Retired as a Vice President for Syncrude Canada Ltd., Gord Winkel joined the University of Alberta in 2010 as Chair and Industrial Professor for the Safety and Risk Management Program in the Faculty of Engineering. In this capacity he provides safety and risk management education to final year engineering students and has worked to make this a core competency requirement for all engineering disciplines. In April of 2016, Gord was announced as Director of the newly established School of Engineering Safety and Risk Management.
Gord has worked extensively in the oil sands mining industry. He joined the Imperial Oil/ExxonMobil organization as a Vice President on Loan from Syncrude Canada Ltd. to advance the Kearl Oil Sands Project. Gord was Vice President, Aurora Bitumen Production at Syncrude Canada Ltd., served as General Manager of Extraction, was Manager of Extraction Operations and formerly Manager of Mine Maintenance/Operations again with Syncrude.
His work to improve workplace safety led to a Distinguished Lecturer Award from the Canadian Institute of Mining in 2002. His work to advance the Surface Mining Industry through sharing knowledge, technology, best practices and innovation has led to a second Distinguished Lecturer Award from the Canadian Institute of Mining in 2008. A third such award was received in 2013 for leadership in advancing safety excellence in the global mining industry.
Gord is supporting mining research and technology development in Canada and chairs the Surface Mining Association for Research and Technology (SMART). Additionally Gord chairs the J.T. Ryan Safety Committee and is working on the development safety strategies for the Canadian Institute of Mining. He has also accepted board positions on Careers, The Next Generation Foundation and the Canadian Corps of Commissionaires.
On the healthcare front, Gord is a member of the Alberta Health Services Quality and Safety Advisory Committee reporting in to the Alberta Health Services Board. He is also supporting the Alberta Agriculture Industry as Executive Director for the AgCoalition, an unprecedented collaboration of producer groups across the sector, towards progressing safety practices that make sense at the farm and ranch level.
Gord is Vice Chair for the University of Alberta Board of Governors Safety, Health and Environment Committee, and has participated on various strategic initiatives for injury reduction provincially and nationally. Gord also works to provide support in safety, risk management and organization effectiveness to firms across Canada.