Winifred B. Kessler
Winifred Kessler’s 40-year career in wildlife science and management was divided between academic and government positions. She held teaching and research positions totaling 19 years at the University of Idaho, Utah State University, and the University of Northern British Columbia where she chaired the Forestry Program. She was the 1997 British Columbia Academic of the Year and in 2002 received an Outstanding Alumnus Award from Texas AM University. Her 21 years with the U.S. Forest Service included terms as the Alaska Regional Ecologist, the National Wildlife Ecologist, and in 2010 she retired as the Alaska Regional Director of Wildlife, Fisheries, Ecology, Watershed, and Subsistence Management. Dr. Kessler has been active in The Wildlife Society (TWS) throughout her career, becoming a Certified Wildlife Biologist in 1979, serving 6 years as Associate Editor for the Wildlife Society Bulletin, 6 years as the Northwest Section Representative to Council, and was the 2012-13 President of TWS. She was named a TWS Fellow in 2009 and in 2017 received the profession’s highest recognition, the Aldo Leopold Memorial Award. Other service includes 25 years as a professional member of the Boone & Crockett Club, 20 years on the HCTF Board of Directors, and 3 years on the National Board of Directors for Ducks Unlimited Canada. Her collaboration with Bruce Leopold and James Cummins resulted in the 2018 publication of the comprehensive textbook North American Wildlife Policy and Law. Dr. Kessler holds a Bachelor of Zoology and a Master of Range Management from the University of California at Berkeley, and a Ph.D. in Range Science from Texas A&M University.
Harvey Andrusak is the President of Redfish Consulting Limited in Nelson. He specializes as a biological consultant in freshwater fisheries biology, with expertise in kokanee and rainbow trout biology. Harvey has also served as Director, Fisheries Branch and Manager, Fish Culture in the Ministry of Environment, Lands and Parks and as the Regional Fisheries Biologist in the Ministry of Environment. Harvey is a graduate of the University of British Columbia with both a Bachelor of Science and a Master of Science.
Ian McGregor is the former Vice President of the Sports Fishing Division of the Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC. Prior to joining the Society, Ian worked for the Provincial Fish and Wildlife Branch, retiring in 2011 after 35 years of service. Ian worked several summers as a student for the Fish & Wildlife Branch on interior small lakes management before beginning his career as a steelhead biologist in 1977. He worked in both the marine and freshwater environment and has worked on steelhead issues on the central coast of British Columbia, on the east and west coast of Vancouver Island, and in the Fraser River drainage. In 1995 Ian became the Fisheries Section Head for the Thompson/Okanagan Region and then the Fish & Wildlife Section Head for the Thompson Region in 2002. More recently he became involved in large lake watershed management leading the Ministry of Environment, other government agencies, stakeholders and industry in progressive integrated management. Ian was involved in all aspects of provincial fisheries management and served as a FFSBC Board of Director from 2003-2011. He has a Master’s of Science from the University of Victoria specializing in fisheries and aquatic sciences. Ian and his wife Brenda McGregor live in Kamloops and have two children. Ian spends his leisure time on interior small lakes fishing and recreating on Shuswap Lake with his family.
Don Wilkins grew up in the Grand Forks – Christina Lake area of BC. Moving from Victoria to Prince George, with a degree in Education, he taught high school sciences for 33 years, retiring in 2006. In addition, he worked for 13 years as part time Provincial Emergency Program Area Coordinator. Don is an avid trapper, shooter and hunter. He is a past President of the BC Trappers Association and a past President of the Spruce City Wildlife Association. He has been a CORE instructor and is currently a Master Instructor for federal PAL courses. He has travelled the province extensively.
Ken received his B.Sc. and M.Sc. at UBC in the Zoology Department, specializing in aquatic ecology, and an M.A.Sc. and Ph.D. at UBC in the Faculty of Applied Sciences in Civil and Environmental Engineering. He worked for the Ministry of Environment in the Fisheries Research and Development Section on the UBC campus from 1979 to 2005, initially as a project biologist, and eventually as Section Head for Fisheries Restoration and Bioengineering. While in this position he conducted a set of large-scale adaptive management experiments, and is internationally recognized for his research in the design, operation and effects of hypolimnetic aeration systems, lake/reservoir fertilization, and stream/river enrichment. Ken received the Murray A. Newman Award for Significant Achievement in Aquatic Research in 1997, Fisheries Professional of the Year from the BC Ministry of Environment in 1999 and the Seth Diamond Award for Interdisciplinary Conservation Research from the University of Idaho-Moscow and University of Montana-Missoula in 2001. Ken transferred to the Greater Vancouver Regional District from 2005 to 2007 as Senior Engineer and was the project lead for the Environmental Management team, with responsibility for raw drinking water quality, and monitoring the environmental effects of wastewater discharges from the regions five wastewater treatment plants and municipal water withdrawals from the Capilano, Seymour and Coquitlam rivers. Dr. Ashley is currently Director of the Rivers Institute at BCIT, an instructor in BCIT’s Ecological Restoration Program and is an Adjunct Professor in Civil Engineering at UBC.
David is Executive Director of Knowledge Management Branch in the Ministry of Environment. He has worked for the provincial government since 1996 when he started in Kamloops with Fish and Wildlife Branch as the Regional Fish Inventory Specialist. David moved to Victoria in 2004, to become Business Applications Specialist focusing on systems and information technology to make fish and fish habitat information available to the public and decision makers. In 2007 he became manager of the Ecosystems Information Section and most recently Executive Director in 2014. The Knowledge Management Branch is currently responsible for: fish, wildlife and ecosystems information and systems; snow, ground water, surface water and other climate related data and information gathering networks; State of Environment reporting; the North Road Analytical Chemistry Lab; and, the JT Fyles Natural Resources Library. David is also one of the government representatives on the Fish and Wildlife Compensation Program – Columbia Board. Prior to joining the BC public service, David worked for 6 years as an environmental consultant and was involved with freshwater and marine projects around BC including: the Stikine, Haida Gwaii , the Lower Mainland and Vancouver Island. David holds a B.Sc. from UBC and is a Registered Professional Biologist. Away from the office, he enjoys cycling, swimming, boating and fishing, and lives in Victoria with his wife Jodi and their three children.
Al is a professional forester with 45 years experience spanning government and consulting. Born in Burns Lake, he lived in a variety of communities in the northwest while growing up, including Queen Charlotte City, Kitwanga, Terrace, and Prince Rupert. His early career saw him stationed in Houston, Lower Post, Ootsa Lake, and Smithers. During a second stint in Houston as forest district manager, he also served as president of the Professional Foresters Association, and board chair for Northwest Community College. In 1994 he was appointed regional manager for the Prince George Forest Region, and for awhile worked concurrently as executive director of Forest Practices Code Implementation. In 1998 he moved to Victoria to take on the role of vice president for land and resources at Forest Renewal BC and was later promoted to chief operating officer. In 2002 Al started his own consulting firm and has since worked with a wide variety of industries, communities, and governments across the province, nationally and internationally on natural resource and management matters. From 2004 to 2007 he served as president of the McGregor Model Forest and was a founding director of the Canadian Model Forest Network. He is a past member of the Forest Appeals Commission and Environmental Appeals Board and was chair of BC’s Forest Practices Board from 2010 to 2013. When not in Victoria or travelling, Al will likely be found at the family cabin on Uncha Lake.
Greg Anderson recently retired as the first Executive Director of the newly created Forest Enhancement Society of BC. This was Greg’s second retirement: in 2011, he retired following a combined 35-year career with both the BC and Alberta Forest Service. BC career highlights included, 13 years as an Operations Manager responsible for the day to day delivery of Forest District programs, during which time he also coordinated and led the “Enhanced Forest Management Pilot Project” that was established to develop innovative forest management practices for province-wide application. Greg initiated and led BC’s first “Rocky Mountain Trench Ecosystem Restoration” program from 1996-2006 and was a founding member and inaugural Chair of the British Columbia Prescribed Fire Council during that time. In 2004/05, Greg successfully completed an assignment as the government appointed decision maker responsible for implementing the Province’s controversial, recently passed “Bill 28 – Forestry Revitalization Act” in the central and southern interior. Serving as the Province’s first Ecosystem Restoration Manager from 2006 until his retirement, Greg was nominated for the British Columbia Forests Excellence Award in Forest Management in both 2009 and 2010 for his leadership in this role. Greg is currently Chair of the Columbia Basin Trust’s Environmental Advisory Committee and a technical advisor for their Basin Ecosystems Program Strategic Plan. He also sits on the Columbia Headwaters Community Forest’s Board of Directors and is a Scientific Advisor and project reviewer for the Columbia Valley Local Conservation Fund. Beyond natural resource management involvement, Greg is currently serving a second term as a Councillor for the District of Invermere and is a former School Board Trustee and Chair for Rocky Mountain School District #6.
Ex-Officio/Chief Executive Officer
Brian Springinotic joined the Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation in 2004, becoming Executive Director in 2005. Since joining the Foundation, he has led the organization through a transition from government agency to the current status as an independent not for profit charitable foundation. Prior to joining the Foundation, Brian started his working career in the forest industry and then moved on to a career with the provincial government, including several years in the conservation land management field as well as protected area policy, planning and management work. He has a degree in Resource Geography from UVIC as well as an Education degree from UBC.