Sierra Club Canada Foundation (SCCF) staff:
Dr. Jennifer Baker, MA, PhD
Jennifer Baker holds a doctorate in English and Canadian Studies, specializing in Environmental Humanities. Her graduate research focused on the intellectual and cultural history of farming techniques in Canada, settler-colonialist culture and its impacts on current environmentalist thought. She has worked as an anti-poverty advocate and Reviews Editor for Arc Poetry Magazine. Jennifer joined Sierra Club Canada Foundation as the National Administrative Coordinator in 2017, and her role expanded to the National Administrative and Communications Coordinator in 2018. She currently lives in Ottawa, where she also works as a Part-Time Professor at the University of Ottawa in the Department of English.
Her favourite part of working with Sierra Club Canada Foundation has been communicating with members and young people passionate about the planet and ready to generate the deep structural changes needed to save our planet for future generations.
Lindsay Boucher recently stepped down as Prairie Chapter Coordinator and now works on the Edmonton Wild Child Program with Sierra Club Canada Foundation. She grew up in Edmonton spending a lot of time outdoors whether it was camping, canoeing or simply enjoying nature in her own backyard. This formed a strong appreciation for the environment from a young age. Lindsay graduated from the University of Alberta with a degree in biology which fueled her passion for environmental work through a science-based approach. Her research experience specialized in environmental toxicology while her professional experience focused on addressing water quality issues in Alberta’s lakes. She enjoys her role with Sierra Club because she is able to deepen understanding of environmental processes through raising awareness on environmental issues coupled with engaging communities to become aware of their impact on nature – as well as nature’s positive impact on them.
Allison Dean - Watch for Wildlife Coordinator
Allison Dean is our Watch for Wildlife Program Coordinator. Although born in Atlantic Canada, Allison grew up in Texas where she attended St. Edward’s University studying environmental science and policy along with graphic design. During her time there, she worked on a number of campaigns advocating for sustainable initiatives and climate change solutions in the City of Austin. Upon graduation, she decided to come back to her roots and moved to Nova Scotia. As a lover of nature and the outdoors, she is passionate about working with the public to find solutions to environmental issues. In her free time, Allison can be found hiking, swimming, or on her bike zipping around the city.
Gretchen Fitzgerald is our National Programs Director. She has focused on environmental impacts of oil and gas and mining, volunteer engagement, and climate change. Having grown up in northern Newfoundland, Gretchen witnessed the impacts of the collapse of the cod fishery on her community and was drawn to marine biology and conservation ecology as a student at Dalhousie University.
She has produced a report on the harpoon swordfish fishery, spearheaded activity on marine invasive species and ballast water management in Atlantic Canada. Gretchen has participated as an expert in numerous environmental assessments, including the Joint Panel Review for the Digby Quarry. In her spare time she loves getting out in the garden to grow veggies, birding, and baking really good treats for her family (although reportedly not enough of them!)
Follow her on Twitter @GreenMission
Hannah coordinates Sierra Club’s PEI Wild Child Programs, which are outdoor programs designed to connect kids to nature through play. She is a queer woman and settler, born on the Canadian Shield on the unceded Anishinaabe territory of Thunder Bay, Ontario. She has a BSc. and MSc. in Ecology, which have provided opportunities to research frogs, songbirds, fish, native pollinators, and invasive green crabs. Hannah now spends her time playing in the woods with kids and is committed to building a more inclusive world where differences are valued. Hannah spends her free time playing board games, nerding out about fungi, and volunteering with many community groups in PEI.
Kristina Jackson, MSc
Kristina has a master's degree in wetland restoration from University of Florida. In 1999, she volunteered with Sierra Club (US) and has never left. She was hired as a Community Organizer on Gulf of Mexico Sustainable Fisheries the month before Hurricane Katrina hit. She worked with Sierra Club on urgent issues in Gulf communities for three years.
Kristina also co-founded Classroom Nature, a charity providing hands-on science programs in economically disenfranchised schools. She says, “There are few things more rewarding than introducing nature to kids frequently excluded from field trips and guest speakers.”
Kristina and her family immigrated to Canada in 2010, where she began with Sierra Club Canada Foundation as Ontario Chapter Coordinator for four years, moving into other positions, utlimately to National Operations Director. Her favorite activities with Sierra are the tree plantings and the annual medicine wheel workday with the Peel Aboriginal Network in Brampton.
Julia Miller-Black - WIld Child NS Coordinator
As our Director of Development and Communications, Melissa brings her passion and commitment to social and environmental justice to Sierra Club with more than 15 years of experience as a senior-level development and communications professional. Having led national philanthropy campaigns in the areas of women’s reproductive health, animal welfare, human rights, progressive policy, among others, Melissa understands the challenges faced by organizations whose missions are not typically easily funded. Helping to create a culture of philanthropy, coupled with a keen sense of the importance of taking a broad concept like “the environment” and creating relatable narratives and visuals, asserting the donor’s position, and crafting and strengthening the case to support our campaigns is what gets her up (very early) in the morning. Melissa comes by her passion honestly, having been raised by two parents who are seasoned NGO executives who have dedicated their professional lives to making our world better.
A former highland dancer and pipe band tenor drummer, Melissa is proud to hail from Maxville, Ontario – home of The Glengarry Highland Games. An animal and nature lover, cook, and gardener, she has never met a dog she didn’t like, or a rose she wouldn’t bend to smell, but she is still working on her mortal fear of toads.
Dan Reid holds a BA in Humanities, with a double-major Communications, from York University. Dan has enthusiastically joined with Sierra Club Quebec Chapter to actively promote environmental protection, in keeping with his Daoist values for a harmonious coexistence with nature. Having taught himself to read and translate Classical Chinese, Dan has published English translations of early Daoist texts, found in his books The Thread of Dao: Unraveling Early Daoist Oral Traditions in Guan Zi’s Purifying the Heart-Mind (Bai Xin), Art of the Heart Mind (Xin Shu), and Internal Cultivation (Nei Ye) and The Ho-Shang Kung Commentary on Lao Tzu’s Tao Te Ching. Dan studies Kung Fu, Chinese massage therapy (Tui Na), and occasionally leads Qigong practice groups. He has worked in various fields, from marketing, to construction, to cooking in restaurants, and playing percussion and jazz guitar.
Paulina Retamales is the Edmonton & Area Wild Child Project Coordinator. She has a Bachelor’s in Education degree from her hometown in Chile, and a Master’s in Recreation & Leisure studies from the University of Alberta. She is an outdoor educator and trained Master Naturalist, with strong environmental ethos and extensive experience working with children, youth and adults. Paulina has taught outdoor education courses for the past 10 years and feels passionate about connecting children to natural areas and encouraging others to be active participants of the outdoors. She is a proud mother of two children and enjoys spending time with them in the river valley, exploring nature and exposing her children to nature to help them promote their awareness and importance of resource conservation. Paulina feels proud to be part of this amazing Wild Child program and she can't wait to share nature experiences with children, families and friends in the community.