Board of Directors
The CAPLA Board oversees the conduct of the business and management of CAPLA. The CAPLA office staff is responsible for the day-to-day conduct of business. The key responsibilities of the Board are:
- Developing an association strategy
- Risk assessment and management
- Developing internal controls
- Financial and operational reporting and review
- Succession planning and development
- Establishing a communications policy
CAPLA BOARD OF DIRECTORS 2021-2022
DEB WATSON, CPLCA, CPMA – President
Deb is a passionate leader, mentor and coach, and was most recently the Manager of Land Administration at CNOOC Petroleum North America ULC. Deb started her career in the oil and gas industry at Husky Energy Inc. having previously worked in the legal world for many years.
A CAPLA member since 2006, Deb is actively involved in the association as a Mentor and Co-Chair of the Electronic Land Files Taskforce. Deb was certified with her CPLCA in 2011 and her CPMA in 2013.
Deb further demonstrates her commitment to volunteering in the non-profit sector through the ‘In the Lead Program’ with Calgary Youth Justice Society as a Mentor as well as the ‘Allies – Sirius Program’ which aligns with Deb’s desire to inspire and support young girls to become confident young adults.
Deb is President of Midnight Blue Jazz Society, a 17 piece non-profit ‘big band’ that is dedicated to promoting and developing arts and culture in Calgary and surrounding areas through live music performances at both public and private functions.
Randon Slaney – Vice President
Randon is Legal Counsel at ENMAX and focuses on corporate and commercial transactions. This includes advising on mergers and acquisitions, developing large-scale projects, setting up joint ventures and general contractual matters. He has also completed a secondment with a large Canadian oil and gas company, providing him with valuable experience in considering issues from the perspective of business teams. In his free time, Randon enjoys chess and backcountry camping.
MELANIE OTTENBRIET-SMITH – Treasurer
Melanie is the Executive Vice President, Asset Management with LandSolutions LP. With a background as diverse as Mel’s, she has a keen understanding of many facets of our business, making her a go to resource both inside and outside of her organization. Her background as CFO, as well as past Advisory and Board positions with CAPL and CAPLA, have helped to form a strong foundation for her leadership in her role today and brings an innate understanding of the bottom line, governance and human resources.
Mel is a natural driver with a passion for serving the people that work with her, and her clients. She has a people first mentality in her approach to business which can be seen when she is developing teams, systems, and solutions to industry.
TRACEY STOCK – Secretary
Tracey has more than 30 years of experience in the energy sector and has been a CAPLA member since 1997. He is a lawyer, landman, professional engineer, and chartered manager actively consulting in oil and gas. He also serves part-time as an AER Hearing Commissioner. His background includes leadership in land administration, A&D, negotiations, land systems and conversions, corporate, commercial, survey, and construction law, arbitration, GIS, reservoir engineering, and economic evaluations. He teaches surface and mineral A&D administration for CAPL, business law for APEGA, and contract drafting, ethics and professionalism, practice management, and client relations management for the Canadian Centre for Professional Legal Education. Evenings often find Tracey teaching business law and land administration at Mount Royal University or volunteering legal advice for clients at Calgary Legal Guidance. He has taught intellectual property law and information systems management in the MBA program and survey law for the Schulich School of Engineering at the University of Calgary. In 2013 he received CAPLA’s Outstanding Volunteer Award and in 2017 he received the Summit Award for Community Service from APEGA and the Sovereign’s Medal for Volunteers from the Governor General of Canada.
Tracey has served on the Board of Directors since 2012 including terms as treasurer and vice-president, and president. Previously, was a member of the Surface Land Administration Advisory Committee, chaired the A&D Subcommittee of the Education Development Committee, was a panel member at the 2011 Surface Land Summit, and a speaker at several CAPLA conferences. He has also been a guest speaker with the CAPLA Lunch ‘n Learn program and the CAPLA Leadership Breakfast series. His articles have been published in NEXUS and The Negotiator.
Kathryn is the Manager of Mineral Land Administration at PrairieSky Royalty LTD. with responsibility for A&D, mineral lease issuance, contracts, land systems, well data, and land records. Prior to joining PrairieSky in October of 2017, she worked at Cenovus Energy Inc. for 14 years, more recently as a Manager in the Energy Asset Management (EAM) department. She has held technical or leadership roles in various functions including A&D, mineral fee title, mineral/JI systems, mineral contracts and leases, and surface land. Before moving to the oil and gas industry, Kathryn worked for 15 years as a legal assistant in real estate, corporate-commercial transactions and other areas, eventually focusing on oil and gas transactions. During Kathryn’s career, she has been recognized for her strengths in identifying and addressing process improvement opportunities, building successful partnerships with cross-functional groups, and promoting knowledge sharing and innovation within and across teams.
Kathryn earned a Bachelor of Arts (Political Science) from the University of Calgary, and a Business Process Management Certificate and an Advanced Certificate in Petroleum Land Contract and Administration from Mount Royal University. She is a Past President and former director of CEAMS (Centre for Energy Asset Management Studies). Previous volunteer roles at CAPLA include Editor of NEXUS Magazine, Industry Relations Committee Chair and Facilitator for the NOA and A&N Task Force.
CARLA KRUSCHEL – Director
Initially enticed by the legal world, Carla began working at a law firm after graduating from SAIT. Fascinated by the similarities between legal and land, she accepted a position with Canadian Hunter Exploration Ltd., where she spent the next 20 years advancing her career as Canadian Hunter became Burlington Resources and eventually ConocoPhillips. During that time, Carla held various land positions while she successfully completed SAIT’s Petroleum Land Administration Certificate and the Advanced Petroleum Land Administration Certificate at Mount Royal University. She then moved to ARC Resources Ltd. as Supervisor, Contracts and Land Administration.
A CAPLA member since its inception, Carla credits the association for supporting her career by providing resources, networking opportunities, education and professional development. She has served as a mentor in the Mentorship Program and on the B.C. Tenure Review Committee, Conference Education Committees and the Leadership Forum. As a member of the Board of Directors, Carla is committed to supporting CAPLA’s quest to elevate the profile of the land discipline.
KIRSTIE EGAN – Director
Kirstie started her career in 1980 at Esso Resources Canada Limited. Her land experience started in the map room where days were spent splicing maps, coloring Esso’s land base on maps (pencil crayons weren’t only for geologists) and recording land sale information. It was her first taste of the land business and she loved the legal aspects associated with it. Many hours were devoted to reading leases, legal cases and regulations. She held a variety of lease administration and analytical positions in the land department over the next 10 years.
Kirstie completed certificates at Mount Royal University in Petroleum and Mineral Resources Land Management in 1983 and Business Administration in 1988. In 1993, she ventured out on her own to consult for a number of small- to medium-sized oil and gas companies and became a CAPLA member in 1994. She held a variety of roles and managed both surface and mineral administration, assisted with system implementation and even dabbled in joint ventures.
In 2001, Kirstie accepted a managerial position with a dynamic junior company and for the next five years enjoyed being a part of a growing organization. When that company was sold to a larger entity in 2005, she joined Crescent Point Energy as a contracts analyst and is currently the Manager of Mineral Land Asset Management at Crescent Point.
Andrea Janska – Director
Andrea Janska started her career in the late 1990’s at Numac Energy Inc., where she started her career scanning their Surface files. Over the years she has held several different positions from Surface Land Administrator, Surface Land Agent and now Surface Land Manager. She is currently the Surface Land Manager at Paramount Resources Ltd., where she has been for the last 15 years. Through those years she completed her Petroleum Land Administrative Certificate through SAIT and her Land Agent License through Olds College.
Her passion in each position has been Surface A&D. In her current role she keeps current with regulations and that the department is compliant with the changes as well as helping and handling any difficult A&D transactions and Surface acquisitions. She started her CAPLA volunteer though the A&D Committee, where she helped develop the Surface A&D Course.