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UWindsor alumnus receives Professional of the Year nomination

The Windsor-Essex Regional Chamber of Commerce has nominated a UWindsor alumnus for its Professional of the Year Award, making him one of only a handful of engineers to receive the honour.

Sean McCann, a professional geological and civil engineer with 28-years of experience under his belt, said it’s not common for engineers to receive nominations in this category even though they play such an integral role in our society.  Only two engineers have won this award in the 27 years the chamber has hosted the event.

“Anything we sit on, touch, look at, go to work in, fly in — an engineer has touched it many times over,” said McCann, who was named Windsor-Essex County’s Engineer of the Year in 2016.

McCann received his Bachelor of Applied Science in geological engineering in 1989 and Master of Applied Science in civil engineering in 1993 from UWindsor. The father of four resides in Tecumseh and has been helping companies across the country secure funds through Canada’s Scientific Research and Experimental Development (SR&ED) Tax Credit Program since 2001.

“I get involved when there’s a problem they can’t readily solve,” he said. “I listen to their stories and problems, and try to interpret them. Canada as a whole is much stronger knowledge-wise thanks to the financial benefits companies receive through this program, based on the technological advancements achieved.”

McCann has been promoting engineering in Windsor and Essex County for more than 20 years through his volunteer role with the Windsor-Essex Chapter of Professional Engineers Ontario. Over the two-decade span, McCann has helped create a video promoting the engineering profession to students, organized countless engineering promotional events, initiated a lean manufacturing subcommittee for promoting lean principles, judged thousands of science fair projects and has taught technical and nontechnical courses at UWindsor and St. Clair College. He was inducted into the Professional Engineers Ontario Order of Honour at the member level and designated a Fellow of Engineers Canada for his volunteer service — a title bestowed to those who have contributed significantly to the engineering profession.

In 2012, he launched McCann International Consulting Enterprises, which he currently operates as president and senior engineer to assist hundreds of clients with their SR&ED claims in numerous industries in almost every province, through his technical writing skills and understanding of the engineering design principles.

“Sean is a strong advocate for the engineering profession on a very broad scale,” said Dr. Bill Altenhof, a UWindsor mechanical and materials engineering professor who has volunteered in the community with McCann in the past. “He understands that engineers require a strong and comprehensive education, mentoring, engagement and collaboration together in an appropriate network, and working together in a multi-disciplinary fashion to best benefit the profession and, very importantly, our society.  Sean’s efforts have resulted in impacts and significant contributions at the local municipality level but also at the provincial and national levels.”

The 27th Annual Business Excellence Awards took place on April 19, 2017 at Caesars Windsor. Watch the nomination video of McCann and the other finalists, including the winner, Holly Ward.