Alan Fair graduated from the University of British Columbia in 1978 with a BSc in geological engineering.
He spent one year working for a geotechnical consulting firm before joining Syncrude Canada Ltd. in June of 1979 at its Fort McMurray operation. In 1995 he completed his master’s degree in business administration from the University of Alberta. During his 32 years at Syncrude, Fair held several different engineering and operations management positions within the mine, extraction and technology areas.
He assumed the role of manager of research and development in May of 2004. As the manager of Syncrude’s R&D department, Alan was responsible for both the technical direction and overall management of all research and development activities at Syncrude. He retired from this position in June 2011 to assume the role as the Executive Director of the then, newly created Oil Sand Tailings Consortium (OSTC). The OSTC was integrated into Canada’s Oil Sands Innovation Alliance (COSIA) and is now known as the COSIA Tailings Environmental Priority Area. As the Director of the COSIA Tailings EPA, Fair was responsible for coordinating the industries’ R&D efforts to develop technologies aimed at enabling more timely and effective reclamation of oil sand tailings. He reitred from COSIA at the end of 2014.
Throughout his career, Fair has been involved in many aspects of reclamation and mine closure, including a key role in the development of various oil sand tailings technologies. He is committed to the advancement of collaborative R&D in the oil sands.