the Showtime film feature children’s film Bailey’s Billion$, and recently appeared with
Bleacher Bums, co-starring Wayne Knight and Maury Matt Lucas (Little Britain) in The Wind in the Willows for
Chaykin. Mary’s talent can be seen outside the realm of the BBC. Mary’s directorial feature film debut Young
television with feature film credits such as: Mambo Italiano, Triffie’s Been Made Away With, was released in 2007. She
the highest grossing Canadian film since Porky’s; Violet; The also starred in the picture, alongside Colin Mochrie,
Divine Ryans, with Pete Postlethwaite; and New Waterford Andrea Martin and Corner Gas’s Fred Ewanuick. Mary
Girl, which made its American debut at the Sundance has also done a movie-of-the-week for DeVinci’s
Film Festival. Mary appeared in the feature Extraordinary Inquest producer Chris Haddock, called The
Visitor, with Andy Jones, co-starred with Michael Moriarty Quality of Life.
in the award-winning TV mini-series Major Crime, with
4 2008 ALBERTA SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY LEADERSHIP FOUNDATION AWARDS GALA
VIP and Main Reception
Jerrold Dubyk Quartet
Jerrold has been pursuing music with a newly acquired determination and it is this pursuit that led him
to New Jersey/New York where he completed his Masters degree in Jazz Studies at Rutgers University.
He has had the privileged opportunity to study with and perform alongside of his
mentor, saxophonist Ralph Bowen of the 80s hard-bop super group OTB as well
as legendary drummer Victor Lewis, pianist Stanley Cowell, Vic Juris, jazz
Grammy nominated trombonist Conrad Herwig, Mickey Roker and many
other distinguished jazz musicians in the New Jersey/New York area.
He was extensively featured as a soloist during the “Rutgers in New
York” series at the Blue Note Jazz Club in New York City
Awards Show Stingers Ensemble
After Party Stingers Ensemble is a collection of local
Jim Brenan Quartet Edmonton musicians who have played together in
Founded in 1994, the Jim Brenan Quartet has been a a variety of formats for a wide range of musicians.
continuous presence on the Canadian music scene. Equally These performers have collectively played with
at home in nightclubs, at intimate parties or at international Tommy Banks, David Foster, the Edmonton
music festivals, this collection of Alberta based musicians, with Symphony among others.
their traditional instruments and their fascinating repertoire,
have proven over the years that they can come into any situation,
capture anyone’s attention and really swing!
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY IMPACTS YOU! 5
MESSAGE FROM THE GALA HOST
Conematic Heating Systems is proud to host the Alberta Science and Technology (ASTECH)
Leadership Foundation Awards Gala. As one of the previous years’ award recipients, we
can relate to what the ASTECH Awards must mean to each candidate. For us, it was an
affirmation of our direction and a catalyst for our staff that flooded them with enthusiasm,
pride and drive to continue our applied innovation. The ASTECH Awards will take on a
different meaning for each individual; however, we encourage you to embrace it as your
catalyst to further your innovations which, in turn, will paint a bright future for science and
technology innovations in the Province of Alberta.
Conematic has pioneered technologies that are setting the standards for energy savings
and affordable, environmentally responsible heating solutions. This has been made
possible through Conematic’s relationships with its outstanding partners and alliances that
represent the best in the world within their respective areas. Innovating together with:
SAIT Polytechnic, Grundfos, HBX Control Systems Inc, Caleffi Hydronic Solutions, Dungs
Combustion Controls, Bekaert, and ebm-papst Inc has propelled Conematic into a world-
class technological innovator and industry pacesetter.
We thank the ASTECH Foundation for its continued support of science and technology
innovation in Alberta. These awards are very meaningful and will certainly continue to
foster the spirit of innovation in Alberta.
Mr. Doug Smith
Conematic Heating Systems
6 2008 ALBERTA SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY LEADERSHIP FOUNDATION AWARDS GALA
ASTECH/ALBERTA SCIENCEFAIR FOUNDATION
Up and Coming Alberta
Gary Kurek – Driven by Curiosity
At 16, Gary Kurek has found his scientific niche. One in which he can
combine his love of all things medical with his flair for engineering.
Mr. Kurek found his calling when his increasingly immobile
grandmother couldn’t find a walker that could do everything she
needed it to.
“I observed how she moved around and what she needed,” he
remembers. “I thought of ways I could improve the device to suit her
needs.” The enterprising young man spoke to several people in the
nearby community of Bonnyville and discovered that almost everyone
had a relative or friend who experienced the limitations of wheelchairs
Always alert to possibilities, Mr. Kurek set out to design a better
contraption. He calls his model a Rollator wheelchair hybrid. It’s based
on a rolling walker to which he attached a kit that allows users to use
the walker manually or as an electric wheelchair.
“By combining the functions of a walker and a wheelchair into one
mobile assistive device, I was able to offer more functionality than
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY IMPACTS YOU! 7
ASTECH/ALBERTA SCIENCEFAIR FOUNDATION FEATURED STUDENT…CONTINUED
what is currently out there,” he explains. “And I made it more versatile and smaller. And it’s less
expensive than what’s out there.”
Mr. Kurek took the Rollator to the Edmonton regional science fair and was asked to represent
Alberta at the Canada Wide Science Fair in Ottawa. He took home the silver medal in the
Intermediate Engineering category. He also won the Peer Innovation Award and his project
was recognized as the project best applicable to a patent.
It’s the third time he’s been at the Canada Wide e
Science Fair, having won a bronze medal last year.ear.
Mr. Kurek built his first science fair entry when
he was in Grade 8. He designed a nighttime
roadside system of signals that could alert
drivers if wildlife was near the roadway.
That way they could slow down to avoid an
Mr. Kurek says he has always been fascinated byy
biology and science, driven by a rural upbringing and
his insatiable curiosity. He was encouraged to pursue science more
seriously by his Grade 8 science teacher who spotted his scientific
ability. The rest is history, as they say.
These days when he’s not in school, in the drama club or playing volleyball
on the school team, Mr. Kurek is going through the process of patenting
the Rollator wheelchair hybrid. He’s received a development offer from the
Northern Alberta Institute of Technology to design and build a final prototype of
the Rollator wheelchair hybrid.
“This project has introduced me to the business side of life and I’m interested in that,” he says.
His dream is to start up a company that specializes in medical assistive devices.
8 2008 ALBERTA SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY LEADERSHIP FOUNDATION AWARDS GALA
MESSAGE FROM THE FOUNDATION
Science and Technology Impacts You….and we visionary leadership in establishment of a world
are glad you have joined us to celebrate Alberta’s class S&T capability, you and others will learn
achievements this year. On behalf of the twenty about the tremendous impacts Alberta is having
two patrons of the Alberta Science and Technology on industry, academia and society around the
Leadership Foundation, I would like to welcome world.
you to the 2008 celebration of outstanding
achievement in Alberta science and technology. Alberta is clearly “punching above its weight” in
Over the past nineteen years, the ASTECH the global science and technology community.
Foundation has recognized over two hundred This year’s finalists and award winners are
recipients for their outstanding contributions in driving innovation in the health of individuals
science and technology. These contributions and our society, environmental stewardship,
have impacted the lives of Albertans, Canadians information technology, and our food supply.
and humanity beyond our borders, and stand as They are helping to harness and utilize our natural
testament to the global influence of world class resources in more efficient and more sustainable
science and technology originating in Alberta’s ways, and strengthen the health of our people
laboratories, classrooms, workshops and…even our and our society. In doing so, they are also
garages! contributing to the education and employment of
Albertans, to an increasing range of opportunities
At this year’s ASTECH Gala, we recognize twenty for young people across the province, and to
two finalists, and present thirteen awards to 2008’s the health and welfare of Albertans young and
science and technology leaders. These finalists and old. At the ASTECH Foundation we are confident
award winners illustrate the breadth and depth of that the Science and Technology leaders who are
Alberta’s science and technology capabilities. From being recognized this year are already having a
university knowledge creation and dissemination, direct impact on the future of all Albertans and
to technical inventiveness and ingenuity, to Canadians.
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY IMPACTS YOU! 9
MESSAGE FROM THE FOUNDATION…CONTINUED
Recognizing how “Science and Technology Impacts You” in Alberta
would not be possible without the patrons and sponsors of the ASTECH
Foundation. These are organizations and individuals who believe that
Alberta is making tremendous contributions to the global Science and
Technology landscape. Leading research and educational institutions,
committed leaders from our federal and provincial governments, and
visionary public and private companies contribute significant time, talent
and financial resources to recognize Alberta’s science and technology
heroes….and I ask you to join me in thanking these ASTECH patrons and
sponsors for their insight and support. You’ll see their names and logos
profiled during the ASTECH Gala, and throughout this program; please
take an opportunity to thank them for their encouragement of Alberta’s s
science and technology leaders.
Finally, I would like to thank you for joining us in celebrating the
tremendous achievements of this year’s ASTECH Awards finalists and prize
winners, as your involvement further honours the contributions being
made by Alberta’s Science and Technology heroes.
ASTECH Foundation Chair
10 2008 ALBERTA SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY LEADERSHIP FOUNDATION AWARDS GALA
2008 ASTECH AWARDS FINALISTS AND RECIPIENTS
EXCELLENCE IN SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY PUBLIC AWARENESS
Inspiration in the Night Sky
The Rothney Astrophysical Observatory
Dr. Phil Langill, Director
Dr. Phil Langill is still buzzing from the funding about 10 years ago Dr. Langill was hired as resident
recent open house he hosted at the astronomer. He began using the unique facility to educate the
Rothney Astrophysical Observatory public by helping to institute open houses for the public and
outside of Calgary. “Three hundred tours and seminars for schoolteachers.
people came to the observatory,” he Several years later, the observatory hired Dr. Langill as its
enthuses. director and he proposed continuing and expanding public
He remembers specifically a youngster outreach activities at the facility. Given the green light, Dr.
who climbed up the ladder to peer at Langill proceeded.
the night sky through an eyepiece on the Now the observatory has grade-specific programs for school
observatory’s largest telescope. It took him a while children from grade 6 to 12. It has partnerships with Girl
to see anything. Dr. Langill coached him to “jiggle your Guides, Brownies, Scouts, Cubs and Beavers, in which they
eye a bit to the left. See anything?” He received a negative response. work towards various astronomy badges. Day camps have
“Jiggle it a bit to the right then. See anything?” Still nothing. organized sessions and the observatory is open to visitors
Then suddenly an excited burst of “Holy cow! Look at all the stars!” three afternoons a week. Open houses are also a regular
It’s those magic moments that stay with the wonderstruck child for event.
a lifetime and with Dr. Langill for a long time, too. All this goes on while the observatory remains one of
Although he admits to being biased about the interest value Canada’s leading astrophysical observatories and a vital U of C
in astronomy, Dr. Langill hopes the Rothney Astrophysical teaching and research facility. Its location in the foothills of the
Observatory will instill in people, youth especially, the wonder of Rockies gives RAO the unique ability to scan the northern sky,
science through astronomy. and to make a valuable contribution to astrophysical research
“If we are able to inspire even one in 500 of our visitors to
remember their time at the observatory and become an And next year, The Rothney Astrophysical Observatory will
astronomer, a scientist or a teacher,” he says, “then we are be a major Canadian player in the United Nations-designated
successful.” International Year of Astronomy. The year will commemorate
the 400th anniversary of the first study of the heavens
Originally the University of Calgary used the observatory as
through a telescope by Galileo Galilei, who is considered the
a teaching and research facility. When it received additional
father of modern astronomy.
12 2008 ALBERTA SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY LEADERSHIP FOUNDATION AWARDS GALA
AVAC/iCORE/ASTECH OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT IN INFORMATION
AND COMMUNICATIONS TECHNOLOGY AND INNOVATION
Pushing the Tech Envelope
Dr. H. James Hoover, Professor, Department of Computing Science, University of Alberta, and
Antony G. Olekshy, University of Alberta and Avra Software Lab Inc.
Dr. James Hoover recently visited the City of Edmonton website. In 1998 before the Internet was on
It worked exactly the way it was supposed to. most people’s radar, Mr. Olekshy
“I was pleasantly surprised to discover that one of my students realized the web was more than just
was involved,” he says. “Getting ideas out into practice static pages of information and began
characterizes our work.” imagining how to use it to deliver
Jim Hoover and his lifelong collaborator, Tony Olekshy, have
spent the better part of 35 years examining computing from all The “crown jewel” in their techie caps is
angles. They build systems that allow professionals, particularly “making the web sing and dance as if it was
engineers, do their jobs better. a computer on your desk.”
They are the driving force behind Avra Software Lab Inc., Among their most impressive products is
a University of Alberta spin-off company, formed in 1998. iPRSM®, the first web-enabled engineering application.
Avra provides software development services and acts as an Developed for the petro-chemical industry, the technology enables
industrial test bed for research. plant personnel, compliance auditors and engineers to have
instantaneous simultaneous access and analysis to data on any
The duo grew up on the same street in Edmonton. As high
pressure relief system, from any location with web connectivity.
school students they would spend late nights hacking in the
U of A’s Department of Chemical Engineering process control “In looking back on all the products we’ve made, each one pushed
lab, according to Dr. Hoover. He went on to study Computing the envelope of current practice in some way,” Dr. Hoover says. “We
Science while Mr. Olekshy studied Electrical Engineering. didn’t invent the big things such as the web, or markup languages,
but we did see a way to combine and leverage them beyond
Mr. Olekshy and Dr. Hoover are not seduced by the latest
their original intended purpose.”
technology just for the sake of novelty.
The duo is motivated by the intellectual challenge of their work
“We ignore the hype, and instead ask what the new technology
and by the joy of seeing how their products help clients.
can do that makes a difference in the way we build systems and
improve how our customers work,” Dr. Hoover explains. “Our “It’s great to know we are giving people a way to do their jobs
strength is being consistently ahead of the curve in pushing even better than before,” Dr. Hoover says.
new technology to its limits in making useful products.”
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY IMPACTS YOU! 13
DOW AGROSCIENCES/ASTECH INNOVATION IN AGRICULTURAL SCIENCE
Keeping Food Supply Abundant and Safe
Dr. Ronald Howard, Plant Pathologist, Pest Management Branch, Agriculture Research Division,
Alberta Agriculture & Rural Development
As consumers, we tend to take the “My role is to study disease issues to contribute to the overall
food on our plates for granted. We body of knowledge on pest management strategies for
can do so because researchers like crops,” he says.
Dr. Ronald Howard work in their labs The CDCS’s mandate to bring crops from around the world to
and in farmers’ fields protecting crops Alberta to test their adaptability keeps Dr. Howard busy. Out
from pests such as weeds, insects and of their element, the plants may fall prey to a disease or bring
diseases. new diseases to the region. Alberta already grows a large
“One of the eternal challenges to crop variety of crops; and producers continually introduce new
producers is plant diseases,” Dr. Howard says. methods of farming. All of these challenges offer Dr. Howard
“We try to give growers up-to-date information so fertile ground for research ideas.
they can cope with crop diseases to minimize losses in Not only does he discover new plant diseases and find
yield and quality.” ways to protect crops against them; Dr. Howard is also an
For the past 33 years Dr. Howard has worked as a plant pathologist, ambassador, sharing his findings with producers, researchers,
researcher and manager at the Alberta Crop Diversification Centre extension specialists and academics around the world. He has
South (CDCS). During that time he has studied about 50 different written publications and made presentations numbering over
types of crops and the diseases that plague them. 1,000 in his career, and has advised post-graduate students
Whether it’s tomatoes, potatoes or grains, Dr. Howard has the and visiting scientists from across Canada and in China.
ability to work with producers to help them understand the He also spearheaded the construction of a new $16-million
diseases that affect their crops and how to manage them. research greenhouse facility at CDCS, the most modern in
“My goal is to try to answer the questions that are at the top Canada. “We will be able to conduct leading-edge research as
of the producers’ minds,” Dr. Howard explains. “What is this a result of this legacy facility,” he says.
disease? Where did it come from? What can we do about it?” “I hope my scientific contributions will help produce healthier
In his quest to answer these questions, Dr. Howard food crops for Alberta consumers and beyond,” says Dr.
collaborates with colleagues in provincial and federal research Howard, who is anticipating retirement. “And hopefully
stations, university faculties, private sector companies and healthy plants will help to keep Alberta’s crop industry strong
consultants, and teams of agriculture producers. and competitive in the future.”
14 2008 ALBERTA SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY LEADERSHIP FOUNDATION AWARDS GALA
SYNCRUDE/ASTECH INNOVATION IN OIL SANDS RESEARCH
Bringing Increased Efﬁciency to Industry
Dr. Hong Zhang, Professor, Computing Science, Faculty of Science, University of Alberta;
Syncrude/iCORE/Matrikon/NSERC Industrial Research Chair
Alberta’s oil sands hold estimated reserves of 174 billion and cause less damage to the
barrels of oil. And Dr. Hong Zhang is dedicated to finding environment.”
ways to waste as little of that and process as much of the Dr. Zhang began conducting oil
resource as is possible. sands-specific research in 1999.
By working closely with industry, specifically Syncrude He was seeking a challenge as
through a partnership with NSERC, iCORE, Matrikon and the a researcher. His partnership with
University of Alberta, the professor of Computing Science Syncrude allowed him to do that.
developed advanced image processing software, which he “I enjoy doing research people care
thinks of as a suite of “visual analyzers”. They give equipment about,” he says. “I talk to my partner at
operators an effective means to measure ore particles, which Syncrude about technical issues that need to be
must be under a certain size in order to pass through a screen resolved. Then we try to come up with solutions that can
before they are delivered to the extraction process. benefit the industry, and can create an immediate impact in the
Dr. Zhang has also developed image-processing software province of Alberta. That’s gratifying to me.”
to allow operators to detect large frozen oil sand lumps and Dr. Zhang credits much of his success to his students. “I bring
minimize the risk of jamming crushing machinery in winter them problems and resources and they generate the solutions.”
operations. He adds that he takes particular pleasure seeing his students
Dr. Zhang’s advanced image processing software improves grow and enjoy success after graduation, often taking positions
the oil sands industry business performance through an in industry in Alberta.
increased understanding of ore preparation process. The advanced image processing technology Dr. Zhang
“Given the vast volume of the reserves, if we improve the and his students developed has injected new science into
efficiency of the mining process by even a fraction of a conventional engineering methods in the oil sands industry.
percent, it could translate into billions of dollars,” Dr. Zhang Now Dr. Zhang’s goal is to provide support to Syncrude to
explains. He adds the improved efficiency allows industry to help with the technology transfer. And he wants to see
reduce rejected material. how his advanced image processing research can be
“That means there is less material that needs to be trucked extended to other areas in the oil sands mining.
and reprocessed,” Dr. Zhang says. “So we use less energy
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY IMPACTS YOU! 15
SHELL/ASTECH OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT IN
ENVIRONMENTAL TECHNOLOGY AND INNOVATION
Managing Garbage to Solve Big Problems
Dr. Patrick Hettiaratchi, Professor, Department of Civil Engineering, Schulich School of Engineering,
University of Calgary
Dr. Patrick Hettiaratchi has a mission Before Dr. Hettiaratchi’s biocell can accomplish the ambitious
to change the way people think agenda, municipalities have to buy into the concept – starting
about garbage. He’s designed a with Calgary.
revolutionary landfill ‘biocell’, which Dr. Hettiaratchi and the City of Calgary are conducting a full-
will contribute to solving some of the scale pilot project of the biocell. It covers one hectare and is
major problems the world is facing. processing about 55,000 tonnes of waste, producing about
“The biocell can help control climate 300 kilowatts of power, over the next five years.
change by reducing methane emissions,” “What works in Calgary may not work in Indonesia,” he
he explains. “It can reduce dependence on observes. “But every country has a problem with garbage and
non-renewable energy by creating energy from the the idea of the biocell is worth pursuing.” He cites the amount
garbage, which will also affect oil and gas prices; and it of moisture and the type of garbage as variables that need to
addresses land use because most of the garbage will be converted be considered when designing the biocell.
to a usable product and we can reuse the landfill cell and reduce
Dr. Hettiaratchi is building an international biocell network to
traditional landfill use.”
help advance the technology for use in various climates and
The biocell is a large pit lined with clay and plastic. It is loaded with conditions.
tonnes of ordinary garbage. When it is filled, the biocell is sealed
“What to do with all of our garbage is one of the world’s
with a plastic cap. To enhance natural breakdown of waste either
biggest problems,” he says. “We hope our project in Calgary
water is added, or “leachate” collected at the bottom of the landfill
produces good results so we can provide information to
is re-circulated. The gas is captured and used to make electricity.
policy makers to make the decision to use the biocell in
When the methane production dwindles, oxygen is pumped integrated waste management systems. The biocell has the
back into the biocell and it becomes a giant composter, a potential to solve some of the world’s problems and benefit
process that may take about a year. The biocell is opened, all of society in several ways.”
compost is removed, recyclable material is harvested and the
rest, about 30 per cent of the original volume, is moved to a
traditional landfill. Then a new biocell is set up on the same
16 2008 ALBERTA SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY LEADERSHIP FOUNDATION AWARDS GALA
SAIT POLYTECHNIC/ASTECH OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT
IN APPLIED TECHNOLOGY AND INNOVATION
Designing Spaces for Today
DIRTT Environmental Solutions
Morgens Smed, CEO of DIRTT
Welcome to the end of renovations that make the office a chunks your space stops being a
construction zone for months on end. And then you wish you barrier and becomes an extension
would have designed the space differently. of the culture and addresses the
“Traditionally, office renovations are a series of concessions,” says needs of the individual at that
Geoff Gosling, a founding partner and responsible for product particular time. This allows self-
development at DIRTT. “Everyone has to have a say and you are expression and individual function.”
making decisions that you have to live with for years. This is an DIRTT developed and uses a software
inferior way to design a work space.” program created specifically to design
Calgary-based DIRTT (Doing It Right This Time) Environmental and manufacture the walls. ICE® minimizes
Solutions builds pre-engineered and pre-manufactured the complexity of design for clients and
moveable walls. They can be configured to support existing manufacturing costs. It allows designers to work with
office furniture and offer storage options. DIRTT Walls without in-depth product knowledge, such as how
modules connect together and other specifications. ICE has had
They also eliminate construction waste and future renovation
such a huge impact that “ICE EDGE”, a wholly owned subsidiary
waste – no demolition, procuring and re-building. That’s
was formed to apply this technology to other industries. This
because once the DIRTT system is installed, it’s easy to change
technology is now being used in several other industries such
the configuration of the offices without major renovations.
as modular housing, command and control environments, and
“Even a lay person can do it with a small amount of training,” Mr. office furniture.
Gosling insists. “This technology is sustainable from a behavioral
“ICE® sets us apart from our competitors and allows us to
perspective. It can change, evolve and adapt to small or large
seamlessly and radically change our product over time,” Mr.
needs. It provides the opportunity to individualize a space. This
Gosling says. “We never build the same thing twice.”
is critical in giving people ownership of their environment.”
For now DIRTT is focusing on offices. Their future lies in
The fundamental assumption DIRTT operates on is that the
wherever drywall exists, in particular residential construction.
future is unpredictable and that requires agility in designing
spaces to accommodate the unforeseen. “When the kids go off to college, you don’t paint their room.
Their room is gone,” Mr. Gosling jokes. “DIRTT is about
“Generally people wait to make major reconfigurations to the
addressing what the world is about today and what it
office,” Mr. Gosling says. “But if you make changes in smaller
might be tomorrow.”
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY IMPACTS YOU! 17
OUTSTANDING LEADERSHIP IN ALBERTA SCIENCE
Internationally Renowned Chemist sees Long-Term Results
Dr. Tristram Chivers, Faculty Professor and Professor Emeritus, Department of Chemistry, University
“Had I not come to Alberta I wouldn’t Dr. Chivers points out that in spite of considerable interest, the
have researched sulphur chemistry at new process has yet to be developed on an industrial level
all,” says Dr. Tristram Chivers, faculty because of economic considerations.
professor and professor emeritus in Dr. Chivers wrote a book about sulphur-nitrogen compounds
the Department of Chemistry at the called A Guide to Chalcogen-Nitrogen Chemistry, which he
University of Calgary. considers one of the areas in which he and his team made a
That would have been a missed major contribution. He talks about combining sulphur, which
opportunity for Alberta’s sour gas and is an insulator, and nitrogen, which is a gas, into one molecule.
petrochemical industries and for the main They produce a conducting polymer.
group chemistry world. “That was a remarkable observation,” he says. “Our studies
Dr. Chivers has been described as the “godfather” of main played a pivotal role in explaining why the combination of
group chemistry, the chemistry of common elements such as the two non-metallic elements leads to a compound with
phosphorus and sulphur. He is widely considered to be Canada’s metallic properties.”
most distinguished researcher and one of the world’s elite in this Discoveries such as this motivate Dr. Chivers to continue his
broad area of research. He has made significant contributions to research. He also values the stimulation that comes from the
applications of this branch of chemistry to Alberta’s sour gas and interaction he has with his many students.
petrochemical industries. And much of his ongoing work is still in
“I like the excitement of sharing discoveries with these
the development stage.
extremely bright young people,” he says. “I liken it to getting
“As a chemist, my goals are long term. What one does today to the top of a mountain and seeing a view you didn’t expect
doesn’t necessarily have immediate impact,“ Dr. Chivers explains. and sharing that new perspective with them.”
“I make new compounds that are precursors to useful materials.
Dr. Chivers recently co-authored his second book, which is
You have to appreciate the timescale from the fundamental
intended for senior undergraduate and graduate students.
discovery to application could be 10 to 15 years.”
It’s called Inorganic Rings and Polymers of the p-Block Elements:
As an example, he describes a discovery he made in the From Fundamentals to Applications. The book is based on Dr.
1980s – a process to convert hydrogen sulphide from sour Chivers’ 40 years of research experience in the chemistry
gas directly to sulphur and hydrogen, a useful commodity. of inorganic ring systems of which elemental sulphur is the
The current industrial process produces sulphur and water. prime example.
18 2008 ALBERTA SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY LEADERSHIP FOUNDATION AWARDS GALA
OUTSTANDING LEADERSHIP IN ALBERTA SCIENCE…CONTINUED
Discoveries Leave Lasting Legacy
Dr. Marvin J. Fritzler, Professor of Medicine, University of Calgary
Dr. Marvin Fritzler remembers clearly the incident that shaped his technology policy and strategies
professional life. It was soon after he’d started the MD program at with other industry and
the University of Calgary when a professor invited him to visit a scientific professionals as well
patient with Lupus, an autoimmune disease that was previously as government representatives
unknown to him. in provincial, national and
“This was the first time I saw a real patient with a real disease international organizations.
and it turned out that what I was doing in the research lab had He’s served and chaired committees
amazing relevance to this disease,” recalls Dr. Fritzler, professor of the World Health Organization
of Medicine at the University of Calgary. “This and subsequent and Centres for Disease Control for over
patient encounters motivated me to focus my career around 20 years with a mandate of developing
autoimmune diseases and the challenge of developing new international standards used in diagnostic
diagnostic techniques to provide earlier diagnoses before testing.
patients’ organs were damaged.” Dr. Fritzler is also the chair of the Alberta Science and Research
His first major contribution to world science was in 1976, when Authority (ASRA), a role he has held for the past five years. During
he was the first to identify a unique antibody in the blood his tenure, ASRA made significant contributions to the strategy
of patients with an autoimmune disease. Over his career, Dr. around nanotechnology, prion and water research, among others.
Fritzler’s research opened up new areas of cell biology and is the “Developing science and innovation strategy and policy for
basis for more than 10 distinct antibody markers that continue government took me to a different level of patience,” Dr. Fritzler
to be used by laboratories around the world in the diagnoses of says, chuckling.
Dr. Fritzler, a native Albertan, sees big challenges ahead of
Dr. Fritzler considers his greatest contribution was his recent him. He wants to make sure the strong legacy of biomedical
discovery of GW bodies, a previously undetected part of the cell. research support and excellence that inspired him to return,
“Although it never received any attention, surprisingly, the stay and work in Alberta is sustained.
antibodies to this new cell structure were not rare in patients who In the same vein, he wants to continue building his
had a certain neurological condition,” he explains. diagnostic lab as a world leader in providing diagnostic
When he’s not conducting research at the U of C, Dr. Fritzler services for autoimmune diseases and innovative
is generally in meeting rooms hammering out science and technologies that attract business to Alberta.
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY IMPACTS YOU! 19
OUTSTANDING LEADERSHIP IN ALBERTA SCIENCE…CONTINUED
Getting to the Heart of the Matter
Dr. Gary Lopaschuk, Scientific Director, Mazankowski Heart Institute
Dr. Gary Lopaschuk’s discoveries are “Initially we aimed at treating ischemic heart disease, but
saving the lives of people from infancy because obesity is such a big problem in society, the market
to old age who suffer from heart for a drug to treat obesity is becoming the major indication
disease. for commercialization,” Dr. Lopaschuk explains.
His pioneering work in cardiovascular As well as his outstanding contributions to the areas
research has identified, at a molecular of cardiovascular research and commercialization of
level, the role and mechanisms of a therapeutic heart disease and obesity treatments, Dr.
number of key enzymes that are important Lopaschuk has trained many graduate students and post-
in how fatty acids are metabolized in the doctoral fellows. He says he enjoys that aspect of his career,
heart. as he hopes he is able to “turn on young investigators to
His findings have a major impact on understanding research.”
how heart disease may be caused and potentially As part of his job as scientific director of the Mazankowski
prevented. They have led to applications in the treatment of heart Heart Institute, Dr. Lopaschuk is charged with hiring these
disease that have changed the field of cardiovascular medicine and researchers. He recently signed on 12 new recruits from
benefitted the care of patients suffering from heart disease. around the world.
Dr. Lopaschuk’s innovative approach, which focuses on novel “We can attract top-notch researchers because of the
anti-ischemic compounds that act in specific ways, is undergoing infrastructure we have in Alberta,” he says.
advanced development for treatment of patients with angina An AHFMR Scientist, Dr. Lopaschuk was attracted to the
pectoris. It could revolutionize how heart disease is treated in the province 23 years ago for the same reason. He stayed 18
future. years longer than intended even though he’s had several
“What excites me most is the transfer of the research into a clinical attractive offers. He intends on sticking around for a while
reality to treat heart disease,” Dr. Lopaschuk says. “We’ve been able longer.
to move forward a whole new approach to heart disease.” “The environment in Alberta is very conducive to supporting
Dr. Lopaschuk has been described as a scientific risk-taker whose research and there is a wonderful opportunity to build
wide-ranging investigations often don’t work out as planned. something here,” Dr. Lopaschuk says. “I am very excited
So perhaps it’s no surprise his research into heart disease about the next part of my career, creating a facility that
had unintended consequences. He discovered the same people throughout the world will regard as a leader in
compounds could be used to treat diabetes and obesity. cardiovascular research.”
20 2008 ALBERTA SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY LEADERSHIP FOUNDATION AWARDS GALA
OUTSTANDING LEADERSHIP IN ALBERTA TECHNOLOGY
Innovator of Green and Intelligent RF Electronics
Dr. Fadhel Ghannouchi, Professor, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering,
University of Calgary
Of all his significant accomplishments in radio frequency (RF) “We’re contributing to a new wave
electronics, Dr. Fadhel Ghannouchi holds training over 70 masters of eco-friendliness and energy
and PhD students as the most gratifying. efficient ‘green’ electronics,” Dr.
“My students are very important to me,” says the professor in the Ghannouchi explains. “By working
department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. “They have on minimizing the power loss in
helped shape my career and influenced me to produce interesting electronics devices and circuits used
work.” He has trained students from all parts of the world, who in radio batteries in mobile terminals
are now high-ranking professors at prestigious universities, senior can last for weeks or even months,
researchers and executives at high-tech companies. compared to days for commercially
available terminals. That is important to
In addition to his stellar record as an educator, Dr. Ghannouchi is
a world-renowned research engineer and scientist and respected
technical leader and innovator. As iCORE professor and senior Just as important is the universality and sustainability of
Canada Research Chair in RF radio technology at the U of C’s the technology, Dr. Ghannouchi is developing a communication
Schulich School of Engineering, he has an opportunity to make terminal that can be used anywhere safely without sacrificing the
good use of all of his talents. performance.
Dr. Ghannouchi’s Intelligent RF Radio Technology Laboratory It’s understandable that the Canadian Space Agency is interested
(iRadio Lab), established three years ago, has attracted the in Dr. Ghannouchi’s work. The iRadio Lab program, Quick
attention of industry and top-flight researchers from around Sat, is developing a radio transmitter for the agency that
the world. Its mandate is to address problems of an individual enhances power reliability and energy efficiency. Both are
device to a systems level and deliver specialized designs to critical components in flying objects, like satellites, that rely on
industry, which develops the technology into distinct products for transmitting power from a solar cell.
commercialization. “It’s exciting to think that one day we will fly one of our
iRadio receives support from all levels of government and industry. prototypes in space,” Dr. Ghannouchi says.
It is developing radio technology that focuses on energy efficiency He also has a more earthbound desire to build a company
and optimizing the flexibility, mobility and universality of the radio to commercialize iRadio Lab’s technology, “to get a return
communication terminals. The niche lab is one of a kind in Canada from the investment that we and society have put into
and has few parallels in the world. this venture.”
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY IMPACTS YOU! 21
OUTSTANDING LEADERSHIP IN ALBERTA TECHNOLOGY…CONTINUED
For the Excitement of Discovery
Dr. Jacob H. Masliyah, Professor Emeritus, Chemical and Materials Engineering, University of Alberta
Dr. Jacob Masliyah clearly loves his understanding of the bitumen extraction phenomenon, and
work. When he’s asked what motivates was applied to guide operating efforts towards improved
him to work in oil sands research, he processes in the fields of extraction, froth treatment and
responds with great enthusiasm. tailings.
“For the fun of it. Most of us in science He explains that his work put the “art of oil sands extraction”
and engineering are puzzle solvers,” he on firm scientific footing, the only way the process can be
explains. “It’s the excitement of discovery improved.
or being able to explain a phenomenon. It’s “From my point of view, if we improve the recovery of
also the excitement of doing something good bitumen from the oil sands, we make better use of the
for society and knowing you are being useful.” resource,” he explains. “We are the guardians of the resource
Dr. Masliyah, professor, Chemical and Materials and we are beholden to improve the process of extraction to
Engineering, University of Alberta, has used his abundant enthusiasm lower the impact of oil sands operations through emissions
and his strength in theoretical applications to improve recovery of control, water usage and land foot print.”
bitumen from the oil sands. He holds the NSERC Industrial Research Dr. Masliyah is also credited with establishing unique
Chair in Oil Sands Engineering and he is past holder of the Canada academia-industry partnerships, based on research
Research Chair in the same field. collaborations and technology development and the transfer
When Dr. Masliyah, an officer of the Order of Canada, first came of complex knowledge from the classroom into the field
to Alberta from Saskatchewan in 1977 he hadn’t heard of the oil and vice versa. He says industry’s support and long-term
sands. Now he is credited with leading his team to become the funding of his team’s research are testimony of the industry’s
world’s leading centre of bitumen extraction research, work that willingness to embrace good science to improve operations. It
is critical to the oil sands industry’s ability to optimize recovery of also improves business outcome.
oil while reducing environmental impact. Among his most cherished roles are mentoring and teaching,
Dr. Masliyah combined his expertise in fluid particle dynamics both to his university students and to practitioners in the field.
with research into surface dynamics between clays and Dr. Masliyah attributes collaboration with students inside and
bitumen to reveal the true nature of bitumen interactions out of the lab and with the workers in the field to the success
with solids and water. His research advanced the of his research and its practical applications.
22 2008 ALBERTA SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY LEADERSHIP FOUNDATION AWARDS GALA
OUTSTANDING LEADERSHIP IN ALBERTA TECHNOLOGY…CONTINUED
Reliability Research Rewarding
Dr. Ming Jian Zuo, Professor, Mechanical Engineering, University of Alberta
Harsh climate and extreme operating conditions wear on the to develop tools that improve
equipment used in Alberta oil sands. And when millions of dollars reliability of such systems while
are at stake reliability becomes an issue. minimizing operating costs and
Enter Dr. Ming Jian Zuo, professor in the Mechanical Engineering the risk of industrial accidents.”
department at the University of Alberta and a world leader in the The aim of the research is also to
research fields of reliability and maintenance optimization. Both avoid reactive maintenance practices,
are applicable to Alberta’s oil sands industry. common in the oil sands and move
Dr. Zuo’s pioneering work in integration of reliability and toward proactive maintenance that is
condition monitoring provides industry with insight into less expensive and safer for operators.
scheduling maintenance shutdowns of facilities that extends the Dr. Zuo’s technology uses leading-edge
useful life of industrial equipment while saving money. vibration analysis techniques, allowing monitoring
In 1997 while on sabbatical leave in Hong Kong, Dr. Zuo picked of the internal components of specialized equipment without
up ideas about using online condition-monitoring data to help disrupting operations.
assess equipment health and develop tools to enhance reliability Dr. Zuo says people often don’t understand how industrial
in industrial facilities. reliability has an impact on their lives. “You read in the Edmonton
Coming back to Alberta, he began working with engineers at the Journal that a coker has been upset and production is being lost,
Syncrude Research Centre. The team conducted experiments and or that there’s been a power outage, or a train has derailed. This
researched innovative applications using algorithms to monitor is how reliability is related to our daily life,” he explains. “These
wear in some components in large slurry pumps. Dr. Zuo also are the kinds of problems I am trying to address.”
devised methods to diagnose wear and crack growth in heavy- Dr. Zuo’s work has and will continue to have a major impact to
duty components in gearboxes and is now addressing anomaly ensure the long-term operation and sustainability of Alberta’s
assessment in pipelines. oil sands operations. His work has other applications in
“Reliability is a critical measure of performance of today’s areas such as wind energy, mining, agriculture and waste
engineering systems, like airplanes, spaces shuttles, automobiles, treatment, among others.
trains, mining equipment, pipelines and chemical refineries,” Dr. “I want to push the research frontier of condition-based
Zuo explains. “Using my advanced training in reliability theory, reliability analysis and apply these research results in
data analysis, signal processing and optimization I am able practice,” he says.
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY IMPACTS YOU! 23
OUTSTANDING COMMERCIAL ACHIEVEMENT IN ALBERTA SCIENCE
AND TECHNOLOGY (GROSS SALES GREATER THAN $25M PER YEAR)
Success through Science and Entrepreneurship
CV Technologies Inc.
Dr. Jacqueline Jie Shan, President, CEO, CSO, CV Technologies Inc.
CV Technologies Inc. is one of COLD-fX revenue for the past four and a half years, totalled over
Alberta’s most successful life science $158 million.
stories. The company’s lead product is In 2008 CV Technologies opened a new 29,000-square-foot
COLD-fX. headquarters and research and discovery centre in Edmonton. The
The natural health cold remedy has company employs 85 scientists, administrative staff and marketers,
been proven to prevent colds and a substantial increase over the eight employees on payroll in 2003.
relieve symptoms, so it’s no surprise that COLD-fX is successful because of the scientific rigour applied to
the over-the-counter product is Canada’s the research and clinical studies used to develop the product.
number one cold/flu remedy and has become CV Technologies’ revolutionary research and discovery tool,
iconic. ChemBioPrint uses chemical and biological analysis to define the
Celebrities as diverse as Ralph Klein and Rick Mercer are big complex bioactive ingredients in natural health products.
COLD-fX fans. Half of the CFL teams use it and the NHL named it The National Institute of Health, one of the world’s top research
the league’s official cold remedy. The City of Edmonton purchased organizations, recognized CV Technologies’ clinical trials as one of
COLD-fX for their front-line workers, including the police, fire the top 25 advancements in dietary supplements research in the
fighters and paramedics as part of its pandemic plan. And as the world for 2005.
official celebrity spokesperson for COLD-fX, the controversial
Dr. Shan grew up with traditional Chinese herbal medicine. Her
hockey icon Don Cherry is helpful in getting the word out.
science is based on that knowledge, combined with her education
“The single most important achievement of CV Technologies in pharmacology and physiology. As a physiologist, she knows
is that we have translated our scientific vision into applicable that after an illness has established itself, it is extremely difficult to
commercial products,” offers Dr. Jacqueline Shan, president, CEO, reverse or cure it. That’s why at CV Technologies, the focus is on
CSO. “We used public relations as part of our marketing strategy prevention through natural remedies, while most pharmacology is
to bring ‘buzz’ to the product by using word of mouth and based on relieving symptoms.
getting it into the consumer market.”
“Our company is one of the first to develop a preventative,
CV Technologies’ success can also be measured by its evidence-based health product and because of our innovative
financial and operations results. The company posted science and marketing, we have created a new industry,” Dr. Shan
revenue of $1.5 million in 2003 after launching its COLD- says. “We are very proud that we can help people’s health and
fX commercialization program. Since then, combined grow our company.”
24 2008 ALBERTA SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY LEADERSHIP FOUNDATION AWARDS GALA
OUTSTANDING COMMERCIAL ACHIEVEMENT IN ALBERTA SCIENCE
AND TECHNOLOGY (GROSS SALES GREATER THAN $25M PER YEAR)…CONTINUED
Leading the Market in Industrial GPS Products
Hemisphere GPS Inc.
Steven Koles, President, CEO
Hemisphere GPS Inc. is revolutionizing the way farmers work their The Outback Guidance® suite of
fields by introducing precision farming tools. products claims more than half of
The company’s guidance and auto-steering products allow the global market share in after-
farmers seeding, swathing or combining their fields to improve market precision agriculture GPS
efficiency and decrease input costs. With the guidance systems applications. Over 50,000 farmers in
farmers can set a map in a desired pattern, be it a straight line, a 50 countries are using the company’s
circle or adjusted to contours. products. With over 70 per cent of their
clients in North America, Hemisphere
“This is important to farmers because traditionally they have
GPS is focusing on international growth.
purposely overlapped rows to avoid skipping ground cover,”
explains Steven Koles, president and CEO of Hemisphere GPS Inc. The company trades on The Toronto Stock
“They can lose up to 10 per cent or more of the land like that. So Exchange. It achieved revenue growth of 27 per
Outback Guidance® helps reduce fuel, fertilizer and seed costs, cent, from $45.9 million in 2006 to $58.1 million in 2007. Growth in
reducing environmental waste.” the first and second quarters of 2008 was up 56 and 59 per cent,
respectively, setting new records for the company.
Other than efficiency gains, Mr. Koles says Outback Guidance®
auto-steering systems offer additional benefits to farmers. While the Outback Guidance® products comprise 75 per cent of
Hemisphere GPS’s revenue, the company’s products have other
“It reduces driver fatigue,” he explains. “That way they can work
industrial applications in marine and aviation, with growth plans
longer hours and through the night. If it takes fewer days to
in other vertical markets.
harvest and helps farmers avoid potential severe weather, that
translates to better crop yields.” Hemisphere GPS continues to develop its intellectual property
with a total of 39 patents awarded or pending. The company
This technology and the precision farming practices it fosters,
continues to collaborate with the University of Calgary on a
allows farmers to conserve soil. Farmers can do what is called “strip
number of research programs.
tilling”, pre-planting nutrients in the autumn after harvest and
returning in the spring to plant seeds in the same rows without “We are working together to make Calgary a centre of
disturbing the soil. The process can also improve crop yields. excellence in geomatics,” Mr. Koles explains. “We are
pushing the level of innovation in what GPS can do in
No wonder Hemisphere GPS, a global leader in precision
commercial GPS technology and products, is leaving its
competitors in the proverbial dust.
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY IMPACTS YOU! 25
ASTECH SOCIETAL IMPACT
Narrowing the Digital Divide
Calgary Drop-In & Rehab Centre
Dermot Baldwin, Executive Director, Calgary Drop-In & Rehab Centre
The Calgary Drop-In & Rehab Centre Internet connection also provides homeless and low-income
(DI) is narrowing the digital divide Calgarians with a sense of connectivity to their family and the
and offering hope to low-income and broader community through email, access to social networks
homeless Calgarians. like Facebook and other Internet groups. Social connections
Six years ago the DI partnered with 14 help them stay encouraged and motivated.
social agencies and began the Computer Computer training is critical to the demographic served by
Learning Centre (CLC) as a pilot project. CLC the DI. Many of its clients haven’t completed high school.
offers a computer lab, computer training, life- They require basic technological skills tailored to their needs.
skills training and certification programs. CLC offers computer courses in programs like Microsoft Word,
The approximately 34,000 homeless and low-income email, Excel and PowerPoint through classroom instruction,
Calgarians that have taken advantage of the centre are e-learning and one-on-one training.
testimony to the need for such a service. Computer modules are incorporated into several of the job-
More and more jobs are dependent on technology and computer skills. readiness training. Trainees use e-learning to earn certification
The marginalized and the poor often don’t have access to computers in several fields including Workplace Hazardous Materials
so they are further marginalized because they are computer illiterate. Information System (WHMIS), Transportation of Dangerous
Goods (TDG) and Confined Space Pre-Entry (CSP). Students
“From our perspective, everyone deserves to have an opportunity to
can also complete certification in Construction Safety Training
be part of the Alberta Advantage,” says Dermot Baldwin, executive
Systems (CSTS) using CD ROM-based courseware.
director of the DI. “Every Albertan should be able to keep learning,
growing and changing regardless of their financial status.” He points By encouraging individuals to step across the digital divide
out that the DI is also contributing to the workforce for Calgary’s to improve their economic status, the DI ensures homeless
tight labour market. individuals have the facilities, the opportunities and the skill-
sets to changes their lives and end homelessness, one person
The DI’s clients can connect with the broader world through a
at a time.
program called Voices of the Community (VOC), which provides
secure, reliable and personalized free voice mail services. “We help people get jobs, and connect with others in a
Through VOC, people experiencing homelessness can connect variety of ways,” Mr. Baldwin says. “In doing so our program
with employment and housing opportunities, health care creates a more vibrant community. That’s priceless.”
providers and family.
26 2008 ALBERTA SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY LEADERSHIP FOUNDATION AWARDS GALA
ASTECH SOCIETAL IMPACT…CONTINUED
A Vision to Democratize Knowledge
Dr. Adriana A. Davies, Executive Director and Editor in Chief, Heritage Community Foundation
For Dr. Adriana A. Davies, the World Wide Web is a tool to 4,000 audio files and 2,000 video
democratize learning. files. Over 1.5 million visitors
Her life’s work in literature, fine art and research, combined accessed albertasource.ca in 2007
with the possibilities presented by the Internet, led Dr. Davies, and returned on three occasions.
executive director of the Heritage Community Foundation, “The Library at Alexandria, The
to create the visionary Alberta Online Encyclopedia (www. Library of Congress, The British
albertasource.ca). Library and other great libraries were
“The encyclopedia is using new information technology traditionally available only to elites,” Dr.
for public education,” says Dr. Davies, editor-in-chief of the Davies says. “Our encyclopedia is not in a
Alberta Online Encyclopedia. “We are creating websites that gated environment where people have to pay,
are born digital and using all of the capabilities the web gives so it truly is accessible to everyone.”
us.” The heart of the Alberta Online Encyclopedia is the democracy
The dynamic virtual encyclopedia of 76 websites (and of the Internet, but the quality of the information is paramount.
counting) was purpose-built for education. It positions the Pivotal to the value of the encyclopedia is that the information
Heritage Community Foundation as Canada’s largest web posted is credible, reliable and dependable. The material is written
publisher whose online materials are intended for public and produced by a team of content and technical experts.
education. “We have complete control over content development and can,
The material on the portal covers Alberta’s historical, natural, therefore, guarantee its authority. We need to do this because
cultural, scientific and technological heritage. The Foundation we are operating in the public trust and our visitors need to
partners with heritage organizations in the creation of online trust our content,” Dr. Davies explains. The team regularly
learning resources. These include museums and archives; the receives emails from students, researchers and teachers from
media; professional associations; the Aboriginal, Francophone around the world.
and other ethno-cultural communities; and individuals. “This is truly 21st century publishing,” she enthuses. “Anyone
The Encyclopedia includes text, images, audio and video. The can access these rich resources anytime day and night.
majority of content was created specifically for albertasource. This kind of access to information shapes us as Albertans,
ca. There is also a range of archival material to explore. The Canadians and as global citizens.”
portal contains about 27,000 html/PHP pages, 75,000 images,
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY IMPACTS YOU! 27
ASTECH SOCIETAL IMPACT…CONTINUED
Assistive Technology Improving Lives
Randy Marsden, President and CEO
“Imagine sitting on your hands and And that’s what it’s all about. “The computer is the great
using the computer,” suggests Randy equalizer,” Mr. Marsden explains. “If you give someone access
Marsden, president and CEO of to the computer, you give them opportunities for education,
Madentec. “How are you going to do it?” recreation, vocation, socialization, which has been taken away
You’re not going to do it. by disability.”
If you’re disabled and can’t move around Madentec has been in business for 20 years. During that time
independently like able-bodied people do, the company’s assistive technology has allowed about 15,000
the computer becomes very important to your people the world over to regain their quality of life after
quality of life. It could be your only option for suffering a disability. Among them are people suffering from
education, recreation and socialization. paralysis, ALS, multiple sclerosis, muscular dystrophy and head
injury, among others.
That’s where Madentec’s assistive technology can be a lifesaver.
For example, TrackerPro is a computer input device that takes the Some of them are able to go back to work, like one of
place of a mouse for people with little or no hand movement. Madentec’s employees who suffers from cerebral palsy.
Anything that can be done with a regular hand mouse can be done “He’s in a wheelchair with his arms in awkward positions,”
by using TrackerPro, by using head motions. Christopher Reeve used describes Marsden. “To see him you’d never think he is a high-
TrackerPro. functioning contributing member of society. The difference is
And if you can’t move your head, Madentec has a solution for that the technology. The computer totally unlocks him, gives him
too. The company has developed technology that uses switches independence and meaning to his life.”
activated by blinking, puffing, clicking teeth and other subtle Millions of users have benefitted from Madentec’s onscreen
movements to activate the mouse. keyboard, distributed by Microsoft and included in every copy
Mr. Marsden’s inspiration to start developing assistive technology of Windows for the past 10 years.
was a friend who became quadriplegic as a result of an accident Mr. Marsden says the company’s assistive technology saves
as a youth. He built a device that allowed his friend to speak. the social system vast sums of money by giving people with
“He’d been living in a hospital for about 15 years,” Mr. Marsden disabilities a tool to help them become independent and
recalls. “And at least partly because of that technology, he was productive members of society. This reduces health care and
able to leave the hospital and move home to live with his social assistance costs.
28 2008 ALBERTA SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY LEADERSHIP FOUNDATION AWARDS GALA
LEADERS OF TOMORROW
Agility for Usability
Steve Kirkham, Founder, CEO, Trinic
When some students at the University of Alberta were having His contributions to the U of A include
difficulties using Bear Tracks, the complex online registration Xbook, an online textbook exchange
system, Steve Kirkham became the white knight that rode to that saves students thousands of
their rescue. dollars each year. In 2000 he took
“Instead of complaining, I made a better system,” Mr. Kirkham advantage of a small loan program
recalls. He spent a week figuring out how to improve the for young entrepreneurs and launched
usability of the registration process. When his success was Trinic, a service offering website hosting,
reported on the front page of the student newspaper, domain names and website design.
thousands of grateful students registered on Bear Scat, his With his future ahead of him, Mr. Kirkham
user-friendly version of Bear Tracks. will continue to enhance the user experience on
Since then Mr. Kirkham graduated from the U of A with the web. He says it is inadequate web design and not
degrees in computing science and psychology. He is inadequate users that is the root of web stress. His goal is to further
currently consulting to the university, spearheading new web usability on sites like online banking and webmail to allow
technologies to enhance web design for an updated student intuitive navigation reducing the need to constantly refer to manuals
administration website, which about 90,000 users will access and help pages.
each year. While Mr. Kirkham spends a lot of time in front of the computer, he
Mr. Kirkham uses an unconventional “agile” development hasn’t neglected to develop his leadership skills. He leads a team of
method that monitors software usability while it is being accomplished functional analysts, business analysts and software
designed. His method engages user testers throughout the engineers from the U of A, PeopleSoft and IBM on his current
process and observes how and where they have problems. project with the U of A. He’s also served on the Students’ Union
The system is then tweaked as often as needed, according and is a team leader with the Edmonton Regional Search and
to the users’ reactions, to create the best user-friendly site Rescue Association, among other leadership roles in community
Mr. Kirkham has gleaned his skills through university courses Mr. Kirkham was the 2006 recipient of the Honourable Peter
and internships with Google and Apple. Lougheed Leadership Award, the U of A’s most prestigious
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY IMPACTS YOU! 29
LEADERS OF TOMORROW…CONTINUED
Passion for Science
Tracy Dang Mah, Student Researcher, University of Alberta
Growing up with food allergies gave “I want to get beyond the bench to make an impact,” she
Tracy Dang Mah an appreciation for explains. “I want to work in areas where I not only produce
the complexity of the human immune great results, but I get to implement those results to produce
system. By high school she had even greater results to better humanity.”
developed a passion for immunology A big part of the future Ms. Mah sees for herself involves
that spurred her to remarkable mentoring young scientists. In her last year of her under
achievements and fascinating work with graduate degree in a Bachelor of Science program studying
accomplished scientists from around the Immunology and Infections, she has already begun to do that.
She provides guidance to high school and under graduate
Ms. Mah attributes her successes to mentors summer students in her lab and has been invited to mentor
who guided her in her formative years as a budding students for the Canada-wide Science Fair and Canadian
scientist. Among them was the Sanofi-Aventis program that Association for Girls in Science. She hopes to mentor other
introduced high school students to lab science. Sanofi-Aventis participants later this year, completing the
“Setting high school students loose in a multi-million-dollar facility mentorship circle.
takes faith and confidence that we could do something worthy,” she At 21, Ms. Mah is already a sought-after public speaker. She is a
recalls with amazement. “I wouldn’t be in science without mentors Top 20 Under 20 Canadian recipient and she won the Alberta
giving me those opportunities. That’s why I’ve achieved what I have.” Centennial Medal for outstanding community involvement,
Following her passion for immunology, Ms. Mah joined the team leadership and citizenship. Ms. Mah is an inspired young
of researchers at the University of Alberta, including those who woman whose potential to do great things is as great as is her
launched the revolutionary cure for Type 1 diabetes, known as the passion and ability to inspire others.
Edmonton Protocol. “Mentorship plays a great role in the future,” she says. “If
“I want to keep up my research career,” she says. “There is huge everyone tries harder to leave a lasting impact in someone
potential to make positive changes in the world through else, then we will all have done a good job at taking full
research.” She acknowledges that research is only as good as advantage of the opportunities we’ve been given.”
its potential to be implemented and she hints that she could
make a foray into policy or clinical work.
30 2008 ALBERTA SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY LEADERSHIP FOUNDATION AWARDS GALA
LEADERS OF TOMORROW…CONTINUED
Young Scientist Sees His Future in Alberta
Travis Murdoch, MSc Candidate, Integrated Immunology, Oxford University; Medical Student,
University of Alberta
At 16 years old and still a keen high school student, Travis But science is still his primary
Murdoch joined the University of Alberta’s clinical islet passion.
transplantation team as part of the Alberta Heritage Foundation Mr. Murdoch hopes to make his
for Medical Research - Heritage Youth Researcher Summer mark in three main areas. The first
program. That experience was to set the course of his life. is mentorship. He attributes his own
In 2002 he won the Governor General’s medal. By the age of 20, achievement to the mentors who
he had published a primary-author publication reviewing the have guided him and hopes to give
current knowledge surrounding methods of clinical islet culture. the same back.
By 2006 Mr. Murdoch’s scientific focus was trained on “Science is a human endeavour,” he says.
inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). He is developing a novel “Science needs people to motivate and get
diagnostic and monitoring tool for IBD using nuclear magnetic others really excited about it.”
resonance (NMR) to profile the metabolites present in urine Mr. Murdoch’s second area of interest is in being a clinician, so he
samples. can “take science and see it work at the bedside.” And thirdly, he
Now at 23, Mr. Murdoch can be found on the campus of hopes that research will continue to be a major focus throughout
Oxford University in England working on his MSc in Integrated his career.
Immunology, a recipient of a prestigious Rhodes Scholarship. He “I want to take a clinical question—one that comes from directly
returns this fall to the U of A to complete his final year of medical seeing a patient—into the lab and find a pragmatic solution that
school. I can use to help the patient, be it better diagnosis, treatment, or
“I want to go to other top centres around the world and bring overall patient care.”
back what I’ve learned, so Alberta can build on the strong And he hopes to do it in Alberta.
foundations we already have in the province,” he says. ”That’s my
“I think Alberta is in an amazing position right now. We’ve
reached critical mass with a lot of great people working
Mr. Murdoch’s impressive CV includes humble roles like here and strong funding,” he says. “I’m excited about the
volunteering as a canvasser for the Alberta Heart and Stroke potential of Alberta.”
Fund up to positions of significant responsibility like chairperson
for SHINE Cline Ethics Committee. He also has a list of music
credentials that include performing in bands and producing CDs.
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY IMPACTS YOU! 31
OUTSTANDING CONTRIBUTION TO THE
ALBERTA SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY COMMUNITY
Honourary Scientist, Honoured Advocate
Dr. Howard E. Tennant, President and Professor Emeritus, University of Lethbridge
Dr. Howard E. Tennant is adamant that Despite his impressive track record in building facilities and creating
he is not a scientist. “I am out of the world-class faculties, Dr. Tennant acknowledges that is only one
School of Business. I have done work piece of the puzzle.
in science, but I am anything but a “Some people’s job is to build universities and colleges, but we also
scientist,” he protests. need someone to think about what Alberta needs. And sometimes
It is an understatement to say Dr. there’s a trade-off,” he admits.
Tennant, a member of the Order of Dr. Tennant has spent the last dozen years with the Alberta Science
Canada, has “done work in science.” and Research Authority (ASRA) taking care of Alberta’s interests.
Over his 30-plus-year career as academic, leader, He is a long-serving member on the ASRA board, testimony
policy maker and volunteer, this modest man has to the high value government and his colleagues place on his
made a huge difference in promoting and advancing the contributions.
science and technology sector in Alberta and Canada and arguably, His depth of understanding of macroeconomics, combined with
the world. He has never wavered from his mission to create an his extensive provincial, national and international experience has
environment where public policy and public funds support been instrumental in creating important public policy initiatives.
innovation and research. And those initiatives have increased funding for science and
“My area of interest is in policy and strategy as it relates to science technology projects and improved commercialization prospects for
and technology,” Dr. Tennant says. “I worry about how to attract Alberta’s technology sector.
the best people, build the right buildings, put the right equipment “In my policy work, I try to focus on the future of research and
in place to see that excellence in research produces the best technology,” he says. “We are nothing in the world unless we
students in the world.” produce highly qualified people.”
During his tenure as president and vice-chancellor of the Dr. Tennant is well aware that Alberta’s oil and gas fields are only a
University of Lethbridge, over $100 million of capital expansion means to create wealth and not an end in itself.
took place and enrolment grew from just over 2,000 to over
“Yes, we have energy, but now we have to work on how to get
7,000 students. The university established masters and PhD
value out of it while maintaining a decent world and a good quality
programs and became a centre for research and scholarly
of living,” he explains. “Science and technology are the critical
ingredients in that and the only way we can earn our bread.”
32 2008 ALBERTA SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY LEADERSHIP FOUNDATION AWARDS GALA
2008 ASTECH FOUNDATION SPECIAL AWARD
Medical Care Driven by Patients’ Needs
Institute for Reconstructive Sciences in Medicine (iRSM)
Dr. John Wolfaardt, Professor, Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry, University of Alberta; Director, iRSM
Dr. Gordon Wilkes, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeon, iRSM
What began as a common interest in the 1980s led Dr. this creates hope for those who need
John Wolfaardt and Dr. Gordon Wilkes to the epicentre of a it later on. That’s important to them.”
revolution in head and neck reconstruction and rehabilitation. What iRSM has planned might sound
“The impact on patients, functionally and psycho-socially like science fiction, but it’s real.
when they have lost complete contents of their eye or half of Patients with a massive loss of tissue can
their jaw is devastating. People would get their diagnosis and look to a future when the planning, and
their world changed forever,” Dr. Wolfaardt says. design of their reconstructive components
“At the time the options for facial reconstruction were limited. is done in the virtual world. Their team of
It was frustrating for the patients and for us,” he adds. Patients technicians and surgeons will have a plan that is
who had lost significant parts of their faces had to endure designed specifically for the individual. Some parts will be
the daily cumbersome and painful procedure of gluing facial built using regenerative medicine to generate tissue for the person.
prostheses onto their sensitive skin. “It’s personalized medicine,” Dr. Wolfaardt says. “We have the potential
“We knew something really different was needed,” recalls Dr. to provide people with outcomes we can’t even anticipate today.”
Wolfaardt, director of iRSM. Dr. Wolfaardt says it’s not an accident that Alberta is at the helm of
Advanced digital technologies have improved treatment these important developments.
through surgical simulation, and design and construction “We work with really multidisciplinary activities, which we couldn’t
of prostheses and other devices. Instead of gluing their undertake without the depth of talent in Alberta,” Dr. Wolfaardt
prosthesis onto their faces, patients now have the benefit of says. “We work with people in surgery, engineering, rehabilitation
biomechanical implants that are anchored into their bone, medicine, computing science, graphic designers and industrial
including hearing devices. A whole range of technology designers. Whatever it is, the infrastructure is such that we can
was developed to enhance the use and performance of the usually find someone.”
He adds that it is unusual to see the kind of collaboration
“Patients who lived through the period prior to these he has encountered. As well, he credits the Government of
technological advancements see how medical care is driven Alberta for having the vision to set up the test facility for
by their needs,” Dr. Wolfaardt says. “They say even if they can’t patients, a precursor to iRSM.
benefit from all of the outcomes of our newer developments,
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY IMPACTS YOU! 33
2008 ASTECH AWARDS DISTINGUISHED PATRONS
their clients, people, and the capital markets. With nearly 94,000
people worldwide, member firms provide audit, tax, and advisory
services from 717 cities in 148 countries.
Bennett Jones LLP is an internationally recognized Canadian
business law firm focused and founded on principles of
professional excellence, integrity, respect and independent
thought. Out firm’s leadership position is reflected in the law we
practise, the groundbreaking work we do, the client relationships
we have, and the quality of our people. The Alberta Research Council (ARC) puts research to work. We’re
linking science and industry to create innovations that benefit
the lives and businesses of everyday Albertans, strengthen the
Canadian economy and drive global markets. ARC’s researchers
and scientists are recognized for their excellence in applied R&D
KPMG is well qualified to serve the needs of technology both here at home and abroad. ARC is the largest and oldest
companies. We have the necessary resources and in-depth applied R&D organization in Canada and the only one of its kind in
experience to help producers of technology products and Alberta.
services succeed in today’s dynamic business environment. As
an industry thought leader, we provide long-range vision, astute
insights, and innovative professional service strategies to help
leading companies stay at the top of their markets. Our role is
to help businesses sustain their success by minimizing risk and Syncrude is the world’s largest producer of light, sweet crude
transforming opportunities into clear and powerful results. oil from oil sand. In 2007, the company will produce about 110
KPMG LLP is the Canadian member firm of KPMG International, million barrels of Syncrude Sweet Blend from the Athabasca oil
the coordinating entity for a global network of professional sands deposit. Syncrude’s operation north of Fort McMurray,
services firms, providing audit, tax, and advisory services, with Alberta, includes oil sand mines, utilities plants and extraction
an industry focus. The aim of KPMG International member and upgrading facilities. The company’s rise to prominence
firms is to turn knowledge into value for the benefit of in Canada’s energy industry is due largely to its long-
term commitment to research and development. Its
34 2008 ALBERTA SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY LEADERSHIP FOUNDATION AWARDS GALA
2008 ASTECH AWARDS DISTINGUISHED PATRONS…CONTINUED
investments in this area have allowed Syncrude to increase reputation continues to grow with its leading-edge
production, trim costs, improve environmental performance achievements such as “Edmonton Protocol” treatment for Type
and product quality, and increase global competitiveness. With 1 diabetes; the pioneering work of the National Institute for
the recent completion of its Stage 3 expansion project, Syncrude Nanotechnology; and the world’s first antiviral treatment for
now meets 15 percent of Canada’s crude oil requirements. hepatitis B. Since 1994, University researchers have reported
more than 1, 260 inventions, received 393 patents, generated
more than $33 million in licensing and royalties revenue. The
University (through TEC Edmonton) currently has 71 active
spin-off companies. Our students learn from some of the
brightest scholars in the country and the best teachers; the
The Alberta Heritage Foundation for Medical Research (AHFMR)
University of Alberta leads the country in the number of 3M
supports health research at Alberta’s health research intensive
Teaching Fellowships—Canada’s top award for undergraduate
universities, teaching hospitals and regional health authorities.
university teaching excellence. In 2007, twelve University of
Heritage researchers are earning international recognition for
Alberta professors were named as Fellows of the Royal Society
their advances in a number of areas including genetics, heart
of Canada, which is the highest national academic honour for
disease, diabetes, neurosciences, and health services research.
scholars, artists and scientists.
AHFMR’s ForeFront Program provides support for people in
universities and private industry in commercializing medical and
The University of Calgary reflects the community that created
The University of Alberta is the largest research institution in and supports it—dynamic, innovative and energetic. As one
the province serving nearly 37,000 students in more than of Canada’s leading research universities, these qualities are
200 undergraduate programs and 170 graduate programs. at the heart of all we do. The UofC has significantly increased
As one of Canada’s top universities for external funding, its research funding to $252.5 million, which ranks seventh in
it received approximately $490 million in sponsored Canada, and is continuing to move ahead.
research in 2008-08. The University’s international
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY IMPACTS YOU! 35
2008 ASTECH AWARDS DISTINGUISHED PATRONS…CONTINUED
growth and productivity in value added sectors within
four priority areas: energy, information and communications
technology, life sciences and nanotechnology.
AVAC Ltd. is an Alberta-based, private, not-for-profit company
that invests in research initiatives and early stage commercial The Alberta Science and Research Authority (ASRA) is an advisory
businesses that expand Alberta’s value-added industry, with board to the Government of Alberta comprised of representatives
particular focus on the agri-business, renewable resource, from Alberta business, academic and research communities. The
ICT, life sciences and other industrial technology sectors. Board’s mission is to enhance the contribution of science and
Created in 1997, AVAC aids its clients by providing early stage research to the sustainable prosperity and quality of life of all
investment, insight and focus to build viable commercial Albertans.
value-added opportunities in Alberta.
Dow AgroSciences Canada Inc. is a research-based, agricultural
sciences company with a diverse product portfolio including weed,
Alberta Advanced Education and Technology is responsible
insect and disease management for agricultural/horticultural crops
for enhancing value added activity, increasing innovation
and products for forestry and industrial vegetation management.
and building a skilled workforce to improve the long-run
The company has significant investments in plant genetics and
sustainability of Alberta’s economy. The ministry ensures
biotechnology platforms in canola and corn which focus on a
the province’s high quality learning environment, including
range of input production traits and value-added quality traits.
an effective apprenticeship and industry training system, is
Established field research capabilities are across western and
affordable and accessible, and the source of a highly skilled
eastern Canada including a plant breeding and cell biology group
based in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. Significant research and
Through leadership and strategic investments, the commercial development alliances in Canada including SemBioSys
ministry also nurtures an innovation system consisting Genetics Inc., of Calgary, the National Research Council’s Plant
of world-class research capacity and technology Biotechnology Institute in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan and with
commercialization support designed to accelerate Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada across Canada.
36 2008 ALBERTA SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY LEADERSHIP FOUNDATION AWARDS GALA
2008 ASTECH AWARDS DISTINGUISHED PATRONS…CONTINUED
oriented education to more than 76,000 registrants annually. SAIT
offers four applied degrees, 62 diploma and certificate programs,
33 apprenticeship trades and 2,000 continuing education and
The Alberta Ingenuity Fund supports science and engineering customized business and industry courses.
research of the highest calibre, to create a prosperous
future for the province. It draws funding from a $1 billion
endowment established and managed by the Government of
Alberta to build the capacity for innovation, especially in areas
with long lasting social and economic impact.
A leader in research, the University of Lethbridge is a place where
world-renowned researchers collaborate amongst the disciplines
to address issues of global concern and to provide applicable
solutions. For example, in 2005, the United Nations (UN) named
SAIT’s record-setting graduate employment rate of 97 percent
the University of Lethbridge the Canadian centre for its Water for
this year is a result of the polytechnic’s relationships with
Life decade (2005 to 2015) in recognition of the leadership role the
institution has taken in water research. The University is also home
Faculty work with more than 150 external organizations and to the Canadian Centre for Behavioural Neuroscience – a world-
benefit from the guidance of 1,000 industry professionals on class facility where Canada’s leading behavioural neuroscience
advisory committees. group sheds new light on the brain and behaviour.
The polytechnic’s seven Centres of Technology, many unique
in Canada, were designed and built in association with
SAIT’s Applied Research and Innovation Services is industry’s ICORE invests in people—the highest calibre research scientists
point of contact for institutional expertise and resources who work on fundamental and applied problems in informatics.
for innovative projects—projects that enable the It operates several grant programs to develop iCORE Chairs
advancement and adoption of technology in industry. at Alberta universities, around which world-class research
SAIT Polytechnic excels in delivering relevant, skill- teams are developed. To date, over twenty-seven research
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY IMPACTS YOU! 37
2008 ASTECH AWARDS DISTINGUISHED PATRONS…CONTINUED
chairs have been established to focus on emerging areas such as NAIT also engages with business and industry in applied research
wireless communications, artificial intelligence, systems biology, and innovation and provides corporate training. The institution
and quantum and nanocomputing. Over a dozen research chairs offers 1,650 programs and courses, with 6,000 graduates receiving
are in partnership with Alberta industry. For more information, degrees, applied degrees, diplomas, certificates of journeyman
visit www.icore.ca. certification every year. A Top 35 employer in Alberta, the institute
also has the largest diploma-granting business school in western
Canada and offers a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration
as well as Alberta’s only Technology Management degree. It trains
more apprentices than anyone in Canada, including 50 percent of
Western Economic Diversification Canada (WD) invested more trades people in Alberta and 17 per cent nationally. NAIT is home
than $84 million toward 88 innovation projects across the to Canada’s first commercial fuel cell, has a business incubator for
West in 2007-08. This leveraged an additional $250.5 million inventors and entrepreneurs and accesses research grants through
from a variety of partners, including provincial and municipal NSERC (Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of
governments, universities, research institutes, industry and not- Canada). In addition, six new world-class centres for various
for-profit organizations. technologies have been opened in the past five years and two
more are in the works.
NAIT is one of the preeminent institutes of technology in Canada, Mount Royal College is a premier undergraduate institution that
known for student success, with 134,000 alumni worldwide. With offers a unique blend of programs – baccalaureate university
more accredited programs than any other similar institute in degrees, applied degrees, diplomas and certificates – to more
Canada, it provides real-world education in business, advanced than 13,000 full and part-time students and 40,000 continuing
technologies and skilled trades to more than 86,500 education students each year. Since 1910, Mount Royal has
customers annually at 15 locations in Alberta and in 23 developed innovative and market-driven courses of study
countries around the world. that enable graduates to develop successful careers in
the business, not-for-profit and government sectors
38 2008 ALBERTA SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY LEADERSHIP FOUNDATION AWARDS GALA
2008 ASTECH AWARDS DISTINGUISHED PATRONS…CONTINUED
in Canada and around the world. Our programs are evolving Shell Canada’s corporate goals are growth and profitability within
to meet the changing needs of Alberta’s employment market, an overarching commitment to sustainable development.
but one thing remains the same: Mount Royal’s graduates are Shell Canada is a Canadian corporation, wholly owned by Royal
in high demand because of their industry-ready technical skills. Dutch Shell pic, an English company with headquarters in the
For example, more than 90 per cent of students graduating Netherlands.
with a Bachelor of Applied Computer Information Systems and
Business are employed right away. Our programs are developed
with expert input from Advisory Groups made up of faculty and
industry leaders, resulting in programs like the Applied Degree
in Environmental Science, which prepares students for careers in TELUS Corporation is the largest telecommunications company
Canada’s fastest growing field of employment. Students in the in Western Canada and the second largest in the country. We
Bachelor of Applied Communications – Electronic Publishing provide a wide range of communications products and services
and Technical Communication programs are highly sought including data, Internet Protocol (IP), voice, entertainment and
after because they know how to adapt to the latest changes video. Our strategy is to unleash the power of the Internet to
in technology. Mount Royal graduates are able to undertake deliver the best solutions to Canadians at home, in the workplace
applied research and focus on problem solving. They enter the and on the move.
market confident and ready to make an impact on Alberta’s
CMG Reservoir Simulation Foundation (Foundation CMG)
supports professors’ and students’ leading edge research in
Shell Canada is one of the largest integrated petroleum computer simulation and modelling flow of liquids and gases
companies in Canada, producing natural gas, natural gas and biochemical reactions in the earth. Improving technology
liquids and bitumen. It is also the country’s largest producer and reducing negative impacts: CO2 sequestration, oil and
of sulphur. Shell Canada is a leading manufacturer, gas production, in-situ recovery and other processes with
distributor and marketer of refined petroleum advanced 4D dynamic visualization. Exciting opportunities
products. for engineers and scientists exploring CO2 oil and gas
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY IMPACTS YOU! 39
2008 ASTECH AWARDS DISTINGUISHED PATRONS…CONTINUED
recovery, coalbed methane, in-situ oilsands, environment
remediation and other technologies. Foundation CMG is an
industry endowed not-for-profit organization and sponsors
researchers and students in universities in Alberta and around the
BioAlberta is the central voice and the organizing hub for life
sciences in Alberta. We are a private, not-for-profit industry
association with activities focused in the following areas:
• Government advocacy
• Industry promotion
• Increasing industry access to financing
In today’s high-tech world, products and services change as
• Facilitating access to human resources
rapidly as technology evolves. Keeping up with these changes
can be overwhelming and time-consuming. As your insurance • Business development and networking opportunities
advisor, we ensure our market information is current and remains Alberta’s life science industry is a broad field of endeavour
on top of technological trends which affect our clients’ business. encompassing biotechnology, environmental science, medical
Whether you are an emerging company or a multinational firm technology, industrial bioproducts, agriculture biotechnology, bio-
with revenue in the billions, Lloyd Sadd Insurance makes it a informatics and natural health products.
priority to understand your business and the way it operates in
context with technology. Lloyd Sadd Insurance’s Technology
Industry Practice is a group of insurance professionals working
exclusively with technology clients to think up unique and
dynamic solutions for their insurance needs so clients can stay
focused on running their business.
40 2008 ALBERTA SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY LEADERSHIP FOUNDATION AWARDS GALA
2008 ASTECH AWARDS AND RECEPTION HOSTS
ASTECH 2008 AWARDS GALA HOST
Based in Calgary, Conematic is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of advanced
heating solutions. Through seamless innovation with its partners and alliances,
Conematic developed Hybritherm Technology™ – the environmentally responsible
heating system that creates a single, complete solution for space and water heating by
leveraging the world’s best technologies.
The newly released SOL series heating systems with Hybritherm Technology™ will reduce green house
gas emissions by more than 1.5 tonnes, per unit per year and save 25% on monthly heating bills, while
delivering extraordinary comfort.
ASTECH/ALBERTA SCIENCEFAIR FOUNDATION FEATURED STUDENT SPONSOR
The Alberta Ingenuity Fund supports science and engineering research of the highest
calibre, to create a prosperous future for the province. It draws funding from a $1 billion
endowment established and managed by the Government of Alberta to build the
capacity for innovation, especially in areas with long lasting social and economic
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY IMPACTS YOU! 41
2008 ASTECH AWARDS AND RECEPTION HOSTS…CONTINUED
2008 ASTECH VIP & MAIN RECEPTION HOST 2008 ASTECH AFTER-PARTY HOST
IBM Canada Ltd. is one of Canada’s leading Cybera Inc. is a member-driven, member-governed
providers of advanced information technology, organization, with a mandate to provide provincial
products, services and business consulting leadership by coordinating, integrating, leveraging, and
expertise. We are dedicated to helping our clients sustaining investments in cyberinfrastructure technologies
innovate and succeed through the end-to-end in Alberta. Cybera maintains primary offices and staff at
transformation of their business models and the the University of Calgary and at the University of Alberta.
application of innovative technology and business As part of its mandate, Cybera will facilitate access to
solutions. IBM Canada and its wholly-owned services and support personnel to increase access to
subsidiaries employ more than 19,000 regular full- technology and expertise to enable Alberta researchers
time and part-time people across the country. In and businesses to solve problems, advance their research
addition, IBM provides temporary employment and development, and innovate in key priority areas
for 3,800 people including 805 students. such as health, life sciences, energy, nanotechnology and
Information and Communication Technologies (ICT). For
more information, please visit http://www.cybera.ca.
42 2008 ALBERTA SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY LEADERSHIP FOUNDATION AWARDS GALA
2008 ASTECH AWARDS ADJUDICATION PANEL
Neil Taylor Dr. Cornelia Kreplin Dr. R. Sean Sanders
Chenomx Inc. Agriculture and Rural Development University of Alberta
Dr. Olga Kovalchuk Dr. David Bailey Dr. Zhangxing Chen
University of Lethbridge Genome Alberta University of Calgary
Paul D. Clark Dr. Alice Hontela
VisionGain Consulting Inc. University of Lethbridge
Peggy MacTavish Craig Dobson
Precarn Inc. Taylor Warwick Consulting Limited
Todd Babiak Kathryn O’Hara Tim Lougheed
Edmonton, Alberta Ottawa, Ontario Ottawa, Ontario
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY IMPACTS YOU! 43
2008 ASTECH AWARDS NOMINATORS
Dr. Robert Tipman Patty Rooks Dr. Elizabeth Cannon
Hamid Sarreshtehdari Ryan Radke Dr. Sandy Murphree
Henry Najda Dr. Chandra Khulbe Andrew Vogan, P.Geol
Gwen Kenderdine Drew Hiltz Dr. William McCaffrey
John Fleiger Dr. Jack H. Jhamandas Steve Hogle
Dr. Richard Hawkes Gary McPherson R. Stewart Thompson
Satya Brata Das Shelagh Holm Dr. Don Kjosness
Warren Piers Dr. Mike Lipsett Dr. Mohamed Abousalem, P. Eng
Russ Taylor Dr. Payam Rahimi Julia Millen
Dr. Alex Zahavich Brian Doucette Warren Michaels
Dr. Indira Samarasekera Dr. Gregory Taylor Hicham Aiteimaalem
Dr. Walter F. Bischof John Masters
44 2008 ALBERTA SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY LEADERSHIP FOUNDATION AWARDS GALA
2008 ASTECH AWARDS GALA COMMITTEE
Karen Beliveau Steve Hogle Bev Jones
Beliveau Consulting Alberta Research Council ASTECH Foundation
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY IMPACTS YOU!
2008 ASTECH AWARDS BOARD OF DIRECTORS
2008 PATRON ORGANIZATION REPRESENTATIVES
Kathleen Thurber Frank Meyer Dr. Lorraine Whale
Alberta Heritage Foundation for CMG Reservoir Simulation Foundation Shell Canada Limited
Medical Research (Foundation CMG)
Dr. Peter Hackett Gary Otto Syncrude Canada Ltd.
Alberta Ingenuity Dow AgroSciences Canada Inc.
Steve Hogle Lynn Sutherland TELUS
Alberta Research Council Inc. iCORE Inc.
Lisa Bowes Scott Olsson University of Alberta
Alberta Advanced Education and KPMG
Technology/Alberta Science and Glenn McMurray
Research Authority Stuart Tate University of Calgary
Lloyd Sadd Insurance Brokers Ltd.
Ed Knash (ASTECH Chair) Christine Picken
AVAC Ltd. Trevor Davis University of Lethbridge
Mount Royal College
Martin Kratz Doug Maley
Bennett Jones LLP Dr. Ben Silverberg Western Economic Diversification Canada
BioAlberta E.H. Guy Mallabone
GENERAL REPRESENTATIVES OF THE SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY AND RELATED BUSINESS COMMUNITY
Peter Kinash John W. Masters Dr. Roger Pederson
Calgary Technologies Inc. TRLabs
46 2008 ALBERTA SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY LEADERSHIP FOUNDATION AWARDS GALA
ASTECH AWARD RECIPIENTS 1990–2007
Innovation in Alberta Science and 2001 Terry Allen 2002 SMART Technologies Inc. 2000 David Mitchell
Technology 2002 D. Jed Harrison 2003 NOVA Chemicals Corporation 2001 William Cochrane
1990 Ronald G. Micetich 2003 Michael Brett 2004 NOVA Chemicals Corporation 2002 Andrew W. Gilliland
2004 Gérard Lachapelle 2005 NovAtel Inc. 2003 Matt Spence
Outstanding Leadership in Alberta 2005 Dr. Norman Beaulieu 2007 Intuit Canada Ltd. 2004 David T. Lynch
Science 2006 Alberta Ingenuity Centre for Machine Learning 2005 Dr. William Bridger
1991 Leroy Cogger (AICML) Corporations with sales < $25M 2006 Cyril M. Kay
1992 Leonard T. Bruton 2007 Dr. Garnette Sutherland 1992 Biomira Inc. and Westronics Inc. 2007 Dr. Eldon Smith
1993 Benno Nigg & D.L.J. Tyrrell 1993 Valmet Automation (Canada) Ltd.
1994 Jeremy Wang Group Outstanding Achievement in Applied 1994 Alta Genetics Inc. Leaders of Tomorrow
1995 Robert Hodges Technology and Innovation 1995 Merak Projects Ltd. 2000 Rita Aggarwala
1996 Robert V. Moody 2002 Saskatchewan Research Council (SRC), 1996 Revolve Technologies Inc. 2001 Jocelyn Grozic
1997 Timothy R. Mosmann Pipe Flow Technology Centre 1997 SMART Technologies Inc. 2002 Michael S. Kallos (co-recipient)
1998 Richard E. Peter 2003 Miodrag Belosevic 1998 Wi-LAN Inc. 2002 Talib Rajwani (co-recipient)
1999 David W. Schindler 2004 Light Up the World Foundation 1999 EyeWire, Inc. 2003 Tim Poon
2000 The Islet Transplantation 2005 IMUS Research Team 2000 Matrikon 2004 Konrad Walus
2001 John Wallace 2007 Conematic Heating Systems Inc. 2001 BioWare Corp. 2005 Ryan Schneider
2002 Samuel Weiss 2002 Micralyne Inc. 2006 Sean Hum
2003 Brian D. Sykes Outstanding Commercial Achievement 2003 Upside Software Inc. 2007 Jeeshan Chowdhury
2004 Bryan Kolb
in Alberta Science and Technology 2004 Ceapro Inc.
2005 Dr. Paul Kubes 1990 B & W Technologies Ltd. 2005 CV Technologies Inc. ASTECH Foundation Special Award
2006 Philip Currie 1991 Intera Technologies Inc. 2006 Replicon Inc. (A special award issued at the discretion of the Board
2007 Dr. David Bundle 2007 Extreme Engineering of Directors of the Foundation)
Outstanding Commercial Achievement 1992 Richard E. Taylor
Outstanding Leadership in Alberta in Alberta Science and Technology Outstanding Contribution to the 1993 Raymond U. Lemieux
Technology Corporations with sales > $25M Alberta Science and Technology 1994 Lionel E. McLeod
1991 John Tulip 1992 Sherritt Gordon Ltd., Metal and Coinage Community 1995 TRLabs
1992 Lawrence C.H. Wang Products Marketing 1990 Eric A. Geddes 1996 Alberta Research Council
1993 Brian Unger 1993 CS Resources Limited 1991 Clement W. Bowman 1998 Honorable Peter
1994 Donald B. Robinson 1994 IDACOM Telecom Division, 1992 Robert B. Church Lougheed, Q.C.
1995 Karl Chuang of Hewlett-Packard Canada Ltd. 1993 Harry E. Gunning 1999 Fred A. Stewart
1996 Norman J. Dovichi 1995 NOWSCO Well Services 1994 D. Robert Weir 2001 Robert J. Crawford
1997 Maurice M. Moloney (co-recipient) 1996 Tesco Corporation 1995 John S. Colter 2003 Alastair Ross, in memoriam
1997 Anthony A. Noujaim (co-recipient) 1997 PanCanadian Petroleum Ltd. 1996 Thomas P. Keenan (co-recipient) 2005 Dr. Roger Butler, in memoriam (co-recipient)
1998 Leo A. Behie 1998 Syncrude Canada Ltd. 1996 Martha Piper (co-recipient) 2005 Dr. Karl A. Clark, in memoriam (co-recipient)
1999 Wayne Grover 1999 QC Data International Ltd. 1997 William D. Croft 2006 Alvin Gerald Libin
2000 Larry Comeau 2000 Not awarded 1998 James W. Murray 2007 Dr. Margaret-Ann Armour
2001 CSI Wireless Inc. 1999 Eric P. Newell
SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY IMPACTS YOU! 47
ASTECH AWARD RECIPIENTS 1990–2007…CONTINUED
ASTECH Industrial Research Syncrude/ASTECH Innovation in Al-Pac/ASTECH Innovation Excellence in Science and
2005 Xsensor Technology Corporation Oil Sands Research in Integrated Landscape Technology
2006 Quadrise Canada Fuel Systems 1992 Roger Butler Management Public Awareness
1993 Jacob Masliyah 2001 Stan Boutin 1994 Science Alberta Foundation
NRC/ASTECH Innovation in 1994 Clifton Shook 2002 Brad Stelfox 1995 Praxis Society
Industrial Research 1995 Norbert Morgenstern 2003 EMEND Project Partners 1996 Calgary Science Network (co-recipient)
North 1996 Otto P. Strausz
1997 Murray R. Gray Excellence in Science and 1996 WISEST (co-recipient)
1991 Axion Spatial Imaging Technology Journalism: General
1998 Don Scott 1997 Discover ‘E’ Science Camps
1992 ZI Probes Inc. Public
1999 Waldemar Maciejewski 1998 Alberta Women’s Science Network
1993 Russell Technologies Inc. 1992 Mark Lowey
2000 Jan Czarnecki 1999 Dinosaur Country Science Camp
1994 Harding Instrument Co. Ltd. 1993 Michelle Jones
2001 Donald E. Sheeran 2000 Edmonton Space & Science Centre
1995 Epsilon Chemicals 1994 Arthur Heller
2002 Keng H. Chung (now Odyssium)
1996 Madenta Communications Inc. 1996 Scott McKeen
2003 Paraffinic Froth Treatment Technology 2001 Operation Minerva
1997 AltaRex Corp. 1998 John Acorn
Commercialization Team 2002 ‘Pi in the Sky’
1998 Cytovax Biotechnologies Inc. 2000 Not awarded
2004 Hassan Hamza 2003 University of Alberta’s Faculty of
1999 BioTools Incorporated 2002 Alberta Venture Magazine, Editorial
2005 Rodney Ridley and Patrick Dougan Graduate Studies and Research (FGSR)
2000 SRW Technologies Team Outreach Program
2006 The In Situ Combustion Research Team
2001 Russell N.D.E. Systems Inc. 2004 Ed Struzik 2004 Biotechnology Training Centre Outreach
2007 AACI Research Team, ARC
2002 BigBangwidth Inc. 2006 Gregory Harris 2005 Shad Valley
2003 Acrodex Inc. AVAC/ASTECH Innovation in 2006 Kananaskis Field Stations and G-8
2004 Virexx Medical Corp. Agricultural Science Excellence in Science Journalism: Legacy Chair in Wildlife Ecolory
1999 Gary R. Stringam Specialized Publications 2007 The Alta Project, Dr. James Pinfold, UofA
South 1993 Rae Haaland
2000 Prem Kharbanda
1991 Itres Research 2001 James H. Helm 1994 Lois Hammond
1992 Smart Technologies Inc. 2002 Allen Good 1995 Dennis Urquhart
1993 Malibu Engineering Ltd. 1997 Not awarded
1994 New Era Systems Service Ltd. AVAC/Dow AgroSciences/ASTECH 1999 Connie Bryson
1995 Yellowbird Products Limited Innovation in Agricultural Science 2001 Tony Kryzanowksi
1996 Travis Chemicals Inc. 2003 John O’Donovan 2005 Nickle’s New Technology Magazine,
1997 Intelligent Databases International Inc. 2004 Cold Regions Geoenvironmental Research Editorial Team
1998 Canzyme Corporation Facility
1999 Oncolytics Biotech Inc. 2005 Dr. Thava Vasanthan and Dr. Feral Temelli
2000 Mentor Engineering 2006 George Clayton
2001 Alterna Technologies Group Inc. 2007 Dr. Maurice Moloney
2002 SemBioSys Genetics Inc.
2003 Spartek Systems Inc.
2004 Canadian Bio-Systems Inc.
48 2008 ALBERTA SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY LEADERSHIP FOUNDATION AWARDS GALA
Science and Technology
2008 ASTECH FOUNDATION
D I S T I N G U I S H E D PAT R O N S
VIP & Main ASTECH/Alberta After Party
GALA HOST Reception Host
Gold Sponsors Silver Sponsors
Alberta Association of Colleges &
Technical Institutes (AACTI)
Quadrise Canada Corporation
APEGGA – Association of Professional Nexen Inc.
Engineers, Geologists, and Penn West Petroleum Ltd.
Geophysicists of Alberta Quest PharmaTech Inc.
CCAT – Calgary Council for Red Door Photography
The Idea Factory
University of Calgary – External Relations