Climate Leadership Team

The Climate Leadership Team was announced on May 12th. Member biographies are listed below by group.

Quick Links to each member:

British Columbia Government

 

Jordan Sturdy, MLA

Jordan Sturdy - MLA

Jordan Sturdy was elected MLA for West Vancouver-Sea to Sky on May 14, 2013. Prior to being elected, Jordan served as Mayor of Pemberton for three terms. Jordan was appointed Parliamentary Secretary for Energy Literacy and the Environment to the Minister of Environment on July 30, 2015, and is a member of the Cabinet Committee for Environment and Land Use. Jordan serves as chair of the Climate Leadership Team, working with members from non-governmental organizations, academia, industry, communities and First Nations to redefine B.C.’s low-carbon future. Jordan also chairs the Provincial Roundtable on the Environment and the Economy.

Jordan previously served as Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure. Jordan entered public service as a local trustee for the Pemberton Valley Dyking District and also served the Sea to Sky Corridor in a variety of capacities, including as a member of the Squamish Lillooet Regional District Board, Director of the Fraser Basin Council, Lower Mainland Treaty Advisory Committee Executive Committee Member, SLRD Hospital District Chair, and Sea to Sky Regional Hospital District Director.

Jordan has also served as President of the Whistler Farmers’ Market Society and Director of the BC Association of Farmers’ Markets. Jordan and his wife Trish own and operate North Arm Farm in Pemberton, where they have lived since 1989. North Arm Farm is a popular regional destination, which grows 45 acres of certified organic vegetables and berries and hosts many events and farm dinners.

Jordan served as a BC Ambulance Paramedic for more than 20 years as well as a Professional Ski Patroller and mountain rescue specialist. Jordan grew up in Vancouver, attending Magee Secondary School, Vancouver Community College, Langara and the University of British Columbia.

 

Susanna Laaksonen-Craig, Head, Climate Action Secretariat

Susanna Laaksonen-Craig was appointed as the Head, Climate Action Secretariat effective September 15, 2014.  Susanna has worked in the BC Public Service since 2007 in a variety of roles including as an Executive Director in the Timber Operations and Resource Stewardship Divisions and has lead both Research and Product Innovation & Climate Change Branches.  Susanna is originally a forest economist from Finland, with a Master’s degree from the University of Helsinki.  She went on to receive a Ph.D. in Wildland Resource Science from the University of California at Berkeley.  Before joining the BC Public Service, she worked as an assistant professor at the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Forestry, as the Assistant Director of the University of California Forest Products Laboratory, and as a researcher for the Finnish Forest Research Institute.

 

Academics

 

Nancy Olewiler, Professor, Simon Fraser University School of Public Policy

Nancy Olewiler was Director of the School of Public Policy since its founding in 2003 until September 2014.  She has a PhD in Economics from the University of British Columbia. Prior to coming to SFU in 1990, she was an Associate Professor at Queen's University in Ontario. Nancy has held visiting positions at the University of Colorado, University of California, Berkeley, and University of New South Wales.  She was Chair of SFU's Econonomics department from 1995 to 2000.

Nancy has held a number of positions serving many communities, locally and internationally.  These include being a member the Board of Directors of BC Hydro from 2001 to 2010 and TransLink from 2008 to 2013 (where she served as its Chair from 2010 to 2013).  She is a member of the National Statistics Council and Chairs the National Accounts Advisory Committee for Statistics Canada. Her areas of research include natural resource and environmental policy, the impact of environmental regulation on the economy, and environmental tax policy. She has published in academic journals, edited books, has written two widely used textbooks, and produced numerous reports for the Canadian federal and provincial governments on a wide range of environmental and natural resource issues. From 1990 to 1995 she was Managing Editor of Canadian Public Policy, Canada's leading public policy journal. Nancy is a research mentor to the Environment and Economy Program for Southeast Asia and the Latin American and Caribbean Environmental Economy Program.

 

Dr. Thomas F. Pedersen, Executive Director, Pacific Institute for Climate Solutions

Dr. Thomas F. Pedersen - PICS

Dr. Thomas Pedersen was appointed Executive Director of the Pacific Institute for Climate Solutions beginning September 1, 2009. His previous positions included Dean of Science (2003-2009), Professor of Oceanography and Director of the School of Earth and Ocean Sciences at the University of Victoria (2002-2003), and Associate Dean, Research for the Faculty of Graduate Studies at the University of British Columbia (2000-mid2002). Pedersen holds a degree in geology from UBC and a PhD in marine geochemistry from the University of Edinburgh. He is a fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and of the American Geophysical Union. He is an internationally recognized authority on ocean chemistry, has published extensively in the field of paleoceanography, and has longstanding interests in climate change issues and the application of government policy to climate-change mitigation and adaptation.

 

Dr. James Tansey, Associate Professor, University of British Columbia Sauder School of Business and CEO/Co-Founder of Offsetters

James Tansey is an associate professor at the University of British Columbia’s Sauder School of Business and is the Executive Director of the Sauder Centre for Social Innovation and Impact Investing (SauderS3i), a Research Centre at the Sauder School of Business dedicated to social innovation and sustainability. He has taught in MBA, EMBA, Executive Education, MSc and Undergraduate programs in the UK and Canada. He is the founder and CEO of Offsetters Climate Solutions, Canada’s largest carbon management company. Following the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games, Tansey was selected as one of four international advisers working with the United Nations Environment Programme on the environmental strategy for the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi, Russia.

Tansey has worked as an advisor and contributor to the World Economic Forum, the UK National Audit Office, Oxford Analytica, Cisco, ISIS Innovation (Oxford), Environment Canada and the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency.

Tansey received his PhD from the University of East Anglia in 1999. After a number of years in the Faculty of Graduate Studies at UBC, he returned to the UK as a lecturer in Science and Technology Studies at the Said Business School in Oxford, where he was also deputy director of the James Martin Institute for Science and Civilization. He returned to UBC in 2006 where he joined the Sauder School of Business. In 2013 he was awarded a Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal for his contributions to the Province of British Columbia.

 

Community Interests

 

Linda Hepner, Mayor, City of Surrey

Mayor Linda Hepner - Surrey

Linda M. Hepner was elected Mayor of Surrey on November 15th, 2014 after serving nine years on City Council. Her commitment to the community is a product of a life nurtured there, having worked up the ranks within the City of Surrey for over 20 years, most recently as the Manager of Economic Development before being elected to Council in 2005. She has directed several key initiatives on City Council, such as advocating for the inclusion of approximately 468 acres into the regional Green Zone, spearheading the continued economic development of Surrey’s City Centre, and spearheading the Clean Energy & Technology Action Plan. The Mayor’s work on City Council to date has focused on providing residents from City Centre to Semiahmoo with the ability, opportunity and amenities to live in well-balanced communities that provide jobs and promote economic viability, sustainability and livability.

 

Paul Ives, Mayor, Town of Comox

Paul Ives practiced as a lawyer in Comox for several years before being elected to the Town of Comox council in 2002 and re-elected in 2005. In 2008, Paul was elected Mayor of the Town of Comox and then re-elected in 2011 and 2014. From 2005 to 2011, Paul served on Comox Valley Regional District Board and chaired the Comox Valley Sports, Water and Sewer Commission as well as serving as CVRD’s member on the Municipal Finance Authority and the Town’s voting member on the Municipal Insurance Authority. In 2012, Paul was elected Vice Chair of the North Island Sunshine Coast Regional Advisory Committee, as part of Island-Coastal Economic Trust. Paul and his wife Paula reside in the Town of Comox and enjoy walking their dog, Hannah, the Golden Retriever, in the Northeast Woods, along with cycling, skiing, squash, tennis, baseball and hockey. Their three adult children live on Vancouver Island.

 

Luke Strimbold, Mayor, Village of Burns Lake

His title as one of Canada's youngest mayors seems to follow him around, but Luke Strimbold has many discerning qualities that serve him well as Mayor. Strimbold leads his life by the principles of inclusion and equality, and those sentiments are reflected in his politics. Growing up in Burns Lake, a town with six nearby First Nations, Strimbold has had many chances to experience neighbouring cultures and traditions. When asked what defines him professionally, Strimbold responded that his biggest passion is "building relationships and partnerships with First Nations. Building stronger working relationships will support a better place to live, work, and play for all people. We need to remove barriers, build trust, and support one another." This inspiring passion is not one that only applies to Burns Lake, but all of British Columbia. Strimbold strongly believes local governments need to actively "serve [their] community to influence progressive leadership." Strimbold's service to his community has also earned him recognition - he was listed as one of the Top 10 Governors in the Monocle Magazine, as well as BC's Top 30 Under 30 in BC Business. To Strimbold, though, the simplest of pleasures have the highest importance. "My family time would be impossible for me to give up."

 

Environmental Interests

 

Tzeporah Berman, Adjunct Professor Faculty of Environmental Studies York University

Tzeporah Berman BA, MES, LLD (honoris causa) has been working on environmental policy in Canada and beyond for over twenty years.  She is an Adjunct Professor of York University Faculty of Environmental Studies and a strategic consultant who works with many philanthropic foundations, First Nations and environmental organizations.  She is the former co-director of Greenpeace International's Global Climate and Energy Program, Executive Director and Co-founder of PowerUp Canada and Co-founder and Campaign Director of ForestEthics. Tzeporah was appointed by the Premier of British Columbia to the Green Energy Task Force in 2009 to design recommendations for the development of renewable energy in the region. Tzeporah was one of the experts in Leonardo Di Caprio's environmental documentary 11th Hour, was one of six Canadian nominees for the Schwab Social Entrepreneur of the Year Award, has been profiled as one of 50 Visionaries Changing the World in Utne Reader and as "Canada's Queen of Green" in the cover story for Readers Digest.  She was honored by inclusion into the BC Royal Museum permanent exhibit of one of 150 people who have changed the face of British Columbia. Last year Tzeporah was awarded an Honorary Doctorate from the University of British Columbia, Corporate Knights named her one of the Top Women in Sustainability (Canada), and she was nominated for Climate Woman of the Year by Responding to Climate Change. She is the Canadian Ambassador for World Future Council Global 100%RE, a fellow of the Broadbent Institute and Planet in Focus' 2014 Canada Eco-Hero. This year Tzeporah has been nominated for the YWCA Women of Distinction Award in British Columbia. Tzeporah was one of the creators and lead negotiators of the Great Bear Rainforest agreement and the Canadian Boreal Forest Initiative. Her work has contributed to the protection of over 40 million hectares of old growth forests.  More recently Tzeporah helped to design Greenpeace International's Arctic campaign, the Volkswagen campaign in Europe and the Clean Our Cloud campaign that led to Apple and Facebook becoming international leaders in using renewable energy for their data centers. Her first book, This Crazy Time: Living Our Environmental Challenge was recently published by Knopf Canada. www.tzeporahberman.com. Twitter/Tzeporah.

 

Matt Horne, BC Associate Regional Director, Pembina Institute

Matt Horne is the Pembina Institute's associate regional director for British Columbia. He has been with the organization since 2003, focusing on policy change that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions in British Columbia and provide replicable models for the rest of Canada. In pursuit of this goal, he has worked on initiatives with the province, municipalities and First Nations. Prior to joining Pembina, Matt worked extensively with energy-economy models on projects attempting to estimate the costs and benefits of climate change policy in Canada. Matt holds a Bachelor of Engineering from Dalhousie University and a Master of Resource and Environmental Management from Simon Fraser University.

 

Merran Smith, Executive Director, Clean Energy Canada

As the executive director of Clean Energy Canada, Merran Smith leads a team that is working to transform our nation's energy systems to reduce fossil fuel dependence and the risks of climate disruption. Merran’s team conducts original research and modeling to understand the opportunities for Canada in the global low-carbon economy, and shares those findings with policy makers and the public via high-impact communications products. During her career, Smith has brought together business, government, and civil society organizations to create innovative solutions to some of the most challenging issues of our age. She received the Clean16 award for sustainability and clean capitalism, the Wilburforce Foundation Award for Outstanding Conservation Leadership, and a transformative leadership award for the Seasons Fund. She was recently named a fellow of Simon Fraser University’s Centre for Dialogue.

 

Business Interests

 

James Gorman, Vice President, Corporate and Government Relations, West Fraser Timber

James assumed the role of Vice President of Corporate and Government Relations for West Fraser Timber on May 19. Prior to that he served as the President and CEO of the Council of Forest and the President of the BC Lumber Trade Council which is responsible for representing the BC forest industry’s interests in Softwood Lumber negotiations with Canada and the United States. Prior to joining the forest industry, James served the Government of British Columbia for nearly twenty years. His most recent roles in government were as the Deputy Minister of Advanced Education, Deputy Minister of Education (K-12) - a position he held for six years – and Deputy Minister of the Public Service Agency.

 

David Keane, CEO, BC LNG Alliance

In an energy industry career spanning 33 years David has conducted business in over 16 countries. He has managed various forms of the business and has established a strong external reputation in the energy industry. As BC LNG Alliance’s President, David has responsibility for promoting and developing a robust LNG export industry in British Columbia that is safe, environmentally and socially responsible. David was named President of the BC LNG Alliance in August 2014.  Prior to joining the Alliance, David was with BG Group for 10 years serving as Vice President, Policy and Corporate Affairs. Before joinging BG he was with Dynegy Inc. as Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer of Dynegy Europe. David also spent several years with Apache Corp. and Conoco, Inc.  He also spent nine years as a helicopter pilot in the US Army. David is Vice Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Premier’s LNG Working Group on Labour and is a member of the Board of Directors of the Immigrant Employment Council of British Columbia. David is a cum laude graduate of Kansas State University, and holds a bachelor's degree in business administration. He is married, has two grown children and two grandchildren and lives in Vancouver.

 

Tim Newton, P.Eng, Former BC Hydro and PowerEx Engineer and Executive

Tim Newton has engineering and economics degrees earned at Cape Town and then at Oxford on a Rhodes scholarship. As a professional engineer he held various positions at BC Hydro during his 33 year career there. While there Tim also spent 30 years working on the Columbia River Treaty. He was subsequently a Board member of the Western Electricity Coordinating Council, a tri-national electric transmission reliability organization, for 10 years, one of which he served as Board Chair. Tim has been a member of the Columbia River Treaty oversight body, the Permanent Engineering Board, since nominated by British Columbia in 2003.

 

First Nations

 

Ian Campbell, Chief, Squamish First Nation

Chief Ian Campbell - Squamish First Nation

Ian Campbell has many names. He is called Xalek, his chieftain name is Sekyu Siyam, and his nickname is lan. He is the youngest of the sixteen hereditary Chiefs of the Squamish Nation, and he is a descendant of the Squamish and Musqueam First Nations of the Coast Salish People. Xalek grew up speaking the Squamish language and his grandfather taught him to hunt and to respect nature. His passion in life, singing, has taken him around the world, representing his people in several singing groups. He strongly believes in sharing the spiritual and cultural values of the Coast Salish people to help educate others, bridge the gap between cultures, and promote closer relations. His goal is to maintain a healthy lifestyle and restore the legacy that his ancestors have left for him. He is grateful to his elders and family for giving him strength, guidance, and discipline.

 

Michelle Edwards, Chief, Cayoose Creek Band

Michelle Edwards is Chief of Sek’wel’wás or Cayoose Creek Band, and a Board Member of the Cayoose Creek Development Corp. and Antares Project Services. She is leading her community towards economic growth and success, and has a critical role in the development and execution of the Cayoose strategic pillars. Chief Edwards initiated the launch of Split Rock Environmental, a community owned business that doubled production in 2013. She is also the current Chair of the Lillooet Tribal Council.

 

Zach Parker, Chief, Ulkatcho First Nation

Bio coming soon

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