Advisory Board and Committees

Advisory Board

WISEST is an associated unit of the Office of the Dean of Students, and is affiliated with the Career Centre. Our programs and initiatives are guided by an Advisory Volunteer Board lead by an Academic Co-Chair and Industry Co-Chair. The WISEST board consists of scientists, engineers, scholars, educators, and STEM students from the University of Alberta, industry, and the larger community. Under the direction of the Advisory Board, various committees oversee specific aspects of WISEST and its goals. Under the direction of the Advisory Board, various committees oversee specific aspects of WISEST and our goals.

Current Academic Co-Chair: Dr. Tian Tang

Dr. Tian Tang is a Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Alberta. She is a recipient of many awards, including the Alberta Ingenuity New Faculty Award, APEGA Early Accomplishment Award, Tier 2 Canada Research Chair, Martha Cook Piper Research Prize, as well as the Adhesion Society's Distinguished Paper Award and Outstanding Young Adhesion Scientist Award.

Dr. Tang received her Bachelor's degree in Engineering Mechanics from Tsinghua University in 2001, and a PhD in Theoretical and Applied Mechanics from Cornell University in 2005. Before joining the University of Alberta in 2017, she was a Visiting Research Scientist in the Chemical Engineering Department at Lehigh University. Her research interests involve the modeling and simulation of soft materials and interfaces - especially at micro- to nano- scales, and in biological systems, as well as applied computational analysis of nanostructures functional in a variety of applications, including environmental, biomedical, and nanotechnology.

Professor Tang

Current Industry Co-Chair: Dr. Lisa White

Lisa White is an Industrial Professor at the School of Engineering Safety and Risk Management in the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Alberta, and has over 15 years of professional and academic experience in Strategic Environmental Assessment, Environmental Risk Assessment, and Environmental Impact Assessment.

She has worked as an environmental consultant for over 11 years as a Project Manager, and in 2013 she received her Ph.D. in the area of Strategic Environmental Assessment for Sustainable Resource Development and Planning from the School of Environment and Sustainability at the University of Saskatchewan under Dr. Bram Noble. She was also awarded an Engineering MSc in the assessment of surface and groundwater contamination potential from point source pollutants in 2006 from the University of Saskatchewan.

Her research applied a strategic decision-making (SEA) framework in support of the development of energy resource policy that operationalized sustainability. This was accomplished by developing quantitative sustainability criteria linked to higher level social, environmental and economic sustainability principles and using an online assessment process to evaluate energy policy options. The structured decision-making framework provided for replicability, transparency, and accountability in the decision-making process; while the use of stakeholder focus groups and an online multi-criteria assessment process allowed for the meaningful participation of multi-party stakeholders.

Dr. White's most recent relevant project experience includes a Strategic Environmental Assessment for Parks Canada assessing the cumulative environmental impact of industrial development surrounding the Wood Buffalo National Park in Northern Alberta, as well as an environmental risk assessment for Alberta Transportation for a school expansion in Edmonton. Her other corporate experience in environmental management includes Environmental Scans and Reviews; Phase I and II Environmental Assessments; Environmental Impact Assessments; and project management and communications support.

Lisa also manages and leads multi-disciplinary projects and teams, and has been responsible for writing and editing many technical reports. 

Dr. White

Current Advisory Board Members

Tian Tang Academic Co-Chair
Lisa White Industry Co-Chair
Denise Hemmings Past Chair/FoMD
Blessie Mathew DoS Representative
Mandy Quon DoS Representative
Ingrid Pederson Program Committee Lead
Nancy Manchak Communications Committee Lead
Colleen Knetchel Secretary
Lisa Willis Faculty of Science Representative
Samantha Pearson Faculty of Science Representative
Edna Dach Education/Community Representative
Megha Bajaj WiSER Co-Chair
Zeenat Ladak WiSER Co-Chair
Gwyneth Lake UA-WiSE Co-Chair
Mary Nelson UA-WiSE Co-Chair
Fervone Goings WISEST Team Lead
Ben Tucker Faculty of Arts Representative
Heather Bruce Faculty of ALES


The WISEST Advisory Board is supported by four Board Standing Committees including:

Program Committee - to assist with strategic delivery and improvement of programs that achieves WISEST’s objectives

Communications Committee - to assist with strategic communications to achieve WISEST’s objectives, including audience identification, communication plan development and execution

External Relations Committee - to assist with external relations activities that achieves WISEST’s objectives including fundraising, funding diversification and networking.

Promotions and Recognition Committee - to assist with the promotion and recognition of WISEST

Committee membership is open to non-board members and the structure and meeting frequency of each is committee specific.  Each committee seeks to have diverse representation including the thoughtful inclusion of men, racialized women, a young adult (18 - 25), from a broad cross section of disciplines and with the goal to have a representative from each of the following sectors: industry, government, academic, education.