Our Team

Proton has assembled an internationally experienced, expert management team and advisory board to lead its vision and operations

Proton’s leadership team have played instrumental roles in successful and impactful global companies and organizations—and are now providing Proton with technical and organizational innovation as it continues to grow its business worldwide.     `

Executive Team

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Grant Strem

Chairman and CEO

Mr. Strem spent a number of years working with upstream oil and gas sector before moving into reserves evaluation and banking. His general interest in science and space propulsion system led him towards physics heavy understanding of extreme oxidation processes.

During his engineering Master’s degree, He was a former student of Dr. Ian Gates and has remained close friends for the last 12 years

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Seta Afshordi

Chief Operating Officer

Seta Afshordi believes that a new clean energy era is overdue, and that this change should come from inside the oil and gas industry. Seta began her career with Schlumberger as a field engineer and explosives officer, working in Scotland and Oman. She moved to Calgary in 2008 where she worked on a variety of heavy oil projects for Husky, CNRL, Athabasca, and Murphy Oil. Project types include SAGD, CSS, polymer flooding, THAI, and now Hygenic Earth Energy (hydrogen). Seta has a Master’s Degree from Chalmer’s University of Technology in Sweden on Environmentally Sustainable Process Technologies, and a Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering from prestigious Sharif University in Tehran. Seta spent 10 years as a National Badminton Champion for both Iran and Sweden.

Miss Afshordi began working for Proton mid-2017 as Operations Manager and rose to become COO of Proton Technologies Canada Inc., whose corporate vision of worldwide transition from fossil energy to clean energy aligns with hers.

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Calvin Johnson

Head of Commercial

Calvin Johnson is President of KE Risk Group. Prior to founding KE Risk, Calvin was deeply involved in Transalta’s trading business, and CIBC’s Energy Derivatives business. Calvin has been assisting Proton since late 2018, and believes that Proton will play a critical role in North American hydrogen supply

Advisory Board

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Caralyn Bennett

B.A.Sc.

Chief Strategy Officer and EVP of GLJ Ltd.  Expertise in sustainability practices, energy diversification, technology development, business collaboration, strategy, and governance.

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Pietro Di Zanno

A focused individual with proven ability to; impact business growth, lead a team of experts or salespeople, develop and initiate product and country strategies, and build strong customer relationships across cultural interfaces.

Over thirty-five (35) years experience, linking marketing, operations, sales and technology, within the oil and gas, refining and petrochemical industries.

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Tom Davis

BBA

As an experienced Senior Consultant, Tom provides insights on value creation strategy. With more than 30 years of successful operation specializing in SAGD projects, he is highly motivated, and results driven.

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Jan Eden

Jan is the Founder of 21st Century Executive Mindset, a Co-Founder of Bumble Bees Venture Capital and Past President, Association of Corporate Growth (ACG) Calgary Chapter.

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Chris Gallas

(B.A.), (M.A.), MSc, (Ph.D.)

Chris brings on 40 years of professional experience. His expertise is focused on reservoir engineering in thermal and chemical EOR, heavy oil, multi-fracked horizontal well modelling, gas storage, waterfloods and primary depletion.

 

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Ian Gates

M.A.Sc., Ph.D., P.Eng

Proton co-founder and Professor, Department of Chemical and Petroleum Engineering, University of Calgary since 2004.  Specializes in energy and materials research with applications in hydrogen, heavy oil, and natural gas. 

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Brian Harschnitz

B.Sc., P.Eng

Over 35 years oil & gas industry experience, development of large oil sands resources. Current Director of JACOS and former experience with Imperial Oil.

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John Howard

B. Sc., MBA, P.Eng., ICD.D

Independent director. Over 35 years oil and gas experience including VP Production, CNRL. Other experience includes Verdant Energy, Numac Energy, Shell Canada. Acceleware Advisory Board member, U Calgary Senator, several other board roles.

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Calvin Johnson

Head of Commercial

Calvin Johnson is President of KE Risk Group. Prior to founding KE Risk, Calvin was deeply involved in Transalta’s trading business, and CIBC’s Energy Derivatives business. Calvin has been assisting Proton since late 2018, and believes that Proton will play a critical role in North American hydrogen supply
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Rob Otway

Rob Otway is a professional engineer who has devoted 36 years to the construction industry. In his role as Executive Vice President for Bird Construction, Rob is responsible for all buildings and special project operations within British Columbia, Alberta and Saskatchewan. Previously, he spent 25 years with PCL Construction in various executive and project management positions, including executive oversight of PCLs corporate sustainability strategy. Rob graduated from the University of Waterloo (BASc 1985) and is a recent graduate of the Institute of Corporate Directors (ICD.D) Directors Education Program.

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Pratik Shah

P.Eng, PMP, MBA

CEO and Founder of Hrim Project Consultancy Group. Pratik adds value to Protons executive council through the engineering best practices, project execution strategies, and agile principles for complex projects.

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Harrie Vredenburg

Ph.D, ICD.D

Professor/Scholar on Corporate Governance, Strategy, Sustainable Development. Served as non-executive member of the boards of directors of several publicly traded and private companies.

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Dr. Jingyi (Jacky) Wang

Ph.D, P.Eng.

Proton Co-Founder. Dr. Wang has 15 years combined experience in chemical engineering and reservoir engineering with petroleum industry and research, expertise in the areas of unconventional resources recovery technology. He is also a Research Associate in the Department of Chemical and Petroleum Engineering at the University of Calgary.

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