Reflect. Reconnect. Imagine.

This year’s Environmental Gathering is an opportunity to reflect on the work of environmental nonprofits across the province, reconnect with each other after a challenging year, and imagine what is possible for the province in the years to come.

We want to keep everyone safe, so this year, the Environmental Gathering is virtual.

Join us on October 27 for a full day of learning and opportunities to connect with your community 

Gathering Agenda

These events are live on Zoom! You will receive the Zoom link and session material (where applicable) directly to your inbox 24 hours before the event starts.

We encourage you to be present and participate in these interactive sessions as these sessions may or may not be recorded. The Environmental Gathering is on October 27, 2021 and all session times are in MST.

Context setting and an overview of how we will engage with each other during the day of programming. Including opening remarks from Pat Letizia, President and CEO of Alberta Ecotrust Foundation, a moment of reflection with Sierra Shade, Indigenous Events Consultant with CPAWS Southern Alberta, and remarks from Honorable Jason Nixon, Minister of Alberta Environment and Parks.

Pat Letizia

Pat is known for her enthusiasm and candor, and is an ardent champion for the environment and the voluntary sector. She has been with the foundation since 1996, prior to which she completed a Bachelor of Science Honours degree at the University of Calgary while raising 3 young children, carpooling, volunteering for several organizations and holding down a part-time job. 

She has significant experience in local, provincial and national arenas of environmental philanthropy and non-profit program development. Under her leadership, Alberta Ecotrust has grown significantly in both financial assets and community impacts.

Sierra Shade

Pookaakiiwun (Little girl), english name Sierra Shade, is the Indigenous event consultant for CPAWS Southern Alberta.

She is a researcher, educator and powwow dancer who reigns from Kainai Nation. Sierra is committed to language revitalization, land based learning and working with other Kin in treaty 7 area.

Honourable Jason Nixon

Minister Nixon was first elected as the Member of the Legislative Assembly of Alberta for the constituency of Rimbey–Rocky Mountain House–Sundre on May 5, 2015. He was re-elected on April 16, 2019. 

Mr. Nixon had the privilege of serving as the Leader of Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition in the Alberta Legislative Assembly from October 2017 to January 2018. He has held other notable positions within the Assembly, including Official Opposition House Leader, Chief Opposition Whip, a variety of Shadow Minister roles, and he has served as a member of several legislative standing committees. Jason Nixon was appointed as Alberta’s Minister of Environment and Parks as well as Government House Leader on April 30, 2019.

Join facilitator Chúk Odenigbo of Future Ancestors Services in exploring the meaning of environmental justice and how it can be woven into our collaborations, programs and strategies as environmental changemakers. This interactive session will include examples of concrete steps and changes organizations can make to build equitable, inclusive and environmentally abundant futures here in Alberta.

Chúk Odenigbo

Proudly Franco-Albertan, Chúk’s passion lies in the interactions between culture, health and the environment.

Outside of this work with Future Ancestors Services, he is the cofounder of The Poison and The Apple and is completing his PhD in Medical Geography after completing a masters degree from the School of Public Health at the University of Montréal.

Chúk is your typical urbanite, in love with technology and
fashion, all the while retaining a connection with nature and integrating green and blue spaces into his everyday.

His vision is to reconnect humanity with nature in a way that accommodates modernity, sparking that green revolution without decimation of the present.

It’s time to stretch your legs and get ready for the next session.

After a challenging year, what people and projects in Alberta’s environmental community have inspired us? Alberta Ecotrust Vice President Rod Ruff hosts a panel discussion highlighting three successful projects that have cultivated hope by engaging communities, making an impact on policy and launching innovative programs.

This session will include presentations from the teams behind the Eastern Slopes Community-Based Aquatic Monitoring Collaborative, the Climate Innovation Fund, and the Defend Alberta Parks campaign.  

Rod Ruff

Rod Ruff is the Vice President at Alberta Ecotrust Foundation and loves to work across boundaries and build creative partnerships to advance a more sustainable future in Alberta. Rod is passionate about program design, evaluation, and collaboration. He has led strategic projects for Alberta Ecotrust which includes participating as a founder of the Low Carbon Cities Canada initiative which established the Climate Innovation Fund in Calgary and Edmonton, and Project Blue Thumb – Canada’s first social innovation lab aimed at addressing water quality issues. When he isn’t at work, or spending time with his wife and daughter, you can find him nestled in a book, fly fishing in the Bow River, or hunting in the prairies near his hometown of Medicine Hat.

Alberta Ecotrust 2019 Environmental Gathering Presenter Rod Ruff

Eastern Slopes Community-Based Aquatic Monitoring Collaborative

Sofie Forsström

Sofie Forsström is the Education Program Manager for the Oldman Watershed Council, based out of Lethbridge. In addition to overseeing education projects like Engaging Recreationists and supervising summer staff, she also coordinates OWC’s volunteer restoration events and aquatic biomonitoring program in the headwaters. Sofie has a Masters degree in Applied Ecology. In her spare time, she volunteers as a Scout leader, rides her horse, and goes hiking with her dog, Quiche.

Climate Innovation Fund

Mike Mellross

Mike has nearly a quarter century of experience in climate change, sustainability, and environmental management working across the private, public and charitable sectors. Mike is a published author with articles in science journals on market transformation theory for the achievement of climate change goals.

Mike has degrees in Environmental Science, Water Pollution Studies, and Natural Sciences and is a registered Professional Agrologist with the Alberta Institute of Agrologists. Mike was a recipient of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities’ Best for Canada Innovator award and a 2019 winner of the Charles Labatiuk award for environmental excellence.

Stefanie Drozda

Stefanie aims to connect, support, and advance the ideas and people leading urban climate solutions in Edmonton and Calgary. With a passion for the environment cultivated while growing up in rural northern Alberta, Stefanie holds a BSc in Environmental Economics and Policy from the University of Alberta. 

She has worked in the sustainability field for nearly a decade, in the post-secondary and municipal government sectors.

Stefanie finds joy in tending her garden, spending time in the wilderness while hiking, camping, and fishing, and sipping a warm cup of tea. 

Jessica Lajoie

Jessica’s environmental and community passions were cultivated during her formative years growing up in Sudbury, Ontario. These interests led to a degree in Environmental Engineering from the University of Guelph and then to Alberta to work in the burgeoning carbon offset sector. After starting a family, Jessica spent almost a decade working for the climate and corporate engineering teams at The City of Calgary.

The opportunity to work on urban climate change projects was a dream come true. Outside of work, Jessica can be found volunteering in her community, puttering in her garden, or spending time with friends and family.

Defend Alberta Parks Campaign

Becky Best-Bertwistle

Becky has worked as the Conservation Engagement Coordinator at CPAWS Southern Alberta since 2018, she continues to learn everyday from the passionate grassroots conservationists she is fortunate to work with.

When not “on the job” she can be found playing bluegrass on various stringed instruments and spending time hiking, riding or paddling around the province.

Tara Russell

Tara Russell is the Program Director at CPAWS Northern Alberta. She started working with CPAWS in 2015, where her passion and knowledge of Alberta’s wild spaces have allowed her to wear many hats in the organization. She has led projects to project to better protect our natural heritage: ask her about caribou conservation, and work to protect the North Saskatchewan River Headwaters. Outside of her work with CPAWS, she recharges in the very places she works to protect.

 

Natalie Odd

Natalie Odd is the Executive Director of the Alberta Environmental Network and has worked in the environmental nonprofit sector in Alberta for over 20 years. They have a membership over 50 environmental groups that connect, collaborate, mobilize and impact ecosystems. Over the past year, they have partnered with other organizations for the Defend Alberta Parks and Protect our Water – Alberta Beyond Coal ground campaigns. She was born in Holland and has lived in England, France, Spain, Sweden and Ecuador. 

Jeff Wiehler

Jeff is a Communications Specialist at the Alberta Environmental Network, where he supports campaigns and working groups. He contributed to the design, websites and information flow for the Defend Alberta Parks and Alberta Beyond Coal campaigns. 

With a background in chemistry, journalism and user experience design, Jeff focuses on digital communication for topics related to science and sustainability. Beyond his projects with the AEN, Jeff provides digital marketing support across sectors.

While you are grabbing a bite to eat and a break from your computer, we’ll have a few questions for you to reflect on!

Join Vicki Stroich, Engagement Director of Alberta Ecotrust in a facilitated discussion about directions we might take in our collective action as Alberta’s environmental community. This is an opportunity to connect with fellow participants and begin to imagine the impact we can make together.

Vicki Stroich

Vicki is a Calgary based facilitator, non-profit leader, community builder and dramaturg with over 20 years of experience. Designing and hosting creative spaces and fostering collaboration are Vicki’s great passions. She is currently Engagement Director for Alberta Ecotrust. Previously Vicki worked with Alberta Theatre Projects for over 16 years, serving as the company’s Executive Director for over four years.

She has recently been exploring the intersection of the art and environmental sectors by participating in committees and programs that bring the work of artists and environmental communities together. She has a BFA Drama from University of Calgary and an Extension Certificate in Social Innovation and Changemaking from Mount Royal University. Vicki has received a Betty Mitchell Award for Outstanding Achievement for her work on new Canadian plays and is an Avenue Magazine Top 40 Under 40 Alumni.

Take a moment to rest and reflect on the previous session.

As a sector we are increasingly recognizing that environmental challenges are intimately connected to social, health and economic challenges experienced in our communities.  Join Mary Pickering from The Atmospheric Fund and Stefan Hostetter from the Centre for Social Innovation as they discuss and engage participants in approaches to designing programs and projects that offer multiple community benefits.

Mary Pickering

Mary Pickering has 30 years of experience in the environmental non-profit sector. She is currently senior advisor to The Atmospheric Fund, and Low Carbon Cities Canada, working to accelerate urban climate action while generating equitable community benefits.

Mary is an experienced program designer and leader of collective impact and partnership initiatives, co-directing development of the City of Toronto’s TransformTO climate plan and participating as a founder of the Low Carbon Cities Canada initiative.

Mary holds a Master of Environmental Studies from York University in Environmental Communications and is an accredited partnership broker, mentor and trainer for the international Partnership Brokers Association.

Stefan Hostetter

Stefan Hostetter is a life long environmentalist, storyteller, and community builder.

Currently working with the Centre for Social Innovation (CSI) as the Community Manager of CSI Spadina, he’s always looking for new interesting projects to jump into.

Outside of CSI, he is the Co-Chair of the Toronto Climate Action Network, co-hosts the Green Majority a nationally syndicated radio show that covers environmental topics. 

He also co-produces the Stories We Don’t Tell a monthly storytelling series and podcast that dives into the parts of peoples lives society often is happy to leave untold.

We will close the day together with closing remarks from Pat Letizia, President and CEO of Alberta Ecotrust Foundation and some final reflection questions to inspire the work ahead!

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Tickets

Please Note

  • Registration closes at 11:55 P.M. on October 26, 2021. We hope this gives you enough time to decide if this event works with your schedule.
  • If you need bursary support to attend, please contact us at [email protected] We endeavoured to make the Environmental Gathering as accessible as possible.
  • If you need a refund, you must let us know by 4:00 P.M. MST on October 20th, 2021.

Frequently Asked Questions

Alberta Ecotrust uses photographs and videos of our events in our promotional materials on our website and social media channels. By virtue of your attendance at the Environmental Gathering sessions, all event participants agree to the use of their likeness in these materials.

The Environmental Gathering is dedicated to providing a harassment-free event experience for everyone, regardless of gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, age, disability, physical appearance, race, ethnicity, or religion. Alberta Ecotrust does not tolerate harassment of event participants in any form.

At the sole discretion of Alberta Ecotrust, and without a ticket refund, we receive the right to expel from the event, anyone that we determine is violating the Code of Conduct and/or behaving in a manner that could be disruptive to the event or any other event participant.

Alberta Ecotrust and the Environmental Gathering will not accept liability for damages of any nature sustained by attendees or accompanying persons, or loss of, or damage to their personal property as a result of the Environmental Gathering or related event.

Your ticket does register you for the entire day of programming. We are working with facilitators to create an interactive experience. We encourage you to attend all of the sessions.

The sessions are designed to be interactive and the majority of sessions will not be recorded.

If you need bursary support to attend one of the events, please contact us at [email protected]. Please let us know who you are and why you need a bursary.

Even though this event is online, we invite participants to approach this day as if they were attending in person.  The sessions will include interaction and are not designed as webinars.  We hope you will be present for the full day of programming and be prepared to interact in breakout rooms throughout the day.  We will be taking breaks and an hour-long lunch break to allow you opportunities to stretch, step away from the computer and renew your energy.

Registered participants will receive the Zoom link and session material (where applicable) directly to their inbox 24 hours before the event starts.

Early bird pricing is $50.00 until October 18, 2021 or access our group ticket price when you purchase five tickets for $200.00 CAD. 

After October 18, you can purchase an Individual ticket for $75.00 CAD or access our group ticket price when you purchase five tickets for $300.00 CAD. 

The Environmental Gathering is designed as an active learning event. There is a strong emphasis on learning, and importantly, on implementing solutions. The more people that attend from your organization, the more benefit you and your organization will receive!

If you need bursary support to attend, please contact us at [email protected]. Please let us know who you are and why you need a bursary. 

If you have questions about tickets, please contact [email protected].

By purchasing a ticket to the Environmental Gathering, you agree to the following terms and conditions:

  • Refund Policy: If you need a refund, you must let us know by 4:00PM MST on October 20th, 2021.
  • Ticket Transfer: Due to the nature of the Environmental Gathering events this year, we are unable to offer ticket transfers.
  • Code of Conduct: The Environmental Gathering is dedicated to providing a harassment-free event experience for everyone, regardless of gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, age, disability, physical appearance, race, ethnicity, or religion. Alberta Ecotrust does not tolerate harassment of event participants in any form. At the sole discretion of Alberta Ecotrust, and without a ticket refund, we receive the right to expel from the event, anyone that we determine is violating the Code of Conduct and/or behaving in a manner that could be disruptive to the event or any other event participant.
  • Photo & Video Release: Alberta Ecotrust uses photographs and videos of our events in our promotional materials on our website and social media channels. By virtue of your attendance at the 2020 Environmental Gathering sessions, all event participants agree to the use of their likeness in these materials.
  • Liability: Alberta Ecotrust and the Environmental Gathering will not accept liability for damages of any nature sustained by attendees or accompanying persons, or loss of, or damage to their personal property as a result of the Environmental Gathering or related event.

If you have any questions about these terms and conditions, please email [email protected]

Contact Us

Have a question about the Environmental Gathering? Contact us at [email protected].

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Our Sponsors

There are a number of ways you and your organization can be involved.

If you would like to become a sponsor, please email [email protected]

The Environmental Gathering would not be possible without the generous support of our sponsors. Thank you!