Teresa Waddington has a clear purpose.

“I’m on a mission to turn my dad’s oilpatch into my daughter’s energy garden,” she says. Indeed, she’s said it so many times it has become a mantra.

Currently the vice president of corporate relations for LNG Canada, she’s a firm believer in making change from inside the energy sector.

“I’ve stayed in the industry even though we’ve had amazingly difficult challenges, problems and jobs to do,” Teresa says. “Being inside the company you can make a lot of little decisions every day. Inside, you have the keys to make a difference.”

For Teresa, making a difference revolves around two themes: greater sustainability and greater equity for women.

Teresa’s family visiting one of her father's wellsites in Fort St John.

Inspired by parents

The daughter of two engineers, she grew up watching her parents’ careers in the energy sector.

“I vividly remember watching my mom paint her nails and grab her hard hat as she headed for her job at the Taylor Refinery near Fort St. John, B.C.,” Teresa says. “My parents would talk about their work as being interesting and rewarding. It also provided our family with some great opportunities.”

As well, her parents’ experiences instilled in her a belief “that a career as an engineer in the energy industry meant no ‘compromises’ on being a mom or a woman, that it would allow me to have a positive impact, and that it would provide me the means and the freedom to pursue other activities that I love.” 

After high school, she followed in their footsteps. In 2004, she graduated with a degree in chemical engineering from Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario.

Her first job was as a project engineer at the Shell’s Scotsford Expansion Project near Fort Saskatchewan, outside of Edmonton, Alberta.  
“I ended up being responsible for the hydrogen manufacturing unit,” she recalls. “Since that first job, I’ve worked across projects, commercial, front-end development, maintenance, operations, health safety security and environment (HSSE) and now in corporate relations.” 

Teresa working an electric shovel in the Albian oil sands mine.

Her roles include working in Fort McMurray and Scotland, the latter for which she had 24 hours to accept a job as plant manager at a natural gas liquids plant.  

“I phoned a bunch of supporters and mentors and my husband to find the bravery I needed to take the job,” Teresa remembers. She worried she’d wouldn’t live up to expectations and would be seen as a less-than-ideal mother if she took the job. Neither worry proved true. 

Looking back, Teresa says “not a lot of women have had the opportunities I’ve had in life.”  
Those opportunities have given her the skills, experience and confidence to make sure other women have such opportunities. She also likes “turning the tables” on long-held perspectives and attitudes. In one instance, she asked men go to a nail salon and report on if they felt they belonged. 
“That opened them up to setting up a task group to make more changes in the workplace; to make everyone feel welcome when they open the door.,” Teresa says.  
One such change was making sure control rooms at plants had washrooms for all genders, and the “art” on the walls included more than hockey stars. When the operations team in the control room offered to make her a bacon sandwich during her weekly visits, Teresa knew her suggestions and her presence was accepted. Plus, her approach put her on the path for more and bigger leadership roles. 

A family photo shoot after all receiving their iron rings.  

Teresa winning Mentor of the Year from the Oil and Energy UK industry association (OEUK). 

Teresa’s three children at the Fort McMurray Oilsands Discovery Centre.

No such thing as typical  

Teresa’s workdays are seldomly typical. Although she’s based in Calgary, the massive LNG Canada gas liquification and export facility is under construction in Kitimat, B.C., in the traditional territory of the Haisla Nation. 
“In a typical week, I’ll travel to Vancouver or Kitimat to meet with local stakeholders or government and participate in LNG Canada’s leadership team meetings to ensure alignment and context are clear,” she says.  
Communications are central to her job, speaking with her team, company leaders and stakeholders are a daily task. 
“I might speak at an event or attend an event.  I’ll keep up to date with local news related to the LNG industry. Each week I set aside time for mentoring, as it was such an important support in my career. I get a lot out of it, whether I’m the mentee or the mentor,” Teresa says.   
One of her most used skills is listening.  
“I’ve found that the core skill set I rely on is to listen to and learn from the deep expertise in my teams, she says. “No one person can hold every perspective clearly, and a key function I perform is really around knowing and sharing the business context and the nuance of who cares about what so we can prioritize our work and drive business delivery through our function.” 

Natural fit

Working at LNG Canada is a natural fit for Teresa.  
“I wanted to come to LNG Canada— it exemplifies my mission to turn my dad’s oilpatch into my daughter’s energy garden,” she says. “LNG Canada will be the lowest emissions liquefied natural gas facility of its size anywhere in the world. It’s really the start of an entirely new industry for Canada. We have a culture that celebrates and embraces a wide range of people who are working on the leading edge of operational technology to deliver a truly future focused workforce, plant, and industry. I am very motivated to be a part of that.”


LNG Canada


Based in Calgary, Alberta, Frequent visits to Vancouver, and Kitimat, British Columbia.  


Bachelor of Science in chemical engineering from Queen’s University. 

Salary, education and advancement may vary from company to company. 

To learn more about LNG, visit Liquefied Natural Gas.

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