Wilf Gobert (B.Sc. (Honours) Mathematics 1971) accredits his time at the University of Windsor as laying the foundation for his life and career. He is currently Vice Chairman (Oil & Gas Securities Analyst) at Peters & Co in Calgary Alberta. He was Managing Director, Research from 1979, when he joined the firm, through September 2002 when he was named Vice Chairman. He is a member of the Company’s Board of Directors and its Executive Committee. He was a long-time member of the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers’ Investment Symposium Organizing Committee. He served as a member of the Alberta Securities Commission’s Financial Advisory Task Force. Mr. Gobert has been an equity analyst since January 1973 and an oil industry financial analyst since 1976. In an annual survey of oil industry analysts in Canada, produced by Brendan Woods, Toronto, he consistently ranked among the top ten rated analysts during the 1990s and early 2000s. Mr. Gobert’s expertise has been engaged by the Alberta Government as well as the Government of Newfoundland and he has appeared before the Senate of Canada, as an expert witness, regarding the oil industry aspects of the proposed North American Free Trade Agreement. Mr. Gobert has been an active public speaker over his career, speaking several times a year, at conferences throughout North America, and including every professional association in Calgary.
Three former Ph.D. students of Dr. Bill McConkey, Professor Emeritus, Department of Physics are currently working at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, in Pasadena, California. They are from the left - Charles Malone, PhD (2003), NRC Reasearch Associate, JPL. Self. National Academies of Science Senior Research fellow, JPL., Morty Khakoo, Post-Doctoral Fellow (1984-7), currently Professor of Physics, Cal State University, Fullerton, Consultant at JPL. And John MacAskill, Ph.D (2003), Staff Scientist JPL. Not included in the picture is Murray Darrach, PhD (1991), Staff Scientist and Group Deputy Leader, JPL. Group leaders at JPL are very keen to hire Windsor-trained scientists because of the good, practical preparation they receive.
John Wilson was recently appointed Vice President, Exploration at Rival Energy Ltd. John graduated from Windsor in 1978, where he received an Honours BSc in Geology along with a gold medal for academic excellence. John brings to his new position over 27 years of experience as a geologist in the Western Canadian Sedimentary Basin, where he worked for a number of successful oil and gas companies in a variety of positions, including exploration manager. Most recently Mr. Wilson was a senior exploration geologist with Crew Energy Ltd.
Immediately upon graduating, Pierre Jraiche, B.Sc. '96 in Mathematics and Computer Science, was recruited by Watson Wyatt, a global consulting firm specializing in human resource benefits. He is a consulting actuary and team leader in the Retirement Practice at Watson Wyatt in Southfield, Michigan. He is a Fellow of the Society of Actuaries, a Member of the American Academy of Actuaries, and an Enrolled Actuary. When addressing students and their parents at the Dean’s Reception for Exceptional Undergraduate Students in September 2004, Pierre fondly recalled his days as a student and was appreciative of the Math Department’s reputation for quality teaching which enabled him and many of his classmates to be recruited quickly by top companies in both Canada and the U.S. Pierre, dedicated to giving something back to the University and its students, teaches the Actuarial Mathematics I and II courses for students pursuing an actuarial career.
Dr. Fred Longstaffe was recently appointed as the University of Western Ontario’s Provost & Vice-President Academic for a five year term commencing July 1, 2005. Dr. Longstaffe received his Bachelor of Science in Geology from the University of Windsor in 1973 and his Ph.D. from McMaster University in 1978. Before becoming Provost, Dr. Longstaff had served as Western’s Dean of Science since 1999 and as Chair of UWO’s Department of Earth Sciences from 1993 to 1999. Longstaffe is the recipient of many national awards and honors including election as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada in 1997; the Past-Presidents Medal (1993) for research by a younger scientist and the Logan Medal (2003) for career research achievement from the Geological Association of Canada and, in 1998, the Past-Presidents Medal for Research from the Mineralogical Association of Canada.
Kumar (left) and Andrew Bhatia of Axxon Computer Corporation are Windsor's own 'dot on the technology map'. The brothers, graduates of the School of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering, are developing an international reputation with their input and output circuit cards which extend a computer's capabilities to handle more hardware and/or software. Their products have been bought by the likes of NASA, Lockheed Martin and Harvard University and used to control such things as surveillance cameras, aircraft and flight simulators, and even a casino's computer gear.
Their story literally began in the classrooms of the University of Windsor where the brothers were so busy helping students get plugged into the then new personal desktop computer gear, they became consultants and eventually went on to open their own store. The annual sales of their company, Axxon Corporation have now reached $5 million. (Story and picture are courtesy of a Windsor Star article which appeared June 17, 2004.)
John Buchanan graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics and Computer Science in 1986 – although initially, he was the last person anyone would have pegged as successful.
“I scored 7/40 on my first calculus test and was told I should decide whether or not I belonged at university,” recalls Buchanan. “I decided there and then that I did!” Originally a British boarding school dropout and later fired from his janitorial job for playing videogames, he emigrated to Canada as an adult and drifted to Windsor where his future plans quickly came into focus with some help.
“I remember professors like Dr. Bill McConkey as the most amazing and engaging lecturer I had ever seen, and that Dr. Om Chandna never let me take notes in class.” He also fondly recalls the aging computer he bought from the math department for $1 and that the department’s professors hired him to write code for them. He then wrote his first videogame, earned $10 and took his first step toward his career today, with the company Electronic Arts – also known as EA to videogame addicts. Until recently, John was Director of Advanced Technology for EA but he has now assumed the role of University Research Liaison Dude. Electronic Arts is the world’s leading independent developer and publisher of interactive entertainment software for personal computers and systems such as Playstation2, Xbox, Nintendo Game Cube and Game Boy Advance.
In September 2003, Dr. Cindy Hutnik (B.Sc. '85) returned to the University of Windsor to address students and their parents at the Dean’s Reception for Undergraduate Students of Academic Excellence and to present the first Hutnik Research Award which she established to give back to the institution that set her on a path to higher learning. Dr. Hutnik, now living in London, Ontario, grew up in Windsor and received her B.Sc. in Biochemistry from the University of Windsor in 1985. She pursued her Ph.D. (1990) and MD from the University of Ottawa, FRCSC (Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons of Canada), in 1999. Dr. Hutnik has a practice in Ophthalmology at St. Joseph's Health Centre in London, is an Assistant Professor of Ophthalmology at the University of Western Ontario, and is an adjunct professor of Biochemistry at the University of Windsor.
Dr. Christopher Hogue obtained his B.Sc. in Biochemistry in 1990 from the University of Windsor and his Ph.D. in Biochemistry at the University of Ottawa while working in the laboratories of the National Research Council. He is currently a Scientist in the Samuel Lunenfeld Research Institute of Mount Sinai Hospital and is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Biochemistry at the University of Toronto. Hogue has been developing Bioinformatics applications since 1986, working in both the commercial sector and in academic software development and since that time he has published over 40 scientific articles as well as 6 patents. He has received several major grants for his research, including a CDN $29 Million effort to build the BIND database, making him one of the top-funded biological scientists in the world. He was selected as one of Canada's Top 40 under 40 in 2001.
Please read profiles of other successful Science Alumni.