a future worth working for

Eric Newell Award of Excellence

Nominations opening soon.

The Eric P. Newell Award of Excellence was first introduced in 2006. This award is dedicated to a person who exemplifies outstanding leadership, championship and support of the CAREERS vision and mission. 

In recognition of outstanding contribution to CAREERS: The Next Generation. This award is the highest achievement in the CAREERS organization.  It requires the demonstration of extraordinary and commendable leadership and service.  

The Award is named in honour of  Eric P. Newell.   Eric Newell is a retired Alberta business executive with a stellar history of corporate leadership and achievement, as well as an exemplary record of service to industry and community.

Mr. Newell served Syncrude Canada Ltd. for 14 years as the company’s Chief Executive Officer (1989-2003) and for nine years as Chairman (1994-2003). He also served as President from 1989 to 1997.

Under his leadership, Syncrude, which is the world’s largest producer of crude oil from oil sand, became a key player in the western Canadian economy, an increasingly significant source of energy supply for the entire nation, and a model of a reliably operated, environmentally efficient, socially responsible corporation. During Mr. Newell’s tenure, Syncrude surpassed the billion-barrel production benchmark and embarked on an ambitious multi-billion dollar expansion program that continues today. Prior to joining Syncrude, Mr. Newell held a number of positions of increasing challenge and responsibility at Imperial Oil Limited and Esso Petroleum Canada.

As President of the Alberta Chamber of Resources in the mid 1990s, he spearheaded the creation of the National Oil Sands Task Force, which in 1995 developed a comprehensive new energy vision for Canada. This vision led to the large-scale expansion now underway in the oil sands industry.            

Through a wide variety of national, regional and local affiliations, Mr. Newell plays an active role promoting and creating opportunity for the wider community. He is well known, for example, for his successful and ongoing efforts to strengthen partnerships between education and business, and for championing corporate social responsibility.  Mr. Newell served on the University of Alberta Board of Governors for six years (1996 – 2002), the last four of those years as the Chair. In June, 2004, he was installed as the 18th Chancellor of the University of Alberta.

Previous recipients include:

  • Eric Newell, Chair, CAREERS: The Next Generation Foundation (2006)
  • Shirley Dul, Assistant Deputy Minister, Alberta Advanced Education and Technology, Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training Branch (2007)
  • Neil Tidsbury,  President, Construction Labour Relations – Alberta (2011) 
  • Paul Collins, Past President, Collins Steel (2017)