2010 Award Recipients

The Canadian Institute of Forestry – Institut forestier du Canada 2010 National Awards Banquet took place on Monday, September 27th in Jasper, Alberta at a gala banquet at the Jasper Park Lodge. Ms. Anne LeBrun Ruff, President of the Institute was the moderator of this long-running annual tradition.


The Canadian Forestry Achievement Award was established in 1967. The intent of the award is to recognize unique and outstanding forestry achievement by individuals in Canada. It is the Institute’s objective that it encourages excellence in the forestry profession. This year’s recipients were Dr. Martin Alexander of Sherwood Park, Alberta in our Rocky Mountain Section and Dr. Al Gordon of Sault Ste. Marie from our Central Ontario Section.


Dr. Martin Alexander, this year’s recipient of the Canadian Forestry Achievement Award.

Dr. Martin Alexander is a senior fire behaviour research officer with the Canadian Forest Service (CFS) located at the Northern Forestry Centre in Edmonton. He has been employed by the CFS since 1976 and has contributed to the Canadian forestry community for over 34 years. Marty’s research interests are wild land fire behaviour and forest and grassland fire danger rating, including the practical and scientific application of such knowledge to fire/fuel management and other disciplines. He was one of the architects of the Canadian Forest Fire Behaviour Prediction System and also served as one of the co-coordinators of the international crown fire modelling experiment in the Northwest Territories from 1995-2001. In 1993, Marty was made the first Honorary Life Member of the Forest and Rural Fire Association of New Zealand, and in 2003 he received the international fire safety award for his research efforts. Over the course of his career, he has made exceptional contributions and has garnered unique and outstanding achievements within the field of forestry. In addition, he has been an outstanding mentor to three generations of Canadian wildfire and forest management professionals. Dr. Alexander truly encourages and exemplifies excellence in the forestry profession.


Dr Alan Gordon’s recipient of the 2010 Canadian Forestry Achievement Award.

Dr Alan Gordon’s career began in 1954 with the Ontario Department of Lands and Forests as a Research Forester. His passion for scientific discovery dates back to his early days as an undergraduate, recording the first global record of red spruce in Ontario in 1950 and producing his first journal publication – in the Forestry Chronicle of course – in 1952. Dr. Gordon’s accomplishments are numerous – some of the more noteworthy include a series of papers which were the first in Canada examining the impacts of acid rain in the Sudbury/Wawa area; he also published a seminal paper on red spruce, establishing it as a species and not a race of black spruce; as well as provocative papers, such as: Budworm! What about the forest illustrating the critical co-evolutionary role spruce budworm plays in boreal mixedwood stand development and succession, and the potential impact extensive BT spraying for budworm control may have on these pathways. Dr. Gordon’s research on spruce genetics and tree breeding continue to this day. Dr. Gordon has been honored with 50 years of service to the Institute in 2005. Since 1983, he has been an adjunct professor of genecology at the Faculty of Forestry, University of Toronto. Throughout his career, Dr. Gordon has interacted with undergraduate and graduate students. His passion and enthusiasm for forestry is genuine and infectious.


Created in 1980, the Canadian Forestry Scientific Achievement Award recognizes unique and outstanding achievement in forestry research in Canada. This year there were two recipients: Dr. Jan Volney of Edmonton Alberta, working at the Northern Forestry Centre, and a member from our Rocky Mountain Section and Dr. Peter Duinker of Dalhousie University in Halifax, and a member from our Nova Scotia Section.


The Canadian Forestry Scientific Achievement Award recipients Dr. Jan Volney with President Anne LeBrun Ruff.

Dr. Jan Volney’s background includes forest entomology and forest ecology and he is currently senior research scientist at the Northern Forestry Centre in Edmonton. He has followed a sound, no-nonsense program for conducting research throughout his career and has helped collaborators and students to see the wisdom of this straight-forward approach. Numerous useful discoveries, widely disseminated in peer-reviewed publications and reports, have resulted from this basic application of the scientific method. Jan has authored or co-authored over 60 peer-reviewed publications in the primary scientific literature and a significant number of other useful publications directed at scientists, practitioners, forest policy-makers and the public at large. Much additional scientific work has been improved through his advice about design and analysis or the thoughtful application of his editor’s pen. Jan has also contributed enormously to the development of students, both as an undergraduate instructor and graduate supervisor. Many of his graduate students have themselves gone onto excellent careers in entomology and forest science, and Jan’s significant influence on their lives and career is well-known. In addition to his direct and continuing contributions as a practicing scientist, Dr. Volney has effectively undertaken administrative tasks in support of a large number of other scientists. In his work as a Project Leader and Team Leader at the Northern Forestry Centre he has reviewed, evaluated and assessed projects of other researchers. As Co-Editor of the Canadian Journal of Forest Research from 1998-2002, his evaluation, advice, and decisions about scientific publication affected a broad cadre of forest scientists conducting research, both in Canada and internationally and, of course, contributed to the high quality and excellent reputation of forest science in Canada. As an active member of the Canadian Institute of Forestry, he has served the national organization and his home section in a number of capacities. Furthermore, Jan’s determination to make his science relevant should be noted. Much of the research that Jan has undertaken has come in response to industry and/or government interest.


Dr. Peter Duinker (left) accepts the 2010 Canadian Forestry Scientific Achievement Award during the Nova Scotia AGM.

Dr. Peter Duinker is known and respected both across Canada and internationally for his contributions to creating knowledge, and seeing it applied in the forestry profession. Highlights of Dr. Duinker’s contributions to advancing knowledge in the field of forestry include 22 years of service at both Dalhousie and Lakehead universities. He was appointed Associate Professor and Chair in Forest Management and Policy at Lakehead University only two years after his PhD was completed, and currently serves as Associate Dean Research, Faculty of Management at Dalhousie University. He has supervised 53 Master students, four PhD students, and six Postdoctoral Fellow/Research Associates. Dr. Duinker has successfully accessed several million dollars of research grants and contracts, including being funded for 15 years running by the Sustainable Forest Management Network on projects ranging from biophysical science to social science to the Forest Futures Project. He has also been involved with the Model Forest program since its inception. Peter’s early work included focus on the biosphere and climate change with the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis in Austria. His continued involvement with this international institute has included activities such as leading workshops, and participating on panels and the Canadian Committee. Dr. Duinker has published one book, 20 chapters in various books, 35 refereed papers, 112 reports, and a total of 103 papers, poster and abstracts. He has also acted as Associate Editor of The Forestry Chronicle for nine years running.


The Institute recognizes that there are many individuals involved in forestry across Canada who are making outstanding contributions early in their careers. This award is in honour of James Kitz, a member of the Institute and the College of Alberta Professional Foresters, who passed away at the early age of 36. The award recognizes individuals who make significant, unique, and outstanding contributions in the field of forestry early in their career. It has the objective of encouraging excellence in the forestry profession. This year’s recipient was Ms. Aude Fournier of Ottawa, Ontario.


Ms. Aude Fournier accepts the James M. Kitz Award.

Ms. Fournier is an Ontario Registered Professional Forester. She graduated with a forestry degree from Laval University in Sainte-Foy, Quebec in May 2000. She then worked as a consultant with private landowners in the Eastern Townships region of Quebec. Aude received a Masters of Science in Biology (Forest Ecology) degree from the University of Montreal in August 2003. Her research project dealt with artificial regeneration of six hardwood tree species on abandoned farmlands in south-western Quebec. In 2006, Aude was hired as an extension forester with the Forestry Research Partnership in Mattawa, Ontario. In 2007, Ms. Fournier joined the Canadian Forest Service as a program assistant for the Canadian Council of Forest Ministers International Forestry Partnerships Program. In a very short period of time, she moved from assisting in the delivering of the program, to being the Operations Manager for the program. She has been responsible for planning and implementing activities in key international forestry markets including the United States, Europe and Japan – all in collaboration with the provincial and territorial jurisdictions, and in partnership with Canadian Embassies and Consulates. Her enthusiasm and “just do it” attitude has allowed the program to deliver highly successful initiatives including seminars and international missions. As well, Aude has been responsible for the development of communication materials and the delivery of presentations to key audiences. She has the tremendous ability to work with a diverse group of stakeholders, as well as federal, and provincial governments in order to achieve the desired results. Aude’s nomination for this award was supported by numerous letters from provincial governments, embassies and consulate officers in Canada’s international markets, and the forest sector.



The Institute recognizes unique and outstanding achievement in forest management by a group or organization through the Canadian Forest Management Group Achievement Award, which was established in 1998. This year’s recipient was the Foothills Research Institute of Hinton, Alberta.


This year’s recipient of the International Forestry Achievement Award Mr. William Clarke of St. John’s (Newfoundland-Labrador Section), with Executive Director John Pineau.

Bill’s varied career in professional forestry has been guided by his strong set of personal principles and his belief that forestry should and can assist people both here in Canada and around the world. Early in his career, after Bill worked as a forester and subsequently Project Manager with the Newfoundland Forest Service, he looked to expand his horizons and improve conditions for those less fortunate. Bill left his job with the Forest Service and set his sights on a country overseas. This decision took him to the New Hebrides Islands in the South Pacific working with Canadian University Service Overseas (CUSO), as a Forester in the then newly independent Republic of Vanuatu. Bill’s knowledge and experience proved vital in helping to better manage harvesting by international companies, to help establish plantations throughout the island, to introduce commercial thinning on established plantations – as well as sawing and pressure treating thinned materials. After five very productive and rewarding years abroad, Bill returned to Newfoundland and the Forest Service this time in series of positions as Technician, Forester, District Manager and Regional Supervisor of Forestry, along with other managerial positions, from 1984 to the present. Since his return to Canada Bill has been a devoted CIF/IFC member, and he has held several key positions with our Newfoundland and Labrador Section. Bill has been a tremendous “spark plug” for our Forest without Borders program in Newfoundland and Labrador; successfully encouraging many of his colleges to assist him with various projects across the Province. To date Bill has helped lead the planting of 7 000 seedlings across the province with the assistance of the Section and its many partners, distributed brochures, bookmarks and information on Forests without Borders at countless events and successfully raised over $4 500 (and counting). Bill truly exemplifies the spirit of this award and in each and every thing he has done both here at home and abroad. As the Institute continues to move forward to develop its Forests without Borders Program, members like Bill, who bring energy, enthusiasm and experience to international forestry, natural resources and community improvement will be key to its success.


The Presidential Award is presented to individuals who have provided outstanding service and commitment to the Canadian Institute of Forestry, and who exemplify a devotion to, and passion for the profession. This year’s recipient was Dr. Keith McClain of Sherwood Park Alberta, and a member of our Rocky Mountain Section.


The 2010 recipient of the Presidential Award is Dr. Keith McClain of Sherwood Park, Alberta.

Keith has a Bachelor of Science in forestry and a Master of Science from the University of Toronto and a Ph.D. from Oregon State University. He is a Registered Professional Forester in British Columbia, Alberta and Ontario. Keith has worked in the field of forestry for over 35 years beginning his career in 1973 with the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources at the Northern Forest Research Unit in Thunder Bay. In 1990, Keith moved to Prince George, British Columbia where he provided leadership to a team of scientists in the development of an applied research and technology transfer initiative for the Canadian Forest Service. In 1992 Keith became involved with the federally sponsored Model Forest Program by contributing to the development of the proposal that saw the formation of the McGregor Model Forest and acting as Chair of the Technical Advisory Committee. Keith then continued his career as a private consultant, providing scientific advice to the forest industry in the development of operational research trails and the application of results, criteria and indicators and assistance to the international Model Forest Program in Chile. After six years of consulting Keith assumed a newly created position of Director, Science Policy and Strategy within Alberta Sustainable Resource Development where he is currently responsible for ensuring the best science is available to inform decision making and support policy development. Keith sits on the Board and Executive committees of the Foothills Research Institute and has participated on the Partners Committee of the Sustainable Forest Management Network. Keith has been a member of the Canadian Institute of Forestry since 1967, holding council positions in various sections. He is Chair of the organizing committee and of this conference. In 1997, Keith received our Tree of Life Award. He has been instrumental – in ensuring the success and sustainability of The Forest on your Desktop – the Institute’s national electronic lecture program, since its inception in 2007.


The Canadian Institute of Forestry is very a much a grass-roots organization; but with a national network and focus. There are currently 18 sections that span the country, and they are truly the foundation and strength of our organization. Our Section of the Year award recognizes outstanding involvement of a specific Section in the affairs of the Institute. It was a very difficult decision as to which Section was most deserving of this award in 2010. This year’s recipient has been very active with events, initiatives, activities and in providing member value that addresses our strategic directions. The Northwestern Ontario Section has effectively and successfully encouraged future forest practitioners through their time and effort with Lakehead University and Confederation College students, and their outreach to the community with supporting envirothon and public forestry tours. They have also worked to maintain professional competency with many member events, therefore contributing to the health of the Canadian Institute of Forestry. The Section has also spearheaded a carbon offset program and tree plant with multiple partners.


The presentation of the Schlich Medal reintroduces something that the Institute has not done for almost two decades. Sir William Schlich, who was born in 1840, was a German forester who became Inspector General of Forests to the Government of India. He also founded the School of Forestry at Oxford in 1905, and was knighted in 1909 for his many achievements. He passed away in 1925 and the Oxford Forestry School sponsored a campaign to create a fitting memorial – the Schlich Memorial Fund. The trust itself was established in 1929, initiating the recognition of outstanding contributions to forestry in a number of countries including the UK, Australia, New Zealand, the U.S. and Canada. One of the first recipients was Franklin Delano Roosevelt, who went on to become the 32nd President of the U.S. Another was Gifford Pinchot, the first Chief of the US Forest Service. With the reintroduction of the Schlich Award in Canada, the Institute plans to recognize an outstanding forestry student annually, commencing this evening. Dr. John Innes, Dean of the University of British Columbia Faculty of Forestry, current Chair of the Commonwealth Forestry Association and a Trustee of the Schlich Memorial Fund presented the first Schlich Medal in Canada, in two decades.


The recipient of the 2010 Schlich Medal Sara Cosgrove (U of A), with Executive Director John Pineau.

The recipient of the 2010 Schlich Medal was Sara Cosgrove of the University of Alberta. Sara has been a CIF/IFC member for all her years as a student, and has served as the student rep. on the Rocky Mountain Section Council. She also attended our 2009 AGM and conference in Nanaimo. Sara is a Forest Society Executive member, and has been the recipient of several prominent academic awards and prizes. She has volunteered and assisted with many special projects, including working with international students. She is also co-captain of the Forestry Timber Wolves Women’s Hockey Team. Sara’s outstanding engagement and interest in her university program, the Institute and in many other areas makes her truly deserving to receive the Schlich Award.



Ken Plourde of the Rocky Mountain Section receives his Tree of Life Award.

The Tree of Life Awards are nationally recognized, but are selected by the Sections of the Institute. They are awarded to individuals who have made superior, dedicated or particularly effective contributions to sustainable forest resource management, forest renewal or sustained yield, and integrated management of the forest and its intrinsic resources. This year’s recipients were:

Cliff Henderson, Rocky Mountain Section
Vic Lieffers, Rocky Mountain Section
Ken Plourde, Rocky Mountain Section


During every annual Awards Banquet, the Institute recognizes those individuals who are celebrating 50 years of membership in the Institute, and induct these members into the Golden Year Club. There were seven members who proudly reached this impressive milestone in 2010:

Stuart E. Baker
John Barker
Walter Mahal
George R. Richards
Leonard H. Suomu
Ben S.P. Wang
Charles E. Van Wagner


Since 1908, volunteers have played a special and significant role in the success growth of our Institute, by sharing their time, energy and expertise. Volunteers are absolutely vital in fulfilling our mission. These special members have provided significant volunteer service and contributed to the Institute by providing countless hours of service. Outstanding volunteer plaque recipients for 2010 were:

Dr. Sylvie Carles, Orleans Section
Trevor Stanley, Manitoba Section


Teresa Stokes
Mark Kube
Marty O’Byrne
Rory Thompson
Dave Morgan
Don Podlubny
Geoff Clarke
Alex Drummond
Keith McClain
Aniko Parnell
Anand Pandarinath
Tom Archibald
Duncan MacDonnell
Derek Sidders
Dan Wilkinson