Deborah Clark

Executive Director

Phone: (204) 925-3777 ext. 100

Deborah has a broad and eclectic background in the private and non-profit sectors that spans more than two decades. She has always been passionate about sustainability, climate change, food security and culture.  She has a diploma in Business Administration, with majors in Accounting, Administration and Marketing, from Assiniboine College and a BGS from Brandon University with a focus on Community and International Development and Women’s Studies. A life-long learner, she is currently enrolled in Program Development of Adult Learners. The take-away from her education, “If you see a need, fill it”.

Deborah is intrigued by the similarities of cultures, and Indigenous peoples’ awareness, and their ties to land, food and water. She has learned much from sitting, and sharing, knowledge, history and food with people through her community work and travels. A person needs to know what they don’t know about the topic, the people and the history before being able to move forward in a good way.

Deborah spends her some of her spare time upcycling, rehabbing and renovating, creating new things from old. While she doesn’t plant a garden, she does make very good use of donated bounty and distributed the end results with neighbours, friends, co-workers and the community. She also writes novels with culinary and travel themes.

Colleen Ans

Living Green, Living Well Program Coordinator

Colleen’s passion for the environment began at a young age while she grew up on her family’s acreage, surrounded by animals and nature. She has a Bachelor’s of Commerce degree from the Asper School of Business with a major in International Business but has since found a love working with and learning from local organizations. Colleen furthered her studies when she travelled to Israel to complete a permaculture and ecological design course on Kibbutz Lotan. In Israel, she studied and ignited a passion for organic gardening, composting, and using her creativity to reduce waste by repurposing materials. She’s always known she wanted to help better the world through her career.

Colleen aims to leave as little footprint on the world as possible and hopes to inspire others to do the same. She has an affinity for supporting local business, travelling, listening to live music, and spending time outdoors as much as possible. Colleen is an avid volunteer and advocate for waste reduction, mental health awareness, animal welfare, and gardening within her community.

Tyrell Benton

Compost Courier

Tyrell passionately invests his time in all things natural and traditional, from indigenous ceremony and organic / probiotic gardening to nature walks and regenerating the environment. While regularly increasing awareness and providing education regarding many of our ecological issues including water quality, soil degradation, commercial farming, and species diversity, he loves being a part of the Compost Winnipeg team. He is also a big pepper fanatic, and is leading the charge on Compost Winnipeg’s vermicomposting initiatives.

 

Sean Birkett

Green Audits Project Assistant

Sean has completed a Bachelor of Environmental Science with a focus area in sustainable development from the University of Manitoba. His passion for environmentalism began in high school when he discovered documentaries and reading material on the environmental effects of the meat industry. Doing a school year abroad in Germany at the Technical University of Munich and his work experience with waste auditing have led him to his passion of waste management. In his free time, Sean enjoys
learning languages, cooking, watching hockey, and spending time with friends and family.

Karrie Blackburn

Sales & Customer Service Lead, Compost Winnipeg

Along with 10,000 other Winnipeggers, Karrie attended the Climate Strike in September 2019. The spectacle of supporters for #FridaysForFuture was inspiring but didn’t feel like enough. Karrie began looking at her own life habits to take immediate and deliberate action to fight climate change. Composting was the most impactful choice! Karrie, being a firm believer in leading by example, took it a step further and joined the crew of like-minded, action-taking, passionate beings at Compost Winnipeg as a courier and advocate. Since joining the team in November 2019, her zeal and drive for change continues to grow and inspire. You may also recognize Karrie as the Hoopist & founder of Kurrent Motion Hoops and former president of the Winnipeg Circus Club.

Robin Bryan

Compost Winnipeg General Manager

Robin has a diverse range of management, advocacy and programming experience. His longstanding passion for environmental action and his strong social and environmental values stretch back to his teenage years going door-to-door canvassing for wilderness protection.

He is no stranger to composting or to working within the non-profit sector.  After working for nearly a decade on environmental and active transportation issues in Winnipeg at the Wilderness Committee Manitoba office and with the University of Winnipeg’s UWSA Bike Lab, Robin then spent several years working and living in Dawson City, Yukon and across Canada’s northern territories. Robin has recently re-established himself back in Winnipeg and is excited to help Compost Winnipeg continue to grow and divert as much valuable, nutrient rich organic waste from Winnipeg’s landfills as possible. He enjoys wilderness excursions, rock climbing, pick-up hockey at the local rink, making music and raising his toddler, Taiga in his free time.

Lea CotéLea Coté

Composting

Phone: (204) 925-3777 ext. 104

Lea started her journey with the Green Action Centre in 2011, as part of the Active and Safe Routes to School Program. Her passion for food waste reduction led her to switch over to the Composting Program in April of 2019. She is a 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. Lea loves volunteering around the world, whether it’s with turtles in Costa Rica or on a farm in the Galapagos Islands, and has a love for learning and trying new things everyday.

Omid Ershad

Compost  Courier

Omid came to Canada in 2019 and has lived in Winnipeg since then. He came from a busy city in Iran with a different kind of pollution, therefore he can see the big difference between Winnipeg and his hometown—a difference worth preserving. In his personal life, Omid always tries to protect nature and is glad to now be part of a friendly, caring team that tries to make our planet a better place to live. He’s a former carpenter and enjoys playing soccer and spending time in the gym.

Cesar Flores

Community Pathfinder, First Nations Waste Minimization

Cesar Flores grew up moving throughout Central and South America. His exposure to rural and indigenous communities throughout his years growing up have fueled his passion, respect, and hope in community development and indigenous knowledge to address the climate crisis and create alternative modes of relating to the land and each other. He has a Bachelor’s in International Development Studies focused on Community Development and experience in environmentally focused small-scale organizations, not-for-profits, grassroot and indigenous led movements. This has developed his understanding of collaboration with minority groups and Indigenous Communities. In addition to academic training, Cesar has received valuable life lessons in Northern Manitoba while gathering plants, ice fishing, and exploring the bush alongside friends and mentors. Cesar is excited to work alongside Indigenous communities looking to reduce waste as a Community Pathfinder on the First Nations Waste Minimization team.

Joel Friesen

Operations Supervisor, Compost Winnipeg

Joel started working for Compost Winnipeg in 2019, and is excited to be doing a job which so practically addresses climate change and environmental degradation. He has a philosophy major and history minor from the University of Manitoba. Joel has always worked outside, and has spent many years tree planting in BC and doing landscape construction in Winnipeg. He loves canoe tripping, hiking, cooking and travelling. He is also a musician and does music production in his free time.

Jordan Guiboche

Community Pathfinder, First Nations Waste Minimization

Jordan’s interest in community-based work began when he attended the Katimavik program after completing high school in Norway House Cree Nation. This led him to volunteer with various compost and environmental organizations, and gave him experience in connecting with organizations, resource-gathering, team-building, building community relationships, and facilitating. After spending 4 years working full-time in a classroom as an Education Assistant (EA) with the Seven Oaks School Division while also working on a degree in Education at the University of Winnipeg through the Community-based Aboriginal Teacher Education Program (CATEP), Jordan decided it was time for a career change. He has a strong sense of concern for the environment that fits well with the mission of the First Nations Waste Minimization program and Compost Winnipeg, where he worked briefly before moving over to the First Nations program. As a single Indigenous father, Jordan works to change stereotypes and provide a good future for his son Aldrian. In his free time, you can find Jordan jamming on his guitar, playing video games, long-distance walking, or taking care of his son.

Chantel Henderson

Indigenous Programs Outreach Coordinator, First Nations Waste Minimization

Ph: (204) 925-3777 ext. 107
Chantel is Ojibway from Fairford First Nation and Sagkeeng First Nation. She developed her passion for the environment from an early age. She first learned about recycling back in elementary school and has strived to promote sustainable environmental practices through friends, family, and coworkers, ever since. She has a Bachelor’s of Arts degree in Urban and Inner City Studies from the University of Winnipeg, a Graduate Diploma in Community Economic Development from Concordia University, and is a 2016 graduate of the 20/20 Catalyst program that provides 3 months of intensive training for First Nations, Inuit and Metis leaders across Canada on developing clean energy projects within their communities. She loves to read, chill out with her cat Venus, sing karaoke, and travel. She looks forward to working with First Nation communities on developing waste minimization efforts and resources here in Manitoba as part of the First Nations Waste Minimization team.

Sharee Hochman

Sustainable Transportation Program Coordinator

Sharee holds a Bachelor of Arts in Communications & Sociology from The University of Winnipeg and has since applied her studies in the nonprofit sector, helping local and national bike and environmental organizations share their mission. Her passion for cycling quickly began after discovering the vibrant and mobilizing bike and urban planning community in Winnipeg. This has encouraged her to create an impact in her own way, which led to co-founding Women in Urbanism Canada, a women-led community working to transform Canadian cities into more equitable, enjoyable, and sustainable places for everyone. This has allowed her to develop a gender and intersectional lens toward cycling and city-making. 
 
When Sharee is not biking for transportation, protests, recreation, or in the winter, you can find her planning her next solo backpacking trip. She has travelled around Canada and Europe to discover cities built environments and infrastructure. She also enjoys photography, outdoor markets, and cooking. Sharee is excited to help kids, parents, and everyone in between incorporate cycling into their lives in a safe and enjoyable environment!
 

Dr. Durdana Islam

Program Manager, Climate Action Team

The Climate Action Team (CAT) is a coalition of environmental organizations in Manitoba who joined forces out of a sense of urgency and obligation to create a road to climate resilience in our province.  Partners include Green Action Centre.  Climate Change ConnectionWilderness Committee – Manitoba OfficeManitoba Energy Justice Coalition and Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives – Manitoba Office.

Durdana Islam has a PhD in Natural Resources and Environmental Management from the University of Manitoba with several years of teaching experience at the University of Winnipeg. She has many peer-reviewed publications and won a number of awards for her academic research and publications. She worked with many northern Indigenous communities in Manitoba during her doctoral and postdoctoral studies.

Durdana’s heart is in creating a healthier and sustainable community. As a climate change researcher and a mother of two amazing kids, she is worried about her children’s future. She believes in the equity for all in a diverse and progressive society. It is through our determination and shared vision; we can accomplish real change to build a better world where social and environmental equity is addressed. She envisions a Manitoba where real action on climate change supports thousands of new jobs and saves Manitobans millions of dollars as we transform to a more efficient and green economy. Whether in the scope of university teaching, professional and volunteer work, she strives to connect with people and create a sense of community. Durdana believes in learning, growing and empowering others.

Durdana loves to read and paint in her spare time. She enjoys long walks in the park, kayaking, camping and fishing in summer; and skiing and skating in winter. According to her, “Nature feeds my soul”.

 

Lief Johnson

Compost Courier

Lief moved to Winnipeg in 2008 but grew up in The Pas, Manitoba. His favourite memories of home are his school, friends, fishing at the cabin, and skidooing with his dad & brother. Lief met his partner while attending the University of Winnipeg where he studied Film & Theatre. After a paid internship with NSI, he was hired by Manitoba Film & Music as a Location Scout. His many interests include psychology, exploring, urbanism, hockey, & history. He also loves to spend time biking with my family and considers it really important to help normalize different modes of transportation for his kids while they are still young. He loves to volunteer for the Winnipeg Folk Fest and is passionate about lowering his carbon footprint and believes composting is a great way to do so. 

Kris Kuzdub

Sustainable Transportation Coordinator

Phone: (204) 925-3777 ext. 105

Growing up in Winnipeg, Kris quickly grew a passion for travelling and understanding cities, which is why she pursued her Bachelor in Environmental Design focused on Landscape + Urbanism at the University of Manitoba. After which she made it a priority to travel and explore cities to better understand the way cities function and the places you live affect your day to day life and how to make strong sustainable communities. Living abroad for the course of 5 years throughout Europe, two of which she gained her Masters in Architecture and Urban Design, Kris decided to return to Winnipeg after graduating. Working in the design sector and gaining promotional experience throughout the years, Kris has worked as a Graphic Designer, and Landscape + Urban Designer, from which she brings a unique creative perspective to her role. Kris has a new appreciation and perspective for her hometown since returning and is excited to be making a positive impact on the city.

Kris is also an Artist and a creative person in general; she enjoys thrifting and flipping to reuse items in new ways, photography and supporting local small businesses. Though she loves living in city centres, she also regularly gets out to explore nature and enjoys any sports on a board (particularly surfing). She is a believer in trying new things, experimenting and pushing yourself out of your comfort zone.

Garrett LeBlanc

Compost Courier

Growing up in St. Boniface, Garrett spent a lot of time outdoors around his neighbourhood and along the monkey trails off the Red and Seine Rivers. He has taken those experiences and has widened those outdoor adventures with his partner Dana around Manitoba’s wilderness today. He enjoys long sauna sessions, has sneaky frisbee throwing skills, likes to shoot hoops, and has also been known to dabble in karaoke on the occasion. For self-care, Garrett practices mind-body routines such as Qi Gong and Tai Chi to feel grounded and to develop calm and relaxation within. He has been composting and driving for years now, so bringing the two together became a natural progression. Garrett appreciates being able to make such a direct impact on a daily basis by working at Compost Winnipeg and feels fortunate to be a part of a larger community aligned with his lifestyle choices.

Katheryn Loewen

Sustainable Transportation Coordinator

Phone: (204) 925-3777 ext. 101
Katheryn
is a cyclist with a love for the outdoors. Born and raised in Manitoba, she is a dedicated four-season bike commuter that learned to enjoy getting around the city on two wheels, no matter the weather. After completing a Bachelor of Arts in Music with a focus on Music Therapy, she spent two months cycling with friends to St. John’s, NL, slowly experiencing some of the many faces of Canada and getting to know people and communities along the way. Katheryn spent time working as a bike mechanic and became involved with the cycling community in Winnipeg, then moved to Windsor, Ontario and worked with a local cycling advocacy group managing their community bike shop, the Bike Kitchen. Through this position, Katheryn discovered a passion for active transportation advocacy and non-profit work.

When she’s not fixing or riding bikes, she can be found playing the banjo, petting cats, and sewing. Katheryn is excited to have returned to Winnipeg and is looking forward to connecting with people about sustainable transportation issues in the area.

Van Luu

Administrative Assistant, Compost Winnipeg

Van is passionate about our vision at Compost Winnipeg. She has been an active member of social and charity events during her undergraduate studies at the Vietnam Aviation Academy. She is thrilled to be part of this dynamic team and support her level best in this great cause.

Kristen MalecKristen Malec

Composting

Phone: (204) 925-3777 ext. 106

Kristen received a bachelor of science in environmental sciences, majoring in forest ecology at the University of Winnipeg. Kristen loves everything the outdoors has to offer, and has always sought a career in the environmental field, (especially when her jobs take her outside).

Kristen’s passions include reducing her waste and consumption, sourcing food from small scale farmers who practice regenerative and sustainable agriculture, learning about ways to incorporate permaculture concepts into her garden, trees and forests, canoeing, camping, and spending time out at the lake with friends and family.

Mel MarginetMel head shot

Workplace Commuter Options

Phone: (204) 925-3777 ext. 112

Mel is a life-long environmentalist. She lives in central 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 is the Publisher at Great Plains Publications. She’s happy to be helping more people to commute in a healthy, sustainable way, everyday!

Beth McKechnie

Program Coordinator, First Nations Waste Minimization

Phone: (204) 925-3777 ext. 102

Beth has been with Green Action Centre since 2006. For the first 10 years, she focused squarely on sustainable transportation. Since 2016, she is thrilled to be part of the First Nations Waste Minimization team. This program supports First Nation communities in Manitoba to reduce and divert waste through hands on assistance, resources, tools, school presentations, and community events. Beth continues to moderate the Active Transportation listserv in Manitoba and is a co-founder and past board member of Peg City Car Co-op, which introduced carsharing in Winnipeg.

Roman Okis

Compost Courier

Roman is from Lviv, Ukraine, and moved to Winnipeg in 2003. Since then he has worked many different jobs including construction and foodservice. His passions include foraging for mushrooms, picking berries, and fishing. When Roman isn’t at work he is spending his time with his 6-year-old son and his dog Bently. 

Nikole Sawatzky

Office Coordinator

Nikole is passionate about animal activism and environmental sustainability. She has been plant based for most of her adult life, for both the animals and the planet, and is always looking for new ways to lessen her carbon footprint. Her current focus is learning how to avoid the fast fashion industry, and her goal for 2020 is to learn how to sew so she can make her own clothing (or at least alter thrifted items). Nikole is an avid reader and writer, and spends her free time volunteering at a local farm sanctuary.

Josep Seras Gubert

Sustainability Projects Coordinator

Josep is a multidisciplinary project manager focused on environmental education and sustainable design. He is an innovative and visionary team player with 25 years of experience ranging from product design to creativity in education and the eco-movement. He is always keen to be involved in like-minded organizations, which help us reframe our understanding of how to live on the planet. Josep has a special interest in educating kids in their exploration of the natural cycles around them and their role in preserving Mother Nature. Having worked with organizations such as Evergreen Brickworks and Earthbound Kids, he has a deep seated belief that through education and innovation we can work together to make a better world.

Amy Smith

Community Pathfinder, First Nations Waste Minimization

In 2018, Amy started on contract as a Community Pathfinder for the First Nations Waste Minimization program. Her passion for waste minimization began in her childhood home in Pinawa, where she helped her parents with the backyard compost and worked a couple of summers at the town recycling depot as a teenager. In October, she completed a Masters of Natural Resource Management from the University of Manitoba. Her thesis studied ways to improve end-of-life vehicle recycling in northern Manitoba.

Tracy Thomas
Tracy Thomas bio pic

Administrative Assistant, Compost Winnipeg

Tracy moved back to her hometown, Winnipeg, after spending the last 20 years in Edmonton, AB. For 18 of those years, she filled a variety of roles in a non-profit organization. She is an avid composter and loves to garden. Tracy is excited to work with the Compost Winnipeg team to help reduce waste in Winnipeg.

Alyssa Wolfe

Compost Courier

Alyssa has spent the past decade working in the food industry and is a recent graduate of the Niagara College food science and technology program. Her passions lie in sustainability and community involvement, which is what encouraged her to join Compost Winnipeg. She sets her intentions on cultivating a positive environment for all living things in and out of her life. One day Alyssa hopes to run an organic farm and continue sustainable practices like composting and living a minimalistic lifestyle.