History of the CHOA
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History of the Canadian Heavy Oil Association

From its inception, the Canadian Heavy Oil Association has been about networking and connecting those working in the heavy oil industry.

The concept of the Canadian Heavy Oil Association was initially conceived in the mid-80s by a number of industry professionals who realized the need to create an informal forum for sharing ideas related to the heavy oil industry.

Different from other professional societies, the association would offer broad participation to heavy oil industry representatives including members of the service and regulatory sectors. Membership would also not be restricted to professional status as required by other traditional associations, such as the SPE, PS-CIM, and the CSPG. In addition, a strong social component would be added to provide an atmosphere to promote effective networking.

In 1986, the CHOA was incorporated through the Alberta Societies Act with its first president, Mr. Ken MacRae. As the membership expanded, the offerings of technical and social events grew. Membership fluctuated through the mid-90s with the turndown in the heavy oil industry due to oil prices. As a result of this slowdown, concerns were raised about the long-term viability of the Association. But with the return of strong pricing through the late 90s, membership and even participation dramatically increased, particularly as a result of the strong interest in Alberta oil sands development.

In 2010, the CHOA adopted a new set of bylaws that restructured the governance of the Association to create a Board of Directors focused on strategic governing of the Association, and hired an Executive Director to manage the day-to-day affairs of the Association.


Canadian Heavy Oil Association
#100 221 10th Ave SE
Calgary, Alberta T2G 0V9