Board of Directors


Stella_(1).JPGStella Swanson, Chair

Stella has a Ph.D. Limnology, BSc. Honours Biology and is a Registered Professional Biologist.  She is a Member of Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry, Canadian Association of Water Quality, Society for Mining, Metallurgy and Exploration.  She has been the chair of the Elk Valley Selenium Management Task Force and Elk Valley Cumulative Effects Management Framework. 



Steven Malborough, Vice Chair

Steve has a BSc in biological sciences. He has worked and travelled extensively throughout the world. His professional background is in oil & gas, mining and infrastructure. Steve and Andrea have 3 young children and are happy at last to call Fernie home. The family enjoys skiing, biking, climbing and working on their acreage. Steve is also an auxillary with Fernie Fire & Rescue. 


Matt Noseworthy, Director

Matt graduated from College of the Rockies Mountain Adventure Skills Training (MAST 2001).  He is a white water raft guide on the Elk River (Trip Leader, Swift Water Rescue, EMP Level 3 First Aid), Canadian Avalanche Association Ski Operations Level 2 and Professional Member, Red Seal Carpenter.  Matt is a member of the Elk River Alliance, and Fernie Trails Alliance.  He wants to protect the Elk River ecosystem.


Roxanne.jpgRoxane Esch, Director

Roxane holds a B.A. Honours and Bachelor of Education and is a teacher in the French Immersion program at Fernie Secondary School.  She has been paddling and working on rivers around the world since 1982 as a guide, videographer, instructor and competitor. She was a member of the Canadian Whitewater slalom kayaking team 1991-93 and a freestyle paddler with team Wavesport 1996-98.  Roxane has coached kayaking at the Provincial and National level as well as leading instructor certification courses (river kayak course conductor). 

Over the years, I have witnessed the loss of many great whitewater "runs" around the world, either due to hydroelectric projects or pollution. I am an advocate for river conservancy through responsible stewardship and education. As a teacher, I am constantly reminded of the need to educate students about the importance of water management, and sustainability. Fresh water is a precious resource.

I love that I can be on the water within five minutes of my home. I am able to paddle on a clean, free flowing river with relatively easy access. It is an incredible recreational resource with unrivaled beauty and a wide variety of flora and fauna. Paddling the stretch from Hosmer to Fernie on a sunny, late afternoon is breathtaking.

 Marie Wilfong, Director

Marie is a retired educator. She has always been involved in outdoor pursuits: kayaking, skiing, hiking, biking. Consequently, she is passionate about promotion, responsible stewardship and protection of the environment. She is keen to put her passion into action and give back to the community.

Marie has been on the Fernie Trail Alliance Board for 4 years. Since her move to Fernie, 8 years ago, she has actively participated in the maintenance and building of trails as well as volunteering with the ERA. She is also an active member of Canadian air Search and Rescue as a spotter.


Lynn Muller, Director 

Lynn is a professional rafting guide started Canyon Raft Company in 1995. With her partner, Blair she moved from rafting on the Kicking Horse river to the Elk river and embraced life in Fernie. Lynn’s fitness is an inspiration. She keeps active year round, biking, swimming, hiking, paddling, cross country skiing and alpine skiing. Her spirit animal is the hummingbird.



Levi.JPGLevi Strom, Director 

Levi is a student at Sparwood Secondary School.  He attended the Elk River Watershed Discovery Camp in 2013 and has been the junior leader from 2014-2016.  Levi also attended Blue Lake Camp 2008-2009.  He feels ERA is a great organization that helps protect the Elk River and the environment and communities around it!!



Carla.JPGCarla Fraser, Director 

Carla Fraser moved to the East Kootenays (Fernie) in 1997 after studying forest resource management at the University of British Columbia. She started her career as a professional forester hiking around the Rockies. Passionate about sustainable resource development and continuous learning, Carla decided to move into the mining industry in 2005. Currently focused on all things water related from monitoring to compliance within the Elk River watershed. In her free time, Carla loves everything the Kootenay lifestyle has to offer with her husband and two kids.


Alexa Hurdal

Originally from Elkford, BC where I spent my childhood rafting and canoeing on the Elk River. I finished high school and university in Alberta where I got my degree in Human Resources, before moving back to the Elk Valley. I settled in Fernie and started working for Canyon Raft Co. as a shuttle driver and then a raft guide. I also work in Human Resources at the ski hill, where I get to utilize my degree. I enjoy spending my summers rafting and kayaking on the Elk river, where I can share my love for the river and its amazing ecosystem. I believe it is important to support sustainability efforts for our environment and to engage with the community on environmental issues. 


Margie Sutherland

After 17 years as a Treasury Analyst then Contracts Analyst, in the natural gas industry, Margie was thrilled to move to Fernie in 1998 with husband Mark.  Recently retired from her dream job of 15 years in the horticulture industry, she's excited to have the energy and time to give back to this amazing and beautiful community. Avid gardener, skier, SUP'er, biker, newbie climber, Margie and her faithful dog Finny walk along the Elk daily, always in awe of the river’s beauty.




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