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Dr. Antoine Noujaim (Egypt)

Dr. Noujaim was born in Cairo, Egypt, in 1937. He lived and studied in Cairo for the first twenty-four years of his life, attending the University of Cairo and graduating from the Faculty of Pharmacy. In 1961 he won the prestigious Fulbright Scholarship in Bionucleonics (a study that combines physics and biochemistry) from Purdue University in Indiana. There he completed both his masters and doctorate.

Dr. Noujaim came to Alberta in September, 1966, to become an assistant professor at the University of Alberta. Eventually he worked his way up to become Chairman of the Division of Nuclear Pharmacy. During his time as Chairman the department became the largest in North America and was the first in the world with its own nuclear reactor.

In addition to his academic career, Dr. Noujaim also established two biotechnology companies, Biomira and Altarex. Both companies are involved in the research and development of cancer vaccines. The hope is the vaccines will be able to selectively destroy cancer cells while sparing the healthy ones and, the companies are targeting ovarian and lung cancers in particular.

The many awards bestowed on Dr. Noujaim include Canada's highest award for pharmaceutical research, the McNeil Award (1987), the Old Master Award from Purdue University (1987), and the Governor General Canada-125 medal for contributions to the country, as well as having an institute for cancer research at the University of Alberta named after him (the Noujaim Institute of Pharmaceutical Oncology).

Dr. Noujaim passed away in July 2006.

Dr. Gamil Tadros (Egypt)

Dr. Gamil Tadros was born in Egypt and attended Cairo University where he attained a B.Sc. in civil engineering in 1962. In 1966 he moved to Calgary to attend graduate school; in 1970 he completed his PhD in civil engineering. Since his graduation, Dr. Tadros has gone on to become one of the most respected engineers in the field of bridge design and construction. He has published over 110 journal articles and in 1994 completed a National Lecture Tour for the Canadian Society of Civil Engineering (CSCE). Currently, Dr. Tadros is a Structural Consultant for Speco Engineering Ltd. and a Technical Applications Consultant for the Canadian Network of Centres of Excellence on Intelligence Sensing for Innovative Structures (ISIS Canada). Dr. Tadros has been involved with the construction of over 100 bridges, aqueous retaining structures, and several Advanced Composite Material (ACM) bridges as well as being involved in bridge reconstruction. However, he is best known as the conceptual designer of the thirteen kilometre Confederation Bridge that connects Prince Edward Island to New Brunswick a design which won him the 1996 News Maker of the Year award as chosen by the Engineering News Record of New York. In addition, Dr. Tadros has received awards from the CSCE, recognizing his contribution to the engineering profession, and was elected Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Engineering and awarded. In 2003 he won the Distinguished Professional Award from the Calgary Immigrant Aid Society.

Tawfik Nasr

Dr. Tawfik Nasr, a scientist at the Alberta Research Council (ARC), has been investigating the extraction of bitumen from Alberta’s oil sands for more than fifteen years. After graduating from the University of Alexandria in Egypt, he moved to Canada to attend the University of Manitoba where he received his PhD in physics. Nasr came to Alberta to work on a geothermal project for the University of Alberta, joined ARC’s heavy oil sands group, and began developing models for early thermal recovery.

Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage (SAGD) systems first appeared in the early 1980s, providing a revolutionary means of drilling for oil. Though a breakthrough in petrochemical technology, the shortcomings of SAGD were obvious—large amounts of water and energy were required, creating harmful greenhouse emissions. Nasr focused on ways to improve these methods, patenting several inventions that would reduce SAGD energy consumption. His patents include the Expanding Solvent-SAGD and the Tapered Steam Solvent-SAGD, both of which improved the efficiency of the original design. More recently, Dr. Nasr developed the Field Research Energy Database (FRED). It is a database that stores data from the SAGD project and includes a special viewer that facilitates access and interpretation of data from the SAGD projects.

Nasr lives in Edmonton with his wife and three children. He has been working with ARC for over twenty years and is a member of the Petroleum Society of Canadian Institute of Mining, the Society of Petroleum Engineers, and the Canadian Heavy Oil Association.

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