Oilfield safety, capitalizing on opportunities, priorities for 2020 Rising Star

Rising Star recipient Garrett Gramlich

Garrett Gramlich may be one of the youngest members of the distinguished Rising Stars group this year, but his maturity and performance in the field makes his age irrelevant.

Garrett has quickly risen up the ranks at privately-owned, natural gas focused Canlin Energy Corporation, which produces about 40,000 boe/d from fields in Alberta, Saskatchewan and B.C.

A production engineer for Canlin, Garrett has been with the company for four and a half years and has definitely left his mark on the firm.

Scott Waldner, Canlin’s general manager of production, who nominated his young colleague for the Rising Stars award, wrote glowingly about his role in the company.

“Garrett has turned our second lowest netback property into Canlin’s second highest netback property, during a time when natural gas prices have been at an all-time low,” Waldner wrote. “He consistently looks for new opportunities of responsibility by initiating discussions around incorporating new revenue streams (such as power generation and accessing new markets).”

Garrett’s post-secondary education included studying petroleum technology at Calgary’s Southern Alberta Institute of Technology and studying at Montana Tech, where he earned a Bachelor in Science in Petroleum Engineering.

For the young engineer in his 20s, becoming involved in the energy sector was a logical move.

“The biggest factor for me becoming involved in the energy industry was the fact my father has been in the industry for a long time,” he said. “He often took me to (oil and gas producing) sites.” 

He now has four and a half years of industry experience and, as production engineer he plays an important role with Canlin.

Garrett said he was very fortunate to have a mentor living in the same house where he grew up.
 


“My dad was a huge influence,” he said, adding multiple members of his family have been involved in the oil and gas sector.

Even though he entered the business during difficult times, Gramlich said one can’t dwell on the negatives. 

“You have to find ways to make money,” he said, “No matter how gloomy things appear.”

He said he’s fortunate to work with a company that can pivot when things get tough.

“Canlin has done a great job (of navigating through difficult markets),” he said. “When gas prices were very low, we looked at all of our operational costs and where we could save money.”

For him oilfield safety is vital, something he was involved in growing up in Rocky Mountain House. That commitment continues at Canlin.

“We need to prove that we’re doing things safely and ethically,” he said.

Garrett has no doubt he’ll be involved in the oil and gas industry for many decades because he’s an optimist about its future. 

“I strongly believe oil and gas will be important for the world for years to come,” he said.

While renewables will play an increasing role, natural gas will also play an important role in the energy future, he believes.

And five years down the road, where does the young engineer see himself?

“I don’t see myself going anywhere,” he said. “I think there’s a real opportunity with Canlin and I see myself in a senior management position (in the future).”