Eddie Gardner (T’it’elem Spath), born March 3, 1946 in Hope, BC is a member of the Skwah First Nation. He graduated from the University of Prince Edward Island in 1972 with a Bachelor of Arts in the Social Sciences. Eddie worked for a variety of federal, provincial, First Nations and private sector employers in designing, coordinating, directing and delivering a broad range of programs and services from an Aboriginal world view.
Eddie is currently an Elder-in-Residence with the University of the Fraser Valley. Eddie conducts sweat lodge ceremonies, medicine wheel workshops, and provides Indigenous students with encouragement, guidance and support to achieve academic excellence. Eddie does lectures and presentations to classes on a variety of topics from an Indigenous perspective.
Eddie is devoted to working with First Nations authorities, Salmon Are Sacred, environmental groups, scientists to protect and restore wild salmon. Eddie believes an essential first step for restoring wild salmon is to remove open net feedlots from their migration routes due to deadly, mutating viruses and diseases stemming from those feedlots that could bring wild salmon to extinction.
Aurash understands that the shape of our planet is within the hands of the species with the most impact: humans. He is critical on the lifestyle of our species and how our industrial and household practices can alter the future of this world. Achieving a BSc. in Biology from The University of British Columbia, Aurash is a proponent of sustainability on all levels and he believes that the individual decisions each human takes, collectively has significant consequences on our species-level carbon footprint. Aurash believes that educating the public on environmentally-oriented issues is essential in order to become a “greener” species. By writing for the Footprint Press, Aurash aims to educate people on how commercial industrial practices (like salmon farming) can harm the environment and that by gaining this knowledge, each individual will consider taking more sustainable actions.
Chrissy believes in the combination of creativity and nature as both elements have this wonderful way of transforming into something sensational and fantastic. Plants and animals alike, have been her inspiration and motivation to draw and paint as every given opportunity is a chance for her to submerge herself into better understanding their form, behaviour, and significance. Each drawing presents the possibility to go beyond what she sees and knows, but to become personally connected through empathy.
Her enthusiasm for art making and passion towards the preservation of nature, exceeds the paintbrush and pencil as she dreams of an earth where plants, animals and humans live in a harmonious understanding. Art is the perfect instrument to express that dream.
She has been a student of art for a good portion of her life; she began to draw as a child growing up in Ontario. “Moving to British Columbia, two and half years ago was my calling to expand my knowledge and love of art through University education. As a tree-hugger, vegan, avid hiker and nature enthusiast, British Columbia’s backdrop of majestic mountains and lush vegetation has been and will continue to be my true calling.”
Lynn Perrin, of Abbotsford, has a Master’s degree in Public Policy, and has also studied Economics, Political Analysis, Policy Analysis, Quantitative Research Methods, Program Evaluation, Health Policy, First Nations Policy, and Strategic Planning. She conducted a major research project on policies to promote the security and development of Farmers’ Markets in BC, and ran a small farm in which she raised free-range pork, beef and poultry from 1978-1991. Currently employed as a legal researcher specializing in Freedom of Information, strategic planning, outreach and advocacy for a small forest company, Lynn is also very active in the community. She opposed the SE2 proposal, has been a member of the Southern Gulf Islands Board of Variance – a tribunal to hear appeals to municipal by-laws, Co-chaired the BC NDP Standing Committee on Agriculture from 2003-2005, was the Director of the Abbotsford Arts Council from 2003-4, volunteered for the Glen Valley Organic Farm Co-operative from 2003-5, and volunteered for the Abbotsford Farm and Country Market community input committee. Lynn is presently the official Abbotsford spokesperson for the Abbotsford-Mission Waterwatch group which ran a successful campaign against the Stave Lake P3 proposal, and is a member of the PIPE Up network. See Lynn’s blog, http://justpoliticsinabbotsford.wordpress.com/
Megan Sjogren is a local artist in the Lower Mainland. She is current pursuing her bachelor of Fine Arts degree at the University of the Fraser Valley. Along with her passion for Arts, she has a strong passion for animals and our environment.
Dr. Ken Macquisten is a practicing companion animal veterinarian in Abbotsford. He is also a wildlife veterinarian, former Zoo Director, a founder of the Grouse Mountain Refuge for Endangered Wildlife and the Kicking Horse Grizzly Bear Refuge, lead veterinarian for the Northern Spotted Owl breeding project, and is a Recovery Team Member of the highly endangered Oregon Spotted Frog.
Mike is recently married and has lived in Mission for the last four years. He is a proud parent of two adult children. He has worked as a social worker for the last 25 years and for the last 9 years in the role as a collaborative practices facilitator with the Ministry for Children and Family Development. He is also a BCGEU Shop Steward in Local 604. He is community minded and has a track record of being community involved. He is Chair of the Board for the Wilderness Committee, a member of the Blue Mountain Kanaka Creek Conservation Group and has also been active in the Pitt Polder Preservation Society based in Maple Ridge. He has acted as a strong advocate for protection of our Agricultural Land Reserve. He has been very active in the Green Party both federally and provincially and is an active member of CAUSS.
Sylvia Pincott has had a lifetime interest in caring for the natural world. In 1994 she initiated Backyard Habitat, a community environmental initiative of the City for Abbotsford to encourage “backyard” stewardship, and an appreciation for and understanding of “backyard biodiversity”, wildlife habitat requirements, and the essential interconnections between native plant and animal species. Backyard Habitat became a pilot program for the province-wide Naturescape British Columbia, Caring for Wildlife Habitat at Home, for which she is Naturalist Advisor and member of the Advisory Committee overseeing the program.
Having moved to Pender Island eight years ago, Sylvia’s focus is now more on “island” issues. She is President of the Pender Islands Conservancy Association, and for 2010, received from Islands Trust (the governing body for the Gulf Islands), their Stewardship Award for Enduring Achievement.
The Pincotts have placed a Conservation Covenant on their Pender property, ensuring that its natural values will be protected in perpetuity – as they did on their Abbotsford property before beginning the island chapter of their life.
Bruce Klassen and his wife Eileen have been residents of Silverdale, Mission since 1988. An avid photographer, specializing in nature and macro images, Bruce draws his creative inspiration from the beautiful and abundant threatened biodiversity that is found in the 5 acre woodland in which he stewards. Bruce has been CAUSS’ photographer since its inception 10 years ago. He was also the photographer for the Fraser Valley Bald Eagle Festival. His photos of community events have been featured in the Mission Record and Times newspapers.
Bruce is highly active in the conservation movement and is a long standing member of the Central Valley Naturalists, CAUSS, Mission of Streams, Silverdale Wetlands Committee, Stave Valley Salmonoid Enhancement Society and the Streamkeepers. In addition to his photographical contributions, Bruce is active in civic affairs including member of the Mission Heritage committee, the Mission Official Community Plan planning committee, and Mission’s Environmental Charter committee.
Having lived in the Fraser Valley for the past 20 years, Elena Edwards has seen the ongoing environmental degradation of the natural world that she loves. She considers herself fortunate to have grown up near the Fraser River and away from suburbia, where she formed an intimate relationship with the world of plants, animals, trees, mountains, and more.
In the past 20 years she has seen all of this torn apart and poisoned by industrial development, industrial agricultural practices, sprawl, and the actions of a society that seems to have an overall disregard for the importance of protecting and respecting the very nature of the earth that keeps us alive.
In the past few years she has become proactive in doing what she can to help protect what still remains of a natural environment, and in 2009 organized the Mission World Community Film Festival along with a dedicated committee of fellow nature lovers and activists for a more just world all around. That same year, she became a member of CAUSS, and now seeks to bring additional support to raising the level of awareness and instigate action against the threats to wilderness.