The Direct Horizontal Drilling team is responsible for the leadership, guidance and day-to-day operations of the company. Each member of the leadership team has direct hands-on experience in HDD, and particular expertise when it comes to operating in the tough geological and climactic conditions exemplified by Canadian operations.

Each of these industry experts has a comprehensive understanding of the unique challenges presented by Canadian HDD projects.

Executive Team

    Scott Gilles


As President of DHD, Scott can draw on his 30+ years of trenchless experience, which includes 13 years of field level work on both HDD and Downhole rigs.

With over a decade of field level drilling experience and 2 decades of trenchless engineering including project management Scott can offer a robust technical background to the DHD operations team.

  • Brian Sadoway

    Vice President

    Brian Sadoway’s oil and gas career started in the late 1960’s and progressed through ranks building his career from the ground floor up to international operations. Brian Sadoway has an amazing 55 years of drilling experience. Prior to assuming his role at Direct Horizontal in 2012 he managed operations for over 80 deep well drilling rigs for one of North America’s top drilling contractor.

    Brian has gained the broad-based experience and expertise in all aspects of drilling through hard work, determination and maintaining core values of safety, integrity, and reliability. As President, he has ingrained these values into our talented team as a standard of operation at all levels whether it’s on the floor of a rig or communicating with stakeholders at a management level. His commitment to providing a quality product and professional service while staying on schedule and within budget is second-to-none.

  • Management Team

    • Ryan Chase

      Operations Manager

      Ryan began his career with Direct Horizontal Drilling in 2001 as a roughneck and has since worked his way up to Operations Manager where he manages Directs state of the art drilling fleet.

      His extensive knowledge is utilized for designing and maintaining our custom built high performance rigs.

      Ryan carries responsibility for the day-to-day operations of Direct Horizontal Drilling.

    • Troy Cooke

      Field Supervisor

      Troy has 20+ years in the drilling industry, his expert knowledge has progressed him through the ranks to his current position.

      Troy has been the DIRECT Field Supervisor since 2009, and since that time has supervised field operations for some of the most difficult and complex HDD projects in the country. Nearly two decades of drilling experience in a variety of progressively more responsible roles has meant that Troy has a wealth of experience in the varied and diverse disciplines needed for successful operations in the field.

      Troy’s impressive resume includes successful completions of multiple HDD crossings ranging up to 1800 meters in length and ream diameters up to 60”.

    • Dustin Horatchka

      Field Supervisor

      Dustin started with Direct Horizontal Drilling in 2004.   He has progressed through the ranks and spent 12 years as a Rig Manager before becoming Field Supervisor.  He has gained experience in all aspects of horizontal directional drilling.

      Successful completion of multiple HDD crossings ranging up to 2300 meters in length and ream diameters up to 60″.

    • Alex Viveash

      Technical Manager

      Alex has worked for Direct Horizontal Drilling since 2014 beginning his career as a roughneck for both the maxi and light rig divisions.    Alex worked as a steering hand for 5 years and took over as Technical Manager in 2020. Alex has acquired first-hand knowledge in the design, preparation and execution of HDD crossings – he has had the opportunity to apply this knowledge to a diverse range of HDD settings.

      Alex assisted in Direct Horizontal Drillings transition from wired tool to wireless EM tool using in-house technology.

      Alex has experience in over 150 Crossings. Comprising of 30+ HDD Intersects; including the longest HDD intersect in Canada.

    • Jonathan Shier

      Health & Safety Manager

      If there is anyone who knows the true value of creating a culture of safety, it’s someone who has spent time as a roughneck.

      Jonathan’s early career began in such a manner, and it taught him early on just how valuable safety is on the jobsite. Over the past 10 years he has carried several titles on the operational side of the HDD industry but his career in health & safety began as the Field Safety Supervisor with DIRECT Horizontal Drilling. As the Health & Safety Manager he is mandated to provide leadership and mentorship to supervisors, workers, and other stakeholders promoting the company’s safety program. He ensures that all relevant legislation is incorporated into the strategic health, safety, and environment planning and takes a hands on approach to training staff.

      His commitment to Health & Safety is matched only by his dedication to lifelong learning, and Jonathan holds an enviable record of achievement and numerous certifications in his field.

    Business Development and Project Management Team

    • Rick Shipalesky

      Business Development Manager / Senior Project Manager

      Rick’s initial experience in the drilling industry began in 1978 where he was employed with an Alberta based drilling company for 15 years, experiences included drilling water wells, exploration drilling, foundation drilling, monitoring and dewatering drilling, then Field Drilling Supervisor.

      The knowledge gained from drilling experiences in various sub surface conditions around Alberta, Saskatchewan, British Columbia and Canada’s Arctic have proven to be an asset when doing an HDD crossing.

      Rick’s experience in the HDD Industry began in 1993 where he joined the team of D&KHorizontal where he began as driller, then Rig Manager. In 2001, Rick helped co-found Direct Horizontal Drilling Inc. where he presently is Business Development Manager / Projects Manager. Other duties while at Direct included Rig Manager, Drilling Supervisor, and Operations Manager.

    • David Fisher

      Business Development / Project/Contract Manager, Edmonton, AB

      To adequately meet the needs of customers, Business Development requires in-depth knowledge and extensive broad-based experience. David Fisher offers these qualifications as well as considerable know-how earned through years of specialty training and practical experience.

      David has worked his way through the ranks during since 1996 when he began his horizontal directional drilling career: he has served as a motorman, mudman, driller and most recently as rig manager.

      With this first-hand experience, David is eminently qualified to meet the needs of customers in the Edmonton area.

    • Ernesto Gabuat

      Project Manager, Edmonton, AB

      Ernesto Gabuat is a seasoned project management professional with extensive experience in the HDD industry.

      As a Project Manager, he is responsible for project team management, service delivery, and administration for a variety of our ongoing projects.

      For assigned projects, he is the primary client contact and is responsible for delivering a high quality project on time and within budget. It is his responsibility with other members of the project team to set goals and standards for overall project quality.

      Ernesto a graduate from NAIT in 2002, has spent his entire working career in the HDD industry.


    “We have the best people and equipment in the industry and we strive to maintain our innovative approach to the changing practices and technology to continue to provide the upmost service quality and process safety.”

    Scott Gilles, President