Board of Directors

Pentti Karkkainen

Board Chair and Member of:

  • Audit Committee
  • Corporate Governance & Compensation Committee

Mr. Karkkainen has over 30 years of investment management, energy sector research and investment banking experience, as well as four years of industry experience with Gulf Canada Resources. Mr. Karkkainen was a CoFounder and General Partner of KERN Partners, a leading Canadian based energy focused capital markets and private equity firm, from September 2000 to July 2014 and was the firm’s Senior Strategy Advisor from July, 2014 until his retirement from the firm in August, 2015. Prior to establishing KERN Partners, Mr. Karkkainen was Managing Director and Head of Oil and Gas Equity Research at RBC Capital Markets.

Mr. Karkkainen holds a Bachelor of Science (Honours) degree in Geology from Carleton University, a Masters of Business Administration degree from Queen’s University and holds a designation from the Institute of Corporate Directors.

Mr. Karkkainen is also Chair of the board of directors of AltaGas Ltd.

Ronald Eckhardt

Member of:

  • Reserves Committee (Chair)
  • Corporate Governance & Compensation Committee

Mr. Eckhardt has more than 35 years of experience in the oil and gas industry. Most recently, Mr. Eckhardt was the Executive Vice-President, North American Operations for Talisman Energy Inc., a public oil and gas company from 2003 to 2009. Mr. Eckhardt joined Talisman (then BP Canada) in 1986 as Chief Drilling Engineer and held positions of increasing responsibility in domestic operations until his retirement in 2009.

Mr. Eckhardt holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Manitoba.

Mr. Eckhardt is also a member of the board of directors of Athabasca Oil Corporation.

Kate Holzhauser

  • Audit Committee
  • Environment, Social and Governance Committee

Ms. Holzhauser is a professional engineer and management professional with more than 35 years’ experience in the petrochemical industry. She joined Chevron Phillips Chemical in 2014, where she served as Vice President of Environment, Health, Safety and Security. Prior to this, she held the position of Operations Director and Vice President, Operations in INEOS Nitriles.

Ms. Holzhauser holds a Bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering from South Dakota School of Mines and Technology and a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Houston executive program.

Keith MacPhail

Member of:

  • Corporate Governance & Compensation Committee (Chair)
  • Reserves Committee

Mr. MacPhail has over 35 years of experience in the oil and gas industry and is currently Chair of Cenovus Energy Inc. Prior thereto, Mr. MacPhail was the Chair and CEO of Bonavista Energy Corporation. Prior to joining Bonavista in 1997, Mr. MacPhail held progressively more responsible positions with Canadian Natural Resources Limited with his final position being Executive Vice President and COO. Prior thereto, he held the position of Production Manager with Poco Petroleums Ltd.

Mr. MacPhail holds a Bachelor of Science (Honours) degree in Petroleum Engineering from the Montana College of Mineral Science, a diploma in Petroleum Technology (Honours) from SAIT and is a member of the Association of Professional Engineers, Geologists & Geophysicists of Alberta.

Mr. MacPhail also serves on the board of a private company.

Ronald Poelzer

Member of:

  • Audit Committee
  • Corporate Governance & Compensation Committee

Mr. Poelzer has more than 30 years of experience in the oil and gas industry. Mr. Poelzer was Executive Vice President and Vice Chair of Bonavista Energy Corporation responsible for various strategic planning, business development, financial and capital market roles. Prior to joining Bonavista in 1997, Mr. Poelzer was with Poco Petroleum Ltd. as Vice President, Business Development. Prior thereto, Mr. Poelzer was in public accounting practise.

Mr. Poelzer is a Chartered Professional Accountant and holds a Bachelor of Commerce (Distinction) degree from the University of Saskatchewan.

Mr. Poelzer is also a member of the board of directors of various private companies and a charitable foundation.

Sheldon Steeves

Member of:

  • Environment, Social and Governance Committee (Chair)
  • Reserves Committee

Mr. Steeves has more than 35 years of experience in the North American oil and natural gas business. Mr. Steeves was most recently the Chief Executive Officer and Chair of Echoex Ltd., a private oil and natural gas exploration and production company. Mr. Steeves started Echoex in January of 2001 and monetized the company in April 2012. Prior to Echoex, Mr. Steeves was the Chief Operating Officer of Renaissance Energy Ltd.

Mr. Steeves holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Geology from the University of Calgary and is a member of the Association of Professional Engineers, Geologists and Geophysicists of Alberta, the Canadian Society of Petroleum Geologists and the American Association of Petroleum Geologists.

Mr. Steeves also serves on the board of directors of Enerplus Corporation and PrairieSky Royalty Ltd.

Deborah (Debbie) S. Stein

Member of:

  • Audit Committee (Chair)
  • Environment, Social and Governance Committee

Ms. Stein has over 30 years of industry experience, including 18 years of direct experience in the oil and gas industry, most recently having held the position of Chief Financial Officer at AltaGas Ltd. Prior to joining AltaGas in 2005, Ms. Stein held various positions at TransCanada Corporation. Ms. Stein also led the finance functions of Wendy’s Restaurants of Canada and Paramount Canada’s Wonderland.

Ms. Stein is a Fellow Chartered Professional Accountant, holds a designation from the Institute of Corporate Directors and obtained her Bachelor of Arts degree from York University, majoring in Economics.

Ms. Stein also serves on the board of directors of Aecon Group Inc., Parkland Fuel Corporation, Trican Well Service Ltd., and various private companies, and is a past Chair of Financial Executives Canada and past Trustee of the
Calgary Zoo.

Jonathan Wright

President & Chief Executive Officer

Mr. Wright has been our President and Chief Executive Officer since May 9, 2011. Mr. Wright has more than 30 years of experience in the oil and gas industry.

Prior to joining NuVista, Mr. Wright has held progressively more responsible roles both domestically and abroad with Talisman Energy Ltd., most recently as Senior Vice-President of Talisman’s North American Conventional Production Division which produced approximately one-half of Talisman’s North American production at the time. Prior to joining Talisman in 1995, Mr. Wright spent six years with Shell Canada Ltd. in various operations and business development roles.

Mr. Wright possesses both a Masters and a Bachelor of Science Degree in Mechanical Engineering (with great distinction) from the University of Saskatchewan, where he earned, among other awards, the Canadian Governor General’s Gold Medal for being the Outstanding University Post-Graduate for his pursuit in hydraulics and computer controls.

In addition, Mr. Wright serves on the Board of Governors for CAPP, the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers.

Grant Zawalsky

Member of:

  • Environment, Social and Governance Committee

Mr. Zawalsky is the Vice Chair of Burnet, Duckworth & Palmer LLP (Barristers and Solicitors) where he has been a Partner since 1994.

Mr. Zawalsky holds a Bachelor of Commerce and LL.B. from the University of Alberta and is a member of the Law Society of Alberta.

Mr. Zawalsky currently sits on the board of directors of PrairieSky Royalty Ltd., Whitecap Resources Inc., Zargon Oil & Gas Ltd. and a number of private companies. He is also the Corporate Secretary of ARC Resources Ltd. and is a Governor of the Calgary Petroleum Club.