Chair and Managing Director

Having held several positions at a coal-based utility in the USA and hydrocarbon giants in Canada such as Suncor and Nexen and now as CEO at Borealis GeoPower and Director at Kitselas Geothermal, Alison Thompson has stood on both sides of what sometimes seems like a deep divide between renewable and non-renewable energy production. As an engineer she brings a depth of understanding of the technology behind energy production. Through her incredible diversity of experience, she has developed an intimate understanding of the political landscape and business culture of energy in Canada and beyond.

Her thought leadership and board participation are equally as diverse as her career experience. She is APEGA’s 2020 Centennial Leadership Award recipient. Borealis became the inaugural (2020) BC CleanTech Transformation Advocate award winner. A 2020 Clean50 Top Project Award for the “Fuel for Reconciliation” project was shared between Borealis and Kitselas Geothermal. Remarkably, both the Borealis (Sustainaville) and Kitselas (Fuel for Reconciliation) projects were included on The Future of Good’s Canada’s Top 100 Recovery Projects list for their COVID economic recovery potential. Regionally, she is a Fellow of The Natural Step’s Alberta Energy Futures Lab. Nationally, she is the Chair and a Founder of the Canadian Geothermal Energy Association. Globally, she was a director of the International Geothermal Association and remains a part of a committee charged with crafting geothermal resource specifications for the United Nations.

Locally she has served on the Board of Directors of Alberta Innovates. Nationally she was an Officer of Alterra Power (Magma Energy), a director of Youth Science Canada, an evaluator for the Canada Foundation for Innovation and a board member at Petroleum Technology Alliance Canada and Deep Earth Energy Production. Internationally she had a seat on the Executive Committee of the International Energy Agency’s Geothermal Implementing Agreement. She was also an Expert Evaluator for the European Commission and the US DOE’s geothermal programs and revised that role again in 2020.

She has dedicated a substantial part of her career to demonstrating that Canada does not have to choose between the economy and the environment. Alison enthusiastically leans into Borealis’ B Corp certification and uses the company as a force for good, especially around providing mentoring opportunities to women and youth, and fostering workplace inclusion and diversity. Borealis is proud that “Equal by 30” has globally recognized its diversity leadership.

She holds Bachelor and Master of Chemical Engineering degrees from McGill University, Professional Engineering designations from APEGA and EGBC as well as an MBA degree with a concentration in finance from Queen’s University. She has lived in France, US and Canada and is grateful for her family’s support and assistance.

Want to learn more about Alison’s work with the Energy Futures Lab?

Connect with Alison


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People need to start questioning why we've allowed ourselves to define energy and natural resources to mean carbon.

Alison Thompson

The EFL opportunity affords the chance for rich and meaningful discussion and evaluation of the energy alternatives. Too often, emerging energy choices have been shut down by an out of context sound byte about the cost of the alternative.

Alison Thompson