OSCA Voluntary Board of Directors

Okanagan Similkameen Conservation Alliance Janet Willson, Chair willson janet
Janet Willson, Chair
Janet Willson
Janet brings OSCA important skills in communication and marketing.  An avid nature lover and gardener, she is also a communications leader with extensive experience in strategic marketing and communications planning, relationship-building, and creative problem solving.  She is the owner of in.sight communications and works with clients in both Alberta and British Columbia from her home base in Summerland BC. Janet has extensive board leadership experience and is currently also active on the boards of Community Futures Okanagan Similkameen as well as the Canadian Centre for Business Growth, located at Okanagan College in Penticton.
Okanagan Similkameen Conservation Alliance Bob Nicholson, Vice Chair & Secretary Bob Nicholson
Bob Nicholson, Vice Chair & Secretary
Bob Nicholson
Bob Nicholson is a retired journalist. Coming to OSCA from a 25 year career with CBC, he was a reporter, TV news anchor and regular radio morning show host.  Bob also ran a communications consultancy offering corporate media training and video narration and writing.  Now retired, he volunteers for several community organizations in Penticton including Peach City Radio, Meals on Wheels, the South Okanagan Events Centre and OSCA.

Okanagan Similkameen Conservation Alliance Pat Evans, Treasurer pat evans
Pat Evans, Treasurer
Pat Evans
Pat has had a long career in financial services and is currently a Mobile Mortgage Specialist with TD Canada Trust. She grew up in Montreal and Vancouver and, like many people, moved to the Okanagan to enjoy the weather and fantastic lifestyle. She loves exploring and learning about the Okanagan Valley, and enjoys spending time in her garden.

Okanagan Similkameen Conservation Alliance Sally Kilburg, Past Chair Sally-Kilburg6960 rgb
Sally Kilburg, Past Chair
Sally Kilburg (BS, JD)
Sally has been consistently involved with many environmental and conservation initiatives over the last 20 years, including chairing the Meadowlark Nature Festival planning committee for 6 years, chairing a large community campaign to restore a degraded urban stream and construct a native plant nursery, sitting on a citizens advisory commission to limit firestorm hazards in the urban, parkland and open space interface, and monitoring bird and wildlife along an urban riparian core. After a 25 year career as a civil litigation lawyer, she currently works as a real estate sales professional with Sutton Power 1 Realty in Penticton.  She has an abiding interest in nature, birds and the stars, and cannot believe she lives in such a fantastic place for appreciating all three.
Okanagan Similkameen Conservation Alliance Sharon Mansiere Sharon_1_1
Sharon Mansiere
Sharon B.C. Mansiere (BSc, BA, MSc)
Sharon has worked in biology for 28 years. She started out as an interpreter, field assistant, then contractor, before finally settling in as a professor for the last 18 years. In addition to teaching at Okanagan College in Penticton and Kelowna she has does research on bird vocalizations and is developing a vertebrate research museum for the Okanagan. She is active in local schools where she promotes conservation and awareness about habitats and species.

Okanagan Similkameen Conservation Alliance Ellen Simmons Ellen_1
Ellen Simmons
Ellen Simmons (BSc Forestry)
Ellen has over fifteen years of experience within  the environmental/conservation sector and brings forward a unique skill set combining both Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK) and western scientific approaches. Her current work focus has been on restoration of threatened habitats for endangered species, with a specific concentration in the Okanagan Similkameen region of British Columbia.  She also works at the En’owkin Centre (a Post Secondary Indigenous Institution), where she teaches science-based courses.  Previously Ellen spent six years in the NWT where she had a forestry consulting company that had ongoing working relationships and projects with members of the Dene Nation.  Ellen holds a BSc. in forestry (UBC) and is working on her MSc. in environmental sciences through Royal Roads University.   Additionally, she sits on the board for the Invasive Species Council of British Columbia.

Okanagan Similkameen Conservation Alliance Tanya Luszcz Tanya_1_1
Tanya Luszcz
Tanya Luszcz (BSc, MSc)
Tanya is a wildlife biologist who works in migratory bird conservation with the Canadian Wildlife Service.  As Program Manager for  the Partners in Flight BC/Yukon Great Basin Program, she works with great partners from across western Canada, USA and Mexico to implement bird conservation.  She has a M.Sc. in Animal Ecology from University of Calgary and a B.Sc. in Biology from UVic.  Tanya studied bat habitat  in forests for her M.Sc. degree, and still volunteers her time to give bat programs and talks for the Meadowlark Festival, naturalist clubs and school groups.  Born and raised in BC, Tanya is passionate about wildlife and habitat conservation.  She spends her spare time rock climbing, mountain biking, cross-country skiing, travelling, birding, and gardening.  Tanya’s interest in OSCA lies in educating children and adults about the importance of conserving our natural areas.

Judy Brock (BA, CEd)
Among the founders of OSCA, Judy moved to the Okanagan over 40 years ago and taught at OK Falls Elementary. She and her husband bought part of the historic Oliver ranch in 1970 and became immersed in agriculture and the environment. She served on the board of the South Okanagan Civil Liberties Society and Legal Services Office--active in the “Law talks” series. She has been on her local RDOS Advisory Planning Committee for 30 years and was a founding director of OSCA and former chair of the SOSCP outreach team.
Okanagan Similkameen Conservation Alliance Lia McKinnon lia-osca
Lia McKinnon
Lia McKinnon (BSc MSc)
Lia is a biologist who works with both the Okanagan Similkameen Stewardship Society and the Burrowing Owl Conservation Society of BC. This combination creates a unique perspective working in conservation on both species as well as habitat levels. Lia grew up in the Okanagan, loves to be outside in our rugged natural environment, and loves sharing her enthusiasm with others.