Neil Keown – Chair, Calgary
Neil relocated from Northern Ontario to Calgary, Alberta, after graduation, so he could spend more time in the mountains, initially for snow sports, camping, and hiking. He began exploring fishing, and then hunting, and was soon bitten by the Adult Onset Hunting bug after going on his first deer hunt with a knowledgeable, and patient, mentor. Inspired by the combination of the adventure, as well as the satisfaction of preparing a meal with the results of a successful trip, has led him on adventures across Western Canada. These adventures have included spring snow goose hunting in Saskatchewan, stream fishing in the southern Alberta, ice fishing mountain lakes in the Rockies, deer hunting in the Alberta foothills, to pink salmon fishing on Vancouver Island. Not satisfied with being mediocre at fishing and rifle hunting, bowhunting was soon added to the repertoire, but that was more of an excuse to extend the hunting season. Whenever the season changes, there is always a new adventure waiting to be had, and most family trips are now planned in areas where he can try to pass on the love of these activities to his children, to varying degrees of success. The majority of free time is spent in the Rocky Mountains and Foothills, where there is always a new patch of forest, hill, or a stream, that hasn't been investigated yet.
Spending 20 years travelling Alberta as part of his role at as an automation engineering technologist, he saw the impact that industry has had on the Canadian wilderness, and those that call it home. After transitioning out of the oil/gas sector, his attentions and efforts have been geared towards preserving the wilderness, and ensuring that the next generation will inherit the wilderness that we sometimes take for granted.
Neil lives north of Calgary, Alberta with his wife, and their two middle-school aged children, who are mostly tolerant of his activities.
Andrew Baisley – Co-Chair, Calgary
Andrew grew up in Southern Ontario and relocated to Alberta to start his career. Growing up in areas surrounded by extensive tracts of private land taught him how rare and treasured the public land we take for granted in the west really is. Andrew works worldwide as an environmental scientist but focuses the majority of his time in Western Canada on mine closure and reclamation projects. When not working, Andrew enjoys partaking in the environment his work shows him to be so precious. Hunting, fishing, mountaineering and camping keep him busy year round. Andrew especially enjoys introducing new people to the outdoors, specifically the vast expanses of public lands available to Western Canadians.
Tom Habib – Treasurer, Edmonton
Tom grew up in Ontario, and has had a love of the outdoors as far back as he can remember. It probably helped that his parents shipped him off on canoe and hiking trips every summer, for which he is eternally grateful. His love of nature and wildlife eventually led him to Edmonton 10 years ago for a Master's degree in ecology at the University of Alberta, where he studied white-tailed and mule deer.
Although not from a hunting family, Tom picked it up since moving to Alberta, and is now completely hooked. His thinking on hunting and wildlife management is built around his background in ecology. So for Tom, BHA's values of maintaining large tracts of wilderness, habitat conservation, and environmental stewardship are a perfect fit.
Katie Morrison – Secretary, Calgary
Katie Morrison is a professional biologist and outdoor enthusiast. Growing up, Katie and her family spent much of their time outdoors: camping, horseback riding, canoeing and fishing. This led her to obtain a B.Sc. in Environmental and Conservation Sciences from the University of Alberta and a Masters of Environmental Design from the University of Calgary. While Katie has worked throughout western Canada and in Latin America for university research projects, nongovernmental organizations, and environmental consulting companies, she now spends her days working on public lands conservation in Southern Alberta. Her love of the outdoors continues to pull her into the backcountry on hiking, backpacking and wilderness canoe trips – always with a fishing rod or two in hand. The continuing push of industrial land uses and motorized recreation into Alberta’s shrinking wilderness areas motivates her to work on keeping these areas wild for native fish, wildlife and those who experience these amazing places through traditional quiet uses.
Kurt Megarry – BOD, Lethbridge
Kurt was born and raised in Calgary Alberta. Hunting and fishing was a way of life, spending many days in the field with his father and brother. Later Kurt moved to Southern Alberta where he now lives with his wife and 3 boys. Living in a small town in the prairies Kurt developed a healthy obsession with waterfowl hunting. He also enjoys backpack bow and rifle hunting in the badlands and mountains of Alberta. Kurt shares his love for wildlife and the outdoors with his family, there are always stories to share around the campfire. He was drawn to BHA as he sees a need for increased awareness about conservation and its role in the preservation of opportunities and wild places for future generations of hunters and anglers.
Marc Fossi - BOD, Calgary
Marc acquired his love of fishing from his grandfather and grew up fishing lakes in the Quebec Laurentians and around the BC lower mainland. Shortly after moving to Alberta he picked up a fly rod and the addiction began in earnest. He could regularly be found on the banks of the Bow river after work and on weekends learning through trial and error. Over time he began getting further away from the city to fish, including trips to the Kanektok river in Alaska and the Skeena system in BC. He spends much of his time from June 16th to October 31st on the eastern slopes camping and chasing westslope cutthroat trout. Having witnessed first hand the damage caused on eastern slope streams by industry and motorized recreation he began volunteering for stream rehabilitation projects. After seeing some projects ruined by continued motorized use he realized that more was needed to address the cause of the problem in addition to repairing damage after the fact.
Kyle Snow - BOD, Cold Lake
Ever since his first backpacking trip with his uncle, Kyle was hooked on the outdoors. Whether it was when he completed a three-day hiking trip over Cheticamp Mountain or an extended overnight canoeing trip down the Liscomb River, he knew the outdoors is where he wanted to be. Kyle relocated from Cape Breton, Nova Scotia in mid 2013 to pursue Engineering at the University of Calgary. Coming from the ocean to the mountains was a big shock for him, but he instantly fell in love with what they had to offer.
Jeffrey MacLean - BOD, Calgary
Jeff grew up skiing and fishing on Cape Breton Island. After high school, he moved to Ontario to complete a degree in Geological Engineering at the University of Waterloo. During co-op work terms in Calgary, Edmonton, and Fort McMurray, he began spending time in the mountains and ultimately became addicted to them not only because of the geology but because of the skiing as well. Upon completion of university, he moved to Calgary full time to further explore the mountains through hiking, biking, climbing, and skiing. In 2013, he discovered hunting. This exposure to hunting was a very steep learning curve and forced him to slow down, step back and see all the other things going on in the landscape aside from human activity. While exploring the backcountry, he quickly realized that these wild places would need help staying wild for generations to come.
Jeff's main goals are to protect the land from industry, development or inappropriate use while still trying to maintain a balance with the economy, the environment and all user groups. One of the major issues that drew Jeff to Alberta BHA was the OHV hunters' attempt to represent all of Alberta hunters with an overly loud voice of a few individuals and values that clearly did not represent everyone. Being part of and having BHA in Alberta gives him hope for the future of maintaining the privilege of accessing these wild places and the privilege to continue hunting. Phrases that are frequently heard from him are"That looks like some high-quality fun...and misery”, "Just one more ridge, then we'll take a break", and "Don't worry, I know a shortcut".
Devon Rundvall - BOD, Edmonton
Devon is a new hunter that almost exclusively hunts public land in Alberta. As a public land hunter he was drawn to BHA for it's focus on keeping public land in public hand. He joined the Alberta chapter during the first pint night held in Edmonton and hasn’t missed one since. For the last two years, Devon has helped organize pint nights and represented BHA during events. Despite these efforts no one has given up a honey hole where he can find a nice bull elk. Frustrated with all the secrecy, he decided to join the ABHA board in hopes of getting a peek at everyone else's GPS maps.
Levi Williams-Whitney, Lethbridge
Levi was born in Slake Lake, Alberta and spent the majority of his grade school years trailing his determined mother around Western Canada. Summers were spent with his Dad on the farm and in the bush where the simplicities of life were of most importance. After graduating high school, Levi pursued a Lacrosse Scholarship in the United States and eventually found his way back home with a deeper appreciation for his Northern roots. His love and respect for the wild continues to grow as hunting, angling, and exploring continues to take precedent in his life.
Levi now resides in Southern Alberta where he studies Environmental Science and spends every minute outside of a textbook enjoying the incredible backcountry opportunities of the badlands, prairies, foothills, and mountain tops. He is thrilled to give back and stand up for the areas and wildlife that enrich his soul and fill his plate.