Our Leadership

Doreen Cole2

Doreen Cole

Managing Director

Doreen Cole was appointed Managing Director of Syncrude Canada Ltd. effective December 2017. In this role, she oversees the effective management and stewardship of Syncrude, which has around 4,700 employees and is one of Canada’s largest producers of crude oil from the oil sands of Alberta, with production capacity of 350,000 barrels per day.

Doreen came to Syncrude from Suncor Energy where she most recently served as Senior Vice President, Regional Maintenance and Reliability, and was the company’s lead executive on the Accelerated Syncrude Collaboration initiative.

Doreen brings 24 years of experience and a track record of performance improvement in the oil sands, refining, power and utility industries. She previously held a variety of leadership roles with Shell Canada, including managing the Scotford Refinery in Fort Saskatchewan and leading the downstream business strategy and growth organization in Calgary. Before joining Suncor in 2014, Doreen led EPCOR’s Electricity division in Edmonton.

Doreen has a degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Toronto and lives in Fort McMurray with her husband and one of two daughters, the other attending the University of Alberta. She is deeply involved in the community, including serving as a member of the Keyano College Board of Governors from 2014 to 2017.

Steve Yatauro2

Steve Yatauro

Senior Vice President, Production

As Senior Vice President, Production, Steve is responsible for the day-to-day Syncrude operations. Reporting to him are the Vice Presidents of Production - Mining and Extraction, Production - Upgrading, Maintenance and Projects, Technical - Engineering Services, and Technical - Operations Support.

With more than 28 years in the industry, he brings a wealth of process, technical, and mechanical knowledge to Syncrude. He holds a Bachelor of Electrical Engineering degree from the University of Florida.

Throughout his career, Steve has been involved in community organizations, both in volunteer and board member capacities.  He currently serves as a member of the United Way Fort McMurray and Wood Buffalo Board of Directors.  His wife Trish resides in Fort McMurray, his twin daughters reside in Nashville, Tennessee and his youngest daughter attends San Diego State University in San Diego, California.   

Kara Flynn 2

Kara Flynn

Vice President, Government & Public Affairs

Kara Flynn serves as Syncrude’s Vice President, Government and Public Affairs, and reports directly to the company’s Managing Director. She oversees strategic initiatives in government relations, corporate responsibility, issues management, internal and external communications, and community investment.  She is also the executive leader for Syncrude’s Aboriginal Relations program and a member of the company’s Aboriginal Relations Steering Committee. 

She currently serves as Chair of the Telus World of Science Edmonton Board of Directors, Chair of the Mining Association of Canada’s Aboriginal Relations Committee, and Member of the Canadian Mining Hall of Fame Board of Directors. She is Past Chair of the Keyano College Board of Governors, and Past National Co-Chair of the Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business. Ms. Flynn is also active in a range of committees for the Oil Sands Community Alliance and the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers.

In 2013, Ms. Flynn was recognized with the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal for her work with Aboriginal people and communities. In 2014, she was named C Suite Community Relations Executive of the Year by Alberta Oil Magazine. 

Ms. Flynn has a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of British Columbia in History and Political Science. 

Greg Fuhr Collar and Tie2

Greg Fuhr, P. Eng., ICD.D

Vice President, Production, Mining and Extraction

Greg Fuhr was appointed Vice President Production, Mining, for Syncrude Canada Ltd. in August 2012.  In this role, he oversees Syncrude’s oil sands mining operations at its Mildred Lake and Aurora sites, as well as Syncrude’s lease development, closure and tailings operations. Greg is also a member of the company’s Aboriginal Relations Steering Committee, which guides and champions Syncrude’s strategies to ensure positive outcomes for its Aboriginal stakeholders, and is a Champion of Indigenous Works.

Prior to joining Syncrude, Greg had a 27-year career working with Sherritt International. As the company’s Senior Vice President, Greg led the exploration and feasibility study for the subsequent development of the Sulawesi Nickel Project in Indonesia and oversaw the development of the organization for the commissioning and operations of the $5.5 billion Ambatovy Nickel Project in Madagascar.

Greg holds a Bachelor of Science, Chemical Engineering degree from the University of Alberta and is accredited by the Institute of Corporate Directors with an ICD.D designation.  He is also a member of the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Alberta.

Greg currently serves on the Boards of Directors of the Northern Lights Health Foundation and the Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business. He is Past Chair of the Coal Association of Canada and Past Member, Board of Directors, of the Alberta Chamber of Resources.

Ray Hansen Collar and Tie2

Ray Hansen

Vice President, Law & Land, and Corporate Secretary

Ray Hansen, Vice President, Law & Land, and Corporate Secretary, was appointed in March 2013 and leads the Corporate Secretary, Law Department and Land Administration functions for Syncrude Canada Ltd.

He earned his Bachelor of Arts, Economics in 1979 and Bachelor of Laws in 1981, both from the University of Alberta.

Ray first joined Syncrude as Corporate Counsel in 1985, was promoted to Manager, Law Department in 1989 and then named General Counsel in 1996. He assumed the additional responsibilities of Corporate Secretary in 2008.

Jerry McPherson2

Jerry McPherson

Vice President, Maintenance and Projects

Jerry McPherson serves as Vice President, Maintenance and Projects. In this role, he is responsible for all maintenance and turnaround activities as well as the development and construction of capital and expense projects.

Jerry began his Syncrude career in 2002 and has held a variety of senior management roles in the company, joining the Executive Leadership Team in 2010.

Jerry earned a Bachelor of Engineering in Mining from the Technical University of Nova Scotia in 1984 and after graduation worked in a variety of mining operations across Canada.

He and his wife Leslie have enjoyed living in Fort McMurray since 1999 and have proudly raised three children in the community.

Jerry currently serves as a board member for Careers: The Next Generation and the Keyano College Land Trust, while previously spending 10 years on the Fort McMurray Minor Baseball Association Board of Directors. He has been active for many years in coaching both minor baseball and hockey and is a supporter, with Leslie, of Santas Anonymous.

Peter Read Collar and Tie2

Peter Read

Vice President, Strategic Planning

Peter Read serves as Vice President, Strategic Planning. In this role, he oversees key strategies for Syncrude’s future growth and environmental sustainability, including lease development, land reclamation, closure planning and tailings management.

Joining Syncrude as a mining engineer in 1987, Mr. Read has held leadership positions throughout his career in the organization’s Mining, Extraction, Tailings and Corporate Strategy areas.

He graduated with distinction from the University of Alberta with a Bachelor of Science in Mining Engineering and received his Masters of Business Administration in 1987. He is a recipient of the University of Alberta’s Alumni Honour Award and the CIM Past Presidents’ Memorial Medal.

Mr. Read has served on the University of Alberta Mining Engineering Industry Advisory Committee since 1990. As well, he serves on the Boards of Directors of the Mining Association of Canada and the Alberta Chamber of Resources.

Mr. Read and his wife are long-term Fort McMurray residents and are involved in many volunteer activities in the community. 

Martin Carter 1

Martin Carter

Vice President, Production Upgrading

As Vice President, Production Upgrading, Martin Carter oversees Syncrude’s Upgrading and Utilities facilities at both the Mildred Lake and Aurora leases.

Martin came to Syncrude from Suncor Energy where he most recently served as the General Manager, Maintenance and Reliability – Upgrading. Martin joined Suncor in 2000 as a Process Engineer and has held a range of progressively more senior roles including Manager, National Terminal Operations, Operations Manager Upgrading and General Manager Production Planning and Logistics.

Martin holds a Chemical Engineering degree from the University of Toronto and has attended the Advanced Management Program at Harvard Business School. He currently resides in Fort McMurray with his wife and their three children. He volunteers as a board member for Waypoints, enjoys camping and long distance running, and is most passionate about ensuring everyone goes home safely each day.

Christian Matte2

Christian Matte

Vice President, Technical, Engineering Services

Christian Matte was appointed to the position of Vice President, Technical, Engineering Services effective September 2015.

Chris joined Syncrude in 2001 as a contact engineer in Utilities and has steadily progressed through roles with increasing scope and responsibility in the Technical, Operations and Maintenance areas.  He holds a degree in Chemical Engineering from Laval University.

Originally from Quebec City, Chris and his family regularly volunteer with the Fort McMurray francophone community.

 

Bill Chase2

Bill Chase

Vice President, Technical, Operations Support

Bill Chase was appointed Vice President, Technical, Operations Support, in April 2015.

He holds a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Saskatchewan and a Master’s degree in Business from Athabasca University. With 30 years with Imperial Oil, Mr. Chase has worked in a range of senior engineering and management positions throughout his career.

Coming from his latest role as Arctic/Angola New Operations Manager with ExxonMobil based in Houston, Texas, Mr. Chase also served as the RasGas Company Operations Technical Manager in Doha, Qatar. He also has experience overseeing In Situ Operations and Development projects for Imperial Oil at its Cold Lake facilities.

Bill has lived in northern Canada for much of his career. His wife Lynn and daughter reside in Fort McMurray and his son attends the University of Calgary.

Colleen Kearney2

Colleen Kearney

Vice President, Human Resources

Colleen Kearney was appointed Vice President, Human Resources in March 2016.

Joining Syncrude in 1990 as an Industrial Engineer, Colleen has held progressively more senior roles throughout her career in areas including Central Shops, Facilities, Maintenance and Projects Portfolio. Colleen became Manager, Compensation and Benefits in 2014.  

Colleen holds an Industrial Engineering degree from the Technical University of Nova Scotia and Masters of Business Administration from the University of Alberta.  She currently serves on the Board of Directors for Waypoints (formerly the Fort McMurray Family Crisis Society) and the Regional Recreation Corporation. 

Originally from Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, Colleen is a long-time Fort McMurray resident. She is married to Syncrude employee Paul, and they have three grown children. 

Glen Finnson2

Glen Finnson

Vice President, Health, Safety and Environment

Glen Finnson was appointed to the position of Vice President, Health, Safety and Environment, on December 1, 2016. 

Glen is a 29-year Syncrude employee who was recently on special assignment implementing an OIMS Tier 1 Best Practice in the Production Upgrading area.

He previously served for five years as Department Head, Production Extraction; and in management roles in Organizational Effectiveness, Reliability, Bitumen Production, and Tailings. Earlier in his career, he worked in technical roles in Geology, Tailings Planning and Geotechnical Engineering. He also gained operational experience as a Heavy Equipment Operator. He is a Geological Engineer by profession.

Glen brings to his new role extensive experience in leadership, particularly working toward the practical implementation of our management systems to ensure Safe, Reliable, Responsible and Profitable operations. He looks forward to supporting the organization in continuing our journey to improve SSH&E performance through OIMS and the Loss Prevention System (LPS).

In the community, Glen has volunteered as a coach to hockey, baseball and volleyball teams, as well as to cross-country skiers. He served on the Boards of the Knights Rugby Football and Manta swimming clubs and is an active member of his Anglican church.

Glen is married with two grown children.

Doug Simms

Doug Simms

Vice President, Business Services

Doug Simms was appointed Vice President, Business Services in January 2018 after holding the role in an interim capacity since February 2017.

In this role, Doug oversees Financial Services, Business Controls, Procurement, Site Services, Business Processes and Systems, Information Technology, Aviation and Pension Administration.

Doug’s journey with Syncrude started in June 1998 when he joined as an Internal Auditor. Since then, he’s held a number of key positions within the organization including Manager of Business Analysis and Reporting, Manager of Corporate Reporting and Corporate Controller. He also completed a secondment to an ExxonMobil facility in Fairfax, Virginia, as a Senior Global Refinery Volumes Analyst.

After earning his undergraduate degree with a Bachelors of Commerce from Memorial University of Newfoundland, Doug completed his Certified Management Accountant (CMA) and Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA) designations as well as becoming a Certified Internal Auditor.

After 16 years in Fort McMurray, Doug, his wife Lynette, and their two university-attending children now call Calgary home where he’s continued his support of non-profit organizations. He’s served as Treasurer for the Canadian Cancer Society, volunteered with Fort McMurray Soccer and served two terms as Treasurer of the Fort McMurray United Way. Doug currently sits on several external industry committees representing Syncrude at the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producer’s (CAPP).