for more information please contact:

Dorothy Marshall
Manager, Office Services and Council

780.425.0626
Email: asetceo@aset.ab.ca

The Council

The ASET Council acts as the governing body of ASET, and represents the Association’s members in determining and demanding appropriate organizational performance.  Obtaining its authority from ASET members, the Council is accountable to both its members, and the public.

 

Current Council


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Adam Campbell, C.E.T., MBA
President

Adam has parlayed a strong academic career into a management position with his hometown’s municipal government. Starting off with a diploma in Geomatics Engineering Technology from Lethbridge College, he moved on to a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Lethbridge before earning an MBA from Athabasca University. His early employment saw him working as a survey assistant and drafting technologist in the oil patch. In 2007 he was offered a position as Water & Wastewater Technologist with the City of Lethbridge, a post he held until 2014, when he was promoted to manager.

Adam began volunteering with the Lethbridge chapter. That led to his realising that his professional background and educational credentials made him a logical choice to run for Council. He thoroughly enjoys the challenges that come with the commitment, including meeting with APEGA on legislative review issues and working with other provincial bodies to advance the cause of applied science and engineering technology across Canada.

When he’s not hard at work protecting the Lethbridge water supply and the interests of ASET-certified technicians and technologists, Adam enjoys spending time with his wife and infant daughter and their two dogs, a pug and a bug—that’s right, a pug/Boston terrier cross.

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Don Wilson,
MBA, DBA, C.E.T., MIEEE

First Vice President

In addition to having obtained a diploma in Electronic Engineering Technology from Red River College, Don holds a Master’s degree (Royal Roads University) and a Doctorate (University of Phoenix), both in Business Administration with a focus on technology. A lifelong believer in the value of both education and certification, he is serving his second term as an ASET Councillor, in addition to the time he spends mentoring individuals and advocacy groups, and working with various Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE) committees. Rounding out his volunteerism is his current stint as chair of the NAIT Bachelor of Technology in Technology Management (BTech) Program Advisory Committee. He is also a sessional BTech lecturer, teaching an evening and online Risk Management module.

Don’s professional background makes him an excellent choice to represent and advocate on the behalves of ASET-certified technicians and technologists. After graduation in 1985, he spent some time in technical sales and then moved to Vancouver, where he held progressively responsible positions at various firms, including BC Hydro. From the mid-1990s to 2006, he managed a Winnipeg-based electrical repair facility before being named Siemens Canada Ltd.’s Director of Large Drives, which necessitated his transferring back to Alberta.

Don’s view is that ASET can and should serve an essential function beyond providing a piece of paper that allows technicians and technologists to land jobs. Our province’s current economic climate makes it more important than ever for professionals to separate themselves from the pack and demonstrate their worthiness to be considered for important career opportunities. They can do this best through certification and continuing professional development, two of the ASET pillars to which Don is most committed.

Don lives in Edmonton with his wife, Debra, an HR professional and psychologist, and their two daughters.

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Ray Wilkinson, C.E.T.
Second Vice President

Ray started his career in the trades, earning his steamfitter/pipefitter, plumber, and gasfitter tickets through the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology before going on to obtain a NAIT Building Construction Engineering Technology diploma in 1988. An independent contractor since graduation, he was encouraged early on by engineers and other technologists to pursue certification; as a result, he has proudly held the C.E.T. designation since 1992, noting that, “I have experienced occasions when my C.E.T. added value to my professional findings or observations.”

Ray’s efforts as a member of the Board of Examiners drew the attention of ASET’s Registrar, Jennifer Bertrand, who asked if he would consider running for Council. His interest was piqued so he threw in his hat and is now glad he did. “It is a rewarding feeling to be able to participate with the other Council members in the continued growth and development of our professional organisation.” What really stands out is how little he appreciated the level of work and commitment required to keep ASET on track. That said, there is much left to be accomplished and he plans to stick around for a while yet.

Ray’s true passion is traveling Alberta’s back roads, discovering aspects of his province that few ever experience. He likes the pace of knowing that he can just pull over and let someone pass; or, better yet, stop completely and go explore some random, interesting site. This pursuit has allowed him to “discover” treasures like teepee rings, turn-of-the-century (the 20th, not the 21st!) cemeteries, one-room school houses, windmills, working ferries, and abandoned homesteads. But what really grabs this Alberta boy is the chance to see natural wonders such as, “Fantastic looking bush, woods, meadows, foothills, hoodoos, valleys, coulees, gullies, sloughs and a few big sky places where you can ‘stretch your eyes’ and listen to only the wind rustling in the grass.” Our Ray Wilkinson may be a technologist by training but he possesses the soul of a Prairie poet.

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Sandra Pippus, C.E.T.
Past President

You’ll find no stronger advocate for ASET's many programs and activities than Sandra Pippus. She believes Council and staff are paving the way for great things that will benefit technicians and technologists nationally as well as provincially. While many members do not see what’s happening behind the scenes, myriad activities are consuming the efforts of volunteers and Association employees, as they strive to stay ahead of the curve and think big to the ultimate advantage of current and future members and the profession as a whole.

Sandra believes her C.E.T. designation forces others to see in her what she knows herself to be: a competent, highly professional technologist. Over time she has come to understand that even when people don’t know what “C.E.T.” stands for, the very fact of having those letters after one’s name signifies competence and the need to be taken seriously. That feeling of support extends to why Sandra decided to serve on Council. “I felt disconnected from the profession. As an Industrial Engineering Technologist, I don’t necessarily enjoy the same roles and responsibilities available to many of my fellow professionals. This opportunity has provided me that connection to engineering technology.”

Prior to settling in at SAIT, where she obtained diplomas in Medical Laboratory Technology and Industrial Engineering Technology, Sandra studied at both Camrose Lutheran College and the University of Calgary. Upon graduation she went on to work in planning for two municipal governments before being offered her current position with Alberta Infrastructure’s Health and Government Facilities Directorate, where she is part of the site project management team responsible for building the Grand Prairie Regional Hospital.

Recently, Sandra’s down time has undergone a dramatic change. Where she used to devote herself to theatre, singing, and exercise, she, her husband, and their daughter now share an interest in equestrian pursuits, and the family owns and rides three horses, Sophie, Fallon, and Husker.

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Mark Andriashek, C.E.T.
Councillor

Mark Andriashek holds a Mechanical Engineering Technology from NAIT in addition to his two years of General Science studies at the University of Alberta. A firm believer in lifelong learning, he is working towards his P.Tech., having accumulated the needed experience at the Shell Scotford plant, where he was responsible for piping insulation, and National Oilwell Varco, applying his expertise to designing and engineering product lines for downhole tools. Mark is particularly proud of his work on a piece of drilling equipment called the GriffithForce DAHJ. He went through the entire engineering design process, from brainstorming solutions to challenges, to designing and having the prototype built. This latter part included being responsible for all supporting engineering calculations, modelling and finite element analysis, overseeing testing and evaluation of the prototype, and redesigning as needed to allow for eventual commercialisation. He feels that level of responsibility was highly satisfying, personally and professionally.

A proud member of ASET since 2011, Mark believes his professional designation demonstrates his commitment to professionalism. That’s connected closely to the reason he ran for Council. “I want to promote our profession to the level it deserves,” he explains. “Since I enjoy talking to people, hearing their perspectives, and learning what they want and feel they need, I felt a spot on Council was something worth pursuing. In addition to my affinity for the people-side of things, I’ve always been intrigued by governance and how our leadership does what it does. I guess that goes back to my love of learning and desire to continually improve myself.”

When not designing innovation technology or improving his mind, Mark can be found indulging his interests in mountain biking, fashion, and living a healthy lifestyle.  He reads about anything that is science-related and really enjoys math and physics (Obviously there’s no accounting for taste. Ed.) while keeping up-to-date on the music scene, particularly artists such as Wolf Alice, Kasabian, and Braids.

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Tara Chahl, C.E.T., PMP
Councillor

The determination and drive it took for Tara Chahl to become one of Canada’s first battle-ready women soldiers, are the same attributes that, when combined with a remarkable intelligence and capacity for learning, have allowed her to succeed in the technology sector. Breaking down barriers is nothing new to her, and her current role as Project and Quality Manager at Sherwood Park’s Keymay Industries, a pipeline and civil construction materials supply and service company, is in many ways an extension of her time in the military, allowing her to dispel myths and erase stereotypes. Her work has included training, developing, and leading specialised crews, building and maintaining a Quality Management System, monitoring and controlling a wide range of important project metrics, and devoting herself to the corporate R&D program.  

Tara  joined ASET in 2011, two years after graduating with top marks from NAIT’s Chemical Technology Program, a stream she chose for its diversity, an important consideration given Alberta’s uncertain economy. She recognised that her chosen discipline afforded her opportunities in a range of sectors, including O&G, environment, agricultural, and food processing.

Her motivation for obtaining both the C.E.T. and P.M.P. designations was simple: having those letters after her name meant not having to prove to anyone that she possesses the competencies required to do her job. Furthermore, clients gain comfort in knowing they’re dealing with a certified professional who can manage their projects from start to finish. The proof of that particular pudding lies in the success she has enjoyed and in the opportunities that have come her way.

A natural leader whose innate abilities were honed, quite literally, in battle, Tara believes in leading from the front. Which explains why she ran for Council. During her first term, she is seeking to give back to an organisation and a community that have contributed significantly to her career advancement. She is focused on improving relevant policies, standards, practices, and ethics, and is particularly looking forward to growing ASET and encouraging more women in technology to take on senior leadership roles.

Tara’s devotion both to education and to improving working conditions for technical occupations generally, and for women in particular, has not gone unnoticed. The Government of Alberta obviously goes by the maxim that, “If you want to have something done, give it to a busy person.” Accordingly, Tara has been appointed to a three-year term as a member of the NAIT Board of Governors. And it doesn’t matter that she really doesn’t have the time. She’ll just do it anyway, and do it well.

 

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Kasz Leavitt,
P.Tech. (Eng.)

Councillor

After graduating from Lethbridge College in Civil Engineering Technology in 2009, Kasz Leavitt immediately went to work for MPE Engineering, where he has been ever since. He has experience in transportation design and construction inspection, as well as in his primary role of testing a full range of materials, including:

  • Soils;
  • Concrete;
  • Aggregates; and,
  • Asphalt.

He particularly enjoys the variety his work provides, an d in addition to managing any number of testing projects, Kasz has often been entrusted with the responsibility of training new employees.

His hard work and focus have paid off in his receiving the P.Tech certification in 2016. “The designation allows me, within my scope of practice, to review and report on the tests I perform and oversee,” he notes. “It’s significantly expanded my role and increases the value I provide MPE.”

Kasz is a strong believer in ASET, having supported the Association for a number of years as Lethbridge Chapter Leader. His experience training new staff has shown him the value of working with younger generations of technologists, prompting him to decide to run for Council where, he feels, he can make a real difference in the lives of up-and-coming technicians and technologists.

When he’s not burning the midnight oil at work, Kasz spends time with his wife and four children—an even mix of boys and girls, proving his ability to manage any kind of project. Kasz’s leisure time tends to be devoted to outdoor activities, including coaching lacrosse and serving as a Scout leader.

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Wade Weaver, P.Tech.(Eng.), B.Tech., PMP
Councillor

Like so many successful ASET-registered technologists, Wade Weaver is the product of a family farm. Growing up in Lloydminster, Alberta, he learned very early the value of hard work and determination. He also learned how to run heavy equipment and agricultural tools, sparking an interest in how things work. Jobs as a labourer, operator, and survey assistant helped him pay his way through the Lethbridge College Civil Engineering Technology Program. Upon graduation, he landed with OPUS Stewart Weir (now WSP), an engineering consultancy where he has gone from being a materials technologist, through field project manager and into his new role as Market Sub-Sector Leader, Industrial Geomatics for Canada. Wade enjoys the challenges that have seen him involved in a range of initiatives across the province. His portfolio includes transportation, commercial, and industrial projects, highway, pipeline, and SAGD site construction, and most recently, contributing to the massive North West Redwater Sturgeon Refinery, which is nearing completion in Alberta’s Industrial Heartland.

A great believer in lifelong learning and professional development, Wade obtained his C.E.T. in 2009, whereupon he enrolled in NAIT’s Bachelor of Technology in Technology Management (B.Tech.) Program, from which he graduate with honours in 2012. Two years later, he earned his P.M.P. designation, and he followed that up in 2015 with certification as a P.Tech. A strong ASET supporter, he has volunteered with the Association for several years. When approached about running for Council, felt he could not turn down the opportunity to contribute to shaping his profession.

Wade stays active by playing hockey, camping, and participating in watersports but his true happy place is spending time with his wife and two small children, exposing his kids to new experiences such as skiing and skating, and seeing the world through their eyes.

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Kevin Whelan, C.E.T.
Councillor

Originally from Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, Kevin Whelan moved to Edmonton in 1977. Thirteen years later, he enrolled in the NAIT EDDT program, immediately joining ASET as a student member.

His career has seen him move several times, first to Calgary through a work transfer, then in 1998, as a result of the downturn, to Waterloo, Ontario, where he served as a manufacturing engineer in an auto parts plant. He returned to Alberta two years later, jumping back into both the oil patch and academics. In fact, over the next decade he earned two certificates from NAIT— Project Management and Lean Manufacturing—and one from the U of A—Adult and Continuing Education. Never one to rest on his laurels, Kevin proceeded to apply what he had learned in school, obtaining his Lean certification from the Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME).

His 25-year career has included:

  • Oilfield equipment design; 
  • Oilfield application engineering; 
  • Oilfield field service supervision and management;
  • Automotive manufacturing engineering; 
  • Domestic and international project management;
  • Domestic and international development of employee training programs;
  • Sales; and,
  • Development of training courses at NAIT.

This last bit, coupled with his wealth of industry experience, led to Kevin’s being offered a fulltime position at NAIT teaching in the Productivity Enhancement Services group.

One of the most important contributors to the success he has enjoyed is Kevin’s professional certification. “Industry recognition of my C.E.T. opened many doors over the years,” he explains. “It has afforded me many good opportunities despite the ups and downs of the Alberta economy. I truly believe that, if not for ASET, technicians and technologists would be considered skilled labour rather than the professionals we are.”

As far as Kevin is concerned, ASET’s value extends far beyond certification. He appreciates the skill and conscientiousness the Association’s staff has applied to building the brand of Alberta’s technicians and technologists throughout the province. This appreciation of the organisation’s purpose and its quality led him to throw his hat in the ring and run for Council. He is committed to supporting the efforts of his fellow councillors as they strive to build on past successes and make  ASET’s designations ever more meaningful.

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Greg Widmeyer, C.E.T.
Councillor

To call Greg Widmeyer educated, motivated, and involved, would be a gross understatement. In 2007,, he obtained a Computer Engineering Technology diploma from SAIT. Since then, all he has accomplished is qualifying for his C.E.T., earning a BSc in Computing and Information Systems from Athabasca University, and almost completing that institution’s MSc in Information Systems, a process that will conclude at the end of 2018. All this while juggling the demands of a large family—one wife, two daughters, two sons, and a number of saltwater fish—as well as numerous volunteer commitments with ASET, including serving on the Board of Examiners and acting as an IT/Computer Engineering Technology subject matter expert. Oh, and occasionally he makes it into his job as a Systems Integration Analyst with Associated Engineering (AE), which includes demanding and varied professional duties involving the management of disparate information technology systems. To succeed, he must continually determine which of those systems must be improved, which should be integrated, and which should simply be eliminated. All of this is done to preserve AE’s data integrity, keep the company up-to-date technologically, and help Greg align the technology with his employer’s business goals so as to achieve strategic results.

What prompted Greg to become one of few IT-discipline C.E.T.’s was, at first, curiosity. Working at an engineering firm, he began noticing how many of his colleagues had professional designations, including one with which he wasn’t familiar. He did some research and discovered ASET was responsible for a range of disciplines that included his own. Tired of being required to continually prove his competence, he decided it was time to put some letters after his name. Since then, Greg has led the charge for discipline-specific certification of I.T. professionals, and his efforts are allowing ASET to build relevance with Alberta’s rapidly evolving high-tech sector.

In his down time—we’re not sure how he has any, but…okay—Greg plays board games, reads voraciously, camps with family and friends, and listens to tunes by, among others, Caravan Palace and Abney Park.

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Janet Blayone
Public Member

Bio Coming Soon.
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Dr. Joel Gehman
Public Member

Joel Gehman is Assistant Professor of Strategic Management & Organization and Nova Fellow at the U of A’s Alberta School of Business. He holds a bachelor of science degree from Cornell University and a doctorate in business from Pennsylvania State University. Professor Gehman spent 13 years working in industry prior to embarking on an academic career that has seen him publish dozens of articles, and receive a number of awards and fellowships.

The focus of his research is sustainability, innovation, and strategy. In particular, he investigates how concerns related to sustainability and values affect organisational strategies, technology innovation, and institutional arrangements. He is also interested in how, reciprocally, organisations, innovation, and institutions affect the emergence and trajectories of such concerns. In approaching these questions, Joel draws primarily on organisation theory, together with insights from strategic management, as well as science and technology studies. He prefers to take a process perspective, focusing on the organisation of concerns over place and time.

That blending of science and technology with organisational theory will serve him well on the ASET Council, as will his terms on the Chartered Professional Accountants of Alberta Board of Directors and the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Alberta Council.

When he is not busy shaping the minds of the next generation of business leaders or volunteering on boards and councils, Joel Gehman can be found skiing or enjoying his wine collection with friends and family.

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John Richard (Rick) McDonald, CMC, CLGA
Public Member

A self-described “old codger,” Rick McDonald launched his career in the early 1970s by obtaining a certification as a local government administrator. A strong advocate of personal and professional development, over time he followed that initial designation with accreditation as both a life insurance and real estate agent, in addition to becoming a Certified Management Consultant. Along the way, he found time to complete the University of Alberta’s Senior Executive Development Program and a diploma in biblical studies. He insists there’s no truth to the rumour that he obtained this last parchment to prepare himself better for working with ASET staff (Either way, it’ll help! – Ed.).

Rick’s eclectic professional background includes serving in senior capacities within the Government of Alberta, various municipalities and not-for-profit organisations, partnering in, and managing, a real estate company, working as a life insurance agent, running Preventive Social Services for a regional program in northern Alberta, and, between 1991 and 1997, holding the post of Director of Public Lands. The next year he founded JR McDonald & Associates Inc., the management and governance consultancy whose president and C.E.O. he has been for the past two decades. His many prominent projects include developing the GOA’s landmark 1999 document, Regional Sustainable Strategy for the Alberta Oil Sands. His latest assignment saw him assume the mantle of interim City Manager for the City of Lloydminster, where he was tasked with supporting a governance model change and restructuring the municipality’s leadership and management teams.

He brings to the Association extensive governance experience gained on the Alberta Planning and Municipal Government boards, as well as a recently-completed six-year stint with the Alberta Institute of Agrologists. “I have enjoyed all these opportunities,” says Rick, “And I hope my background and interests will allow me to bring a fresh perspective to the ASET Council.”

Rick and his best friend, Linda, have been married for 45 years and are blessed to have a family that includes four children and seven grandkids. Though they love Alberta, Rick and Linda very sensibly find winters more pleasant elsewhere. Specifically, they prefer Hawaii, as well as their second home in Yuma, Arizona, where they enjoy golf and spending time with their grandchildren and extended family. What’s most telling about Rick McDonald, though, is that after more than four decades, he still feels that, “My work is my favourite hobby."

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Peter Portlock,
CD, MHSA

Special Advisor to Council

The term “eclectic” does not do justice to Peter Portlock’s remarkable journey; we’d prefer to call him a renaissance man, given his background and expertise in the military, health administration, accreditation, governance, music, and travel.

Peter’s academic credentials include a pair of degrees from the University of Alberta, a B.A. in French and a Master’s in Health Services Administration, obtained 19 years apart. A career personnel administration officer with the Canadian Forces, he left the military as a Major in 1980  to pursue his interest in health administration. Among his various roles were serving as Western Canada’s first Patient Ombudsman, as well as CEO of:

  • The Canadian Diabetes Association (AB-NWT)
  • The Alberta Arbitration & Mediation Society
  • Swim Alberta
  • The Canadian Mental Health Association (AB)
  • The Alberta Alliance on Mental Health & Mental Illness
  • The Alberta Physiotherapy Association
  • Lethbridge Family Services
  • The College of Alberta Denturists

In addition to having been a public member of ASET Council since 2007, Peter is the Association’s representative to Technology Accreditation Canada, serving as its Board Chair. A self-proclaimed governance “nut,” he has occupied various roles on the boards of more than half-a-dozen other organisations across Alberta.

He and wife, Linda Long, QC, have three sons, and are also proud grandparents seven times over. In his spare time, Peter plays lounge piano and the church organ, directs a choir, and uses his “portly” figure and white beard to great advantage as Santa in Christmas celebrations throughout Alberta. For good measure, he completed a Travel Counselor certificate program at Medicine Hat College in 2011 and, lest we forget, since 2012, Peter has worked with the NYC-based Council on Accreditation as a peer reviewer and team leader, leading some six to eight accreditation site visits of human service agencies across North America annually.

Staff Management


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Barry Cavanaugh
Chief Executive Officer & General Counsel

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Mat Steppan
Director, Programs & Services

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Jennifer Bertrand
Registrar and Director, Registration & Practice

Annual Reports

Download the ASET Annual Report below: