National Board of Directors, Yellowknife, NWT, June 2019 (Photo by NCC)

National Board of Directors, Yellowknife, NWT, June 2019 (Photo by NCC)

National Board of Directors

The Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) is governed by a National Board with support from seven Regional Boards. In total, more than 120 representatives from the scientific and business communities across the country are involved in ensuring the effective governance and management of NCC.

The National Board of Directors is composed of 16 volunteer members made up of a diverse group of leaders who bring a variety of talents, experiences and expertise to the governance of NCC.

The Board's primary role is to oversee management and ensure NCC's affairs are being conducted in a way that achieves its objectives. Directors of the Board are elected by the Members of the Corporation for a term of three years, and are eligible for re-election provided that they have not served more than six consecutive years.

Officers

  • Mike Pedersen, Chair

    Chair of the board, Business Development Bank of Canada
    Toronto, ON

    Mike Pedersen serves on several boards of directors after a long career in financial services.

    He is currently the chair of the board, Business Development Bank of Canada. Until 2017, Mike was president and CEO, TD Bank, America’s Most Convenient Bank, a top-10 bank in the United States. He was also responsible for overseeing TD Bank Group's environmental strategies and activities for 10 years. Prior to that, he held senior leadership roles managing large businesses around the world. He is also a former chair of the Canadian Bankers Association.

    Mike continues his long-standing involvement in not-for-profit work in Canada, including the environment and sustainability. He and his family are passionate about conservation and Canada’s outdoors, and have canoed, kayaked and hiked all over the country for decades.

    Mike is proud to serve on NCC’s board.

  • Janice Wattis, Vice Chair

    West Vancouver, BC

    Janice Wattis’s love of nature led her to study earth sciences and to work as a park interpreter for the City of Winnipeg and the Province of Manitoba. She studied law in Victoria, BC, practising for many years in Vancouver, BC, and Oakville, Ontario. Most recently, Janice served as vice-president, legal with an international engineering firm, providing professional services in the natural resource industry sectors. She has wide experience in risk identification and management, compliance matters and professional management.

    Janice has been a long-time supporter of NCC and was thrilled to join the BC Regional Board in 2015. She has also served on the Chimo Community Services Board (Richmond, BC) and the PTA of St. Gabriel’s School (Bridgetown, Barbados). She has participated in Vancouver’s Giving Circle and has raised funds for other charitable organizations, including the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada.

    In her spare time, Janice hikes, swims, kayaks, snowshoes and travels.

  • Elana Rosenfeld, Past Chair

    Kicking Horse Coffee, CEO & co-founder
    Invermere, BC

    Elana Rosenfeld is the CEO and co-founder of Kicking Horse Coffee, situated in Canada's Rocky Mountains. Elana promotes values-driven business, not business-driven values. This ethic has propelled Kicking Horse Coffee to gain recognition as North America's #1 Organic & Fairtrade coffee company, Canada's Most Trusted Brand (Coffee/Tea Category) and Canada's Best Place To Work.

    Elana is committed to embedding sustainability principles into all areas of business; to developing better, healthier options for coffee farmers and coffee drinkers alike. She devotes considerable capacity to working with organizations who conserve, protect and enhance the world's natural values.

    Elana lives, works and plays in the mountains, and enjoys skiing, mountain biking, hiking and meditation in her natural surroundings.

    The Nature Conservancy of Canada and Kicking Horse Coffee have been proud partners for over a decade.

  • Catherine Grenier, President & CEO

    Catherine Grenier joined the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) as its president and CEO on September 28, 2020.

    An award-winning leader, Grenier has held executive positions with some of Canada’s foremost nature conservation organizations. Prior to joining NCC, Grenier served as vice president for national parks operations with Sépaq. She was responsible for the management and development of 27 Quebec parks and resorts. Grenier mobilized the Sépaq team to generate an increase of more than 40 per cent in visits to the province’s parks network.

    Prior to joining Sépaq, Grenier held senior roles with Parks Canada. Among her achievements there, she led the process to create Canada’s first national urban park, in Toronto’s Rouge Valley.

    Grenier holds a bachelor’s degree in public administration from Carleton University and a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Ottawa. She received the 2016 Award of Excellence from the Canadian Parks Council in recognition of her community leadership. Her work in protected areas has been recognized with several awards including the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2012.

    Grenier says she is thrilled to be joining the Nature Conservancy of Canada. “I am honoured to have been selected to lead a team which is shaping the future of conservation in Canada,” she said. “This is such a unique opportunity to accelerate the scope and scale of conservation in our country, to connect with Canadians, and to build lasting support for nature. I can’t wait to get started.”

    Grenier took over the position from John Lounds, who led the organization through 24 years of exceptional growth and success.

  • Michael Paskewitz, Executive Manager & Corporate Secretary, Office of the President and CEO

    Michael Paskewitz is the executive manager and corporate secretary in the Office of the President and CEO at the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC). He brings 10+ years experience in non-profit management, public affairs, governance and communications, and a passion to make Canada a world leader in nature conservation.

    He has a BA in political studies and media from Queen’s University and is completing the master of Philanthropy and Non-Profit Leadership program at Carleton University. Prior to his time at NCC, he worked to enhance the public affairs and organizational capacity of international non-profits, including the Canadian Executive Service Organization and as a board member with the Ontario Council for International Cooperation. This also provided him the opportunity to work internationally, including in Guyana and the Philippines. He has also spent time in Ottawa working as a political staffer in the Leader’s Office of a federal political party. His public affairs work has led to positive public policy outcomes for environmental and international development efforts.

    Michael developed his passion for nature during his upbringing in Hong Kong and Manitoba, where he regularly hiked Hong Kong’s many mountains and spent summers by Lake Winnipeg.

Directors

  • Alexandra Blum

    Founder, Silver Lining Marketing
    Oakville, ON

    Alexandra Blum is a marketing executive, specializing in building brands with purpose.

    She is the founder of Silver Lining Marketing, a customer experience company known for taking brands from relevant to remarkable by increasing their emotional connection with consumers through hospitality-inspired training and brand strategies. 

    Alexandra has served as chief marketing officer of Tricon Capital Group and spent over a decade at Fairmont Hotels & Resorts, including in the role of vice-president of Global Communications and Partnerships. Alexandra has served as a Board member of Butterfield & Robinson and the Ivey Business School Alumni Network. 

    Her parents, who both loved the outdoors and all the benefits it brought their physical and mental health, inspired her love of nature. Alexandra is a proud supporter and firm believer in the Nature Conservancy of Canada’s vision, and its value as a marketing partner to Canada’s most admired companies. 

    Alexandra lives in Oakville, Ontario, with her husband, Oliver, and son, Max, and loves her morning walks with family dog, Erin. 

  • Ann Worth

    President, Worth Consulting Group
    Bonshaw, PEI

    Ann Worth brings a broad range of professional experience as Chair of the Nature Conservancy of Canada’s Atlantic Regional Board. Ann is a PEI-based international business consultant who first joined the Atlantic Regional Board of directors in the fall of 2019. She has over 35 years of business experience and her professional background includes tourism, real estate, consumer products, agriculture, fisheries, sustainable development and international trade. Ann has served in various leadership positions, including Meetings and Conventions Prince Edward Island, PEI Aquaculture Alliance and Atlantic Canada Food Export Partnership. Most recently, Ann has been actively engaged as a commercial real estate advisor for Cushman and Wakefield Atlantic.

    An outdoor enthusiast, Ann lives in Bonshaw, a small PEI community celebrated for its natural beauty and commitment to conservation.

  • Robert (Bob) Sutton

    Managing Partner, Korn Ferry
    Calgary, AB

    Robert J. Sutton is a managing partner in Calgary for Korn Ferry. He is also a member of the Firm’s Global Industrial Market’s Energy Sector, as well as the Firm’s Board & CEO Services group.

    Bob has been involved in an extensive number of pan-North America and international assignments, with functional emphasis on board directors, CEOs, corporate directors, general management, financial management, corporate finance, engineering, exploration and operations management.

    Bob entered the executive recruitment business over 25 years ago with a search firm in Toronto. During his tenure, he was a partner in their Calgary office and led the firm’s energy practice for 10 years. He has conducted more than 500 senior-level searches for clients in a variety of industries, with a primary focus on the energy sector, and has specific expertise in the upstream, midstream, downstream and energy services industries.

    Prior to his executive search career, Bob was a divisional vice-president with Madison Chemical Industries, a chemical manufacturer specializing in advanced polyurethane products. Previously, he was a sales representative for Procter and Gamble in Ottawa and co-managed Regional Drilling, a seismic drilling contractor that operated in Alberta and Oklahoma.

    Bob served on the Alberta Children’s Hospital Foundation Board for several years and is a past member of the Campaign Cabinet of the United Way. He currently sits on the Board of West Island College.

    He holds a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Western Ontario, as well as a bachelor’s in general studies from the University of Michigan.

    He is an avid cyclist, skier and fly fisher, and enjoys spending time in the backcountry with friends and family.

  • Bruce Cooper

    CEO, TD Asset Management, SVP, TD Bank Group
    Toronto, ON

    Bruce Cooper is CEO of TD Asset Management (TDAM) as well as senior vice president of TD Bank Group. He is responsible for all TDAM business, including investment management, TD Greystone, mutual funds, operations, risk management and distribution. He has been with TDAM for more than 25 years and has worked in both Toronto and the U.K., managing Canadian, U.S. and global equities across a variety of mandates. Bruce holds a bachelor of commerce degree from Queen’s University, an MA in political science from McGill University and is a CFA charterholder.

  • Bruce Wright

    Partner, MLT Aikins
    Vancouver, BC

    Bruce Wright is a significant philanthropist in Vancouver, a partner at the law firm MLT Aikins and a former managing director at Goodmans LLC. He is a past-chair of the Vancouver Opera Foundation and the Vancouver Art Gallery. In addition to a deep love of the arts, Bruce is passionate about nature and animals.

  • Céline Legendre

    Westmount, Quebec

    Céline Legendre is a partner at Osler and part of the firm’s National Litigation group. She studied political science and law at the Université de Montréal.

    Céline is passionate about nature. She has been associated with the Nature Conservancy of Canada since 2016 as a Regional Board member and recently as a National Board member. She spends as much time as possible outdoors with her family.

  • Chloe Dragon Smith

    Canadian Parks Council
    Yellowknife, NWT

    Chloe Dragon Smith is a young Métis woman from Yellowknife, Northwest Territories. Of Chipewyan and European heritage, she grew up close to her Indigenous cultural values and learned traditional skills for living on the land. This northern upbringing helped shape her values today.
     
    Chloe holds a degree in Earth sciences from the University of Victoria. While educated in science, she is keenly interested in and has found her niche working with people on the social/cultural benefits of the natural world, particularly where those values meet science and conservation.
     
    Chloe works with the Canadian Parks Council. Among other work, she co-chaired an intergenerational citizen working group that created a document called The Nature Playbook: Take action to connect a new generation of Canadians with Nature, which she continues to share across Canada. This project spans the continuum of nature, reaching all generations in cities, regions, states/provinces and countries. Chloe was also recently appointed to the National Advisory Panel for the Pathway to Canada Target 1.

  • Dave Phillips

    Lumsden, SK

    Dave Phillips enjoyed a 40-year career in natural resource management with various agencies and ministries in Saskatchewan. His early work focused on managing Ducks Unlimited Canada's Cumberland Marshes Project between 1979 and 1985, developing a long-term project operating plan to optimize fur and waterfowl production within this 150,000-hectare (370,658-acre) marsh complex.

    He served as assistant deputy minister with Saskatchewan Environment between 1998 and 2008, and as director general responsible for environmental adaptation and practice change with Agriculture and Agri-food Canada between 2008 and 2013. Over the course of his career in natural resource management, he has developed extensive experience in Indigenous relations, operational planning and policy development.

  • Dorothy Sanford

    President, MFDA Investor Protection Corporation and corporate director
    Toronto, ON

    Dorothy Sanford has a long association with the Nature Conservancy of Canada, starting in 2001 when she joined the board and became chair of the Audit Committee until 2007. She re-joined NCC's Audit Committee in 2013 and the board in 2016. She is deeply committed to supporting NCC's mission of preserving Canada's natural landscape.

    Dorothy is a fellow of the Ontario Institute of Chartered Professional Accountants, and had a long and distinguished career as a securities regulator. She currently runs a compensation fund for mutual fund dealers and serves as a corporate director.

  • Judith May

    Regina, Saskatchewan

    Judith May has 11 years of experience in executive decision making and board and government briefing. She worked with SaskPower for more than 30 years and her last role was vice-president, special projects and acting vice-president, human resources, safety and environment. Judith achieved her bachelor of administration from the University of Regina. She currently serves on the Board of Directors for United Way Regina as well as the Buffalo Pound Water Treatment Plant Corporation.

    Judith joined the Nature Conservancy of Canada’s Saskatchewan Regional Board in 2018.

  • Maureen McCaw

    Former executive president, Léger Marketing (AB)
    Edmonton, AB

    Maureen McCaw is the former executive president of Léger Marketing (AB) and president and founder of Criterion Research. She is currently chair of the CBC Pension Fund and board member with Suncor Energy and CBC Radio-Canada. She is also the co-chair of Women United, United Way. Maureen is a past chair of Edmonton Airports and the Edmonton Chamber of Commerce. She completed Columbia Business School’s executive program in management and finance and holds an ICD.D.

  • Michael Paterson

    Senior Scientist, International Institute for Sustainable Development Experimental Lakes Area
    Winnipeg, MB

    Since 1992, Michael has worked at the Experimental Lakes Area (ELA), a research facility located near Kenora, Ontario. At ELA, Michael has led and participated in multiple whole-ecosystem studies and experiments on the effects of human activities on the environment, especially fresh water. He led the transition of ELA from the federal government to the independent not-for-profit International Institute for Sustainable Development.

    Michael has a Ph.D. from Dalhousie University, an M.Sc. from Indiana University, and is an adjunct professor at the Universities of Manitoba, Winnipeg, Lakehead and Trent. Michael has been associated with NCC since 1992 as a regional Board member, regional co-chair, Conservation Committee member and national Board member. He is passionate about nature and spends much of his spare time mountain biking, skiing, hiking and canoeing.

  • Paul Genest

    Senior Vice-President, Power Corporation of Canada
    Toronto, ON

    Paul Genest has been senior vice-president of Power Corporation since 2016. He was senior vice-president of Power Financial from 2016 until 2020. His background includes government, academia and business. He served in a number of portfolios as a Deputy Minister in the Ontario Government. He also served in the federal government as Director of Policy and Research for Prime Minister Jean Chretien.

    Paul is on the board of the National Gallery of Canada Foundation and is a board member of Business for the Arts and the Canadian Chamber of Commerce. He also volunteers with the Pine River Institute, which provides residential treatment for youth with mental health and substance issues.

    Paul joined the Nature Conservancy of Canada’s Ontario Regional Board in 2016.

  • Rob Prosper

    Kemptville, Ontario

    Rob Prosper spent his 38-year career at Parks Canada, advancing ecosystem conservation, establishing new National Parks and Marine Conservation Areas and normalizing a culture of Indigenous reconciliation in the Agency.

    As vice-president responsible for protected areas establishment, Rob was responsible for establishing and/or bringing under legislative protection Sable Island, Ukkusiksalik, Qausuittuq, Lake Superior, Naats’ihch’oh, Tallurutiup Imanga, Thaidene Nene and Akami-Uapishk-KakKasuak National Parks and Marine Conservation Areas.

    As the federal lead for the Pathway to Canada Target 1, Rob has been instrumental in changing the way future conservation is undertaken in Canada and was the driving force behind the Indigenous Conserved Areas element of Canada’s Nature Legacy.

    On the international stage, Rob was the Agency lead for the Convention on Biodiversity, the World Conservation Congress, the International Marine Protected Areas Congress and twice represented Canada at the World Protected Areas Leadership Forum.

    Rob is the recipient of the Queens Diamond Jubilee Medal, a two-time recipient of the Public Service Award of Excellence, was awarded the Canadian Parks Council Award of Excellence and is a two-time fellow of the Salzburg Global Forum.

    Rob is a member of the Acadia First Nation and currently sits on the Innu Cooperative Management Board for Mealy Mountains National Park.

  • Tamar Pichette

    Montebello, QC

    Tamar Pichette has law degrees from Oxford University, England, and Osgoode Hall, Toronto, and a B.A. in political science and psychology from Vassar College, NY. Tamar practised commercial litigation and contract law in Toronto, and has served on several Boards, both in Canada and the United States, including the Sport Dispute Resolution Centre of Canada, where she chaired the Compliance Committee, as well as teaching at the Ontario Bar Admission course. She was appointed to the Board of Trustees of Vassar College in 2015, and was most recently Chairperson of the Board of Directors of JobTrain, a California Bay Area organization dedicated to helping the disadvantaged rebuild their lives through vocational training.

    In her time at JobTrain, Tamar worked closely with committee chairs to reformulate board governance toward more effective use of board members’ skill sets across organizational requirements and worked closely with the CEO to recapitalize the organization to deliver on its strategic plan and on strategic planning. Over the past six years, she has been involved with the establishment of Kenauk Nature, in Montebello, QC, as a conservation territory, in partnership with the Nature Conservancy of Canada.

    Tamar now lives in London, UK, with her husband, Patrick.

  • Wayne King

    Ottawa, Ontario

    Wayne King is a 35-year veteran of the high-tech industry and is the president and founder of InfoMedia Systems Group in Ottawa, Ontario. InfoMedia Systems Group is a cloud solutions and consulting firm with expertise in Microsoft, IBM, Cisco, Google and Amazon cloud-based applications and services. it provides end-to-end virtual office and hybrid business solutions for any size organization.

    Wayne has an honour’s bachelor of mathematics degree from the University of Waterloo, and a master’s of business administration from Wilfrid Laurier University.

    He lives in rural Ottawa, where he and his family enjoy many outdoor activities, including camping, kayaking, scuba diving, skiing and motorcycling.

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