Board of Directors

Bubbling Springs Trail in PEI National Park by Shirley Gallant

Board of Directors

Island Nature Trust is governed by a volunteer Board of Directors of 8 to 12 general directors as well as one representative from each of our four founding organizations:

  • PEI Museums and Heritage Foundation
  • PEI Wildlife Federation
  • Natural History Society of PEI (Nature PEI)
  • Biology Department of the University of PEI

June Jenkins Sanderson, President

June Sanderson

June Jenkins Sanderson is an environmentalist and social justice advocate who joined the board of Island Nature Trust in 2017. A retired educator and counselling therapist, she holds Bachelors of Science and Education degrees from UPEI and a Masters in Psychotherapy from Acadia University. June has experience on boards at the National and provincial levels including the CCPA, ELSB and the Canadian Red Cross. Currently she is one of the leaders for the Terry Fox Naturalization Gallery in Cornwall. June also volunteers with a national youth leadership initiative and with the United Church on issues relating to social justice. 2016 saw June recognized as one of the Women in Leadership in PEI. An avid naturalist June believes that access to natural places is an important component of maintaining health at all ages. She and her partner David live in Warren Grove and spend time exploring natural spaces on foot and bike.

Favourite (two) places in PEI: 1. Sitting under the elder Eastern hemlocks in our woodlot watching the dogs romp in the ground hemlock discovering homes of small creatures. No man made sounds except for my breath. 2. Lying on the warm red sandstone around our favorite snorkelling hole after a wonderful viewing of brown and red algae and the odd lobster.

Favourite quote: “Those who contemplate the beauty of the earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts.” Rachel Carson

Jan Matejcek, Vice-President

Jan Matejcek
Jan Matejcek joined the board in 2018 and brings with him almost forty years of experience as an international transactional lawyer and business manager, as well as insights gained from working with several non-profit organizations in Canada and Europe. Since retiring in 2017 and moving to PEI from London (UK), Jan has finally found the time to follow his life’s passion and runs a tree nursery specializing in growing native trees.
Jan was born in Czechoslovakia and came to Canada in 1969 with his family. He started his legal career with the Ottawa office but several years later joined a large Toronto firm, where he became a partner. Shortly after the fall of the Iron Curtain, he was recruited by the leading US-based global firm of White & Case to lead its east European operations. Over the course of the last twenty-five years Jan participated in some of the largest acquisitions and greenfield projects completed in the emerging markets of Europe. For a number of years he served as the head of his law firm’s Corporate Practice covering thirty five countries of Europe, Middle East and Africa, served on his firm’s partnership committee and acted as the Chairman of the overall business operations in those markets.While working in Ottawa, Jan received the Simon Bolivar Award from the government of Venezuela for his contribution to the growing relationship between Venezuela and Canada. He was the founding member of the Czech Republic – Canada Chamber of Commerce with offices in Toronto and Prague and was a member of the Supervisory Board of the Vision ‘97 Foundation (initiated by the President of the Czech Republic, Vaclav Havel).
Jan studied at the University of Toronto, the University of Windsor and London School of Economics and also holds a degree in Arboriculture from Capell College in London, England.When he is not collecting tree seed, planting trees or pruning, Jan is likely to be reforesting his property, training his bird dog, canoeing, kayaking, skeet shooting, hunting, fly fishing or trying to keep up with his three grown up daughters and his wife, a Charlottetown native.Favourite place in PEI: canopy-covered portion of Dunk River near FreetownFavourite phrase: Carpe diem (“Seize the day”)

Robert MacKay, Treasurer

Robert MacKay

Rob MacKay has served as Treasurer on the board of the Island Nature Trust since 2015. He and his wife, Tammy, live in New Haven with the youngest four of their eight children. In early 2019, they proudly welcomed their first grandchild, and look forward to many more. For over 25 years, Rob’s career has involved tax preparation and accounting. Since becoming a Chartered Accountant in 2009, he has run his own tax preparation and accounting firm in Charlottetown and LOVES what he does. When others’ eyes glaze over at the mere thought of spreadsheets and shudder at the prospect of phoning CRA, Rob happily takes the reins. He has been invaluable to Island Nature Trust in ensuring that we meet high administrative and financial management standards. Volunteering and charities have been in Rob’s blood for many years. As active members of their church, he and his family support many volunteer programs and people.

Favourite place in PEI: The trails through the 30+ wooded acres of his property in New Haven

Favourite quote: God only made a few perfect heads … the rest he covered with hair. Anonymous

Bruce Craig, Director

Bruce Craig, too, is concerned with the developement of PEI’s land and waters, and loss of the Island’s forests.

During his working career, he held a variety of positions with the U.S. National Park Services. He then began a second career as a non-profit manager, first as the regional director for National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA), then as executive Director of the National Park Trust (NPT), and as a manager of several other park support organizations before becoming the Executive Director and Washington representative of the National Coalition for History (NCH), an organization whose mission is to strengthen history, archives, and funding for the arts and humanities. His work as a lobbyist for a non-profit association provided a glimpse into the high-stakes world of Washington politics and provided him with the opportunity to have an impact upon the national issues and trends affecting historical and archival organizations. upon moving to Canada in 2007, Bruce embarked on a new career as a professor of history at UPEI.

In addition to his academic interests, he maintains an abiding interest in philanthropic pursuits, having served as president of the Conservation and Preservation Federation of America, which raised over $14 million for various non-profit organizations in the United States. In 2012, Bruceand his wife Patricia, created the Terra Nova Fund and Endowment of Prince Edward Island (PEI) in association with the Community Foundation of PEI. This organization champions worthy causes that have a lasting impact on the quality of life of people who live and work in PEI and Atlantic Canada, such as the Island Nature Trust. Since 2016 he has also served as president of the Prince Edward Island Symphony Orchestra and presently serves on the board of Orchestras Canada.

Kevin Teather, UPEI Biology Department Representative

Kevin Teather
Dr. Kevin Teather has been a member of the Biology Department at the University of Prince Edward Island since July 1997. He has represented UPEI Biology on the Island Nature Trust board since 2017.Kevin obtained his Bachelor of Science at Brock, Master of Science at Queen’s, and PhD at Carleton Universities, all in Ontario. He subsequently spent just over a year in Indonesia before moving to England for post-doctoral work at Cambridge University. Prior to coming to UPEI, he was a faculty member at Augustana University College in Alberta for two years and at Trent University in Ontario for three years. His research and teaching interests are in the fields of vertebrate zoology and animal behaviour.
An Islander by Choice, Kevin loves to hike the Island countryside, golf, read and spend time with his fur family.Favourite place in PEI: Bonshaw hiking trailsFavourite quote: “Do the right thing. It will gratify some people and astonish the rest.” Mark Twain

Keila Miller, PEI Wildlife Federation Representative

Keila Miller lives in Souris, Prince Edward Island with her husband Terry and their two sons Ayden and Maddox.  She enjoys spending her free time exploring the beach, streams or snowshoeing through pristine winter landscapes with friends, family and her two dogs Bruce and Doug; enjoying the fresh air, atmosphere and all that nature has to offer.  Keila also spends her time volunteering for local sport organizations as well as various conservation and environmental committees.

She is the Vice President of the Prince Edward Island Wildlife Federation, a Provincial Board of Director with the Canadian Wildlife Federation and the Treasurer of the Canadian Wildlife Foundation.  She also serves as one of the Co-Chairs of the Basin Head Marine Protected Area Advisory Committee, with the Department of Fisheries and Oceans Canada.

Keila works as the Co-Watershed Coordinator for the Souris and Area Branch of the PEI Wildlife Federation.  She oversees and manages many diverse and significant conservation strategies in Eastern Prince Edward Island, particularly concerning Atlantic salmon stream habitat enhancement efforts and the implementation and promotion of healthy watershed ecosystem initiatives within Souris and the surrounding communities.

Patricia Caporaso, Director

Patricia Caporaso

Patricia Caporaso has 25 years of international executive leadership experience in agribusiness, food systems, animal production in Latin America, Europe, Africa and North America.

She is the Managing Director and Founder of Food for Development, a global consultancy focusing on food systems,  rural development, agribusiness and the integration of private/public sector goals with food insecure communities in Latin America and Africa.

She is also the President/CEO/Founder of ynSyte (INSIGHT), one of the world’s leading research and business intelligence software companies.

Patricia is a Guest Lecturer and Visiting Researcher at Georgetown University in the area of food systems, trade and value chains, livestock production and climate change.

She holds two Master degrees (from the University of Buenos Aires in Agronomy and from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Services focusing on Political Economy in Latin America) and is multi-lingual, speaking English, French, Spanish and Portuguese.

Patricia has been a strong advocate for integrating climate change into food policy and agriculture discussions, agriculture land into conservation easements and environmental stewardship.  She currently serves on the Board of Advisers in the University of California-Davis Olive Center and  Board of Directors of the Indian River Festival.

She and her husband live on a farm in Virginia where Patricia has a vibrant apiary and  where is an active member of  several  beekeeping organizations. When she is home on the Island she loves to row and one can find her in Southwest river or Charlottetown Harbour, enjoying nature, as a member of Rowing PEI.

Her favorite quote is, “Earth provides enough to satisfy every man’s needs, but not every man’s greed.” ― Mahatma Gandhi

Joyce Dewar, Director

Joyce Dewar

Joyce Dewar has served on the board since 2016. Born in New Perth, Joyce studied political science at Prince of Wales College, Dalhousie University, and the University of Alberta.

Born into a family of farm leaders and politicians of all stripes, she has always taken a keen interest in public and community affairs and was a founding director of the Voluntary Resource Council.

The past 35 years have been devoted to raising a family and running two businesses: The Two Sisters Inc, a retail group in Nova Scotia and P.E.I., and Sewco Inc. which introduced the GROCERY BAG THAT SAVED THE PLANET to the Canadian market in 1989. Well ahead of the long awaited ban on plastic bags, Sewco produced 10,000 cloth bags a day for several years…

Since retiring, one of her projects is to research land use issues as they affected her Bovyer ancestors when they arrived on PEI in 1786 and continue to do so til this day. Being involved in land conservation is an interesting new perspective.

Favorite place in PEI: The stunning beauty of our landscape in June. Canoeing up the west river in autumn, and prowling the forests and red roads year round.

Favorite Quote…Thank God for Science !

Stéphane Le Blanc, Director

Stéphane Le Blanc

Stéphane offers many new skills to the INT Board such as his strategic management, vision, and communications experience serving with many government organizations such as Veterans Affairs Canada where he currently leads a team in Strategic Communications.

These strengths and his research, analysis and special events planning skills were highlighted in his role in Philanthropic Development with the Université de Moncton where he co-authored the Philanthropic Development strategic plan, managed the sector’s communications activities, planned major events, and designed the annual staff fundraising campaign.

His ten years at the Canada Millennium Scholarship Foundation managing the pan-Canadian merit scholarship program designed to recognize, support, and encourage youth to pursue their post-secondary education will certainly aid us in our desire to increase youth awareness of the work done by INT and encourage their participation in preserving our island wildlife and natural areas.

And when he is not occupied with his busy work life and other volunteer activities, Stéphane and his son enjoy hiking and snowshoeing through the Auburn Woodlot, biking on the trails of the Bonshaw Hills, or spending time on the water in Murray River.

Mary Acorn, Director

Mary Acorn

With a Masters degree in Public Health Sciences, and an educational background in food sciences and community nutrition, Mary Acorn has worked with the Chief of Public Health Office, the Department of Family and Human Service, and the PEI Healthy Eating Alliance where her communications, managerial, resource development, stakeholder relations, community project development and board governance experience and strengths were highlighted.

She is particularly interested in the goals of INT and values the role nature plays in enriching our lives from a health and wellness perspective. Connecting people, especially children with the peacefulness of nature is significant for her and she sees the benefits during times she and her children spend in nature on her family land in the Montague area.

Marie-Ann Bowden

During her career at the College of Law, University of Saskatchewan, Marie-Ann actively pursued research and teaching in the areas of environmental law, property and water law. Since retiring Professor Emeritus from the College, she has returned to PEI and has joined the Board of the Upton Farmlands Trust and helped secure a new Water Act with her colleagues at the Coalition for the Protection of PEI Waters.

Tyler Coady

Tyler is a Canadian Armed Forces Veteran who has obtained a B.A. Psychology (Honours) at UPEI and an M.A. Military Psychology at Adler University, Chicago. He has several published research articles and has a strong background in behavioural sciences. Combined with work in peer support and crisis negotiations, Tyler helps other veterans reconnect with nature

Roger E. Coffin

Roger spent 20 years in the private sector as a manager and entrepreneur, followed by a career in the public sector that included business support and aerospace recruitment. Roger has been involved with outdoor organizations mainly in the areas of hunting and fishing. Roger is a life member of Margaree Salmon Association, Miramichi Salmon Association and now Island Nature Trust.

Gordon MacKay

Gordon, who has practiced law since 1980, comes to the Island Nature Trust with extensive personal and professional volunteer experience. He has served as a Commissioner on the Judicial Review Commission (PEI), the Treasurer of the Law Foundation of Prince Edward Island, and President of the Federation of Law Societies of Canada. He has also chaired the Red Cross Multi-Sport Relay and the Prince Edward Island United Way Campaign, as well as the Inspire fundraising campaign of the University of Prince Edward Island.

Lindsey Burke

Lindsey is a recent transplant to Prince Edward Island, having moved here from rural Ontario 4 years ago. She holds an Honours BA in English Literature from Laurentian University, but decided to change directions to pursue a career in conservation. Lindsey obtained a diploma in Wildlife Conservation Technology from Holland college in 2018, and went on to earn her Bachelor of Wildlife Conservation from the University of Prince Edward Island, graduating in 2020. While completing her studies Lindsey worked for Parks Canada with the PEINP resource conservation field unit. While spending her summers surveying beaches for piping plover she gained an appreciation for the beauty of the island’s coastal landscape and decided to make this her home. She has stayed on with the park post-graduation, working as a Resource Management Officer focussed on coastal habitat restoration and species at risk conservation. Outside of work she takes time to volunteer with local organizations, including Ducks Unlimited, CWHC, and the Humane Society. In her spare time, she enjoys practicing yoga, camping, and exploring the island’s trails to bird and work on her wildlife photography skills.