New Class of Graduates Joins the Sturgeon Refinery Workforce Thanks to Women Building Futures, North West Redwater Partnership and the Alberta Carpenters Training Centre

Job Creation Partnership Trains and Employs Women in Trades

EDMONTON, ALBERTA--(Marketwired - Sept. 19, 2016) - In August of this year, a second class of graduates from Women Building Futures' (WBF) began work at the Sturgeon Refinery. Through a partnership program with North West Redwater Partnership (NWR) and the Alberta Carpenters Training Centre, seven carpenter/scaffolder apprentices are now actively employed with three subcontractors at the NWR Sturgeon Refinery.

Women Building Futures first joined forces with NWR in late 2015, along with the Ironworkers Local 720, and celebrated the first graduating class of female ironworkers earlier this year. These apprentice ironworkers are now part of the over 6,000 Albertans working construction at the Sturgeon Refinery every day.

"Our graduates come to employers with unrivalled preparedness for the realities of the job site," says JudyLynn Archer, CEO, Women Building Futures. "NWR values that, and we're proud to have their support in getting more women started in a career they can be excited about."

"Our government is proud to work with the North West Redwater Partnership and Women Building Futures to encourage women to upgrade their skills and train for careers in the skilled trades," said Alberta Labour Minister Christina Gray. "This graduating class of talented apprentices demonstrates our collective efforts in helping open doors for women in the trades. By supporting women, we are building a stronger, more prosperous province."

These skilled women have joined a team at the Sturgeon Refinery focused on building Alberta's energy diversification future, by adding value to Alberta's raw materials, managing CO2 and increasing access to world markets using existing infrastructure.

"Our motivation in this partnership is quite simple. We see tremendous value in the diversification of our workforce, and we want to create opportunities to support these talented and dedicated women as they pursue a career in the trades," says Ian MacGregor, President and Chairman, North West Refining Inc., a 50 per cent owner in NWR. "We have an opportunity to build Alberta's energy diversification future together. These women are now part of our team and I am excited we get to work towards something that we as Albertans can all be proud of."

Tuition for the training program was provided by NWR, and work experience and employment at NWR's Sturgeon Refinery is provided to the women by NWR's contractors: Fluor Canada, PCL Industrial Constructors Inc. and Taurus Projects Group Inc. The Alberta Carpenter Training Centre also provided the hands on skill building throughout the training program.

"We are proud of our involvement in this program and we are confident these graduates will perform with excellence at the Sturgeon Refinery and be on their way to rewarding careers," says Colin Belliveau, Director of Training and Apprenticeship, Alberta Carpenters Training Centre. "The Alberta Carpenters Training Centre and Local 1325 look forward to continuing our partnership with Women Building Futures and NWR as the training program continues to grow."

"We are proud to once again employ the newest class of Women Building Futures graduates," says Gary Truhn, Vice President and General Manager, PCL Industrial Constructors Inc. "Thanks to the job creation partnership between Women Building Futures and NWR, these skilled workers are now well-equipped to not only join the workforce, but to actively contribute to a better future for our province as they pave the way for future graduates in pursuit of a career in the trades."

"We are already seeing the benefits of the program in the workplace and the momentum that this program carries only continues to grow as each class of graduates enters into a career in the trades," says Bill Schneider, Construction Director, Fluor Canada. "Our workforce is made up of dedicated and talented Albertans, and we are pleased to continue to add to our numbers from each of the Women Building Futures graduating classes."

"The integration of these talented female apprentices into the workforce at the Sturgeon Refinery is something we are thrilled to be involved with," says Dave Zubko President Taurus Projects Group Inc. "We fully support the ongoing success of this program and the opportunities it provides for workforce diversification."

Recruitment for the program began in November 2015, throughout which WBF focused on the engagement of Aboriginal women and women living in communities local to the Sturgeon Refinery.

About North West Redwater Partnership

North West Redwater Partnership (NWR) is a 50/50 partnership between North West Refining Inc.( and CNUL, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Canadian Natural. NWR is building the world's first bitumen refinery which will combine the already proven processes of gasification technology with an integrated carbon capture and storage solution. The Sturgeon Refinery, located 45 km north-east of Edmonton, is also the first refinery to sell its CO2 for the purposes of enhanced oil recovery. Phase 1 of the Sturgeon Refinery will convert 79,000 barrels of diluted bitumen directly to fuels and other high value, low carbon products required in the Alberta and world markets. The process is optimized to minimize the environmental footprint of the facility and make bitumen refining sustainable in Alberta. Currently more than 6000 workers are on site as part of the construction workforce. For more information about NWR and the Sturgeon Refinery, visit

About Women Building Futures

Women Building Futures (WBF) is Alberta's premier destination for women who want to discover, pursue and advance in a career in trades. A Social Purpose Organization and registered charity, WBF is valued for its uncompromising approach to meeting the needs of women and industry by recruiting the right people, providing them with the right training and matching them with the right employer. WBF offers women pre-trades competency-based training in welding, steamfitting/pipefitting, plumbing, sheet metal, carpentry, electrical and heavy equipment operator training at their training centre in Edmonton, Alberta. WBF has quickly become the go-to place for women interested in a career in the construction trades and for
companies wishing to diversify their workforce. For more information about WBF, visit

About the Alberta Carpenters Training Centre

The Alberta Carpenters Training Centre (ACTC) is affiliated with the Alberta/NWT Regional Council of Carpenters and Allied Workers. It is funded by the Alberta Carpenters Training Fund, which in turn, is funded through employer contributions, and its members through collective agreements with the Alberta Regional Council of Carpenters. This fund aims to develop and provide in-depth Industrial Scaffolder Apprenticeship programs in North America, and support apprentices' dedication to the completion of their apprenticeship in all areas of the Carpentry trade. For more information about the ACTC, visit

Contact Information:

Erica Morgan
Brookline Public Relations
Direct: 403-538-5641 x 106
Cell: 403-478-1357