I was born/grew up in: Williams Lake, BC
I now live in: Spruce Grove, AB
What I do at work
I help make technical decisions to develop applications for geospatial technology. I work with Geographic Information System (GIS) software, including ESRI products to make sure our clients are able to make the best decisions. My team ensures that corporate data is kept up to date. This is the information displayed on the map products we produce, so it must be reliable and accurate.
With my team, I help solve many types of problems. We make sure underground structures and equipment are properly maintained at the right times. We track inspections of equipment to make sure we are meeting regulations. We make sure electricity outages affect the fewest homes and businesses possible. We try to figure out why use of electricity spikes at certain times and locations.
My background in science and technology is critical to success in my job at EPCOR. I rely on data to make decisions daily. I always work with a team. These include the team I manage and corporate leadership teams. GIS is important to many organizations. It is a source of data, and data is the most important asset an organization manages.
My career path is
When I was in high school, I had no idea what I wanted to do when I grew up. I only knew that I loved being outside and I loved camping. I started my university education with a BSc in Natural Resource Science. I thought I wanted to be a Forester. During my degree, I was able to complete many co-op work terms. I was lucky enough to do a couple of GIS work terms. This is where my love of GIS started! Once I finished my degree, I worked as a GIS technician for 8 months. Then I decided to return to college to complete a GIS Advanced Diploma. I worked for several companies and organizations, doing different types of GIS work, before I came to EPCOR. Check my LinkedIn profile for more information.
I am motivated by
What excites me most is when I can share GIS knowledge with one of my team members, or help one of my team advance their career. I love it when I can introduce other groups in my organization to the benefits of geospatial data and applications. This increases use and dependency on the products my team produces.
How I affect peoples’ lives
My career at EPCOR is very fulfilling! There are always technological changes that push me to make sure my skills are up to date. GIS is exciting because it is used to make decisions in almost every industry. The products my team deliver affect the daily activities of every single employee and the public.
Outside of work I
I love playing hockey, camping, hiking, biking, reading and playing with my kids and dogs. .
I am very involved in the GIS community. I’m currently the President of The Urban & Regional Information Systems Association of Alberta. I have also volunteered on the organizing committee for the last six GeoAlberta Conferences. I was the conference co-chair in 2019, which was a challenging and fun opportunity!
I have been a member of my local Kinette club for the past eight years. Each December we create and distribute Christmas hampers to more than 400 families.
My advice to others
GIS is an incredible career! To get perspective, try working for a private consultant, a municipal government, or a non-profit organization in many different industries. Get involved with various volunteer organizations wherever possible.