Ronald Norman Dalby (1947–1978)
A native of Edmonton, Ronald Norman Dalby attended Norwood Elementary, Spruce Avenue Junior High, and Victoria High Schools. After graduation, he was employed as a technician by the Alberta Research Council (ARC) and worked in its Edmonton laboratories and Oils Sands Pilot Plant near Fort McMurray.
Following his year with ARC, Mr Dalby entered the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Alberta in 1948. In 1952, he graduated with BSc in Civil Engineering (with Distinction). Upon graduation, he was awarded a National Research Council scholarship but, instead of taking it up to enter graduate school, elected to go work in industry and secured employment as Resident Manager in the Marketing Department of Imperial Oil Limited.
In 1955, Mr Dalby embarked upon his career in utilities, joining Northwestern Utilities as Aassistant Distribution Manager. He remained with the company for 12 years, serving in various engineering and management positions.
In 1967, Mr Daly was named president of the Association of Professional Engineers, Geologists, and Geophysicists of Alberta (APEGGA). Serving six years as a member of the Association's Council, Dalby again served as Association President during the 1973–1974 year.
From 1967 through 1972, Mr Dalby worked as Assistant Vice-President and Chief Executive Officer of a group of International Utilities companies. These companies, located in the United States and Canada, were involved in petroleum operations, industrial manufacturing, motor carrier operations, and metal mining.
From October 1972 until his election as University Chancellor in 1973, Mr Dalby was Vice-President of Canadian Utilities Limited. As such, he was responsible for the operations of three major utilities, including Northwestern Utilities Limited, Canadian Western Natural Gas Company Limited, and Alberta Power Limited. Then, in March 1975, Mr. Dalby established R.N. Dalby & Associates, Ltd., a firm providing engineering and management consultation in the field of energy.
Having an unsurpassed ability to organize and get work done allowed him, during his time as an engineeringn student at the University of Alberta, to participate as an Officer Cadet in the University Auxiliary Squadron RCAF. It was during time that he developed an enthusiasm for flying. An enthusiastic flyer, Mr. Dalby obtained a pilot's license with night endorsement, was involved in advanced radio navigation courses, and, later, served as a director of the Edmonton Flying Club. Further to his own business involvements, Mr Dalby was also a director of Husky Oil Ltd. and Indian Oil Sands Economic Development Corporation Ltd.
Active in community affairs, Mr Dalby was a director of St Stephen's College, a charter member of Grace United Church, director of the Alberta Northwest Chamber of Mines, director of the Canadian Gas Association, past president of the Oil Capital Kiwanis Children's Aid Society, member of the advisory board of Guaranty Trust, member of the board of directors of Chembiomed Ltd., and, because of his long and deep involvement in industry, a member of the Alberta trade missions to Japan in 1963 and 1972.
In recognition of his outstanding community service, Dalby was presented, in November 1978, with the Alumni Association's highest honour. The University of Alberta's Alumni Golden Jubilee Award, consisting of a gold-plated tray and framed tribute, recognizes those citizens who have contributed to the welfare of the University. Also in 1978, Mr. Dalby was awarded life membership in APEGGA.
It should be noted that Mr Dalby is the second University Chancellor to be elected by the Senate. Prior to the University Act of 1966 and his election November 23, 1973, the Chancellor was elected by the alumni of the University. Mr Dalby, known for his outgoing and pleasing personality, drive, enthusiasm, and the conscientious manner in which he attended to both large and small matters, assumed his role July 1, 1974, succeeding Louis Armand Desrochers, who retired on June 30 of that year.
Dalby, his wife Elsie, and four children share and enjoy many activities, including skiing, travel, hunting, and fishing.