Invasive Species Council of British Columbia

Who We Are

The Invasive Species Council of BC is a registered charity and non-profit society that is making a difference in the lives of people across British Columbia.

ISCBC is a dynamic action-oriented organization, helping concerned stakeholders work together to stop the spread of invasive species in BC. We lead efforts encouraging people, businesses, government and industry to adopt simple practices that can make a huge impact in preventing the introduction and spread of invasive species.

Vision

Healthy landscapes and communities free of invasive species.

Mission

To take action to build healthy landscapes, including habitats and communities, through education and responsible practices to prevent the spread of invasive species. 

Board of Directors

Our hard-working directors and committee members bring perspectives from all walks of life to help us achieve our vision.

The Invasive Species Council of BC’s Board of Directors is selected by our membership at the Annual General Meeting. Directors on the Board represent one of three Chambers; government, community or business and industry. Within each Chamber, the Board strives to have the representation of a diverse range of background interest areas. 

Nadia Chan, Chair

Governments

LOCAL


Nadia Chan has over 20 years of experience working in urban forestry. She is currently the Manager, Trees and Landscape with the City of Surrey’s Planning and Development Department. Nadia is a Director with the Invasive Species Council of British Columbia, the Pacific Representative for the Canadian Urban Forestry Network, and the Chair of BCIT’s Forest and Natural Areas Management Program Advisory Committee.

Harold Aljam

Business & Industry

AGRICULTURE


Harold is the Economic Development Officer for the Coldwater Indian Band. He grew up on the Paul’s Basin IR 2 and is a 4th generation farmer, raising a commercial herd of beef cattle. Additionally, he has served on Band Council for over 30 years as Chief. Harold says that it is the love for cattle ranching that keeps him involved in agriculture.

Jonathan Holmes

Governments

Indigenous


JJ is the Operations supervisor and safety officer with Lower Nicola Indian Band Development Corporation based in Merritt, BC. When it comes to invasive species, JJ fulfills many roles, including educating and coordinating training for employees to become Certified Pesticide Applicators. JJ works with a wide variety of organizations and First Nations communities to increase awareness of invasive species impacts. With lots of boots on the ground, he is keen to promote is stewardship of the land and protection of food sources and medicinal plants. Away from stewardship, JJ is actively involved in the local Minor Hockey league. 

Sarah Nathan, Vice Chair

Community

Environmental conservation


Sarah is a Registered Professional Biologist and the Provincial Manager of Conservation Programs in BC for Ducks Unlimited Canada. Her work includes seeking new ways to protect wetlands in BC by controlling invasive plants such as Yellow flag iris, Reed canary grass, Russian olive and Himalayan blackberry, and preventing the establishment of invasive animals such as the American bullfrog. Sarah is passionate about developing solutions to conservation problems that incorporate the concerns of a wide range of people, while ensuring a high degree of acceptance and success.

Eric Nijboer, Past Chair

Business & Industry

Natural Resources


Eric is an Operations Manager with Spectrum Resource Group Inc. based in Prince George where he primarily focuses on invasive plant management and operational fuel management/wildfire hazard reduction projects. Eric is a Registered Professional Biologist in both Alberta and BC (RPBio, P.Biol.), and carries a B.Sc. in Biology and Chemistry from Brock University with a focus on Plant Biotechnology. Eric has been engaged in invasive plant management since 2007.

Eamon O’Donoghue

Community

Environmental conservation


Eamon O’Donoghue grew up in Toronto and has lived in northern B.C. for 33 years. He worked for various ministries with the BC Public Service for 32 years, starting as a Park Ranger with BC Parks and retiring as the Associate Deputy Minister in the Ministry of Forests. Eamon oversaw BC Wildfire and chaired the Task force on Emergencies that just released its recommendation to address the growing threat of wildfire in April 2024. Eamon lives on a 160-acre property with his wife and children, is a builder who mills his own wood for construction projects, makes cheese and yogurt from the sheep he raises, and grows 10 different varieties of potatoes. His favourite hobby is collecting and restoring axes. Eamon usually works on the farm during his holidays, but he did snorkel in Hawaii this year. His favourite place to explore is Ireland.

Scott Pearce

Business & Industry

TRADE & RETAIL


Scott has been involved in the nursery industry for 40 years, with a diploma in Landscape Horticulture from BCIT and experience working in both the wholesale and retail nursery trades. Scott has been a partner in GardenWorks, with ten garden centre locations, since 2007. His responsibilities include plant purchasing, merchandising and marketing. GardenWorks has been working with ISCBC for the past 12 years, involved in the PlantWise and Grow Me Instead programs.

Nicci Bergunder

Business & Industry

Transportation & Utilities (Local)


Nicci Bergunder is the Pacific Regional Advisor, Indigenous Relations at Defence Construction Canada, the Crown Corporation that delivers infrastructure and environmental projects for National Defence and the Canadian Armed Forces. Nicci is also the founder and Managing Partner of Encompass, a consultancy centred on Indigenous Relations and Economic Development.

Dan Tisseur

Business & Industry

TRANSPORTATION & UTILITIES


Dan is a Senior Environmental Advisor for Enbridge. He spent a decade as a freshwater biologist working for an environmental consulting firm with assignments throughout BC. Dan has a BSc in Natural Resource Management, a MSc in Environmental Practice, and is a Registered Professional Biologist. His work gives him great insight into industrial perspectives related to invasive species management and he has a great appreciation for the diversity and sensitivity of the various habitats across BC which could be threatened by the impacts of invasive organisms.

Steve Thomson, Treasurer

Business & Industry

Agriculture


Steve has a long record of service to the community and of working on behalf of BC ranchers and farmers. He represented Kelowna Mission as the MLA from 2009 to 2020 and served as Minister of Agriculture and Lands, Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resources and Rural Development. Steve is the former executive director of the BC Agriculture Council. He has served with the BC Fruit Growers Association, the BC Milk Producers Association, as the President of the Kelowna Chamber of Commerce and as a director of the Kelowna Museum. Steve loves sports and is dedicated to his family.

Sophie Dessureault

Governments

Local


Sophie is the Integrated Pest Management Coordinator for the Vancouver Park Board. Working in this role since 1997, she develops and implements policies and procedures to deal with the various pest problems found in the city’s many facilities, parks, and plantings. Most recently her responsibilities have included managing projects such as developing the Vancouver Park Board’s Invasive Species Management Strategy and completing a city-wide invasive plants species inventory.

Alec Dale

Community

Environmental conservation


Originally from Enderby, BC, Alec Dale has lived across Canada and now calls Victoria, BC home where he has lived for the past 22 years. He holds an undergraduate degree in Zoology and a Masters in Aquatic Ecology. Now retired, Alec has spent the past 20 plus years working in the BC Public Service across many aspects of resource and ecosystem stewardship. He has extensive experience working with invasive species and monitoring their impacts, both biological and economic, including leading an Invasive Mussel Defense Program for the Province of BC. As an aquatic ecologist he has a great fondness for freshwater planted aquariums but of course follows Don’t Let it Loose best practices.

Val Miller

Governments

Provincial


Val Miller is the Provincial Invasive Plant Officer for the Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development and the chair of the BC Inter-Ministry Invasive Species Working Group. Based in Nelson, she works with a team of Invasive Plant Specialists and technicians to address invasive plant challenges on public land. A registered professional agrologist with a B.Sc. in Range Management from the University of Idaho, Val has been actively working in invasive plant management and biological control projects in British Columbia for over 30 years.

Jennifer Robertson

Business & Industry

TRANSPORTATION & UTILITIES


Jennifer is a registered Professional Biologist with over 30 years of environment consulting and energy utility experience in BC. She spent 15 years in the field as a Fisheries Biologist on small and large scale projects across BC. Many of the fish and fish habitat enhancement projects that she was responsible for involved invasive species management. Her current role is Director, Sustainability & Environment at FortisBC where she leads a team of environmental and sustainability professionals for the organization. Her team provides corporate environmental oversight for the organization including aquatic and terrestrial resource management and vegetation management.

Joanne Sales

Community

Environmental conservation


Joanne is the founder and Executive Director of Broombusters Invasive Plant Society.  Joanne started with a group of 10 volunteers in Qualicum Beach in 2006 (and coined the now very popular name Broombusters.)  She has been organizing, educating and promoting the control of Scotch broom ever since. Now there are over 600 volunteers cutting broom over 6000 hours each year in 14 municipalities and districts from Vancouver Island to the lower mainland.  Joanne and her family are active organic blueberry farmers on Vancouver Island.

Jennifer Psyllakis

Governments

PROVINCIAL


Dr. Jennifer Psyllakis is the Acting Assistant Deputy Minister of the Resource Stewardship Division within the B.C.’s Ministry of Water, Land & Resource Stewardship. She has worked for the Province of B.C. for almost 20 years in various capacities advancing new natural resource sector laws, policies and strategies, and associated program areas. She is passionate about collaborative approaches to advancing solutions for complex issues affecting wildlife and ecosystems. Jennifer was born in Kitimat and has lived in various communities throughout BC. Jennifer holds a B.Sc. in Wildlife Management from McGill University, M.Sc in Biology from University of Regina and a PhD in Natural Resource Management and Environmental Studies from the University of North British Columbia.

Terry Peters

Community

Environmental conservation


Terry is a 32-year career firefighter, retired from his last position as Fire Chief/Director of Emergency Services for Powell River, B.C. While living in Australia for a year in 2005 on a Firefighter Exchange, he founded the International Association of Firefighters Global Alliance. Terry’s other career accomplishments include being a part-time Paramedic for the B.C. Ambulance Service and Deputy Sheriff for the B.C. Sheriff Service. Terry is a member of his local Invasive Species Board for the Powell River/qathet Region, and a local coordinator for the Powell River/qathet Broombusters. He is an avid fan of rock concerts, motorcycles, and travelling with friends and his wife of 36 years. He is a family man, with three children, two grandchildren, and a 12-year-old dog named Holden. Terry’s favourite past times include his 1969 Chevelle, fishing, and hunting.

Dave Ensing

Governments

FEDERAL


Dave is a research scientist with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada in Summerland, BC, where together with a team of technicians and graduate and undergraduate students, his research program focuses on the ecology and evolution of invasive plants and their biological controls. He has studied invasive plants of priority to BC since his undergraduate studies in 2010, (BSc. Hons, UBCO, 2011) and has since completed his MSc (Biology, UBCO, 2013) and PhD (Biology, Queen’s University, 2019) where he studied the evolutionary ecology of species range limits, or why species occur where they do, and not where they don’t. This research background is well placed for understanding the range expansions of invasive species. When not at work, Dave enjoys mountain biking, backcountry camping and keeping invasive plants out of his yard with his family!

Brian Thomas

Business & Industry

AGRICULTURE/RANCHER


Brian is a third-generation rancher in Okanagan Falls, currently running the ranch he grew up on and lived his whole life. He is a director for his local stock association OSSA, Director for BC Ag Council, Director for Grasslands Conservation Council of BC, past director of BC Livestock Association, and almost the Past President of BC Cattlemen’s Association. He is especially proud of representing the cattle industry for BC Cattlemen’s Association. Brian believes that if you are in an industry, such as the cattle industry, you should be involved in the pieces shaping that industry.

ISCBC LEADERSHIP TEAM

Everyone working with the ISCBC team, from our Executive Director to our volunteers, brings their enthusiasm to our work.

Gail Wallin

Executive Director

Contact Gail

Gary Goodwin

Director

Contact Gary

Dave Ralph

Senior Manager, Operations

Contact Dave

Tamara Slobogean

Senior Manager, Communications

Contact Tamara

Dave Walkem

Senior Manager, Strategic Partnerships

Contact Dave

Tina Benard

Office Coordinator

Contact Tina

Nick Wong

Manager, Science & Research

Contact Nick

Lindsay Barnett

Manager, Planning

Contact Lindsay

Lauren Bosch

Manager, Engagement

Contact Lauren

Fawn Wiebe

Manager, Finance

Contact Fawn