Gary Mar announced as new head of PSAC

Running oilpatch industry associations seems to have become a landing ground for former cabinet ministers.

The Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP) for several years has been headed by Tim McMillan, the former Saskatchewan minister responsible for Energy and Resources. Now, the Petroleum Services Association of Canada (PSAC) has found its own former minister to become its new president and CEO.

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PSAC announced on Nov. 1 that Gary G. Mar will become the new president and CEO, as of Dec. 1.

PSAC noted in a press release Mar brings to PSAC global and entrepreneurial business experience and governmental relationships following an extensive career with the Government of Alberta. There he represented the interests of Alberta in Asia and Washington and as a cabinet minister of six different portfolios including environment, education, and health and wellness. Mar also brings legal skills from his earlier career as a barrister and solicitor.

PSAC said in a release, “With significant experience as a minister, Gary is a great communicator with the media, understanding how to position issues to gain optimum attention. PSAC looks forward to him bringing stories to Canadians of the tremendous innovation and technology that our members develop and how responsibly our industry produces its resources so they too, can be proud of the Canadian energy industry.

The board of directors of PSAC is confident that Gary’s leadership will serve PSAC well in advancing the association’s mission and mandate for its membership.”

Mar’s LinkedIn profile notes he served 14 years as member of the Legislative Assembly for Calgary Nose Creek and Calgary McKay from 1993 to 2007. He held a diplomatic posting as Alberta’s official representative in Washington from 2007 to 2011. Mar was an unsuccessful candidate for the leadership of the Alberta Progressive Conservative Party in 2011, ultimately losing to Alison Redford. Se served as Alberta’s representative in Asia from 2011 until 2015.

The PSAC board of directors also offered its sincere appreciation to interim president and CEO Tom Whalen for leading PSAC during its time of transition, noting, “It’s always a challenge to step into an interim role and Tom performed admirably bringing his depth of knowledge of the association as a prior board member and his keen business acumen to keep all of our important work on track and ensuring our profile and reputation remained impeccable.  It has been a pleasure to work with Tom and we wish him well in his future endeavours.”

In the interim period until Dec. 1, Elizabeth Aquin, senior vice-president of PSAC, will serve as acting president and CEO.


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