OUR STAFF

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The Verschuren Centre's staff are integral to the Centre’s success and collaborative spirit. They represent the wide-ranging expertise required to accomplish the many research projects associated with helping industry to become more efficient and self-sustaining.

ADMINISTRATION

Dr. Beth Mason
Dr. Beth MasonPresident
Dr. Beth Mason
Dr. Beth MasonPresident
Dr. Mason came to the Verschuren Centre in 2014, to build out the bio-products research program, after working with Saputo Dairy Products Canada for 11 years prior. Her background brings a mix of industry, research and business approaches to problem solving in the Agri-food industry, particularly around by-product value extraction and functional ingredients. In 2017, Dr. Mason was appointed CEO of the Verschuren Centre, where she leads the organization in bringing together large industry and community partners toward development and demonstrations of innovative solutions.

Alison Wilson
Alison WilsonLaboratory Equipment Manager
Alison Wilson
Alison WilsonLaboratory Equipment Manager
Alison has many years of experience in the Analytical Laboratory and Manufacturing industries. During this time she worked with a wide variety of analytical equipment in both operations and maintenance. Alison joined the Verschuren Centre in 2013 working as a researcher in the development of new processes/techniques dealing with mine waste. She started the role of Laboratory Equipment Manager in September 2019. Alison is a Professional Engineer with a Bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering from the Technical University of Nova Scotia (now Daltech).

Jeff Aucoin
Jeff AucoinManager of Finance
Jeff Aucoin
Jeff AucoinManager of Finance
Jeff graduated with a Bachelor of Business Administration Degree from Cape Breton University in 2008. His previous work experience includes three years in public accounting with Chant Rowe Shaw Chartered Accountants as well as nine years in Community Economic Development with Coastal Business Opportunities.

Anne O'Neill
Anne O'NeillManager of Client Innovation and Strategy
Anne O'Neill
Anne O'NeillManager of Client Innovation and Strategy
Anne is the manager of Client Innovation and Strategy. She is originally from Cape Breton, yet lived in other parts of North America learning about Innovation. She commenced her post-secondary education in the Sciences where she completed a BSc. majoring in Chemistry. She then completed her Masters of Business Administration and Masters of Management in Innovation and Entrepreneurship. She has experience coaching start-up’s both inside and outside of the classroom and numerous years of managerial experience. Combining her education with work experience, Anne is excited to create the utmost value for her clients at the Verschuren Centre.

Stephen Kelloway
Stephen KellowayLaboratory Manager and Bioproducts Scientist
Stephen Kelloway
Stephen KellowayLaboratory Manager and Bioproducts Scientist
Stephen joined the VC team in 2013 and is an integral part of the work at the Centre. He oversees the daily operations of the VC laboratories as well as the Greenhouse project and agri-marine biorefinery process line. Stephen received his B.Sc. (Hons) at Cape Breton University and M.Sc. Agriculture through Dalhousie (Agriculture Campus).

BIO-PROCESSING TEAM

Aishwarya Mohan
Aishwarya MohanResearch Manager
Aishwarya Mohan
Aishwarya MohanResearch Manager
Aishwarya Mohan has M.Sc. in Agriculture with a focus on food bioproducts from Faculty of Agriculture, Dalhousie University. Her experience is in food-derived bioactive peptides, bioprocessing, extraction and encapsulation of bioactives. She has been involved with the bioprocessing/bioproducts and biopolymer program at the Verschuren Centre as Research Manager since 2017.

Tony Verschuren
Tony VerschurenEngineering Technician
Tony Verschuren
Tony VerschurenEngineering Technician
Tony joined the VC team in 2019 as a member of the agri-marine group. Currently working on the biorefinery process line. This project currently uses cutting-edge technology that turns unused marine biomass into commercial goods for feed, plant and food markets. He has a background in the oil fields, marine industry and in research and development. He has experience in process control systems, instrumentation, PLC programming and automation.

Mark Morrison
Mark MorrisonResearch Assistant
Mark Morrison
Mark MorrisonResearch Assistant
Mark is an undergraduate student at McGill University, pursuing a degree in chemistry. He joined The Verschuren Centre as a member of the bio-products team in the summer of 2019, working on the greenhouse project, as well as the development and implementation of the bio-refinery process line and facility. He has experience with pilot scale microwave volumetric heating, fermentation, and separation techniques.

Yury Yuryev
Yury YuryevPost Doctoral Fellow
Yury Yuryev
Yury YuryevPost Doctoral Fellow
Yury is a polymer scientist with a focus on applications of biopolymers in wide ranging fields including automotive and packaging industry. Prior to receiving his PhD degree from Concordia University in Montreal, Dr. Yuryev worked in the polymer manufacturing industry for more than 10 years. Dr. Yuryev is experienced in developing novel polymer products including composite materials and their commercialization. Dr. Yuryev is well-versed in the polymer processing technologies including injection molding, extrusion and coating.

Faranak Beigmohammadi
Faranak BeigmohammadiPost Doctoral Fellow
Faranak Beigmohammadi
Faranak BeigmohammadiPost Doctoral Fellow
Faranak has been a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Verschuren Center since Jan 2020. She is presently working on extraction of bio-products from marine waste. She obtained her PhD in Food Technology from University of Tabriz, Iran in 2015. She has worked as faculty member and has completed a series of researches on the topic of active food packaging, biopolymers, bio-products and other related subjects.

Joe Pottinger
Joe PottingerMarket Research Technician
Joe Pottinger
Joe PottingerMarket Research Technician
Joe is a marketing student, graduating Saint Mary's University with a Bachelor of Commerce Degree in 2021. Joe previously worked in the UK offshore oil and gas industry for two years as a navigational officer with Gulfmark UK after completing a three-year cadetship program on the remote Shetland Islands. Before that, he spent four years working in the aquaculture industry as fish husbandry personnel and as a Chief Officer on live fish carriers on the Norwegian, Irish and Scottish coasts.

Edward Cross
Edward CrossResearch Scientist
Edward Cross
Edward CrossResearch Scientist
Edward earned his Bachelor of Science (Honours) – Chemistry from Cape Breton University, focusing on the creation of new organometallic catalysts for chemical transformations. He earned his Master of Science in Micro- & Macro- molecular Sciences (Chemistry) from University of Prince Edward Island where he studied biodegradable plastics, examining their properties and applications in controlled drug delivery. After completing his MSc Edward returned CBU, and worked on a variety of industry-partnered research projects. Edward joined the VC in 2015 and is now working with the Bio-Processing Team to develop smart packaging and films.

Xiurong Jiao
Xiurong JiaoPost Doctoral Fellow
Xiurong Jiao
Xiurong JiaoPost Doctoral Fellow
Xiurong graduated with her PhD in plant science from Aarhus University, Denmark. Dr Jiao’s research interests are in the area of sustanabible agricultural production, which can be divided into several specific areas of research: increasing told tolerance of bioenergy crop by screening for high tolerance genotypes under chilling climate; Increasing salinity tolerance by applying plant hormones; screening and identification of plant growth promoting rhizobacteria from wild plants and testing their effects on plant growth promotion and disease control; and utilizing seaweed waste for plant growth promotion.

Elizabeth MacCormick
Elizabeth MacCormickResearch Assistant
Elizabeth MacCormick
Elizabeth MacCormickResearch Assistant
Elizabeth MacCormick is a graduate from Cape Breton University, receiving her Bachelor of Science in Community Studies with a concentration in Biodiversity. She then spent several years working in marine research with the Bras d’Or Institute for Ecosystem Research, focusing on sustainable development and ecosystem-based management in the Bras d’Or Lake estuary on Cape Breton Island. Through her work with the Verschuren Centre, Elizabeth continues to engage with marine and agricultural-based industries to develop value-added solutions for residual biomass or otherwise underutilized by-products.

Galhenage Abeynayake
Galhenage AbeynayakeResearch Assistant
Galhenage Abeynayake
Galhenage AbeynayakeResearch Assistant
Galhenage received BSc. in Food Science & Technology and MSc. in Food & Nutrition from the University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka. In 2020, she completed MSc. in Food Science & Technology from the University of Alberta focusing on the development of bioactive peptides from brewers’ spent grain. Currently, working at the Verschuren Centre as a research assistant.

CARBON TRANSFORMATION TEAM

Breagh Johnston
Breagh JohnstonProject Manager
Breagh Johnston
Breagh JohnstonProject Manager
Breagh Johnston is the Project Manager for the Carbon Transformation Team at the Verschuren Centre. She assists companies with developing and pursing work plans while using the Verschuren Centre’s assets to accelerate their business to be ready for market. She works closely with clients as well as our research and business groups to ensure their project milestones are met and are on target. She has a degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of New Brunswick and has previous working in Calgary as an Application Specialist, helping clients with their instrumentation and control valve needs.

Roger Gumbau
Roger GumbauPost Doctoral Fellow
Roger Gumbau
Roger GumbauPost Doctoral Fellow
Roger joined the Verschuren Centre team in 2019 to tackle challenges in advanced material synthesis and characterization. His research background encompasses organic electrical conductors, bis-imine-based paramagnetic materials, and metal-chelating polymers with antimicrobial properties. Roger also has extensive experience training research personnel in safe synthetic and instrumentation wetlab procedures. He enjoys hiking, cooking and eating good food, to a background of fiddle music.

RENEWABLE ENERGY TEAM

Dan Roscoe P Eng.
Dan Roscoe P Eng.Renewable Energy Lead
Dan Roscoe P Eng.
Dan Roscoe P Eng.Renewable Energy Lead
Dan is a veteran of the renewable energy industry, with extensive experience in all stages of wind and solar project development, financing, construction and operation. He has successfully advocated for innovative energy policy including Nova Scotia’s Community Feed In Tariff, and Halifax’s Solar City program. He was one of the founding investors of Scotian WindFields Inc and has built 50MW of wind energy across 13 projects in Atlantic Canada and New England along with hundreds of onsite solar projects. Dan has a Bachelor of Applied Science in Civil Engineering from the University of Waterloo.

Wayne Ferguson
Wayne FergusonProject Manager
Wayne Ferguson
Wayne FergusonProject Manager
Wayne joined the VC Energy Team in the spring 2020, in the role of Project Manager. Wayne’s extensive career spans twenty-five years, thousands of projects and six provinces. Wayne’s background in Welding Engineering Technology and Building Sciences/Envelope led to a career in Capital Contract Inspection, Building Envelope (SME), Specialist, Remediation Coordinator, Project Manager, and the Director of Facilities. Throughout his career Wayne focused on safeguarding projects interests to ensure they meet the design intent, and contractual obligation of the involved parties. The recipient of numerous awards Wayne has been recognized for his commitment to health and safety, innovation, and project management.

Nicholas Driscoll
Nicholas DriscollEnergy Co-ordinator
Nicholas Driscoll
Nicholas DriscollEnergy Co-ordinator
Nicholas Driscoll holds a Bachelor of Chemical Engineering ('17) and a Master of Resource and Environmental Management ('19) from Dalhousie University. From May to August 2018, Nick completed an internship on recirculating aquaculture systems and eco-industrial parks at the Verschuren Centre. After completing his master’s degree, Nick returned to the Centre in January 2019 to work full-time on Renewable Energy. Since then, he has worked on and/or completed strategic energy management plans; funding applications; energy-data collection, collation, analysis, and visualization; energy audits and reports; simple renderings; project management; a hazardous waste report; clean technology assessments; and secondary research.

AQUACULTURE TEAM

Sindy Dove
Sindy DoveShellfish Laboratory Technician
Sindy Dove
Sindy DoveShellfish Laboratory Technician
Sindy Dove is a marine biologist with a specialty in molecular biology. She completed her B.Sc. at the University of New Brunswick – Saint John in marine biology, focusing on invertebrates and ecology. She then completed her M.Sc. at Memorial University of Newfoundland on Atlantic salmon immune systems. Sindy joined the Verschuren Centre team in 2020 and is now the molecular biologist at the Verschuren Centre studying oysters in the Bras d’Or.

     IMAGINE THE POSSIBILITIES.
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1250 Grand Lake Road,
Sydney, Nova Scotia,
Canada   B1M 1A2

T 902-563-1292 | www.verschurencentre.ca

© 2020 The Verschuren Centre