Please join NOCI at our 20th Annual General Meeting! Friday, March 2, 2017 – doors open at 7 p.m., events begin at 7:30. Dakota Lawn Bowling Club, 1212 Dakota Street, Winnipeg. During our meeting, we will be electing board members, conducting the business portion of the meeting and celebrating NOCI’s 20th birthday with a guest speaker, raffle, door prizes and light refreshments. Please note, you must be a member in good standing in order to vote, so please renew your NOCI membership during the AGM if you have not already done so. The biographies of those who have allowed their names to stand for election to the board are shown below.

NOCI Board Candidate Biographies 2018

Carla Church  is a senior field biologist with the Manitoba Conservation Data Centre (CDC), Manitoba Sustainable Development, and master’s student in the Bioscience, Technology and Public Policy Department of the University of Winnipeg. She specialises in Manitoba’s herpetofauna and the monitoring and ecology of Species At Risk (SAR) of various taxa including plants, freshwater mussels, and Lepidoptera.  She is involved in the mapping of all SAR and other tracked species, using Geographic Information Systems, in the Manitoba CDC and NatureServe. She is currently researching the distribution and habitat requirements of the Threatened Eastern Tiger Salamander in southeastern Manitoba.

Mike James is into his 55th year of teaching Science and Biology. He operates the Boreal Woods Nature Centre near Grand Marais, hosting school field trips, and non-timber forest product workshops as well as conducting school fossil studies with his sister in the Stony Mountain area. Mike has served on a number of boards: The Science Teachers’ Association of Manitoba, The Biology Teachers’ Organization, The Red River Apiarists’ Association, Manitoba Model Forest, and currently the Wood Lot Association of Manitoba, Native Orchid Conservation Inc. and Debwendon. He was Envirothon Coordinator for 6 years. His involvement in the Brokenhead Ecological Interpretive Trail with its fen ecosystem has also been of interest to him. Mike has a passion for teaching about nature and studying the diversity of the boreal forest both with a western science approach and traditional knowledge outlook. Mike and his wife Margo have 3 adult children and 6 grandchildren.

Lavanya Saravanan is currently in her third year of an Environmental Studies degree in University of Manitoba, focusing on policy and law. She was born in southern India, grew up in the north and finished high school in Dubai. She became a member of NOCI last year and volunteered at the Manitoba Orchid Society show. She has also volunteered on campus in the recycling team. She likes to interact with people from different countries and is looking forward to learning and gaining new experience with NOCI.

David Toop has been part of NOCI since 2010 and has been a board member since 2012. David has a Master of Science degree and works for Manitoba Sustainable Development as a hydrogeologist. Familiar to many from field trip activities, meetings and the NOC conference, David also liaises with conservation partners for a common goal of orchid preservation. David has been active documenting orchid sites across Manitoba. While travelling, he has continued to participate in board meeting by phone or video calling.


Note: There are five openings on the board for the even year election cycle and four people have so far allowed their names to stand for election or re-election. If you would like to help out at the board level, please contact the nomination chair, Mike at Nominations from the floor will also be accepted at the Annual General Meeting on March 2, 2018 when the election will take place.