BY TOM KEYSER
For the better part of a year, the president and chief operating
officer of Paramount Energy Trust has been working night
and day on behalf of her corporate unitholders.
Since last summer, when the Alberta Energy and Utilities
Board declared that certain of Paramount's gas-producing
wells posed a threat to northeastern Alberta bitumen reserves,
Sue Riddell Rose, P.Geol., has made every effort to convince
the board otherwise.
Naturally, the geoscientific training she received at Queen's
University in Kingston, Ont., (geological engineering, class
of '86) has been an invaluable resource, as Ms. Riddell Rose
and Paramount have developed their case.
And while many APEGGA members have been following Ms. Riddell
Rose's high-profile EUB challenge, few realize the breadth
of her commitment to the support of geological studies at
her alma mater.
The connection remains strong for Queen's University
alumni in Alberta. Above is an aerial shot of the picturesque
Kingston, Ont. campus.
The Queen’s Connection
Her husband, Mike Rose, P. Geol., is another Queen's alumnus
(class of '79). Not surprisingly, he shares her enthusiasm
100 per cent.
The proof is the new Geological Field Studies Program, soon
to be introduced to the Kingston campus. Funding for the
program was driven by the Roses, who had been casting around
for a way to acknowledge the influence of a campus that continues
to mean a great deal to them.
"It was something we felt we could do for Queen's. A bit
of a help, anyway," Ms. Riddell Rose says with a smile.
Oddly enough, the Roses didn't meet on campus. They only
got to know each other while both worked for Shell Canada's
And their support for Queen's didn't take concrete shape
until they became involved with a western fundraising drive
a little more than four years ago.
The couple had remained in touch with members of their respective
graduating classes. Incredibly, more than 10,000 Queen's
grads live and work in this province.
The thought of giving something back to the Kingston campus
appealed to their sense of community responsibility.
"The Field Studies Program was something both Mike and
I wanted to see implemented," says Ms. Riddell Rose. "We
felt this was a huge opportunity to help move the Queen's
geology department to a different dimension."
The couple's idea was to plant a seed and enable it to grow
into something special for Queen's students of the future.
With Sue and Mike carrying the ball, funding for the new
program began rolling in a couple of years ago. And the program's
first field-studies trip is expected to set out sometime
But this effort isn't the only manifestation of the couple's
support. Mike was instrumental in establishing the Berkley
Scholarship program and since last year, the manager of
Queen's Western Regional Office has been enjoying the rent-free
use of first-class space at Paramount Energy Trust's Calgary
headquarters, courtesy of Ms. Riddell Rose. For two years
prior to that the western office was established at the
offices of Paramount Resources Ltd. in Banker’s Hall.
That's right. Queen's has so many alumni in the West – many
of whom emerged from campus engineering and geoscience programs – that
their social, charitable and business interests and activities
keep a full-time office manager busy.
The manager’s duties involve fundraising, grad placement
and donor relations, of course. But he's also an important
liaison for about 500 Calgary-area students currently enrolled
Like the outstanding post-secondary engineering and geoscience
programs in this province, Queen's seems to generate remarkable
Case in point: APEGGA members Mike Chernoff, P.Eng., and
Bruce Chernoff, P.Eng., Western-based Queen's grads, spearheaded
funding efforts for Chernoff Hall, the $57-million, state-of-the-art
facility which now houses the Department of Chemistry at
Mike Chernoff, who spent much of his working career in the
Alberta oilpatch, also established the $2.6-million Chernoff
Family Awards to assist qualified students who come to Queen’s – as
he did – from outside Central Canada.
A complete listing of Queen's grads on the APEGGA rolls would
take a week to compile. And many, like Mike Rose and Sue
Riddell Rose, have dug into their pockets to demonstrate
"It's related to the exceptional experiences we had at
Riddell Rose says. "You find you want exceptional young
people to share the same type of experience."