Calgary Chapter


Members of the 2015 EAN – Calgary Chapter (L-R): Richard Gleasure, Narmeen Haq, Zeeshan Ahmed, Saif Khan, Dan Wickramasinghe, Ross Pitman, Ashar Sayeed, Quinn Thomson and Michael Hantzsch.

The Engineering Alumni Network (EAN) – Calgary Chapter works to maintain strong ties between Calgary-based alumni and Skule™. Learn more about our Calgary Chapter events and members below.

Calgary Chapter events

Click here to see a calendar of upcoming alumni events in and around Calgary.

Calgary Skule™ Admissions Scholarship

Since its inception, the Calgary Skule™ Admissions Scholarship has helped 11 Calgary-area students attend U of T Engineering. The fund currently offsets over 75 per cent of a student’s first-year tuition costs. The EAN – Calgary Chapter wants to grow the fund to the point where it can offset 100 per cent of a student’s first-year tuition costs. With your help, that target is in reach.

Give today


The founding members of the EAN – Calgary Chapter (L-R): Ross Pitman, Mike Hantzsch, Richard Gleasure and Peter Noble.

Chapter Chapter members

H. Ross Pitman | Chair

GeoE 7T4


Ross is a senior geological advisor for the Kitimat Upstream Production Area of Apache Canada Ltd., specializing in the exploration for and development of unconventional oil and gas reservoirs. He was instrumental in proving the shale gas potential of the Horn River and Liard Basins in Northeastern B.C. These projects anchor one of the major LNG projects being developed on the coast of B.C. Prior to working on unconventional reservoirs, he successfully explored for hydrocarbons in the Northwest Territories making discoveries near Colville Lake.

Before joining Apache, he worked at Amoco Canada Petroleum, Unocal Canada Exploration and Shell Canada in various technical and exploration management capacities. Ross is a registered professional geologist in Alberta and a professional geoscientist in British Columbia.

In 2010, Ross was awarded a University of Toronto Arbor Award for his work to help establish the EAN – Calgary Chapter and the Calgary Skule™ Admissions Scholarship. He has helped mentor a number of younger Calgary area Skule™ alumni. He sits on the Industry Advisory Board for the Institute for Sustainable Energy at U of T and has lectured about the impact of shale reservoirs at U of T and the University of Calgary.

Zeeshan Ahmed

ChemE 0T8


Since graduating in 2008, Zeeshan moved to Alberta in pursuit of a dream job within the oil and gas industry. Having worked with a couple of engineering consulting firms, Zeeshan now works as a process engineer within the thermal group of Husky Energy.

Getting involved in the Calgary chapter was essential for Zeeshan. Knowing the importance of mentorship, he wanted to create an atmosphere where none of the young alumni are left without a mentor. This was accomplished by the introduction of Calgary Skule™ Networking Night, where young and senior alumni interact and share career development discussion and goals.

Zeeshan graduated from the University of Toronto with a degree in chemical engineering. During his time at U of T, he was an active member of the Undergraduate Chemical Engineering Council (Or ChemClub), a committee bridging gaps between students and faculty. He was also a familiar face in the Hart House gym and athletic centre for various varsity tournaments.

Narmeen Haq

ChemE 0T8


Originally from Toronto, Narmeen joined her family in Alberta after graduating from Skule™. She began her engineering career in the environmental sector, primarily working with water and wastewater processing. A few years later, she decided that she needed to see what the excitement around oil and gas was all about. And now, she works as a project engineer in Calgary, where she is involved in designing and procuring mechanical packages, while supporting construction and management activities for new processing facilities in northern Alberta.

Narmeen recognizes the value of the education and extracurricular opportunities that Skule™ offers. Through her involvement with the Calgary chapter, she hopes to keep a strong connection with U of T Engineering, while giving back to the Skule™ community.

Paul Johnston

ChemE 6T6


Paul recently retired from a career that included project engineering, executive administration and management consulting. Born and raised in Toronto, Paul graduated from the University of Toronto in 1966 with a degree in chemical engineering. He went on to work in the oil patch, followed by an MBA at Ivey Business School and then the mining industry.

Upon a move to Calgary, Paul returned to the oil and gas industry as a director with Gulf’s artic/offshore marine and drilling company. Following that, he began a string of consulting positions with Technical Service Company, PWC, KPMG and Ernst & Young. Consulting assignments focused on business process improvement, executive search, human resources and labour relations. The most significant project was a $1-billion outsourcing assignment for Hydro One. He has enjoyed considerable international work over the years including positions in Northern Ireland, the Caribbean, Poland and the U.S.

Paul is married and still residing in Calgary, with two grown children: a daughter who is a reservoir engineer and son who is an architect.

Saif Khan

ChemE 0T7 + PEY


Saif is a risk management consultant, founder and owner of Enginvest Consulting Inc. He has a Functional Safety Engineer’s (FSEng) designation from TÜV Rheinland. He has been a part of many new oil and gas projects and plants, helping to strengthen engineering design for safety and environmental protection, and creating and implementing methodologies for risk management of mega projects. He has provided services for plants and facilities in Alberta, Ontario and B.C. Saif has worked on oil sand recovery techniques (mining, SAGD, CSS), including multibillion-dollar projects.

Saif earned a BASc in chemical engineering from the University of Toronto, with specialization in environmental engineering, and earned the certificate of entrepreneurship from the Centre of Business and Entrepreneurship. As a student, he participated in intramural basketball representing engineering against other faculties and departments and enjoyed professional networking. He is currently enrolled in the Kellogg-Schulich Executive MBA program with expected graduation in 2016.

Saif has found tremendous value in his education at Skule™— both academic and personal—and feels that he has a responsibility to give back to current students and young alumni, while having tons of fun networking, organizing and attending events with the alumni in Calgary.

Quinn Thomson

EngSci 0T7, UTIAS MASc 0T8


Quinn loves tackling technically difficult problems to deliver simple tools that help people. Along this vein, he recently completed his PhD in biomedical engineering at the University of Calgary where his research focused on assessing the severity of brain damage in an acute ischemic stroke, based solely on CT images.

Quinn is currently an app developer with Robots and Pencils, a leading mobile app development company in Calgary. He’s looking to apply machine learning and image analysis to make dynamic, immersive apps that fit naturally into a person’s life.

While an undergraduate student at the University of Toronto, Quinn completed a BASc in engineering science in the aerospace option. Outside the classroom, Quinn spent time as president and tournaments director for the Engineering Athletics Association. This experience helped Quinn to become the founding president of the Biomedical Engineering Graduate Student Association at the University of Calgary. Following his BASc, Quinn had his start in academic research when he completed a MASc in aerospace engineering at U of T. His research focused on developing new multidisciplinary optimization methods.

Quinn believes that brilliant minds only reach their true potential when complemented with communication and leadership skills. Clubs and activities outside regular coursework are the simplest and most effective ways to develop these skills.

Michael Chai

EngSci 1T3 + PEY

michael chai

Michael is an engineering science grad, specializing in energy systems engineering. Michael brings fresh ideas to utilities with his trainings in optimization and renewable energy. This combination of skills allowed him to actively participate in the solar and wholesale energy businesses at ENMAX Corporation. Aside from design work in the office, Michael develops automated tools that free engineers from manual work.

Prior to joining ENMAX, he led the development of Toronto Hydro’s risk analysis model and coordinated its economic analysis for more than $200 million of capital projects during the 2014 regulatory filing.

Outside of the office, Michael is a leader who connects individuals with ideas and opportunities. Under his co-leadership, his team hosted ICUE 2013—one of Canada’s largest undergraduate conferences—which brought together the top 20 engineering capstone projects from Ontario universities to showcase and compete. As the chair of IEEE U of T, he grew the team from eight people to a large student organization of five committees and 25 executives. The branch was recognized as an Exemplary Student Branch in Canada for bringing more than 20 professional and technical events to U of T students every year.

He is excited to help grow the engineering community as a part of the EAN – Calgary Chapter. Michael is a photographer in his spare time.

Bianca Portoraro

CivE 1T2


Bianca was born and raised in downtown Toronto and graduated from the U of T Engineering’s civil engineering program in 2012. She moved to Calgary in the summer of 2013 to pursue her career, and continues to do so, as a structural engineer. She currently works at ATCO Structures and Logistics where she designs campsites and modular buildings located across Western Canada. One of the major projects she was involved in was a 1,500-person camp located in Peace River, Alta. She is also experienced in construction, having worked at Aecon Construction and Materials Ltd. as well as in the solar industry after interning at Advanced Green Technologies Solar.

Using engineering as a way to make a difference in society and giving back to the community is something Bianca is very passionate about. She also enjoyed being a part of Skule™ during her undergrad by participating in spirit events and extracurricular competitions like the Great Northern Concrete Toboggan Race. Joining the Engineering Alumni Network is a way for her to combine these passions: to give back to the Skule™ community and to keep the spirit of Skule™ alive by encouraging networking among the U of T Engineering alumni in Calgary.