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Appendix B – Candidates for the Birds Canada Board of Directors 2022-2023


Thank you for your continued support of Birds Canada. Together, we are Canada’s Voice for Birds! It is time for your voice to be heard as one of our voting members.

By Wednesday, September 28, 2022, five vacancies will exist on the Board of Directors. Two current Board members (Sébastien Rioux and John Taranu) will be completing their first term and have agreed to let their names stand for a second term. Three new individuals (Janet Hill, Trish Sahlstrom, and Anil Wijesooriya) have been nominated by the Board to fill the three positions. Past Chair, Paul Uys has agreed to be re-elected for a 1-year mandate.

To be elected for a 3-year term

Janet Hill, PhD

Janet has background in Biology and Microbiology. She is Professor and Department Head of the Department of Veterinary Microbiology at University of Saskatchewan. She’s a passionate bird enthusiast, Great Canadian Birdathon supporter and has participated in Project FeederWatch since 2016.

To be elected for a 3-year term

Trish Sahlstrom​

Trish is a rancher in British Columbia with strong ties to the prairies. She recently retired as Vice-President, Purchasing and Distribution at A&W. Her forward-thinking approach led to A&W’s progressive procurement policies and support of Birds Canada grasslands conservation work.

To be elected for a 3-year term

Anil Wijesooriya

Anil Wijesooriya is the Director, Restoration and Infrastructure at Toronto and Region Conservation Authority. Anil leads a multi-disciplinary team focused on building climate resilient infrastructure and restoring natural habitats, which help realize the vision of The Living City.

To be re-elected for a 1-year mandate as Past Chair

Paul Uys

Paul is a retired executive with over 40 years’ global retail experience specializing in brand creation, food product development and sourcing. During his 25 years at Loblaw Companies, Canada’s largest food retailer, he headed product development department & innovation, and in his latter days he spearheaded its sustainable procurement initiative. Since retiring from Loblaw, he has become Director, External; OAC at the University of Guelph. He is a Board member of Ontario’s Livestock Research Innovation Corporation, and internationally is a Trustee on the Board of the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC). He also sits on the “International Panel of Experts on Sustainable Foods” (iPES-Foods). In 2014 he was awarded an Honorary Doctorate in Laws by the University of Guelph in recognition of “Innovation brought to the Canadian Food Supply System” and “leadership in Sustainability”. He is the founder of a consulting company, FMG Consulting Inc., which supports responsible food product development and sourcing.

To be re-elected for a second 3-year term

Sébastien Rioux​

Sébastien is a biologist and currently the Manager of Québec provincial operations at Ducks Unlimited Canada. He previously worked for 10 years at the Quebec Wildlife Foundation. The foundation’s work supports partnerships with communities, industry, nonprofit organizations, and other partners to promote conservation of wildlife across Québec. One such project has been the recently published Second Atlas of the Breeding Birds of Southern Québec, for which the foundation is a Gold Level sponsor. Sébastien has been an outdoor and wildlife enthusiast all of his life, and offers Birds Canada his experience from across Québec and a desire to support conservation of birds across Canada.

To be re-elected for a second 3-year term

John Taranu

John is a birder and long-term supporter of Birds Canada. John works at SADA Systems in the New York City area, guiding strategic enterprise clients on their cloud transformation journeys.  In his past employment at Google, John led charity fundraising drives, boosting awareness for Birds Canada and raising a significant amount from his peers and corporate matching contributions. He also convened employees to assist with several volunteer events, such as paddleboard shoreline cleanups and native plantings at Birds Canada’s landscaping project at the Humber Arboretum. John volunteers with Birds Canada’s SwiftWatch program and numerous winter and summer counts.John offers experience to the Board and senior staff with strategic development, recruiting, IT, corporate and individual fundraising, volunteer engagement.

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