Meet FESBC Executive Assistant: Kathy Dupuis

The Forest Enhancement Society of BC (FESBC) has recently welcomed a familiar face back to its team, adding a dynamic member who is no stranger to the Kamloops office. Meet Kathy Dupuis, returning in a new part-time role as the Executive Assistant.

Kathy’s journey with FESBC began years ago when she served as the organization’s first Office Manager. Now, she is ecstatic to rejoin the team and collaborate with the fresh faces and dedicated board of directors. Fondly reminiscing about the early days of setting up the Kamloops office, Kathy recalls the excitement of their inaugural funding intake.

“We had our very first funding intake the day after I started with FESBC in August of 2016,” she recalls, “Although the intake was small, when I read through the application materials, I realized how important this forest enhancement work would be. Seven years later – that hasn’t changed.”

Prior to her time at FESBC, Kathy accumulated invaluable experience in both government and industry offices, providing unwavering support to staff and senior management in diverse capacities. Graduating from Thompson Rivers University in 2007, Kathy has continuously expanded her skillset, with a particular passion for writing and editing. She eagerly anticipates contributing to the FESBC communications team by assisting with website postings.

In fact, you’ll often find Kathy comfortably nestled at home, diligently working on various projects. However, she also relishes quality time with her two grown children and her daughter-in-law, often hosting delightful dinner and movie nights. Currently, the family has embarked on an adventurous endeavor to watch all 28 James Bond movies. And when she’s not immersed in cinematic espionage, Kathy can be found belting out karaoke tunes with her friends or embarking on exciting hiking trips. This year, their plans include a week-long exploration of the breathtaking Fernie region.

One thing that remains unchanged is Kathy’s commitment to helping people and working to ensure both staff and board have what they need in order to be able to do their work. “I feel so lucky to be able to contribute to a team where my values align so closely with the work we do here at FESBC.”

Meet FESBC Office Manager: Joyce Clarke

The Forest Enhancement Society of British Columbia (FESBC) recently added a new office manager to its team. Joyce Clarke, who brings over 25 years of administrative experience in Office Management, Human Resources, Accounting and, as an Executive Assistant, will be working with the team to help keep processes running smoothly behind-the-scenes.

Throughout her career, Joyce gathered diverse work experience through industries such as drilling and manufacturing, as well as experience in both government and non-profit organizations.

“I applied to FESBC because I wanted to make a difference, even if it’s small. I also wanted a position where I could use my skillset and I felt this was a perfect fit,” said Joyce, who has a knack for organizing and implementing successful policies and procedures.

Within her first month of working with FESBC, Joyce got an opportunity to go on-site for one of the prescriptions FESBC had funded in Logan Lake and she found this hands-on approach to working very informative.

“I learned so many things and it really confirmed that I am in an organization where I belong. I like working in the office, but it is really nice to see the work we are doing and how it impacts communities in real-time,” said Joyce.

As FESBC’s office manager, Joyce is responsible for taking care of details for the office, bookkeeping, etc. But she also wears an executive assistant hat, helping the FESBC team wherever needed.

Joyce was born in Ontario in a small town, but while growing up, due to her father’s work, she moved around Ontario a lot, and even moved to Yukon when she was 14 years of age. When she got married, she moved to B.C. with her husband, and she now considers B.C. home.

Her diverse background was part of what attracted her to FESBC’s work.

“I like working as a team and working in a diverse group and I believe with FESBC, I will get that,” explained Joyce. “I believe in giving back, I like taking care of the environment and I like living in harmony with First Nations and all of this also lines up with the work FESBC does; so, it’s great!”

When not at work, Joyce enjoys spending time with her family, hanging out with her yorkie/pom Pebbles, going on camping trips in the summer, and attending music festivals with friends.

On occasion, Joyce dabbles in creative writing and likes to write personal poetry for those who have touched her in some way.

If you ever get the chance to stop by the FESBC office in Kamloops, don’t be surprised if cookies show up, or seasonal decorations are put up, as Joyce likes to bring a touch of hominess to her working environment!

Meet FESBC Operations Manager: Brian Watson

The Forest Enhancement Society of British Columbia (FESBC), recently added to its team a new Operations Manager, Brian Watson, who brings 28 years of forestry experience in Silviculture, Operations, Project Management, and Policy. His main motivation in coming to FESBC has been to combine all of his past experiences with his out-of-the-box thinking and his desire to bring about more connections between foresters and First Nations.

Before coming to FESBC, and early in his career Brian worked for MacMillan Bloedel, then Weyerhaeuser, and was most recently employed with the Office of the Chief Forester, working in the Forest Carbon and Climate Services Branch. Through that work, he was fortunate to collaborate with talented researchers, scientists, administrators, carbon modellers and other foresters, to breathe life into the Forest Carbon Initiative.

But Brian’s love for forestry can be traced all the way back to his childhood.

“When I was young, forestry was always in the news with lots of debates around forestry and logging. My dad actually had aspirations of being a forester when he was young. Although he never did become a forester, I was taken by his desire and became curious about the sector,” added Brian, who grew up in Ladner, B.C., a farming and fishing community.

Brian received his diploma from BCIT in Renewable Resources and a degree from UBC – a Bachelor of Science in Forestry.

“For me Forestry was, and is a great opportunity to work outdoors; it is a super relevant industry to B.C., and what we do really matters,” noted Brian. “It’s dynamic –where we are trying to create an economy for the province, we are trying to manage the forests sustainably with climate change related uncertainty, and we are trying to do this while thinking differently about the social implication of it all. Reconciliation with Indigenous people is bound to land management, and as we start to look at ourselves as caretakers more and more, as we work together as communities, forestry is becoming more and more of a compelling industry to be a part of.”

Brian has also worked with the Ktunaxa Nation, and that experience has provided him with some very important teaching moments he is looking to bring into his work with FESBC.

“I am hoping to apply my learnings from working with the Ktunaxa, to try and open up opportunities to enhance the exposure of other First Nations to forestry,” he noted.

With FESBC, Brian is looking forward to practicing forestry in an operational setting.

“It is an opportunity to be involved in implementing really cool forest management projects. And I’d like people to know that we are here to provide support and to do work that is complementary to what the government is already doing,” he said.

When not at work, Brian, who lives with his family on a farm outside of Cranbrook, ranches. In his free time, he is hoping to spend time lounging along Tribune Bay with family, and escape to Fruita, Colorado to ride PBR (Pumps Bumps Rollers), the famous mountain biking trail, with his buddies.

In addition to his love for forestry and ranching, Brian is passionate about playing hockey, coaching minor sports, mountain biking, sawmilling and walking the countryside with his Aussie Shepherd, Blue.

“With my work at FESBC, I am hoping to get out in the field more often, talk with more people, do good work that is meaningful and close to communities, and make a significant impact!”