Core Team (Staff & Students)
Maeve Lydon

Maeve Lydon

Program Director

Greetings! I am honoured to live and work on Coast Salish territories as an uninvited guest. I am the daughter of Irish immigrants from Galway, (another wild west coast) in Ireland. Over the past 15 years I have been focused on community-based and driven partnerships for social and environmental justice with higher education at UVic via the former Office of Community Based research, with the Environmental Law Centre https://elc.uvic.ca/ and nationally with CBRCanada and CFICE – Community Campus Engage Canada https://carleton.ca/communityfirst/. I love the focus on ecological restoration and decolonization that LLab is committed to : supporting Indigenous resurgence  as part of connecting to and healing ourselves, communities and the amazing natural world we are part of. … “Find a way to make beauty necessary, to make necessity beautiful ‘ – (Anne Michaels)​

Chelsea Thomas

Chelsea Thomas

Education & Curriculum Coordinator

I am a Canadian-Afro-Caribbean-Celtic mom of four unschoolers with a deep gratitude for the traditional territories of the Quw’utsun peoples on which I currently live, work and play with my family. In addition to motherhood, as a PhD candidate (ABD) at the University of Victoria, research assistant and teacher educator at Vancouver Island University, and Education & Curriculum Consultant with the Living Lab, my work aims to highlight the ways in which healing, learning and life are intricately connected to the building of more equitable and sustainable futures. As a passionate believer in the necessity of preventative, restorative and relational approaches to diverse, inclusive and decolonizing education, I feel supported by decolonial praxis and an ever-evolving unschooled worldview. I am also graciously humbled by opportunities to weave and learn from/with Indigenous ways of knowing-being-doing on/with the land and water as a non-Indigenous settler of Turtle Island.

Desiree Jones

Desiree Jones

Research Assistant

ÍY, SȻÁĆEL SIÁM NE SĆÁLEĆE. ESE Desiree Jones ĆSE LÁ,E SEN EṮ W̱SÁNEĆ. My name is Desiree Jones, I am from W̱SÁNEĆ territory and from Pauquachin First Nation specifically. I am currently in my 3rd year of Indigenous studies at the University of Victoria and will be getting my degree next year. Being able to be part of this opportunity and working alongside Living Lab allows me to centre the work I want to do within the community. As a single mother in full time school, my vision has always been to work within the community in ways that give back and benefit the community as a whole while creating new relationships and making new connections. Also expanding my own knowledge so that I can pass down what I’ve learned to my daughter and our future generations.

HÍSW̱ḴE

Jessica Joseph

Jessica Joseph

Arts and Community Engagement Programmer

eyʔ skʷéčəl,

I’m Jessica Joseph from the Songhees Nation. I align myself with cultural restoration and art, and I’m inspired by plants and traditional stories. I started working with the Living Lab over the summer, co-facilitating workshops with local and regional youth. I’m drawn to this project because I believe in the work being done from a community-based perspective. In moving forward, I see Living Lab connecting communities and bringing land-based learning into educational experiences.

Hay’sxw’qə

Lyndsey Joseph

Lyndsey Joseph

Research Assistant

ÍY, SȻÁĆEL SIÁM. TE,TES,ȾE ŦE NE SNÁ ĆSE LÁ,E SEN EṮ LEQEṈEN. My name is Lyndsey Joseph, I am Lekwungen from the Songhees First Nation and I currently reside in Tsawout. I have completed my diploma in Indigenous Language Revitalization and I’m moving forward with my Bachelors of Education in Indigenous Language Revitalization. My educational journey has sparked many interests and passions that have lead me to where I am today. Through my role as a Living Lab Program and Research Assistant I’m eager to learn more about the Indigenous history of the Lekwungen and W̱SÁNEĆ people as I am honoured to come from and be apart of both communities. I look forward to being apart of this team, representing my communities and bringing Indigenous history and science to our schools curriculum.

Tracey Murphy

Tracey Murphy

Research and Program Associate

I am a PhD Candidate in Curriculum Studies at the University of Victoria, and currently a research assistant with the Gender Justice, Creative Pedagogies & Arts-Based Research Group and with Living Labs, bringing a K-12 school focus. I was born on the island of Tiohti:áke (Montreal), of Irish and French settlers. My daughter was born on WSÁNEĆ́ territory and through her roots, I continue to reflect on my place as a settler. I am passionate about the ability of youth to imagine into being an equitable and sustainable future. The intention that I bring to my research work is to re-story colonial narratives with humility as I learn more about the webs of relationality around me and take actions that mirror my gratitude for living on this territory.

Mavis Underwood

Mavis Underwood

Research and Planning Advisor

I am proud to be invited onto the Living Lab Project. As a past IGOV scholar I pressed for improved curriculum in our professional schools of law, health, education and social development as a way to counter the colonizing influence of education and history on relationships with Indigenous First Nations. As one of 16 children of George and Geraldine Underwood of Tsawout First Nation of W̱SÁNEĆ Nation, I was quite familiar with ideas of “getting along” and my Dad instilled that into my mind as I feared my first walk to public school. He told me we had to learn how to get along. With that in my mind I persevered and have made every effort to make my education, work and life meaningful. However, in learning to get along I want people to know the richness of our Indigenous First Nations history. I want people to realize our great prosperity and connection to land and marine territory. I want people to appreciate the richness described by scholars such as Dave Elliott Sr. who reminded us over and over that we were rich, we did not need money because we had everything. I am looking forward to the exhilaration of working with dynamic young scholars who bring me such incredible energy when I get weary.

Stacie Thiessen

Stacie Thiessen

Communications Coordinator

I am a recent graduate from the University of Victoria with a B.A in Visual Arts & Computer Science. I am happy to work for the Living Lab Project from a technical perspective as the communications coordinator, as well as the website coordinator for PEPÁḴEṈ HÁUTW̱. It has been exciting to learn about the initiatives that Living Lab is working on, and about the knowledgeable people in collaboration with the Project. I am passionate about working with community members and learning from local Indigenous perspectives.

Songhees Team
Ellie Dion

Ellie Dion

Songhees Nation Education Liaison

I am grateful to be part of Songhees Nation Education Team as the new Education Liaison. My name is Ellie Dion, I’m Quebecoise and grew up on Wabanaki Territories. My spouse is Lkwungen, Quw’utsun and Lummi, part of the Albany on Songhees with ties into the Williams and the Thomas.

I completed a Major in Film Production as well as a Major in Political Science at Concordia University on Mohawk Territories, Iroquois Nations. Both my education and life experience became key in developing my media company Trickster Productions where I facilitate programs and the use of media to create community driven awareness projects throughout Indigenous communities south Island, the school district, through IED, and VNFC. This process has always been guided by mentors, Elders and knowledge keepers who are very generous with me. I am excited to be given the opportunity to contribute to Songhees Education in this role as an education liaison to Living Lab. I look forward to working with dedication, with all of you, for Songhees students, families, Chief & Council, Elders.

Kristely Kelly

Kristely Kelly

Director of Education
WSANEC & PEPÁḴEṈ HÁUTW̱ (PH) Team
Judith Lyn Arney

Judith Lyn Arney

PH Ecosystems Director

I grew up in the beautiful forests, beaches, and meadows of the W̱SÁNEĆ homelands. I‘m an ethno-ecologist of British ancestry doing ecosystem restoration work and my role with Living Lab is supporting “on the ground” work, especially organizing restoration activities for youth and community. I’m deeply passionate about the healing work of restoration as well as building community based capacity for long term and widespread ecosystem restoration with a core foundation of indigenous land sovereignty.

Ashley (PEPAḴIYE) Cooper

Ashley (PEPAḴIYE) Cooper

PH Programs Director

I am from W̱JOȽEȽP in W̱SÁNEĆ territory, and have been studying the SENĆOŦEN language for 8 years collectively. I graduated W̱,SENĆOŦEN,IST in 2016 with a diploma in Indigenous Language Revitalization through The University of Victoria. For six years I have been learning about plants, medicines, and plant technologies in W̱SÁNEĆ on my own, and with the support of local community knowledge keepers and elders. I have been working at PEPÁḴEṈ HÁUTW̱ for 5 years where I develop curriculum and resources for weekly workshops that I teach with classes ranging from pre-school to grade 11. I am the Programs Director for the PEPÁḴEṈ HÁUTW̱ Native Plant Nursery and Garden Program, SṈIDȻEȽ Resilency Project, and ȾIḴEL Living Lab.

Sarah Jim

Sarah Jim

PH Senior Crew

I am a member of the W̱SÁNEĆ nation from the Tseycum village and have been working with PEPÁḴEṈ HÁUTW̱ since 2018, and with the Living Lab Project since 2019. Living Lab and PEPÁḴEṈ HÁUTW̱ give me the opportunity to work in a cultural significant place called SṈIDȻEȽ; the first W̱SÁNEĆ village site. Working on the land and being with community members and knowledge keepers has allowed me to learn ancestral plant knowledge and traditional ways of being. I also hold a Bachelor’s Degree of Fine Arts from the University of Victoria and have merged my two loves together; art and plants. Creating place-based artwork of my homelands and waters allows me to educate others about the importance of native plant food systems and coastal medicines in relation to the ecosystem and W̱SÁNEĆ culture.

Esther Morris

Esther Morris

WSANEC School Board, Executive Assistant

Hi, I’m Esther Morris from Tsartlip First Nation and I work with the WSANEC School Board as the Executive Assistant. My role with Living Lab is to help coordinate the WSANEC School Board engagement; we are currently focused on the new Indigenous Education and Resurgence Research Project. This project will re-connect our WSANEC peoples to Salish Sea relatives, such as Lekwungen and Lummi, supporting our community priorities for education, land rights and culture.

My own interests are being at home in this pandemic (sarcasm); remaining culturally active in our Coast Salish culture and traditions; keeping my children engaged in education, culture as well as passing along teachings that have been passed on to me from my parents and grandparents.

I think Living Lab is a great project coming alive that will be used for generations to come. My late grandfather, Ivan Morris Sr, was a key knowledge keeper and with the SENCOTEN language and education – being a part of this project has great meaning to me and I’m excited to see it all unfold for our learners to use for many years to come. Once this project is complete and being utilized in curriculum, it will have even greater meaning to the Coast Salish people.

Advisors (Elders / Knowledge Keepers)
Earl Claxton Jr.

Earl Claxton Jr.

WSANEC / PEPÁḴEṈ HÁUTW̱ - TSAWOUT Nation
Lorna Williams

Lorna Williams

Lil‘wat / St’at‘yem’ Nation, Professor Emerita / Faculty of Education & Canada Research Chair - Indigenous Knowledge & Learning
John Elliott

John Elliott

WSANEC / UVic Honorary Doctorate, TSARTLIP Nation
Frank (Bangus) George

Frank (Bangus) George

LEKWUNGEN, Songhees Nation
Butch Dick

Butch Dick

LEKWUNGEN, Songhees Nation
Budd Hall

Budd Hall

Settler / UVic Professor Emeritus - UNESCO Chair in Higher Education
Nicholas XEMŦOLTW̱ Claxton

Nicholas XEMŦOLTW̱ Claxton

(Co-Chair) UVic School of Child &Youth Care

I work with UVic as an assistant professor in the Department of Child and Youth Care. I am also a W̱SÁNEĆ community member and serve as Chief of our SȾÁUTW̱ (TSAWOUT) First Nation. My teaching and research is centered on the revitalization and resurgence of Indigenous knowledge through community-based and land-based research and education. I am honoured to support the Living Lab Project’s community-driven work which bridges eco-cultural restoration and Indigenous Resurgence.

https://www.uvic.ca/hsd/cyc/community-alumni/home/indigenous/index.php

Leslie Brown

Leslie Brown

(Co-Chair) Engagement & Research / Professor Emeritus, UVic School of Social Work

I am a Great-Grandmother and University of Victoria Professor Emerita, who has a life-long passion for community-based research and Indigenous child and family wellbeing. The Living Lab embodies both of these and I am eager to work with the steering committee.

Ellie Dion

Ellie Dion

Songhees Nation Education Liaison

I am grateful to be part of Songhees Nation Education Team as the new Education Liaison. My name is Ellie Dion, I’m Quebecoise and grew up on Wabanaki Territories. My spouse is Lkwungen, Quw’utsun and Lummi, part of the Albany on Songhees with ties into the Williams and the Thomas.

I completed a Major in Film Production as well as a Major in Political Science at Concordia University on Mohawk Territories, Iroquois Nations. Both my education and life experience became key in developing my media company Trickster Productions where I facilitate programs and the use of media to create community driven awareness projects throughout Indigenous communities south Island, the school district, through IED, and VNFC. This process has always been guided by mentors, Elders and knowledge keepers who are very generous with me. I am excited to be given the opportunity to contribute to Songhees Education in this role as an education liaison to Living Lab. I look forward to working with dedication, with all of you, for Songhees students, families, Chief & Council, Elders.

Dorothea Harris

Dorothea Harris

Office of Indigenous & Academic Community Engagement, Indigenous Initiatives Coordinator

My family is from Snuneymuxw First Nation and I am a grateful visitor on the Lekwungen, W̱SÁNEĆ and Sc’ianew territories in Victoria, BC. I hold a BSW (Indigenous Specialization) from UVic and I am a PhD student in Leadership Studies, Adult Education and Community Engagement. My focus is on the impacts of post-secondary education on Coast Salish students. I am the Indigenous Initiatives Coordinator at UVic. In my role at UVic, I work closely with the Living Lab, both to support the funding of the project and the important work of community engagement. Previously, I spent many years doing community work as a front-line social worker in the non-profit sector and Education Manager for a local First Nation. I have a passion for community work and developing community-university partnerships that support the success of local Indigenous students.

John Harris

John Harris

Indigenous Education Elder & Indigenous Knowledge Facilitator SD61

’Uy’ skweyul,
I am an Indigenous Educator and member of Snuneymuxw (Nanaimo) First Nation, working in the Greater Victoria School District’s Indigenous Education Department as the Elders and Indigenous Knowledge Facilitator. I am grateful for the privilege of living, working, and playing in the traditional territory of the Songhees and Esquimalt First Nations, and passionate about weaving local Indigenous perspectives and knowledge into educational opportunities for youth. As an educator and a father, I have found that incredibly profound learning occurs at the intersection between traditional ecological knowledge of local First Peoples, land-based experiential teaching, and an openness on the part of student and educator alike to embrace Uy’skwuluwun (a good mind and a good heart) when doing this work.
Huy ch q‛u Siem

Sarah Jim

Sarah Jim

Pepaken Hautw Senior Crew

I am a member of the W̱SÁNEĆ nation from the Tseycum village and have been working with PEPÁḴEṈ HÁUTW̱ since 2018, and with the Living Lab Project since 2019. Living Lab and PEPÁḴEṈ HÁUTW̱ give me the opportunity to work in a cultural significant place called SṈIDȻEȽ; the first W̱SÁNEĆ village site. Working on the land and being with community members and knowledge keepers has allowed me to learn ancestral plant knowledge and traditional ways of being. I also hold a Bachelor’s Degree of Fine Arts from the University of Victoria and have merged my two loves together; art and plants. Creating place-based artwork of my homelands and waters allows me to educate others about the importance of native plant food systems and coastal medicines in relation to the ecosystem and W̱SÁNEĆ culture.

Erich Kelch

Erich Kelch

CRD / Indigenous Relations

My name is Erich Kelch and I was born in Lekwungen territory/Victoria and now live on PKAALS/Mt. Tolmie/District of Saanich. I am of German and English descent and really feel connected to the people and landscape of Vancouver Island. My work has spanned all levels of government, non-profits and private industry. I recently moved from the CRD to Parks Canada to help manage the Sea Gardens Project.

I am passionate about understanding the history of this place, and working on our responsibilities to each other and mother earth to leave a vibrant home for future generations. While I am very concerned about the trends we are seeing I choose to be motivated by hope and the belief that by working together we can do great things.

It is for this reason that I want to be connected to the Living Lab project where culture, science, conservation and people overlap. I get excited by the kind of learning, sharing and growing that takes place through living lab. This network can play a great role in this community.

Kristely Kelly

Kristely Kelly

Songhees Nation Education
Judith Lyn Arney

Judith Lyn Arney

Pepaken Hautw Ecosystems Director

I grew up in the beautiful forests, beaches, and meadows of the W̱SÁNEĆ homelands. I’m an ethno-ecologist of British ancestry doing ecosystem restoration work (link will be available once our PH website is up) and my role with Living Labs is supporting “on the ground” work, especially organizing restoration activities for youth and community. I’m deeply passionate about the healing work of restoration as well as building community based capacity for long term and widespread ecosystem restoration with a core foundation of indigenous land sovereignty.

Maeve Lydon

Maeve Lydon

Living Lab Program Director

Greetings! I am honoured to live and work on Coast Salish territories as an uninvited guest. I am the daughter of Irish immigrants from Galway, (another wild west coast) in Ireland. I serve as the Program director of Living Lab. Over the past 15 years I have been focused on community-based and driven partnerships for social and environmental justice with higher education at UVic via the former Office of Community Based research, with the Environmental Law Centre https://elc.uvic.ca/ and nationally with CBRCanada and CFICE – Community Campus Engage Canada https://carleton.ca/communityfirst/. I love the focus on ecological restoration and decolonization that LLab is committed to : supporting Indigenous resurgence  as part of connecting to and healing ourselves, communities and the amazing natural world we are part of. … “Find a way to make beauty necessary, to make necessity beautiful ‘ – (Anne Michaels)​

Rhianna Nagel

Rhianna Nagel

UVic Community Engaged Learning Coordinator

As a coordinator for Community-Engaged Learning at UVic, I am keen to connect community and students in endeavours that support learning and community. The Living Lab is an important network for connecting, creating and supporting opportunities that help us work, learn and play in relation with the land, the sea and each other. What a wonderful endeavour for UVic students to engage with! I am excited to support learning processes and relationships of mutual benefit with the Living Lab.

Tricia Roche

Tricia Roche

UVic - HSD Development Officer

After a decade of experience in youth focused research at UVic, I now work as Development & External Relations Officer in the Faculty of Human & Social Development. I find congruence between the values we center in Living Lab and my interest in the principles of human rights philanthropy: power shifting, accountability, community driven, equity and creativity in driving social change. I provide strategic advice on securing resources for land based learning, capacity building and decolonization initiatives of Living Lab. I have been grateful to raise my children on Coast Salish territory.

Nicholas Stanger

Nicholas Stanger

Western Washington University - Research / Environmental Education

​​I work as an associate professor of environmental education at Western Washington University. My research uses an educationalist lens and participatory techniques to understand environmental sociology, ecological identity, transformative places, and Indigenous responses to climate change in the Salish Sea.

I aim to understand, mobilize, and help create space for Indigenous communities to tell their stories of resurgence, cultural adaptation, and sovereignty all while helping find pathways, protocol, and critical understandings amongst settler-colonial communities. Right now I am working with Nick Claxton on the Indigenous Resurgence in the Salish Sea Research Project focused on education with the W̱SÁNEĆ and Lummi Nations and others. I am also supporting the development of the Living Lab Network via UVic as a sustainable backbone for our research and community-driven, land-based efforts.

nicholasstanger.ca

http://www.transformativeplaces.com/#replacing

schoolofchange.ca

Tye Swallow

Tye Swallow

Adult Education Facilitator WSANEC Schoolboard

I am a Facilitator for Language Revitalization with the W̱SÁNEĆ School Board. My interest in being involved in the Living Lab work revolves around helping transform educational structures to be more inclusive of Indigenous ways of knowing and being in homeland. My passion lies in expanding W̱SÁNEĆ ability to practice their treaty rights through education.

Crystal Tremblay

Crystal Tremblay

UVic Community Engaged Scholarship - Special Advisor to Provost

I have been a visitor on the Lekwungen and W̱SÁNEĆ Peoples territories for over 16 years, originating from Quebec with French-Canadian, Irish, Scottish and German ancestry. I am so grateful to live and work on these lands and waters. I also teach and do research at the University of Victoria, where I co-chair the Geography Map Shop and help lead the Salish Sea Hub, both with missions to be of service to the community through facilitating community-driven and action oriented research and learning opportunities that address community needs. I am passionate about supporting initiatives and building relationships that contribute to an inclusive, sustainable, decolonized and just world. I also like to produce community films and arts-based interventions focused on enhancing livelihoods, and for social-environmental justice.  Some of them can be found here. I will be supporting the Living Lab projects as an Advisor at Uvic in community-engaged research, participatory methods, and knowledge mobilization.

Melissa Yestrau

Melissa Yestrau

Director of Science Venture

I grew up spending summers at my grandma’s farm in rural Manitoba. My love for the natural environment was influenced by my grandma as she had a deep understanding of plants, animals and weather patterns. She taught me how to test seeds for viability by sprouting them. I also learned how to keep eggs from breaking in an ice cream pail by swinging the pail in fast circles – an early physics lesson! During my time at university, I became involved in STEM education and have continued this journey at the University of Victoria as the Director of Science Venture. I am committed to ensuring all youth in our community have access to relevant STEM learning opportunities, and strongly feel the Living Lab Network is creating a positive space for learning.

Natalie Baloy

Natalie Baloy

Associate Director of Transboundary Initiatives, Western Washington University

I live with my young daughter and partner on Lummi and Nooksack lands and waters in Bellingham, Washington. I grew up in the US Midwest and moved to the Salish Sea to complete a PhD in cultural anthropology at the University of British Columbia over 15 years ago. As a settler scholar and community member, I engage in work to address ethical relationships in higher education, settler colonial systems, and critical place-based pedagogies that cross borders and disciplines. These commitments drive my work toward grounded, relational, and bioregional teaching, learning, and programming at the Salish Sea Institute, in conversation with Living Lab at the University of Victoria and other transformative initiatives across the Salish Sea.

Morgan Black

Morgan Black

Marine Biology Educator / Ph.D Student

My name is Morgan Black.  I was born in central BC, and have been a grateful resident of Vancouver Island since I was two years old.  I was a naturalist from a very young age and developed a strong connection to the land and sea. I am now a PhD student studying Marine Ecology at the University of Victoria in the Juanes lab (https://juaneslab.weebly.com/) looking at the fish, crabs, and shrimps found on First Nations walled clam gardens ( http://www.seagoing.ca/research/).  In gratitude and reciprocity, I support the Living Lab Project because more ways of knowing and ‘seeing’ the world need to be recognized and respected. I feel our future will much improve when this becomes commonplace.

Jeff Corntassel

Jeff Corntassel

Associate Professor, UVic Indigenous Studies

Osiyo! My name is Jeff Kanohalidoh Corntassel and I’m from the Cherokee Nation. I have lived with my family on the unceded territories of the Lekwungen and W̱SÁNEĆ peoples since 2003. I am currently Associate Professor in the Indigenous Studies Department at the University of Victoria and Acting Director of the Centre for Indigenous Research and Community-Led Engagement (CIRCLE). My research and teaching interests focus on “Everyday Acts of Resurgence” and the intersections between Indigenous resurgence, climate change, gender, and community well-being. Also, I am currently completing a book manuscript on Sustainable Self-Determination, which examines Indigenous climate justice, food security, and gender-based resurgence. I value the work that Living Lab is doing to engage in community-driven work, land/water-based learning, and promote climate justice.

Kristian Dubrawski

Kristian Dubrawski

Professor, UVic Eng & Geog / Canada Research Chair in Rural & Indigenous Water Monitoring Professor

As an Assistant Professor in Civil Engineering and Geography at UVic, I specialize in water sustainability, and study built and natural processes for improving water quality. I am interested in how communities can use the nature around them to improve their water security, relying on as little technology as possible – in a sense, community-led permaculture for water.

I enjoy working with Living Labs youth on understanding science and sustainability, especially in lakes, rivers, wetlands, and coastlines. I certainly don’t have all the answers, but I sure am excited when I witness first-hand the power and imagination of youth driving the world away from ecological plundering and towards ecological healing.

Matt Huculak

Matt Huculak

UVic Library / Director of Digital Commons Staff

As Head of Advanced Research Services at UVic Libraries, I love connecting people with information and digital tools to do the work they love. I am passionate about teaching and learning and providing support to people who want to tell their stories through technology–from podcasts, to maps, to exhibits. I value the Living Lab for providing a space to learn, grow, and engage with community-based research. I am originally from the territory of the Coast Miwok and am grateful to raise my family on Coast Salish territory.

John Lutz

John Lutz

Professor, UVic History

I teach and study the history of the Greater Victoria area as well as British Columbia more generally at the University of Victoria and have written a book on the history of Indigenous-settler relations: Makuk: A New History of Indigenous Settler Relations. I love looking at old records, particularly old maps and I am building a digital collection of BC historic maps with UVic Library. I have been involved with community-campus projects and research including field schools with the Stó:lō Nation and community projects, including mapping with local Indigenous and community groups as well as with the Stó:lō and Gitga’at. In 2017 we co-hosted a special conference on the Douglas Treaty with the Songhees. I look forward to sharing what I know, and the resources I have access to through the university, with the partners in the Living Lab Network.

https://hcmc.uvic.ca/songheesconference

Darcy Mathews

Darcy Mathews

Assistant Professor, School of Environmental Studies, UVic.

I am an Archaeologist and Ethnoecologist working primarily via UVic with the Songhees Nation. We are working collaboratively at Tl’ches (Chatham/Discovery Island), looking at the ways in which the Lekwungen peoples there managed their ecosystems through time. This includes plant foods, such as blue camas, and Springbank clover. We are also looking at the archaeological record of the islands, including three large village sites. These are places where we can bring together community knowledge and science to co-discover the deep history of the islands and the ways in which its inhabitants so successfully and sustainably managed their home over hundreds and thousands of years.

As a father and community-focused person, I particularly enjoy working with youth as part of the Living Lab Program. I have been asked by Songhees elder Sellemah/Joan Morris, to work towards getting the youth back to the islands, and back to the land. I also love archaeology and gardening, and this is an excellent opportunity for us to all get our hands dirty caring for culturally important plants, and also work with village sites to learn more about traditional foods, history, and ways of life.

Jean Paul Restoule

Jean Paul Restoule

Professor, UVic Education / Director of Indigenous Education

Boozhoo! I am Anishinaabe from Dokis First Nation, and French-Canadian from what is currently called Ontario. I am a grateful visitor on Lekwungen territory. I’m a Professor and Chair of Indigenous Education at UVic. My research focuses on bringing Indigenous worldviews to a wide audience which includes Indigenizing and decolonizing teacher education and investigating the use of Indigenous knowledge in online learning environments. I am also co-editor of Indigenous Research: Theories, Practices, and Relationships (Canadian Scholars’ Press, 2018), a ground-breaking collection for students and scholars interested in learning how Indigenous research is carried out in practice. My interest in the Living Lab stems from (see what I did there?) my passion for work that connects young Indigenous people to their lands and knowledge traditions and asserts paths that contribute to ecological sustainability and Indigenous resurgence. I also like to see young Canadians encouraged to engage in respectful relations with the Indigenous lands, knowledge and wisdom that is all around them. We all need to be better versed in Indigenous knowledge traditions to ensure our ongoing survival in harmony with all our relations.

Kathy Sanford

Kathy Sanford

Professor, UVic Education / Curriculum Instruction & Teacher Training

My focus is on educational transformation in schools and teacher education programs, community partnerships, authentically integrating Indigenous ways of learning and knowing the world, aligning assessment practices with meaningful and engaged learning, focusing on transdisciplinarity and inquiry approaches to education that enable responses to global challenges and inequities.

Nancy Shackelford

Nancy Shackelford

Academic Director of the Restoration of Natural Systems Program, UVic

I am a native Texan, having settled here in the beautiful lands of the Lekwungen peoples in 2020 to take on the position of Academic Director of the Restoration of Natural Systems Program at UVic. In my research, I am primarily an ecologist and data analyst. I aim to enhance the predictability and success of restoration outcomes through experiments, observation, and synthesis. In my Directorship, my role involves supporting restoration projects regionally by fostering active partnerships between academia, students, and the community. I am new to the Living Lab Network, and am happy to discover how I can help meet the goals and support the spirit of this group. Ecosystem restoration is an effort to not only restore the spaces that we have damaged, but also to reconnect with our natural environment. I’m excited to share the hopefulness and excitement of environmental stewardship.

John Taylor

John Taylor

Professor, UVic Biology
Joachim (Yogi) Carolsfeld

Joachim (Yogi) Carolsfeld

Director of World Fisheries Trust

I am grateful to have spent over 25 years working from Lekwungen territory in environmental education, environmental research, and international development as leader of the non-profit World Fisheries Trust. In collaborating with the Living Lab, I am interested in a better understanding of how increased reconciliation with the Esquimalt, Songhees W̱SÁNEĆ and Sc’ianew can be carried forward in a good way, how my experience may help in this process, and how my way of working may need adjustments.

Lydia Drzymala

Lydia Drzymala

Pauquachin First Nation, Family Support Worker

I am an Irish-Ukrainian woman and mother and was raised in treaty 7 territories where the mountains meet the prairies in Calgary, AB. I have been grateful to live as a visitor in the territories of the Lekwungan and W̱SÁNEĆ peoples for the past 8 years. I completed my Bachelor of Social Work Degree in December 2019 from the University of Victoria with a child welfare specialization and have been honoured to be working for Pauquachin First Nation in the role of Family Support Worker since January 2020. I am passionate about supporting families to feel a sense of holistic wellness and am especially interested in facilitating land-based healing opportunities. It has been so great to be part of the Living Lab Project, creating experiences for youth where they feel connected to themselves, their culture, and the land, in addition to creating new friendships with young people from other communities. I look forward to the continued work together and to the opportunities that we can create through the Living Lab Project for youth, families, and communities to learn, and heal together while caring for the land.

Kaya Engelstoft

Kaya Engelstoft

Pauquachin First Nation, Education Coordinator

I grew up on the beaches, bedrock and forests of traditional W̱SÁNEĆ territory identifying plants and searching for sharp tailed snakes. The Danish and Icelandic ancestors on my mother’s side settled in Treaty 6 territory in the early 1900’s, and she moved to Lekwungen lands in the 1980’s. My father immigrated to Lekwungen and W̱SÁNEĆ homelands from Denmark in the 1980’s where I was raised. I currently work in the role of Education Coordinator for Pauquachin (BOKEĆEN) First Nation where I focus on anything and all things Education (from kindergarten to post-secondary).

My goal in collaborating with the Living Lab Project at Pauquachin is that one day Pauquachin’s families will be able to practice their inherent right to harvest traditional foods from the intertidal zone of their bay. In the process of getting to that place I look forward to spending time exploring and celebrating the shoreline with children, youth and families, learning and merging traditional and scientific knowledge.

Maya Hamel

Maya Hamel

Esquimalt Nation, Program Supervisor

Hello, my name is Maya Hamel. I was born in Hefei, China. I was adopted and brought to Canada, where I grew up on Treaty 7 territory in Calgary, Alberta and moved to Victoria 7 years ago. I am grateful to be a visitor to the Lekwungen territories. I completed a Bachelors of Social Work with the University of Victoria, where I spent my fourth-year practicum working with Esquimalt Nation. I am now the Program Supervisor for Esquimalt Nations Education Department. I am so grateful to be a part of the Living Lab Project because it brings together so many wonderful voices, perspectives and skills. I am excited to support our youth in being able to explore, learn and connect with the land, plants and animals around them.

Soren Henrich

Soren Henrich

Chair of the Friends of Bowker Creek

I am a founding director of the Friends of Bowker Creek Society (2018) for urban watershed renewal. I am interested in collaboration with the Living Lab project, and am a partner signatory for NSERC and PICS-OPP grant applications with the CRD, Eric Higgs, and Kristian Dubrawski, through Maeve Lydon at UVic. I hope these grants pan out, but if not this year, perhaps next year. In any event, it is great to have community collaboration with the research and educational opportunities provided by Living Labs. I am inspired by the Bowker Creek Streamkeepers and Chum Salmon Recovery supported by the Living Labs Project.

The Friends of Bowker Creek Society website is: bowkercreek.org.

Email is: [email protected].

Bruce Kilpatrick

Bruce Kilpatrick

Communications Advisor

I’m honoured to be part of the Living Lab team and to support the important work it does. In late 2020, I retired from my 26-year role as the executive director of communications + marketing and director of communications at UVic. I come from a settler family—Scottish on my father’s side and Channel Islands French on my mother’s—and my family and I have been uninvited guests on Lekwungen territory for the last 30+ years. At UVic I was a member of the Indigenous Academic Advisory Council and the Orange Shirt Day Planning Committee and I will continue to listen and learn in this new work. I have also been an advisor to provincial governments in BC and Manitoba and an active member of community organizations my entire adult life. I believe in the power and strength of communities and people working together to create change for a better and more just world. I see working with the Living Lab as one way I can, as a settler, support vital decolonization and Indigenous resurgence initiatives. I am grateful to have that opportunity.

Meranda Mercer

Meranda Mercer

Pauquachin First Nation, Education Assistant

My name is Meranda Mercer. I am of mixed ancestry; I am part Norwegian and also belong to the Nisga’a Nation. I was raised on Tsimshian territory in Terrace, BC, and I have been a visitor on the Lekwungen and W̱SÁNEĆ Peoples territories for nearly 10 years.

I now live in Pauquachin (BOKEĆEN), the home territory of my partner and our children. I recently graduated from the University of Victoria with a bachelor’s degree in Child and Youth Care, I now work for Pauquachin (BOKEĆEN) First Nation as the Education Assistant. My role entails supporting program initiatives related to Education for children and youth.

I am grateful to be a part of the Living Lab Project because it connects youth with land-based learning opportunities, educating future leaders with Indigenous history, knowledge, and ways of being.

Deb Morrison

Deb Morrison

Islands Trust, TETACES, University of Washington

I am Deb Morrison, a climate and anti-oppression activist, scientist, learning scientist, educator, mother, locally elected official, and many other things besides (www.debmorrison.me). My work in the world is at the intersection of justice, climate science, and learning. I have extensive experience in research-practice-policy partnerships with diverse partners at different scales as a learning scientist which will likely be an offering I can make in relation to the place-based education and learning resources being developed within this effort. I have worked across scales from the ṮEṮÁĆES Climate Action Project efforts within the Salish Sea to the Local Communities and Indigenous Peoples Platform Facilitated Working Group efforts at the United Nations as part of my deep commitment to decolonial and transformative learning to foster sustainability and climate justice.

Peter Paré

Peter Paré

TETACES Project

I am an emeritus Professor of Respiratory Medicine and Pathology at the University of British Columbia and a Clinician Scientist at St Paul’s Hospital and the UBC Center for Heart Lung Innovation.

I am now a full time resident of S,DÁYES (Pender Island) and a board member of the Southern Gulf Islands Community Resource Centre Society (https://www.sgicommunityresources.ca/). I was one of the organizers of the ṮEṮÁĆES Climate Action Project and a member of the ṮEṮÁĆES Steering Committee dedicated to fostering community to community relations between the W̱SÁNEĆ people and the Gulf Island settlers who largely occupy W̱SÁNEĆ traditional homelands.

Derek Shrubsole

Derek Shrubsole

Teacher, Oak Bay Highschool

As a science teacher at Oak Bay High School, I strive to focus on providing students with an engaging and hands-on learning experience. With place-based learning, I can bring my students to the Bowker Creek ecosystem at the school to learn directly about the ecology of this riparian ecosystem. I have had the fortune of working with Living Lab previously, where my students benefited from their scientific expertise and from the collaboration with students from other schools. I look forward to a continued collaboration with Living Lab and providing my students with such a valuable learning opportunity.

Kalie Dyer

Kalie Dyer

Esquimalt Nation, Education Director
Judith Lyn Arney

Judith Lyn Arney

Restoration Liaison
Leslie Brown

Leslie Brown

Program Advisor / Co-Chair of Steering Committee
Nick Claxton

Nick Claxton

Academic Director, Co-Chair of Steering Committee
John Harris

John Harris

Education Liaison
Maeve Lydon

Maeve Lydon

Program Director
Tricia Roche

Tricia Roche

HSD Development Officer
Nick Stanger

Nick Stanger

Research Liaison
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