Tracy is collaborative and strategic and brings 14 years of management experience in the public, private, and non-profit sectors. Her deep interest in sustainable development grew from a 6-month volunteer experience in a small village in Ghana, Africa, where she learned how living with less could give us more. She’s a graduate of the Management Certificate Program at the University of Winnipeg and has an undergraduate certificate in Sustainable Community Development through Simon Fraser University. She has also taken courses on Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED), and the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act. Tracy has worked with many rural and northern Manitoban communities and wants to expand Green Action Centre’s reach to as many Manitobans as possible.
Tracy is passionate about the environment and is proud to live in a walk-able and transit-friendly community with an urban forest and local stores. She has hiked, canoed, and camped in many parts of Manitoba, including a trip to Churchill to see the tundra and kayak with the belugas. Her love of the ocean and marine mammals led her to volunteer as a research assistant in the Belize Bottlenose Dolphin Research Project with the Oceanic Society. She also sits on the Manitoba Council for International Cooperation’s review panel.
Beth McKechnie has been with theWorkplace Commuter Options program since 2006. Stemming from personal and professional experience, she believes that many people want to change how they get around – with a little help. Beth moderates the Active Transportation listserv in Manitoba, sits on the City of Winnipeg’s Active Transportation Advisory Committee, and was a member of the Advisory Committee for Winnipeg’s first Transportation Master Plan. She is also a co-founder, staff and board member with Peg City Car Co-op, which introduced carsharing in Winnipeg.
Christey is taking on the task of coordinating the Commuter Challenge and any other sustainable transportation events we can throw her way. She is currently finishing her Master’s of Science from the University of Calgary in Sustainable Energy Development (albeit slowly, but surely).
Her undergrad degree began at University of North Dakota, where she partook in a penalty minute-filled hockey career with the Fighting Sioux. A few busted knees later she returned to Winnipeg to complete a degree in biochemistry from the U of M, and embark on a career in agriculture, which sparked interest for her current thesis topic on sustainable food systems.
In her spare time Christey wanders the globe in a Carmen San Diego-like fashion, working to embrace local culture. She is currently working on yoga teacher training and can often be seen biking around town in her version of appropriate footwear and is looking to campaign that biking in heels is easier than walking in them!
Jamie is a longtime outdoor Instructor and Educator, with over 12 years of experience in getting people active outdoors. He is a proponent of active commuting, is a long time cycle commuter, and has run a walking school bus in his neighborhood since 2008 that now has almost 14 children on it!
He is currently a Paddle Canada River Kayaking Instructor, a CCSAM certified cross country ski coach, and a MCA certified Mountain Bike coach. He is the founder and head coach of the Flaming Cheetahs Kids of Mud bike club, the organizer of MEC Winnipeg Paddlefest since 2013, founding member of the Manitoba Whitewater Club, and is the former Director of Communications for Paddle Canada.
In his spare time he can be found getting his three kids outside on bikes, skis or in boats, or charging down rapids in his kayak somewhere in the world. He is excited to be able to share his passion for active living through the Active and Safe Routes to School Program, and hopes to be able to get more people to make active commuting a priority in their daily lives.
Jaret gets to spend his time in classrooms with kids through Green Action Centre’s Environmental Speakers Bureau. He is thrilled to be doing something he loves for a cause he is passionate about. Prior to joining Green Action Centre, Jaret spent ten years as a manager at the Manitoba Children’s Museum. He has worked with thousands of kids and families and enjoys teaching youth the importance of environmental and social issues. In his spare time Jaret is active in his community. He is president of his local community centre, and has assisted with program development and centre management. With the help of neighbors and cycling enthusiasts, Jaret co-founded the South Osborne Bike Hub, a volunteer run community bike shop. Jaret has been a cyclo-commuter for over 15 years and loves seeing other cyclists on the road with him. In his spare time he enjoys working on bikes, birdwatching, and forcing his kids to help him in the garden.
Jennifer joins Sylvie in the Composting Program helping to pave the way for improved organics diversion and waste reduction strategies in Manitoba. She recently moved to Winnipeg from BC, and has a passion for trees and the forest. Her interest in composting and waste reduction stems from her graduate diploma in Green Business Management from Algonquin College, Ottawa where she learned about business innovation as a means to sustainability. Jennifer is currently completing a Masters degree in Environmental Education and Communication through Royal Roads University and is writing a thesis on emotional connections to the natural world. She has a communications degree from Université Laval in Quebec city and loves to travel. She has a soft spot for tropical regions such as Costa Rica where she spent a year doing conservation work with sea turtles and learning Spanish. In her spare time, she tries to spend as much time outside as possible with her two small children teaching them about the beauty of nature.
Jessie has been the co-coordinator of the Workplace Commuter Options program since 2007. She was inspired to help other people get to work sustainably after giving it a try herself. Prior to holding this position, Jessie assisted with Phase 1 of the Community-Based Travel Marketing project and the Backyard Composting Program with Green Action Centre. She sits on the Downtown BIZ Transportation Committee, Ciclovia organizing committee, and the Workplace Wellness Alliance. Jessie has an Undergraduate Degree in Environment and Human Health from Queen’s University (2005), a Certificate in Sustainable Building Design and Construction from Fleming College (2005), and has recently completed a Masters in Interdisciplinary Studies through Royal Roads University.
Justin Quigley is on a 6-month term with the Active and Safe Routes to School Program. He is a self-proclaimed “transportation policy nerd” with an academic and professional lens on city planning, as well as a focus on exploring links between social justice and environmentalism. Justin has an undergraduate degree from the University of Manitoba in Environmental Design and spent a year studying at Portland State University. His passion is in environmental theory and practice.
In his spare time, Justin is an outdoor enthusiast and loves travelling through rural Manitoba and the Whiteshell for backcountry camping and climbing. He has helped build bikes for students at the U of M and is an avid cyclist himself. Justin is excited to bring his passion for active outdoor living and sustainable engagement to Winnipeggers through his work with Green Action Centre.
Lea Grzenda works as the Events Coordinator for the Active and Safe Routes to School Program and is now part of the After The School Bell Rings Program after starting out as an intern through the YMCA’s Youth Eco Internship Program 2011. She is a recent graduate of the University of Manitoba with a degree in Environmental Sciences and is very passionate about the environmental education Green Action Centre is doing. During her time here, she hopes to bring her love for the environment, her passion of working with people and her friendly outlook to the Green Action Centre and all the great work they are doing!
Mary Melnychuk has been involved with Environmental Speakers Bureau for ten years. An experienced teacher, she has been involved in international development and environmental issues for most of her adult life. Her passion is helping people of all ages find simple, cheap, not-too-weird ways tolive more gently on the earth. When she is not doing ESB things, she is a mum, a gardener, and a mean mezzo-soprano.
Mel is a life-long environmentalist. She lives in downtown Winnipeg so that she can bike and walk almost everywhere she needs to go. She is the co-founder and artistic director of Theatre by the River, a professional, independent theatre company, and she also serves as the Marketing Director at Great Plains Publications. Mel loves teaching kids theatre as part of the Native Youth Theatre program and volunteering for the YMCA-YWCA. She’s happy to be helping more people to commute in a healthy, sustainable way, everyday!
Neil joins us with a wealth of experience in community organizing, and a keen interest in participatory engagement strategies. As the coordinator of the biggest litter cleanup in Nova Scotia’s history, he is excited to bring his talents and enthusiasm to Green Action Centre, and continue promoting positive lifestyle choices in his home province.
**Please note: Shoni is away on maternity leave until October 2016**
Shoni Madden has worked with the Active and Safe Routes to School Program since 2010. She comes (on her bicycle, of course) with experience mobilizing communities to create School Travel Plans which work to improve conditions for active travel. After years of work with youth, Shoni has grown to be a strong advocate for children’s health and well-being. She joins the exciting momentum of the active transportation community through participation on several committees, as a perpetual event volunteer, and as a founding board member of Peg City Car Co-op. Shoni loves gardening, cooking local food with her family, and will never tire of DIY projects!
Sylvie Hébert is the Community Composting Coordinator at Green Action Centre. Sylvie has had a passion for sustainable living since she was a child. Without hesitation, Sylvie chose to pursue an environmental career, earning a degree in Environmental Science at the University of Manitoba. She is interested in the Transition movement, and has been involved in organising recent Transition Saint-Boniface activities, such as a community garage sale and environmental film nights. She enjoys outdoor activities such as camping and canoeing and keeps active by playing ultimate frisbee and practicing yoga.