Alumni celebration

Monday, December 24, 2007
Faculty of Science Alumni
The Faculty of Science seized the ‘spirit of why not’ by acknowledging the remarkable achievements of its own alumni from the past 50 years. The Distinguished Alumni award will be an annual honour bestowed upon a science alumnus who has made significant career contributions to his/her field. Also chosen to honour are 50 outstanding alumni who have themselves proven their merit to their peers and community. The diverse group of individuals that were celebrated symbolize the sheer excellence and incredible drive of our graduates, proving that a science degree from the University of Waterloo can lead to great accomplishments. Eight of the honorees are graduates from the Earth and Environmental Sciences Department. 

Bernadette Hughes Conant BSc Earth Sciences ’86,  MSc Earth Sciences ’91  Waterloo, Ontario  

Bernadette Hughes Conant
As Executive Director of the Canadian Water Network (CWN), Ms. Conant has influenced the direction and mission of this Centre of Excellence. She has played a key role in bringing together over 200 researchers from 37 academic institutions to identify and address critical issues in the provision and protection of safe, clean water. Prior to joining the CWN, Ms. Conant was involved in groundwater issues in both Canada and the USA for 17 years. Outside of her professional life, she has taken time to lead and organize a group of fellow Earth Sciences alumni to donate their time cooking and serving dinner to disadvantaged and/or homeless individuals who face daily challenges of poverty and substance abuse. Through her organization and perseverance this group has served the community monthly since 2000, regularly feeding over 100 grateful individuals. Other volunteer hours are given to school council, a children’s reading program, Groundwater Day at primary schools, and various activities at her parish. In her personal and professional life, Ms. Conant’s talent for inspiring people to work together and seizing opportunities has clearly contributed to her many successes.  

Marcel R. Coutu BSc Earth Sciences ’76  Calgary, Alberta  

Marcel R. Coutu
Mr. Coutu has more than 25 years of experience in the resource and energy  sector with a primary focus in corporate finance. Prior to joining Canadian Oil Sands Limited in 2001 as President and CEO, he was Chief Financial Officer of Gulf Canada until its sale to Conoco. Preceding that position, he was Senior Vice President International and Vice President Finance at TransCanada PipeLines where he helped finance its mainline expansion and international projects. Mr. Coutu worked many years in the upstream sector for companies that include Hudson’s Bay Oil & Gas and Dome Petroleum, and has five years of experience in the investment banking business. He has completed the Institute of Corporate Directors Corporate Governance program and is accredited as a certified director under that program. Mr. Coutu serves on the Board of Directors of Brookfield Asset Management, Great-West Lifeco., United Way of Calgary, and the Pension and Compensation Committee of the Calgary Stampede Board. He is Chairman of the Board of Syncrude and chairs the Syncrude Joint Venture CEO and Management Committees. He is also Governor of the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers and a member of the Canadian Council of Chief Executives. 

Anthony D. Daus  MSc Earth Sciences ’84  Huntington Beach, California  

Anthony D. Daus
Anthony D. "Tony" Daus, President and Principal Hydrogeologist, Geomatrix is a 25-year environmental industry veteran. His career as a geologist and hydrogeologist includes:
  • managing one of the largest soil and groundwater investigation and remediation projects in Brazil
  • providing litigation and mediation support on environmental projects involving soil, groundwater and surface water contamination
  • conducting multiproperty industrial and commercial due diligence property assessments
  • evaluating and remediating fuel hydrocarbon spills and leaks
  • managing soil, groundwater, and surface water condition investigations locally and overseas.
He has served as a reviewer for several technical journals, including Ground Water and Journal of Environmental Science Health and is a sought-after presenter in his field. Mr. Daus earned a BSc in Geology from the University of Missouri. At the suggestion of one of his undergraduate professors who encouraged him to explore the up-and-coming environmental field in groundwater, he earned an MSc in Hydrogeology. Since 1997 under Mr. Daus’ guidance as President, Geomatrix has tripled revenues to more than $90 million while doubling its staff size and office locations. Mr. Daus is unique in that he continues to provide consulting services to his key clients while serving as President of the firm. He enjoys spending time with his family, fly fishing, camping, the symphony, and volunteering as a Boy Scout leader.  

Peter Gray, P Geo., QP (ESA) BSc Earth Sciences ’87 Bright, Ontario  

Peter Gray
Mr. Gray has more than 20 years of hydrogeological and environmental consulting experience with projects ranging from small-scale local environmental assessments to large-scale international assignments. This work includes the recently completed community-based environmental assessments for CIDA and World Vision in the countries of Sri Lanka, Indonesia, India and Thailand following the devastating tsunami in southwest Asia in December 2004. He has contributed greatly to the community over the last 20 years as a champion of groundwater education and protection, including working with the Waterloo Wellington Children’s Groundwater Festival as Chair, the Children’s Water Education Council as President, the Rotary Club of Kitchener, the University of Waterloo Advisory Council, Faculty of Environmental Studies Dean’s Council, the Grand River Conservation Authority Water Forum Organizing Committee, Waterloo Wellington Secondary School Science Fair, Technical Advisor for various University of Waterloo graduate studies projects, Director of the University of Waterloo Museum Board and member of the region’s former Groundwater Guardian Affiliate Committee. Mr. Gray’s project and community service experience is complemented by his corporate and entrepreneurial spirit. He successfully launched two environmental companies, including the successful merger of his 12- year-old company Frontline Environmental Management Inc. with the leading KWbased engineering firm, MTE Consultants, Inc. in April, 2007, where he is the senior hydrologist and holds the position of Vice President.  

Andrew W. Panko, PhD MSc Earth Sciences ’77 Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario  

Andrew W. Panko
Andrew Panko is a geoscientist (APGO) and successful entrepreneur who has founded several environmental services and property development companies. After selling his first business, Arcturus Environmental Ltd., he founded Forensic Environmental Services Ltd. which he sold in 2002. He then established Brownfield Revolution Inc. Dr. Panko is a founding partner of Associated Brownfields Inc., a brownfield development company that purchases, remediates and develops contaminated properties. He has a personal interest in railways; he has coauthored several books, including Steam in Niagara (1983), and has received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Canadian Railroad Historical Association. More recently he has been growing vinifera grapes on his family farm in Niagara-on-the-Lake. Dr. Panko is also active within his community as a member and past president of the Rotary Club and several conservation and historical groups. He is a Life Member of the Thorold, Ontario volunteer firefighters. Dr. Panko is a past Chair of the Board of Niagara Falls Hydro and the Niagara Falls Chamber of Commerce, past ViceChair of the Brock University Board of Trustees, is currently on the Board of Directors of Meridian Credit and Chair of the Board of Niagara Regional Broadband Network. 

James (Jim) Reimer BSc ’78 Earth Sciences, MSc Earth Sciences ’80 Calgary, Alberta  

James (Jim) Reimer
Mr. Reimer currently works as Executive Vice-President with Result Energy Inc. in Calgary, Alberta. With over 28 years of industry experience in his portfolio, he has achieved a significant track record of hydrocarbon discovery and development of new exploration concepts. In the past, Mr. Reimer has held several positions at the President and Vice-President levels of both large and small exploration and production companies. He has used this expertise to help mentor and mould many junior Canadian geologists. Additionally, he is the Past President of the Canadian Society of Petroleum Geologists and is currently the marketing chair for the Canadian National Steering Committee - International Year of Planet Earth (2008). He has also participated in numerous industry and professional advisory boards, including the executive policy group of the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers and the British Columbia Oil and Gas Commission. Mr. Reimer was Chair of the first joint convention of the Societies of Petroleum Geologists, Exploration Geophysicists, and Well Logging and he played a key role in developing the hydrogeology division for the Canadian Society of Petroleum Geologists.  

Stephen Schaller BSc Earth Sciences ’88 St Lambert, Quebec  

Stephen Schaller
Stephen Schaller is a RADARSAT-1 Mission Planner for the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) in St. Hubert, Quebec. RADARSAT-1, Canada’s first commercial Earth observation satellite, was devloped by the CSA in cooperation with Canadian provincial governments and the private sector. The images it collects are useful in many fields, including agriculture, cartography, hydrology, forestry, oceanography, geology, ice and ocean monitoring, arctic surveillance-detecting ocean oil slicks and spills-and responding to environmental disasters, all which require fast imaging from space. For the past 10 years, Mr. Schaller has participated in the planning and management of satellite image acquisitions as an On-Call Planner to respond to anomalies and major natural disasters. He has been able to apply his knowledge of geography and remote sensing to help clients on the Canadian Government Order Desk plan and order the best imagery for their needs. He has also acted as the Emergency In-Call Officer for the International Charter, Space and Major Disasters. This past summer has been an especially exciting time for Mr. Schaller as the CSA prepares to launch RADARSAT-2, a superior successor to RADARSAT-1, in December, 2007, from a Soyuz vehicle based in Russia's Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.   

Edward A. Sudicky MSc Earth Sciences ’79, PhD Earth Sciences ’83 Waterloo, Ontario  

Edward A. Sudicky
Edward Sudicky is a Professor in the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences at the University of Waterloo whose research areas of interest include the mathematical modeling of groundwater flow and contaminant transport, groundwater remediation and groundwater-surface water interactions. He also holds the Canada Research Chair (Tier I) in Quantitative Hydrogeology and is a highly cited researcher who has been named a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, the Canadian Academy of Engineering, the Geological Society of America and the American Geophysical Union. Dr. Sudicky has been listed in the Canadian Who's Who and in Marquis Who's Who in Science and Engineering. He received the Geological Society of America's O.E. Meinzer Award in 1999 and the Hydrology Award from the American Geophysical Union in 2002. The National Groundwater Association will honour Dr. Sudicky’s work this fall, presenting him with the prestigious M. King Hubbert Award. In addition to his teaching and research duties, Dr. Sudicky is a consultant to private companies. He has been invited to lecture internationally on numerous occasions and was the Association of Ground Water Scientists and Engineers Henry Darcy Distinguished Lecturer in 1994. He provides service to a number of scientific societies and associations and has acted as editor-in-chief and associate editor of several scientific journals.