Chad Hughes, Executive Director 

BSc Environmental Science

Exploring and learning about this amazing river has been a passion ever since I swapped the Outback deserts for the mountains of the Kootenays. I’m so glad to have the opportunity to use my skills and experience to protect the place we fish, float, and live. I feel the community has a huge role to play in environmental conservation and through the ERA I want to help citizens and visitors of the Elk Valley safeguard the river on which we work and play. 

[email protected]

Kaileigh McCallum, Junior Ecologist 

MSc Biodiversity and Conservation

A long-standing passion for nature and a desire to understand it drives me in my need to protect the Elk River watershed. I am thrilled to have the opportunity to bring my enthusiasm for environmental conservation to a community with such a strong connection to its rivers and a love of nature at its heart. By continuing to learn about our watershed, and encourage others to do the same, we can foster this incredible connection to it and ensure the health of our rivers for future generations. 

[email protected] 

Evgeni Matveev, Outreach and Education Coordinator

MSc Marine Biology

One of the most important yet lagging components of science is communicating research to the public. Over the years I’ve gathered experience in event organization, writing, and graphic design so I can best relate scientific findings to the public via diverse media. I think science is exciting, but often shrouded in needlessly confusing terminology. My goal is to get the local community excited about the science and nature around them, and thereby be more engaged in protecting the ecosystem. 

[email protected] 

Anne-Caroline Kroeger, Program Manager

M.Sc Bioresource Engineering

As a general science student studying side-by-side with engineering students, I was struck at the ability of engineering students ''to get projects done'' through project management skills, and I wanted to learn the ways of effective project managers. I applied these skills with increasing confidence over the five years I worked in an environmental consulting firm in Québec City. My interest in running exciting projects in high-performing teams has grown every year since my early student years.

Stephanie Hirn, Administrative Support 

I've lived in the mountains and small communities my entire life, and have called the Elk Valley my home since 2018. My background is mainly in Administration and Bookkeeping, and with over 16 years of experience in the administration side of business, I really enjoy what I do. When I am not working, you'll find me rappelling off a mountain I just climbed, on a multi-day trek where every ounce weight was carefully considered, if you switch your avalanche transceiver to search, you might find me in the backcountry touring, or look up in the sky as I might be flying with the birds, and on occasion I'll go explore a cave and of course as most residents do, floating the Elk River to relax from life's adventures.