Mr. Merali is a Program and Project Manager, Innovation with the City of Calgary, leading projects to enable and shape engagement of various technologies to better communities in one of Canada’s largest cities. He was recently a candidate for Ward 5 Councillor in the Calgary Municipal Elections on Oct 18th 2021.
He is also a Business, Project Management and Technical Services consultant via Escape Velocity Services Inc. developing innovative megaprojects at Fortune 500s through supporting growth of small and medium enterprises (SME) with organizations such as the Satellite Canada Innovation Network. Additionally, he is a Strategic Advisor and former Chief Operating Officer of 4pi Lab Inc. a Calgary-based space company providing unique early wildfire detection and monitoring capabilities using low-cost satellites for smart, real-time, global coverage.
He is Co-founder and Director of the non-profit Zenith Canada Pathways Foundation, a national merit based professional training and career development mentorship program designed to bridge critical knowledge and experience gaps between post-secondary and early-professional work experience to solidify transitional pipelines for a sustainable and highly-qualified Canadian aerospace industry workforce. Mr. Merali is a member of the International Astronautical Federation‘s Workforce Development-Young Professionals Programme Committee (WD/YPP).
Mr. Merali was previously based with the Canadian Space Agency’s Enterprise Project Management Office (EPMO). He has also contributed to systems engineering and project management deliverables for Canada’s contributions to the international lunar Gateway program, including Canadarm3. In 2018, he was recognized globally as a Top 35 Under 35 of the space industry, selected by a panel of industry movers & shakers (including former astronauts from USA, Canada and Korea) for his achievement, dedication, outreach and contribution to the space business.
He has worked in Aerospace, Energy & Automotive industries, recently as Chief Commercial Officer of the Canadian Space Commerce Association (CSCA) and as Owner and Principal of OrbitOne Consulting. Tahir held previous roles in Project Management in the Oil & Gas business accountable for delivery of USD $75 Million worth of equipment and developing innovative strategies and initiatives for Fortune 500 executives supporting company transformations including 3D Printing. He formerly worked at the European Space Agency’s (ESA) European Astronaut Center in Koln, Germany training crews as an astronaut instructor on International Space Station (ISS) systems and operations. He has visited facilities in Canada, Europe, Russia & the United States and has presented in 9+ nations with support of the Canadian Space Agency and Airbus Defence & Space.
He offers a unique perspective on the intercultural space community having spent 18 minutes in “weightlessness” aboard a parabolic flight, and developed 2 microgravity experiments that flew in orbit aboard the ISS in 2009 and 2012-2014. Recent engagement audiences include industry, academic and government attendees, in addition to scientific research publications and various conference proceedings globally. Mr. Merali is a graduate of the International Space University (M.Sc Space Management) and the University of Toronto (B.A.Sc Mechanical Engineering). He is a registered Professional Engineer (P. Eng.) with the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Alberta (APEGA), holds a PMI designation as a Project Management Professional (PMP), and is a PADI licensed Advanced Open Water Scuba Diver. Tahir was ranked qualified (Top-163) in the 2016 Canadian Astronaut Recruitment Campaign.
Innovative approaches | International perspectives | Customer-oriented system-minded technical design & business aptitude | Entrepreneurial spirit | Professional experience in energy, space/aerospace and automotive industries | Top35Under35 | International work experience including B2B, scientific research, and community ventures | Presented work in 9+ countries to variety of audiences