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The Usual Suspects

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Krista Balsom


Born and raised on Random Island, NL, Krista grew up dreaming BIG. Moving to Fort McMurray in 2001, she left to study political science at the University of Ottawa. Krista returned in 2009 after stints on Parliament Hill to work and put down further roots in Fort McMurray. Working for the RMWB, MacDonald Island, and then local MLA Don Scott has given her a diverse background in community engagement and local initiatives. Currently, she is the president and owner of Balsom Communications Inc., which is the publisher of YMM.


Andrew Johnstone

Creative Director

Graphic designer, illustrator, artist, photographer and author, being creative is not something Andrew does, it is who he is. Based in Staffordshire, he has extensive experience in completing successful designs for employers and freelance clients worldwide. Andrew has an MA in Communication Design from Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design, London, and is the author of two books, The Prehistoric Peak and How The Neolithics Influenced Rock 'n' Roll.


Pauline Crocker

CFO/Accounts Manager

Pauline has been providing administrative and finance support for a variety of companies and organizations in Fort McMurray and Clarenville, NL for the past 18 years. A Business Administration and Computerized Accounting graduate, she knows her way around a financial statement. Organized and results oriented, Pauline has a keen eye for detail and is excited to be part of the YMM team.

Tracy Morine

Marketing & Advertising Consultant

Tracy graduated from Dalhousie University in 2005 with a Bachelor of Commerce after which she moved to Vancouver, B.C. to work in Human Resources. A year later she was presented with the opportunity to move to Hull, England to work in sales. She returned to Canada in 2007 and joined her sister Kelly in Fort McMurray. For the past three years she has been working as an Account Manager with K-Rock and anyone that comes in contact with her knows her passion for both radio and classic rock!

Erika Beauchesne

Copy Editor

Erika is the online and wire editor at Fort McMurray's (#ymm's) only daily newspaper, The Today. Her work has appeared in trade publications, books, the Globe and Mail, the Edmonton Journal, and Toronto community newspapers. Erika has a Bachelor of Journalism from Ryerson University and a degree in English Literature from the University of Ottawa, where she worked for the House of Commons for several years.

Nicole Inzunza

Copy Editor

A member of the Corporate Training Department at Keyano College, Nicole has an advanced degree in English Literature and a background in English Language education. An activist for proper grammar, she has a reputation for whipping out her red pen at a moment's notice. Nicole prefers the role of inquisitive reader and believes that any idea can be made accessible to all readers when the audience is kept in mind. A six-year resident of Wood Buffalo, she has worked in the oil and gas, education and training, and non-profit sectors.

Alanna Bottrell

Feature Story Contributor

Mrs. McBain left several comments on Alanna's kindergarten report card that addressed the young girl's habit of verboseness and penchant for chatter. Compounding matters, she had (and still has) a speech impediment, which leaves her voice sounding like a chipmunk with a mouth full of marbles. So she learned to write. In the sixth grade, she was assigned a writing project featuring an interview with a person of her choice. Alanna chose Father Synnott and has been writing ever since. Today, Alanna works full-time in Marketing and Communications.

Russell Thomas

Opinion Editorial Contributor

Russell Thomas is a marketing and communications professional and has worked for Keyano College since 1999. He also has served several years as a Wood Buffalo Councillor. A passionate arts advocate, he spent 15 years at the helm of the Fort McMurray interPLAY Society which eventually grew into Events Wood Buffalo. He is a well-recognized ambassador for the region, and has spent the past five years trying to inspire a better understanding of this place he calls home, one conversation at a time. Russel can be found online at his blog


Theresa Wells

Opinion Editorial Contributor

Born in rural Saskatchewan, raised in Saskatoon, and having spent her early adult years in Toronto, Theresa arrived in Fort McMurray just over a decade ago with her family, and spent many of those ten years as a stay-at-home mom. In recent months she began an online blog called McMurray Musings, a community-focused adventure that has enriched her life in every possible way and can be found online at


Kevin Thornton

Opinion Editorial Contributor

Born in Kenya, Kevin has lived on five of the seven continents. He writes execrable poems, debauched short stories, opinionated newspaper columns, uncirculated novels and serves as the Crime Writers of Canada Regional Vice President. He can be found in the Saturday edition of the local paper, or at theoldfortamusingfromtheoilsands....


Nolan Haukeness

Opinion Editorial Contributor

Nolan is a broadcaster, writer and pop culture know-it-all. He has been in Fort McMurray since March of 2005 which is technically long enough to call himself a "townie". He is a lover of irony and BFF's with sarcasm. Catch him on the air from 5:00 to 10:00 a.m. Monday to Friday hosting The Show on Rock 97.9.