GARRY MERKEL is a member of the Tahltan Nation in northwestern B.C. and a Registered Professional Forester with over 45 years of experience in the field, management, academic, research and community aspects of forest and land management. He has worked in many fields, some of which include organizational development, community development, business development and management, governance, community-based land management and education.
Some of his current activities include: Senior Negotiator/Advisor, Ktunaxa Nation Council; Executive Director, BC First Nations Housing & Infrastructure Council; Co-Chair, Minister’s Forests and Range Practices Advisory Council; and CEO, Tobacco Plains Development Corporation. His professional goals centre around assisting others to better shape their own futures with a strong emphasis on remaining grounded in respectful relationships with the land and each other.
AL GORLEY is a professional forester with 45 years of experience in both government and consulting work. He has served as president of the Association of BC Forest Professionals and as board chair for Northwest Community College. In 1994, he was appointed regional manager for the Prince George Forest District, and worked concurrently as executive director of Forest Practices Code Implementation. In 1998, he moved to Victoria to take on the role of vice-president for land and resources at Forest Renewal BC and was later promoted to Chief Operating Officer. In 2002, Al started his own consulting firm and has since worked with a wide variety of industries, communities, and governments across the province, nationally and internationally on natural resource and management matters. From 2004 to 2007, he served as president of the McGregor Model Forest and was a founding director of the Canadian Model Forest Network. He is a board member of the Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation and is a past member of the Forest Appeals Commission and Environmental Appeals Board. He was chair of B.C.’s Forest Practices Board from 2010 to 2013.
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