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WestGrid Staff

The roles and responsibilities of WestGrid's Central Staff team include:

 

Meet the Team:

Lindsay Sill
Executive Director
lindsay.sill@westgrid.ca

The Executive Director is responsible for the leadership and management of all aspects of the WestGrid organization, including the supervision of Central Staff, financial management and reporting, administration, relationship management with Member institutions and provincial partners, contributions to policy and procedure development through a role on the Compute Canada Management Committee, liaising with counterparts in other HPC consortia at the national level, and ensuring that WestGrid operations are executed to meet the expectations of the Executive and Member Council Committees and funders, as well as meet the needs of the research community. 

Bio

Lindsay has been providing project management and leadership for WestGrid since joining the organization nearly a decade ago. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Biology from the University of Victoria. Prior to joining WestGrid, she worked as a Laboratory Manager in the Department of Medicine for the University of Calgary where she did research on gene therapy and immunology, which eventually lead to a publication in Nature.  Lindsay is also an Advisory Board member of the first international and Canadian chapter of the non-profit organization Women in HPC, which works to improve the gender balance in advanced research computing.  Lindsay works remotely from the sunny Okanagan.

Patrick Mann
Director of Operations
patrick.mann@westgrid.ca

The Director of Operations is responsible for overseeing the day-to-day technical operations of the organization (e.g. issues relating to networking, collaboration/visualization, user support, and infrastructure operation), chairing the Site Leads Committee, acting as the single point of contact for operational issues in WestGrid, supervising central technical staff, maintaining strong coordination with all other Compute Canada project elements and institutions, and is also expected to play a leadership role in the development and growth of new activities and services.

Bio

Patrick Mann has a broad range of academic and commercial expertise as an IT and computational science specialist. His areas of focus include cloud computing, virtualization, networking, systems architecture, system administration, and collaboration. Prior to joining WestGrid, Patrick served as IT Director for a partnership between Carbon Management Canada and the International Performance Assessment Centre for Geologic Storage of Carbon Dioxide. He has worked as a private contractor, providing Amazon Web Services consulting and development services, and has led strategic IT initiatives through senior leadership positions at Cybera Inc., as Chief Technology Officer, and the University of Northern British Columbia (UNBC), as the Director of the Computing and Telecommunications Services Department. Patrick has a D.Phil. in computational astrophysics from the University of Oxford.

Erin Trifunov
Erin Trifunov
Manager, Projects and Outreach
erin.trifunov@westgrid.ca

The responsibilities of the Manager, Projects and Outreach include providing general administrative and project management support to WestGrid and Compute Canada; producing project documents, including reports and summaries; coordinating activities including special events, orientations and training seminars; management of communications and training activities; and contributing to policies, user needs / user experience management, and contributing to the strategic planning of the organization through participation on the WestGrid Senior Management Team.

Bio

Erin Trifunov joined WestGrid in 2014 as Project Coordinator with a background in communications, marketing research and fund development. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Commerce with a specialization in Marketing from the University of British Columbia. Before coming to WestGrid, Erin was the Marketing and Fund Development Coordinator for the Okanagan Boys & Girls Clubs.  She has also worked for the British Columbia Lottery Corporation and spent several years teaching English at a South Korean university. Erin is based in Kelowna, BC.

Megan Allen
Finance and Administration Manager
megan.allen@computecanada.ca

The Finance and Administration Manager directs all aspects of financial management for WestGrid. This role acts as the liaison with WestGrid Member institutions in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba and the Compute Canada Director of Finance on all matters with respect to funding agreements, accounting, budgeting, financial reporting, audit issues, and management.

Bio

Prior to joining WestGrid, Megan Allen worked for the University of Calgary as a Finance Partner, serving the units of Facilities and the President's Portfolio. Megan has also worked in the oil and gas industry in Calgary and in the transportation industry in Vancouver. In 2003, Megan received her CMA designation, and currently holds the CPA designation. Megan's skills include budgeting, forecasting, financial analysis and relationship management. 

Alex Razoumov
Alex Razoumov
Visualization Coordinator
alex.razoumov@westgrid.ca

The Visualization Coordinator is responsible for the visualization platform across all WestGrid Member institutions. This includes creating a visualization plan for WestGrid and executing the implementation of the plan across the Member institutions. The Visualization Coordinator acts as the liaison with WestGrid Member institutions in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba on all matters with respect to visualization. The Coordinator supports researchers in their visualization needs including responding to requests by email, through the ticketing system and in person as required. Training and outreach on visualization is also an important role. This includes developing training material, delivering training and outreach sessions, and training other staff members to provide seminars.

Bio

Alex Razoumov has a PhD in computational astrophysics from UBC. He has worked on numerical models ranging from galaxy formation to core-collapse supernovae and stellar hydrodynamics, and has developed a number of computational fluid dynamics and radiative transfer codes and techniques. He spent five years as HPC Analyst in SHARCNET helping researchers from diverse backgrounds to use large clusters, and joined WestGrid in 2014.

Jim Tubman
Jim Tubman
Senior Software Developer
jim.tubman@westgrid.ca

The Senior Software Developer is responsible for software and service development projects required both by WestGrid and Compute Canada. This could range from working on Compute Canada’s national user database, to developing an online tool for Bioinformaticians to submit their work to our high performance computing systems, to helping implement national Globus filesharing services.

Bio

Jim Tubman has experience in many areas, including academic research, applied industrial research, search engines, military software, electronic whiteboard tools, mobile apps, and petroleum economics. His technical interests include functional programming, modern C++, software longevity, and digital typesetting and typography. He has volunteered as a science fair judge for longer than he can remember. He has a B.Sc. in Computational Science from the University of Saskatchewan, and an M.Math. in Computer Science from the University of Waterloo. Jim lives, works, and plays in Calgary, AB.

 

Lixin Liu
Networking Coordinator
liu@sfu.ca

The Networking Coordinator manages WestGrid's core network operations, which support high-speed, secure connectivity between its advanced computing clusters, data storage sites, visualization resources and collaboration facilities distributed throughout Western Canada. This position works closely with network infrastructure staff at Compute Canada, CANARIE and the Natrional Research and Education Network (NREN) partners in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba, to oversee network upgrades as well as mitigate network disruptions or delays. 

Bio

Lixin Liu has a PhD in Applied and Computational Mathematics from Simon Fraser University. He has more than 20 years experience in UNIX operating systems, storage and network administration. Lixin is also a Systems Consultant for Research Computing at SFU.

John Simpson
John Simpson
Digital Humanities Specialist
john.simpson@ualberta.ca

The primary roles of the Digital Humanities Specialist are to provide national, research-level consulting service for Social Sciences and Humanities computing; provide expert advice on the use of WestGrid / Compute Canada resources in the Humantiies and Social Sciences; develop new outreach programs aimed at researchers in the Social Sciences and Humanities; and recommend, test, install and support applications to support computing in these disciplines. This position has provincial and national visibility and contributes to the national and international reputation of the University of Alberta, WestGrid, and Compute Canada. The Digital Humanities Specialist takes a strong role in developing strategy in the Digital Humanities for Compute Canada, and takes part in national planning exercises. 

Bio

John Simpson joined WestGrid in January 2015 as a Digital Humanities Specialist and brings a diverse background in Philosophy and Computing. Prior to WestGrid, he was involved in a research-intensive postdoctoral fellowship focusing on developing semantic web expertise and prototyping tools capable of assisting academics in consuming and curating the new data made available by digital environments. He has a PhD in Philosophy from the University of Alberta, and an MA in Philosophy and BA in Philosophy & Economics from the University of Waterloo. In addition to his role at WestGrid, John is also a Member-at-Large of the Canadian Society for Digital Humanities (CSDH-SCHN), a Programming Instructor with the Digital Humanities Summer Institute (DHSI), and serves as Co-Chair, Minimal Computing, with Global Outlook::Digital Humanities (GO::DH).

Todd Zimmerman
Collaboration Coordinator
todd.zimmerman@ubc.ca

The Collaboration Coordinator oversees the delivery and support of a range of collaboration activities within WestGrid, from videoconferenced staff meetings, to online interactive training events, to webstreamed research seminars. Working closely with other technical staff at WestGrid Member institutions, the Collaboration Coordinator aims to provide researchers with access to state-of-the-art collaboration capabilities that support knowledge-sharing and expanded research connections, regardless of geographic location.

Bio

Todd Zimmerman has a diverse background in coordinating and developing national collaborations and strategies to ensure researchers have access to state-of-the-art collaboration facilities and technologies. Over the last ten years, he has helped design and configure many advanced collaborative environments at institutions across Western Canada. In addition to his role at WestGrid, he is also the Senior Manager, Media & Classroom Services for IT at UBC's Okanagan campus in Kelowna, BC, where he is responsible for managing all of the classroom technologies and the Media Centre. He received a Bachelor of Technology in Computer Systems from BCIT and has been working in research, collaboration, and classroom support since 2002.