Working Group Members Selected for Forestry Engagement

(North Cowichan, BC) - As part of the public engagement on the future of the Municipal Forest Reserve (MFR), consultants, Lees + Associates, have selected 16 members of the public to participate in a Working Group. This group will help shape engagement inputs into the Interim and Long-Term Forest Management Plans. Applications for the Working Group (WG) launched on PlaceSpeak, and on our website on February 28. During the two-week application window, a sustained advertising campaign was carried out, resulting in over 70 applications being received.

To ensure the selection process was neutral and independent, applications were each reviewed by Erik Lees, Megan Turnock, and Eileen Finn of Lees + Associates and Dr Stephen Sheppard of the UBC Partnership Group. To help create a balanced working group, the applicants’ interests and background were identified as either general, recreation, environmental/conservation, economy, or forestry. Many people had overlapping interests and applicants were not limited to interest in only one category. Lees + Associates also strove to reach a gender balance.

Applicants who live outside of the Municipality of North Cowichan were not eligible. However, non-residents will have the opportunity to participate in the online survey and attend in-person events. In addition, Forest Advisory Committee (FAC) members were considered, but the Consultants concluded that FAC members will have other opportunities for participation, specifically with the UBC Partnership Group’s technical review.

The final 16 people identified for the Working Group includes 8 men and 8 women. Of them, their interests and/or backgrounds are in forestry (4), economy (2), conservation (4), recreation (7), and general (7). Recreation had the most overlap with the other categories. 14 people attended the inaugural Working Group meeting. 2 members were unable to attend, while one prospective member declined to join the Group. As a result, Lees + Associates will decide if, and how, this position will be filled by March 31. Below is the list of confirmed members:

  • Bruce Coates
  • Dan Williams
  • Roger Wiles
  • Sharon Horsburgh
  • Robert Fullerton
  • Paul Tataryn
  • Margaret Symon
  • Rhonda Hittinger
  • Rick Martinson
  • Deb Wright
  • Larry MacIntosh
  • Sally Leigh-Spencer
  • Michael Petereit
  • Susan Derby

 Summaries from the Working Group Meetings will be posted on our website and PlaceSpeak after each meeting. For more information, and upcoming opportunities to engage, connect with us on PlaceSpeak, visit our website, or like us on Facebook.


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Media Contact:         
Megan Jordan
Manager, Communications & Public Engagement
T: 250.746.3156