The past year has been a difficult one for many of our members, both individual and corporate. Many people have lost work, changed employers or, in some cases, been forced to leave the geophysical industry altogether. Some of you may have been more personally affected by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, falling ill yourself, or dealing with the sickness of family or friends. To everyone experiencing COVID, or undergoing the stressful events associated with the pandemic, I wish you a quick recovery and a brighter future.
Our society has also been deeply impacted by the pandemic and all of the associated public health directives, industry downturn, and general economic distress. Your Board of Directors has worked diligently to preserve the financial integrity of the CSEG while maintaining as diverse and useful a series of educational events as possible. Our volunteers in numerous committees have continued to work tirelessly to provide you, as a member, with continuing education opportunities at lunchtime Zoom lectures, via a virtual Doodletrain and at a virtual GeoConvention. Our social events have, unfortunately, been a victim of the public health limits the province has imposed. I certainly didn’t expect to be the first CSEG president who never attended a social event, or to conduct an AGM via Zoom, but this is how we take care of each other during this time.
This pandemic year has also been a time of new initiatives, many of which, I believe, will continue to shape the CSEG long after COVID is a vaccinated memory. Shortly after the pandemic first arrived, we switched to holding our monthly lunch talks via Zoom. This virtual way of talking geophysics has been further developed at Doodletrain, GeoConvention and in numerous committee meetings. Many members have commented to me, via e-mail or Zoom, that these online technical sessions are, in some respects, superior to in person events. While everyone misses the chance to shake hands with old friends, and meet new colleagues in person, virtual meetings are also effective in many ways. This terrible year has had the unexpected benefit of forcing us to try new ways of communicating, learning and interacting. I believe those new ways will persist while we also welcome back many of our old familiar interactions when we can safely meet again.
In closing, I’d like to say that I feel privileged to have been CSEG President over this period. I have experienced the amazing things that our people will do when faced with adversity, yet still determined to deliver the objectives, programs and products they set out to accomplish. I know that same determined attitude exists throughout the Canadian geophysical and energy industry, and I believe all of you will carry our industry, our province and our country into a successful post-pandemic future.