Alberta Born and Raised
I was born in Bashaw, Alberta, and was raised in the central Alberta towns of Mirror and Stettler. I've called Beaumont home for six years, and have lived in the Edmonton area since 2005.
Husband and Father
I currently live in Beaumont with my wife, Laura vanNieuwkerk, a teacher. Laura recently chose to accept a position at the Tiny Tots Preschool in Beaumont, after working as a teacher in Edmonton for ten years. We have two young sons, Issac and Braden. Our boys are active in many community activities and sports, which keeps us very involved in the community.
After high school, I set off to Red Deer college and then on to the University of Alberta to finish a Bachelor of Science in Environmental and Conservation Sciences. From there, I headed off to Drayton Valley to pursue my career in environmental consulting. There's an inherent skill set that goes along with completing a university degree, which includes teamwork, the ability to learn, the ability to listen, and the ability to seek out answers to things you don't know..
My career in environmental consulting eventually led me back to Edmonton. After some time with other firms, my business partners and I created Navus Environmental Inc. Navus grew from five staff in 2008 to over 100 staff by 2015, when our sought-after business was acquired by Vertex, an environmental and industrial services company operating in Alberta's energy sector. I am currently the General Manager of the environmental team at Vertex's Sherwood Park office. Daily, I work with our senior leaders and our support teams including: accounting, human resources, information technology (IT), safety, and the fleet department.
Education and ProfessionaL experience
- Bachelor of Science, Environmental and Conservation Sciences - University of Alberta
- Professional Agrologist, member of the Alberta Institute of Agrologists
- Project Manager: 10+ years experience as project manger, program manager, general manager, and director of operations in the environmental consulting industry. Currently working towards obtaining PMP designation through the Project Management Institute.
Politics runs in my family. From 1980 through to 1993, my father served on council in Mirror, Alberta, and was eventually elected as mayor. In 1991, he was nominated by the Minister of Environment to the Parlby Creek-Buffalo Water Management Project Review Board. I have and aunt sitting as councilor for the County of Lacombe. I have another aunt who has been working with local MLAs in Alberta for as long as I can remember. Her son has also been involved heavily in local, provincial, and federal politics for quite some time. I gain my inspiration for these dedicated and hard-working folks. I admire them all so much, and have learned plenty from them.