President & CEO
Mr. Gamba founded Canacol Energy Ltd. in 2008. He has held a variety of technical and management roles with major and mid-sized international oil companies, with the majority of his professional career focused on E&P in South America. Prior to creating Canacol, Mr. Gamba was Vice President of Exploration for Occidental Oil & Gas Company based in Bogota, Colombia. In his 8 years with Occidental, he has lived and worked in Ecuador, Qatar, Colombia, and the United States, working in a variety of technical and management roles. Mr. Gamba has also worked for Alberta Energy Company in Argentina and Ecuador, and for Canadian Occidental in Australia, Canada, and Indonesia. He started his career as a geologist with Imperial Oil in Calgary, and holds an MSc and PhD in Geology.
Mr. Bednar is a Chartered Accountant with more than 18 years of direct professional experience in the financial and regulatory management of oil and gas companies listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange, TSX Venture Exchange and American Stock Exchange. Mr. Bednar has been the CFO of several international oil and gas exploration companies, most notably the founding Chief Financial Officer of Pan Orient Energy Corp, a South East Asia exploration company, who during his tenure grew organically to operate 15,000 bbl/d and a market cap of $700 million. He has previously sat on the board of directors of several internationally focused E&P companies, including being the past Chairman of Gallic Energy Ltd. Mr. Bednar began his career in the chartered accountancy firm of Brown Smith Owen in 1993 before moving into financial controller roles at oil production companies. Mr. Bednar holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Saskatchewan.
Mr. Sharma joined Canacol in October 2015. He is a reservoir engineer with 30 years of oil and natural gas experience in the Americas, Middle East, Russia, Australasia, and Africa. He has held progressively senior management roles at major E&P companies worldwide, most recently Head of Production & Operations with Afren Plc. where he was responsible for production, development and operations activities in West Africa. Prior to this, Mr. Sharma was Global Petroleum Engineering Manager for BHP Billiton Petroleum. Mr. Sharma also held the position of Worldwide Chief Reservoir Engineer for Occidental Oil and Gas. Mr. Sharma holds a B.Sc. and M.Sc. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Alberta.
Mr. Teare joined Canacol Energy in early 2009. Previously, Mark was at AEC International and EnCana where he held a series of senior management positions in Ecuador and Brazil. Over his 30 year career, he has extensive experience with a number of senior international Canadian energy companies operating in North America, South America and Australasia. He holds a M.Sc. degree in Geology.
Dr. Luis Baena
EVP Business Development
Dr. Baena holds an MD, MPA, MIA from the Universities of Universidad Militar Nueva Granada, Universidad Externado de Colombia, and Columbia University of New York. He has significant experience in the public and the private sector in Colombia. In the public sector, Dr. Baena was the Secretary of Health of Bogota for 2 years and the Welfare Commissioner of the Country for 4 years. In the private sector, Dr. Baena has managed several enterprises, the last one being in the telecommunications industry which he sold to Telmex, a company owned by Carlos Slim. In the oil and gas industry, Dr. Baena represented BGP in Colombia as branch of CNPC, the Chinese Oil and Gas Company, and was one of the founders of Canacol Energy Ltd.
VP Business Development & General Counsel
Mr. Zaidi is a lawyer and businessman with significant experience in corporate finance and in the mining and energy sector in Colombia. Prior to joining Canacol, Mr. Zaidi was the President and General Counsel of Carrao Energy Ltd., a private oil and gas exploration company he co-founded and co-managed until its acquisition by the Corporation in November 2011. Prior to Carrao, he had been an officer or director of several private and public companies, including Integral Oil Services, Pacific Rubiales Energy, Petromagdalena Energy, Medoro Resources and others, as well as a securities lawyer at Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP. Mr. Zaidi holds a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Toronto as well as a Bachelor of Commerce (Finance) degree from McGill University.
VP New Ventures
Mr. Carvajal is a Geologist with over 30 years of experience in E&P activities, mainly in Colombia but also internationally. Prior to joining Canacol, Mr. Carvajal was the Chief Executive Officer of Carrao Energy Ltd., a private oil and gas exploration company he co-founded and co-managed until its acquisition by the Corporation in November 2011. He was the former Vice President Exploration of Ecopetrol (Colombian State Oil Company) and responsible for all exploration activities in country and overseas. Prior to that, Mr. Carvajal worked for Texaco and British Petroleum, both in Colombia and abroad. Mr. Carvajal has been President of the Colombian Association of Petroleum Geologists and Geophysicists (affiliated with AAPG) and a Professor at the Graduate School of Geoscience of the National University of Colombia.
President Canacol Energy Colombia
Mr. Lutz joined Canacol in August 2016. He is a petroleum engineer with 33 years of oil and natural gas experience in the Americas and Middle East. He has held progressively senior management roles at major E&P companies worldwide, most recently Operations Director Marcellus & Utica with Statoil ASA. Prior to this, Mr. Lutz was Director Operations Planning & Analysis for Occidental Petroleum. Mr. Lutz also held the positions of Asset Manager for the La Cira Infantas redevelopment and Operations Vice President for Cravo Norte concession for Occidental in Colombia. Mr. Lutz holds a B.Sc. in Petroleum Engineering from Stanford and an M.B.A. from Pepperdine University.
Mr. Acuña has 20 years of experience in the oil and gas industry in Colombia in the finance and administrative areas. Previously he worked for Cepsa Colombia as Finance, Administration and IT Manager and held various senior management positions in Petrocolombia S.A., including Finance and Administration Manager and General Manager of an affiliate operating company. He holds an MBA from Inalde, a MSc in Engineering-Economic Systems from Stanford University and a BSc in Civil Engineering from the Universidad de los Andes.
VP Tax & Corporate Affairs
Ms. Tracy Whitmore joined Canacol in 2013 with over 20 years of experience in international tax planning and consulting. Prior to joining Canacol she worked for a U.S. based technology company and at PwC as a Senior Manager in the International Tax Services Group helping clients with cross-border reorganizations, offshore financing and international acquisitions mainly in the energy industry. Ms. Whitmore is a Chartered Professional Accountant and holds an Honors in Business Administration degree from the Ivey Business School.