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Management Team & Board of Directors
We are privileged to have the following individuals on our Board of Directors and management team.
Ed Alfke, CEO & Chairman of the board
Ed is passionate about spreading the message that environmental and financial sustainability can – and must – coexist. Ed understands deeply that unless people and organizations are incentivized to participate in the green economy, to meet immediate needs they’ll continue to do as they’ve always done.
It’s why, under Ed’s guidance, Climate Smart Group is leading the way with the best MRV system in the world that allows everyone from small to large scale operators participate in the green, carbon credit economy; why they’re revolutionizing farming in the Amazon; and why they’re experts in the creation and implementation of regulatory frameworks and management emissions plans for the aviation industry. Change happens when education, inspiration and economic viability come together.
Best known for the founding and expansion of Rent-a-Wreck in the 1980’s, Ed is a hands-on, serial entrepreneur with more than 30 years experience growing companies in Canada, the US and UK. Ed co-wrote the Amazon best-seller The Only Business Book You’ll Ever Need, published in 2012, and in 2013 was a featured speaker at TedX, a talk viewed nearly 3,000 times.
With an outstanding track record of corporate strategic leadership, efficient growth and environmental consciousness across multiple industries, Ed is committed to realizing his vision to make Carbon Credit Solutions and Climate Smart Group the foremost authority in MRV and climate change mitigation strategies in the world.
Awarded numerous business and environmental accolades throughout Canada, the US and the UK including the prestigious Crescordia award in the SW US, the EY Entrepreneur Of The Year™ 2017 and most recently the 2018 BIC Leader Award. Ed lectures on entrepreneurship at universities and was a case study for multiple MBA and commerce programs.
Alastair Handley, President & Board Member
Alastair Handley is Founder and President of Alberta-based companies Climate Smart Group (CSG) and Carbon Credit Solutions Inc, (CCSI). His recent appointment to the World Bank Advisory Group for Operationalizing Article 6 of the Paris Agreement, recognizes Alastair as a leader and authority on Environment Markets worldwide, and especially carbon markets.
In response to the Paris Agreement, the Advisory Group’s purpose is to establish market-based facilities and associated instruments to support the development of carbon markets internationally. This reflects Alastair’s personal mission in recent years, to help national and sub-national governments implement essential environmental market frameworks that stimulate green innovation, create employment opportunities and result in lasting reductions in Greenhouse Gas Emissions.
A pioneer in the environmental market space, Alastair designed and developed one of the first software platforms in the world to aggregate and quantify large-scale emission reductions. Leveraging his prior experience with geographic information systems and software design, Alastair created a world-class Measure-Report-Verify (MRV) system that in the past decade has generated $40 million dollars in documented carbon credits for farmers in Alberta; saved emitters $30 million; and created excess of $30 million in company equity for CCSI.
Alastair’s MRV System was created in 2007, in response to Alberta developing the first carbon market in North America. A global leader, the province’s environmental foresight is the foundation on which Alastair built his companies. The success of CSG and CCSI domestically and internationally exemplifies how emission reduction markets can build wealth, generate jobs, create export opportunities and protect the environment for future generations at once.
Rob Harding, Chief Financial Officer
Rob has held senior leadership roles in oil and gas, engineering, procurement and construction and transportation companies. He has international experience including three years in Qatar working on multi-billion-dollar LNG capital projects and two years in the Caribbean working on energy projects. Rob’s focus has been on strategic solutions that involve creativity, adaptability and scalability in the areas of strategy, governance, operations, financing, mergers and acquisitions. His depth of experience includes small start-ups, major multi-nationals, public and private companies. He also currently sits on a variety of boards and committees in the public, private and not-for-profit sectors.
Saj Shapiro, Chief Operating Officer
Saj Shapiro is an effective leader with extensive management experience and expertise in strategic planning, operations, capital budgeting, and mergers and acquisitions. As COO Saj is responsible for the global operations of CCSI. Prior to joining CCSI Saj was CEO and President of DrillGear Oilfield Services and CalgaRig Corporation where he developed new-market and international operational strategies and sold engineering and logistics services to some of the largest oilfield companies in the world. This success led to being named a finalist for the 2017 Alberta Export Awards.
Saj also served as the CEO and President of Columbia Industries, where in two years he established international manufacturing capabilities, instituted world-class operational capabilities, attained world-class quality certifications, and led the company to unprecedented growth in size, revenues and margins.
In 2006, as Vice President of Technical and Business Development at Nabors Canada, Saj led negotiations for various international projects, led two operational divisions, and restructured and implemented operational efficiencies throughout the company. One of the divisions Saj managed at Nabors experienced 50% year over year growth under his leadership.
Saj holds a Bachelor of Commerce in finance from the Haskayne School of Business, and an MBA from the University of Calgary.
Art Froehlich, Board Member
Art works with a wide variety of industry stakeholders and shares his expertise with private and public sector organizations that focus on finance, processing, research, international marketing and retailing. Art has spent the last 30 years working in primary food production, agri-business and agri-marketing in Canada, United States, Europe, South America and Asia.
As a philanthropist, Art is involved in a developmental initiative in Peru and the Dominican Republic. As well, Art, and a group of business entrepreneurs from the USA, have started a demonstration farm and radio network in Ghana. He also provides financial support to young agricultural scientists from South Africa and other countries in the developing world, allowing them to attend major agricultural scientific conferences. Art works with the Clinton Global Initiative assisting in their agricultural programs in Africa. He has started a number of scholarships for undergraduates at the University of Alberta and Olds College.
Along with his business and professional commitments, Art is still active on the family farm. In addition, he volunteers his time to the Canadian Foodgrains Bank and serves as a mentor to young entrepreneurs.
Howard Kroon, CA, ICD.D, Board Member
Howard brings a wealth of experience in all aspects of building, operating and expanding corporate business interests. He was Chief Financial Officer at Palliser Lumber Sales and transitioned into the role of President and Chief Executive Officer. During his tenure, he grew the company from $28 million in sales to $100+ million in sales and over 200 employees at its peak. He oversaw numerous Palliser accomplishments and best practices, including selection six years running as a Platinum “Best 50” managed private company within Canada. He has spent the last six years in a management consulting role providing strategic, operational, financial and business coaching to CEOs and their senior executive teams.
He is involved in a number of volunteer projects. Working locally and abroad with a retired Canadian ambassador, Howard set up a charitable foundation in the Philippines. Currently, he owns and operates a non-profit that provides low-cost housing to cancer and transplant patients in Edmonton, Alberta.
Ken Hughes, ICD.D, Board Member
Ken Hughes is an entrepreneur in both business and public life, with a Bachelor’s of Science (Agriculture) from the University of Alberta, and a Masters of Public Administration from Harvard. He’s served on many boards in the public, not-for-profit and private sectors, and is a certified member of the Institute of Corporate Directors (ICD.D)
Ken served in public life in three challenging and accomplished roles. As a Member of Parliament (1988-1993), he served in increasing roles of responsibility, including as Parliamentary Secretary to the Deputy Prime Minister. Subsequently, the Government of Alberta appointed him the founding Chair of Alberta Health Services, leading the creation of Canada’s largest single healthcare delivery service, with a $12 billion budget and over 90,000 employees. Finally, Ken was elected to the Legislature of Alberta (2012-2014) serving as Energy Minister and Municipal Affairs Minister, respectively.
Ken founded Alpine Insurance in 2002, retains a principal ownership position with two other partners in the brokerage, and is the Chair of the Board. Alpine serves over 35,000 clients in Alberta and sells more than $90 million in products annually.
Sue Fawcett, CFA, ICD.D, Special Advisor to the Board of Directors
Sue is a certified Corporate Director (ICD.D) with significant governance experience, including with the Government of Canada (The Business Development Bank of Canada), the Province of Alberta (Alberta Economic Development Authority) and the city of Ottawa (Ottawa Carleton Economic Development Organization). Sue currently serves in a governance role for several of Canada’s top mutual funds and is an associate of Independent Review Inc., a professional association of individuals with extensive knowledge of the mutual fund and regulatory market industries. She holds the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation and is considered a financial expert for governance responsibilities.
Sue is a former Vice President of CIBC Wood Gundy with over 25 years experience in the Financial Services industry. She was nominated to represent CIBC Wood Gundy for The Investment Dealers Association Distinction Award for service to her clients and her community. Prior to CIBC Wood Gundy, Sue was a Sessional Instructor at The University of Calgary’s Business Faculty where she taught Business Communications 301 for two years. Concurrently with her role at UofC, Sue worked with Bow Valley Resource Services, an environmental consulting company, as a writer.