We proudly present the Region Stavanger ambassadors for 2016

Siri Ommedal og Odd Skjærseth - Nordsjørittet

Siri Ommedal and Odd Skjærseth from Nordsjørittet, through their passionate commitment to this sport, have elevated the event to become Norway's second largest within its sport. The event is for both the elite and exercisers, and the ambassadors have worked hard to include everyone, through measures such as a shorter course, a separate group without timing as well as several others to continue good development. The ambassadors have shown innovation and new thinking by connecting sports and health research through the Needed study, a research study about the health aspect of a long-distance race, where the race itself was the research lab over two years. The event has been developed to become an important social actor and contributes through the Rescue Action and an important value creation of the equivalent of 11 man-years in its one-day cycle race. One ambassador has contributed through board positions over a number of years right from the very beginning, the other through his position as general manager. In their way, they have worked on this event to become a spearhead in the region with the highest number of participants of annual large events in the region. They have managed to make the event a prestigious event and test of strength with great potential for growth and international participation.

Olav Thorsen og Svein Kjosavik - Rogaland Medical Doctors Union, Nordic Congress on General Practice, 2021

Olav Thorsen and Svein Kjosavik, with their passionate commitment and big visions, have lifted the entire professional environment to new heights. They have shown the region's great ability to collaborate and shown cleverness and proactivity to bring this prestigious professional conference to the Stavanger region. One of these two ambassadors is associated with Stavanger University Hospital, Rogaland medical doctors union, and the Research House, and in addition to being a specialist in general medicine, specialist supervisor, general practitioner and senior physician in Stavanger municipality, he has defended his doctorate from the Department of Global Health and social medicine from the University of Bergen. In 2013, he received the Løvetann award for his great efforts to strengthen the subject of general medicine - and all this in addition to working to bring this conference to the Stavanger region. The other ambassador is associated with Helse Vest, has a doctorate from UiB, is a postdoctoral fellow at Stavanger University Hospital and Research House, general practitioner, and regional project manager for drug safety and is now leading the development of a research group for early cancer diagnostics in Stavanger, to name a few.

Merete Vadla Madland – University of Stavanger / The National IOR Centre of Norway, The European Symposium on Improved Oil Recovery 2017

In 2017, Professor Vadla Madland will organise "The 19th European Symposium on Improved Oil Recovery", under the auspices of the European organisation: European Association of Geoscientists and Engineers; in collaboration with the National IOR Center and the Norwegian Research School in Petroleum, with up to 450 participants. The conference has previously been organised in The Hague, Paris, Cambridge and St. Petersburg, and now, at the University of Stavanger! The ambassador is associated with the University of Stavanger, and the Faculty of Science and Technology, at the Department of Petroleum Technology. The ambassador has a doctorate on the topic of water weakening in limestone reservoirs. She heads the National Center for Increased Oil Extraction where the University of Stavanger, IRIS and the Institute of Energy Technology (IFE) form the core of the Centre. This centre goes by the name The National IOR Centre of Norway. The centre contributes insight and research results to increase the extraction rate of petroleum resources from mature and new fields on the Norwegian continental shelf and was established in 2013 by the Ministry of Petroleum and Energy with the University of Stavanger as the host institution. She has supervised over 150 bachelor's, master's and doctoral students, is the author of more than 100 scientific publications in her field and has also been an invited speaker at several conferences/symposiums. Professor Merete Vadla Madland, University of Stavanger/ The National IOR Center of Norway.

Tor Helge Hetland and Knut B. Carlsen - Stavanger Sandnes Ice Skating Club, ISU World Cup Speed Skating 2016

These two ambassadors, with their passionate commitment over many years, have contributed to getting Sørmarka Arena in place and have since worked on the vision of bringing the World Cup on ice skates to the Stavanger region. They even contributed greatly to the championship becoming such a success and, together with Folkehallene, put the arena on the map as one of Europe's fastest lowland skating rinks. The event was such a success that two new championships have been added to the region now in 2017, and the championship was praised in all media and channels. The ambassadors truly represent the concept of zealots and have put in significant volunteer hours for their sport, in addition to their full professional careers. One ambassador has even won the Firefighter of the Year award for his work in getting Sørmarka Arena in place. Over several years, he has held a board position for his special association here in the circle and committed himself to the conditions and development of this sport (Tor Helge Hetland). Knut B. Carlsen has correspondingly won the circle's sports award and had a central role during the event. He has been both the leader of the club and his special circle and is considered a very solid resource person by the Norwegian Skating Association.

Leif Johan Sevland – Offshore Northern Seas, ONS Trade fair

He is the head of ONS, and together with the ONS team has built up the conference part of ONS to become an impressive "summit" of professional lectures and presentations, with impressive content with a heavy name and current topics that span much wider than only the oil and gas industry. The ONS conference contributes to royalty, heads of state and international group managers visiting the Stavanger region, and consolidates Stavanger's role as one of the world's most central energy cities. The ambassador has devoted large parts of his life to Stavanger! The person started in the "events industry" as manager of Forus Travbane. Later, he has been involved in taking the initiative for many things, including the World Energy Cities Partnership, of which Stavanger is a member. Here he sat as president for a full 7 years. He was a driving force behind the construction of, among other things, the Norwegian Oil Museum, and Stavanger concert hall, and played a key role when Stavanger became the European Capital of Culture.

Karl Gjedrem - Norwegian Choir Association Rogaland, National Choir Festival 2018

Events such as this are important to highlight the wonderful cultural life that exists here in the region, and the Norwegian Choral Association Rogaland and its leader have contributed to strengthening Stavanger's position as the Capital of Culture. Between 1,500 and 2,000 visitors came here in 2018 to fill the city's streets and alleyways with choral singing and music. The ambassador has been the leader of the Norwegian Choral Association Rogaland and is now also active in the Central Choral Association. The ambassador is politically active and extremely committed. He is musical and particularly fond of choral singing. As the leader of his association in Rogaland, he used his opportunity to bring the country's largest event and folk festival in its genre to the Stavanger region.

Jan Olav Johannessen - Stavanger University Hospital, The schizophrenia days

For having built up the schizophrenia days, to become an international and unique event. Schizophrenia Days has had more than 80,000 participants at the conference since its inception, and over 5,000 speakers have shared their knowledge. We in Region Stavanger have no less than 3 (!), projects in the works with him concerning international world congresses. The ambassador is the author and co-author of countless scientific articles and specialist books over the past 30 years. He is the chief physician at the psychiatric division at Stavanger University Hospital and professor of psychiatry at the Department of Health Sciences at the Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Stavanger. He has for several years been a champion of medical studies in Stavanger. He has received a research award from Helse Stavanger for a major effort to promote research in mental health, including on psychosis where he has developed new concepts to detect and treat this in an early phase, for which he has won great international recognition.

Professor Elaine Munthe – University of Stavanger, The International Congress for School Effectiveness and Improvement, 2019

Elaine Munthe, together with her colleagues and Region Stavanger, has worked out a world congress confirmed to the University of Stavanger. She and her team were with their colleagues in Canada, and presented their concept and won! The conference has up to 700 delegates and is organised by prestigious universities in the field. Elaine Munthe is associated with the Faculty of Humanities at the University of Stavanger, where she is a Professor of Pedagogy and also Dean. She has been a programme board member in the research programme PraksisFoU and (2006-2010) the programme Praksisrettet utdanningsforskning (PRAKUT, 2010-2014) at the Research Council of Norway, and was programme manager for Research and Innovation in Education Research (FINNUT) until the new year. She has a doctorate in pedagogy from the University of Oslo. She has a background from the Center for Behavioral Research, and from 2007-2010 she was an employee and head of department at the Department of Primary School Teacher Education, Sports and Special Education. She has research experience from Norwegian and foreign institutions and has lived for many years in the USA, Curacao, Pakistan and Laos. She is the author and co-author of several scientific articles and books in her field.

Olav Røysland - Norsvin Rogaland, The European Pig Producers Conference 2017

Olav Røysland, from Voll in Klepp municipality, is Norway's representative in The European Pig Producers Association. The organiser of the European pig producer congress gathers leading professionals from all over Europe in the Stavanger region. In agricultural Europe, animal health and animal welfare are under pressure and people like to say "Look to Norway", where we have very little use of antibiotics, and a successful focus on animal welfare by both consumers and politicians. The congress gathers around 400 participants and has previously been held in Dublin, Bruges and Parma, among others. Thanks to Olav Røysland, this important agricultural conference is coming to Norway for the first time! Olav Røysland is in many ways a typical Jærbu (person originating from Jæren), enterprising and innovative, with a commitment to value creation and development. He is the initiator of several events, including Agrovision, which is a huge agricultural fair with over 20,000 m2. He is active in both agriculture and the energy sector and is the man behind Jæren Biogass, which supplies energy to Klepp municipality. He holds many board positions, both national and international, and is a true ambassador for Jæren and the Stavanger region.

Odd Langhelle - Axelar, Blink festival

Odd Langhelle has an enormous commitment and considerable event experience. He focuses on being a facilitator and creating the best possible framework around an event so that the athletes can do what they do best. He has built up a significant international folk festival in skiing, which includes Norway's best profiles with around thirty medal winners from the previous WC. He is a committed Sandnes man with many irons in the fire. The ambassador has contributed to the fact that the ski festival has developed into today's popular meeting place of international class, a folk festival that gathers over 50,000 people in Sandnes. With the development of a separate cross-country race in 2016, also open to amateurs, he gave a new dimension to the ski festival and became a huge success. Last year, the ambassador renewed a seven-year agreement with NRK, and in 2015 the entry into Sandnes was Norway's most-watched TV feature. In 2016, the event won the Norwegian Ski Association's award for best skiing event – ironically, completely without snow! The event is naturally the Blink Ski Festival.