Trainer Biographies

We believe that an excellent trainer not only teaches, but also uses the tools in practice.

Mary Lynn Backstrom, PMP, PMI-SP
Implementation Specialist

Mary Lynn spent many years filling a variety of project controls duties such as planning, scheduling, analyzing, training and continuous improvement in the Aerospace Industry.

Since joining Emerald in 2008, she has been a leader on the Petro Canada project which involved business process redesign; the design of templates as well as customization of Web Updater and Dashboards for use at the Refinery in Edmonton. Mary Lynn has worked an impressive variety of projects with success. She has led sessions for review and troubleshooting of scheduling and reporting at Shell, as well as worked on the Agrium Vault project to produce the Level 3 Owner Schedule with linking to the Master Schedule across numerous disciplines and organizations. Mary Lynn designed and delivered customized training at Vale Inco across their scheduling organization, led the P6 rollout component of the Direct Energy project controls implementation of Contract Management, P6 and Time Control for their Canadian organization, and has also worked at Suncor Firebag as a lead scheduler on three Turnarounds and assisted Alberta EnviroFuels and Imperial (Strathcona) with their turnaround schedules.

Mary Lynn has provided classroom and onsite scheduling and project management process training for the Turnaround group at Syncrude as well as assisting on Syncrude’s Snowy Owl Turnaround. She has provided on site schedule assistance to Syncrude’s Ursa Major Turnaround Team, and Syncrude’s Project Olympus Turnaround Team. She has also provided training at Suncor and schedule assistance to BHP Billiton on their Jansen project.She has also worked with URS Flint on their P6 rollout. Mary Lynn is a sought after trainer with Emerald and has trained in all the major cities in Canada.

Mary Lynn enjoys some very diverse spare time activities. Along with a variety of outdoor activities she also enjoys making life size lawn ornaments for special holidays such as Christmas. Mary Lynn is known for participation in the community as well. You may have seen her walking a fundraiser in Edmonton for the Cancer Society.She has walked 420K in support of Cancer Research and Care in Alberta. She has participated in the Edmonton Relay for Life - June 2013 and also in the CIBC Run for the Cure in Edmonton in October 2013, 2014 and 2015.

Susan Hopkins
Implementation Specialist

Sue has a B.A. in Management Information Systems and Accounting from the University of Wyoming. The first ten years of her career were spent with a natural gas pipeline company. She began in accounting and was quickly included on pipeline project teams, which led to her assignment to an implementation team for Oracle Financial software. In the following years, Sue worked part-time as an office manager and substitute teacher while she raised her children.

When she re-entered the workforce full-time, she joined the Wyoming Department of Transportation (WYDOT) where she spent two years helping to build their new Highway Project Delivery team. Sue was a valued member of the team working as the Primavera Systems Administrator where she was responsible for administering Oracle Primavera software for over 200 users and more than 300 projects. While at WYDOT, she also gained valuable experience managing projects; she coordinated quarterly meetings with each of the five districts and managed the design portion of all WYDOT Roadway Projects. Drawing on her accounting background, Sue designed reports in SAP Business/Web Intelligence software that included both written queries and formatted reports. Sue also created and taught in-house training courses on Primavera P6 and SAP Business /Web Intelligence to WYDOT.

At Emerald Associates, Sue is an Implementation Specialist and has been successful at drawing on her accounting and project management background to consult with our diverse client base. With her friendly demeanor and strong communication skills, she has become a talented Primavera trainer and works very hard to effectively implement Oracle Primavera solutions that cater to each client’s unique organizational needs.

Sue has been working as a consultant with Tesoro on their P6 database consolidation setup and migration using Emerald’s P6-Loader extensively, making the migration and database cleanup much easier and efficient. She has also worked with Husky on scheduling, reporting and resource leveling during a recent turnaround, as well as assisting them in using Emerald’s TAPS tool for updating their schedules, EP-datawarehouse to snapshot their data and EP-dashboard for comparing and reporting their data and progress.

Sue enjoys a wide variety of outdoor activities including camping, fishing and hunting. She also spends time volunteering with the Indians Committee for the Cheyenne Frontier Days rodeo where she is co-chair of the social committee.