Regenerative Land Designer and Teacher, Tiny House Advocate
Despite a conventional upbringing on TV and fast food, I developed a passion for the outdoors early in my life. Working for the Government of Alberta, then managing an environmental education company, I witnessed the troubling disconnect between “nature education” and the real results: my students weren’t resolving their “nature deficit disorder”, just spending less time on their smartphones. At the same time, I was seeing firsthand how much of conservation revolves around being reactive versus proactive. Looking for ways to change how we live and relate to our surroundings prompted a move to Vancouver Island to learn about natural building. After completing my first Permaculture Design Certificate, I saw that through integrative, systematic design of landscapes, people could not only become a restorative influence on land but also change their lives in the process.
From that point there was no looking back. Within a few short years I had started, run and sold a successful micro-greens company, co-founded the Southern Vancouver Island Permablitz Network, taught in over 40 PDCs and created Permaculture BC, trained with expert craftsmen and veterans in the field, worked on dozens of projects around the world, and taught over 750 students.
Understanding and emphasizing the importance of biological systems is pivotal to my work. Soil, water harvesting and management, composting, growing food, greywater and waste-water treatment must be balanced with financial viability. Combining Keyline Design, Holistic Management, Permaculture, the Soil Food Web, myco-integration, project management and business implementation, my work centres on regenerative retrofits of broad acre and small scale landscapes, re-establishing watersheds, ecosystems, productive landscapes and enterprises around the world.
Today, I have worked on land-based project design, management, training and installation throughout western Canada, the USA, Cuba, and East Africa. As a speaker for community events, non-profit groups and businesses, I take great pride and pleasure in inspiring and empowering audiences with a passion for change. I have been invited to guest lecture by the University of British Columbia, University of Victoria, Vancouver Island University, and Simon Fraser University. Recent partnerships include Cowichan Green Community, Seven Ravens Permaculture Academy and the Galliano Conservation Association.
I currently call home a small valley in southern British Columbia, Canada.