For more information on any of our committee’s work, or to get involved, please contact us ([email protected]). All committees are always looking for members. You must be an ACTWS member to join a committee.
Conservation Affairs Committee
- Mark Boyce
- Ken Crutchfield
- Kirby Smith
- Kristie Derkson
- Larry Roy
- Lorne Fitch
- Matthew Pyper
- Sarah Elmeligi
- Ben Misener
- Dragomir Vujnovic
- Chiara Feder
- Nikki Heim
Terms of Reference
The CAC operates under the terms of reference adopted by the Executive Board on June 1, 2020.
Issues are identified by members of the CAC and following up on current science presented at our annual conference or through our monthly webinar series. The committee has worked on many Issues over the years; this list was updated in 2022. All of the CAC’s position statements and letters to Ministers can be found in our Members Area. If you are not a member and would like to see our position statements, please email us at [email protected].
Coal Mining Along Alberta’s Eastern Slopes
Our CAC has been engaged in reviewing and opposing coal mining developments along the Southern Eastern Slopes since the coal policy was rescinded In June of 2020. Our work has Involved writing several letters to Minister and the Alberta Energy Regulator regarding specific coal mining and exploration proposals, presenting at the Grassy Mountain Mine public hearing, and meeting with the Alberta Energy Regulator. We continue to share our Cumulative Effects Assessment of the Southern East Slopes as part of the critical scientific Information that should be part of land-use decision making In the Oldman and Bow watersheds. We continue to work with partners to ensure development along the Eastern Slopes considers cumulative effects and applies the more current scientific Information.
Crown Land Vision and Management
The CAC provided Input to the Alberta Government regarding the new Crown Land Vision and will continue to be engaged in any stakeholder and public consultations in this regard. We continue to represent the needs of wildlife and their habitats based on robust scientific research. Although the Crown Land Vision proposed recognizes the Importance of biodiversity, the needs of wildlife and ecological goods and services are not recognized as a critical component of managing these landscapes. That is a significant gap.
Caribou Recovery Planning
Caribou protection continues to be important for the CAC. CAC members have participated on caribou recovery task forces in various ways from supporting partners who are task force members and presenting scientifically founded recommendations to task forces aiming to ensure caribou recovery in Alberta’s boreal. We continue to work towards including real protections for caribou that would stop industrial development in caribou habitat and to hold Government Agencies accountable to planning for and implementing caribou recovery programs. This year, we are participating on the West-Central Caribou sub-regional task force – Berland Planning Area.
The CAC has been following changes to regulations associated with the Annual Allowable Cut and resultant forestry planning in Alberta. The CAC advocates for public consultation and evidence-based decision making for forestry operations. We have partnered with other environmental organizations to advocate for sound logging practices in northern Alberta that do not conflict with caribou recovery planning.
Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee
- Jennifer Foca
- Ashley Shaw
- Everett Hanna
- Nicholas Yarmey
- Dee Patriquin
- Janet Ng
- Chuck Priestley
- Michelle Hoang
- Edna Stobschinski
- Nicole Heim
Terms of Reference
The EDIC operates under the terms of reference adopted by the Executive Board on August 5, 2021.
Supporting EDI programs in other chapters of The Wildlife Society
The ACTWS was the first TWS chapter to create an EDI committee and begin implementing strategic programs to improve diversity, equity, and inclusion. Our committee continues to lead the way for other TWS chapters and has been invited to present at various TWS and Chapter meetings, including the TWS conference in 2021.
Recruiting and retaining ACTWS members from marginalized groups
The EDIC is interested in increasing the diversity of the ACTWS membership. Our first step is to offer a free membership for Black, Indigenous, People of Colour (BIPOC) wildlife professionals and students. Register here.
Offering BIPOC Scholarships
The EDI Committee has been working to reduce financial barriers for individuals who would otherwise not have the opportunity to pursue wildlife studies or programs. Supporting students has always been a central program of the ACTWS. In 2021, the EDI Committee awarded two BIPOC scholarships. The EDI Committee will be discussing this program and making adjustments for 2022.
In the fall of 2020, the EDI Committee issued a survey aiming to increase understanding of our members needs, particularly those that identify as belonging to a marginalized group. The Committee presented these results as a speed talk at our 2022 Virtual Conference, as well as shared results at our Committee Meeting in March 2022.
Offering New Perspectives in Wildlife
The EDI Committee works to share the stories of our members who identify as belonging to a marginalized group. These stories serve to expand our collective awareness of peoples’ lived experiences and celebrate the diversity of people drawn to our profession. Stories are posted on our homepage in our “Diversity is Our Strength” web series. We also welcomed Kyle Shanebeck as a guest speaker to our Committee Meeting during conference week in 2022 and are planning several workshops in 2022.
Education and Information Committee
- Nikki Paskar
- Kristie Derkson
- Sarah Elmeligi
- Sarah Hatt
This committee’s goal is to seek and employ methods of informing the public of basic concepts of wildlife management and of Chapter and Society activities and interests. This committee has largely been involved in various public outreach events, such as the Edmonton Wildlife Festival, the AIEDEC Edmonton Local Leaders event, and the Beaver Hills Bioblitz. Members are also invited as guest speakers to events.
We are also avid supporters of the Beaverhills Bioblitz and look forward to seeing you all there in winter, 2022!
Wildlife EXPO 2022
Planning is underway!
The membership committee has two main purposes: 1) to recruit new members to the ACTWS, and 2) to help retain existing members. We work to identify potential barriers to membership and to identify groups that may be interested in membership.
In Fall 2020, the membership committee partnered with the EDI committee to distribute a membership survey. Results from that survey are being used to guide workshop and webinar topics to address members’ needs.