Donald Stanley has been a leader in the field of environmental engineering and has also achieved recognition of his numerous community, athletic and business endeavours.
Born October 18, 1917 in Edmonton, Donald Russell Stanley attended Eastwood High School and graduated with distinction from the University of Alberta with a bachelor of science degree in engineering in 1940. In 1988, the University of Alberta recognized Dr. Stanley’s contributions by conferring an honorary degree of doctor of science on him.
Although he participated in many sports throughout high school and university including basketball, football and soccer, his major accomplishments were as a hockey player. Like his father, Barney, a member of the Hockey Hall of Fame, Donald Stanley was an exceptional hockey player. He played with two Canadian teams, the Sudbury Wolves and the Edmonton Mercuries, at the World Hockey Championships in Sweden in 1949 and England in 1950, where Canada won the gold cup.
Following his service in the Royal Canadian Air Force as an engineering officer from 1942-45, Donald Stanley returned to Edmonton to begin his engineering career. He was the director of environmental engineering for the Government of Alberta and his responsibilities covered the entire province. During this period he received a Rockefeller Foundation Fellowship, allowing him to attend Harvard University where he received his master of science degree in 1948, followed by his doctorate in environmental engineering in 1953.
In 1954, Dr. Stanley founded Stanley Associates Engineering, a one-man operation that grew into Stanley Technology Group Inc., an international, multi-disciplinary organization with locations in over 40 countries world-wide. The group’s recent projects include the Confederation Bridge linking Prince Edward Island with mainland Canada, the rehabilitation of Edmonton’s High Level Bridge, as well as numerous water and transportation projects throughout the world. Dr. Stanley continues to serve the group as honorary chair of the board.
Throughout his professional career, Dr. Stanley served an innovator in developing techniques for the construction and operation of environmental installations. Malaysia, Philippines, Tanzania, and Canada have benefited from his methods. His business acumen and engineering abilities have resulted in numerous awards and honours. The Association of Consulting Engineers of Canada has twice honoured him with the first Carson F. Morrison Award in 1984 for his accomplishments in technical design, leadership in business, ethics and service to the engineering profession and with the Beaubien Award in 1996, which is the highest mark of distinction for a Canadian consulting engineer.
In 1997, the Canadian Society for Civil Engineering awarded him the Albert E. Berry Medal for lifelong achievement in the field of engineering. Induction into the University of Alberta’s Sports Wall of Fame in 1988 saluted his academic excellence and outstanding performance in athletics.
Dr. Stanley has been active in numerous community organizations. He served as president of both the Alberta and Edmonton Chambers of Commerce, as a member of the University of Alberta Senate and Board of Governors and as president of the Alumni Association. The Commonwealth Games in Edmonton in 1978 benefited from his effort as chair of the Facilities Committee. In 1993, he served as a member of the Alberta Round Table on Environment and Economy and the Legislative Review Panel on the Environment. Taking on wider-reaching responsibilities, he served as a member of the Expert Advisory Committee on Environmental Health for the World Health Organization and was a founding member and fellow of the Canadian Academy of Engineering.
A lifelong resident of Edmonton, Donald Stanley married Joan Bibby in 1960 and raised three children, Mary Louise, Russell and Donald.
Executive Director, The Alberta Order of Excellence