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The Board

Brian Eaton, Chairperson

Brian initially joined the Board in 2011 as the Conservation, Research and Education Director, taking on the role of Chairperson in 2014.  Brian is an ecologist by training, and presently leads the Ecosystem Management Team at InnoTech Alberta.  He grew up  running around in the woods in Nova Scotia, looking for frogs and salamanders (which he observed for short periods and then released unharmed), fish, snakes, and anything else that moved.  In his spare time, Brian is a Venturer Scout Leader, plays soccer, tends a small menagerie of creatures, and does random stuff outside.


Rick Watts, Vice Chair and Website Coordinator
Rick is an avid supporter of Canada’s national park system and has been involved with the Friends of Elk Island Society on and off for more than 15 years. His main interest lies in public engagement through citizen science. Rick has a background in biological sciences, having persuaded his mother to buy him his first field guide at the age of six. He is an avid “hobby” photographer and works in a research support capacity for the Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry at the University of Alberta.


Ian Brusselers, Mail Man and Member at Large
Ian joined the Board in Winter 2013 after getting locked in an outhouse in the park during the Christmas Bird Count. The FEIS rescued and recruited him to the Board. He is currently working for the city of Edmonton as a landscape technician. Ian's favorite thing to do is run outside in the beautiful natural areas in the cooking lake moraine. When he is not running, he is eating all the things!

Laurence (Larry) Roy, Treasurer
Larry joined the Board in Fall 2014 as he retired from his professional career as a wildlife biologist and manager of a group of environmental research teams. He is active in the Alberta Chapter of The Wildlife Society as well as FEIS and lives with his wife in a large acreage north of Innisfree. He enjoys any kind of outdoor activity such as hunting, fishing, hiking, bird watching, canoeing, shovelling snow, building etc. When he is not outside, he is usually working on renovations or watching sports on TV.

Ed Friesen, Member at Large
Ed has been part of the Board for about 5 years and does anything he is asked to get our jobs done, as he says is a "fill-in-the-blanks" kind of guy. In his spare time, he is heading to garage sales, auctions, and rodeos. He has his own shop where is repurposing wood into creative pieces. 

Erin Low, Member at Large
Erin joined the Board in 2015 and has been organizing and promoting various bat outreach events in Elk Island National Park. She is the Edmonton Regional Coordinator for the Alberta Community Bat Program and has been involved in a variety of bat research and outreach opportunities throughout Canada as well as in other countries. Erin enjoys travelling, camping and spending as much time outside as possible. She will be completing her final year of her Bachelor of Science degree in the fall. 

Alanna Lawrence, Secretary and Communications
I have been on the board for just over two years I joined after another board member mentioned they knew me and I might be interested and they decided I was on the board even before asking me! I have a degree in education specializing in biology and have always been interested in the local, native animals and plants. I enjoy learning more about our local ecosystem and helping to spread that knowledge. I work with the Vegreville and Area Family Day Home Program and Parent Link Centre and enjoy gardening and running with my dog.

Elizabeth Watts, Member at Large

Carter Chiasson, Special Events Coordinator
Carter joined the Board in 2017 after attending a Bat Walk and Talk event in the park. She obtained her degree in Environment and Natural Resources at the University of New Brunswick and has an interest in Water Resource Management. She has worked on environmental monitoring projects with the Canadian Rivers Institute involving slimy sculpin (Cottus cognatus). She also did a stint in Malawi, Africa as a Natural Resources Intern working on projects related to water quality in peri-urban areas and climate change. Carter enjoys spending time in nature, photography, knitting and needlework, and tending to her garden in the summer months.

Averil Jones, Conservation, Research and Education Coordinator 
Averil is a recent Bachelor of Science graduate, majoring in Environmental Biology. Ever since she can remember, she has been fascinated by animals and the natural world. She is planning on applying for her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine in September 2018. In her spare time, she volunteers with wildlife rehabilitation centres, and goes camping in the mountains.  


Marvin Mayes, Membership Director
Marvin Mayes is a nature lover and traveler. He has combined his two passions by visiting some unique areas around the planet. To start Marvin has hiked the Canadian Appalachian and Rocky Mountain ranges. Trekked South American trails in Peru, Bolivia and Columbia. He has explored the NWT and Yukon trails in the high Arctic. He also has managed to traverse the South East Asia jungles of Thailand, Laos and Cambodia looking for "the spot." Marvin finds Elk Island National Park as being a great unspoiled part of our world which we all can be enjoy in our own backyard.
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