Board of Directors


  • Patti O'Reilly | Sustainable Tourism Project Coordinator

    Patti O'Reilly | Sustainable Tourism Project Coordinator

    Patti O'Reilly has lived almost her entire life in Delhi (born and raised) and was introduced to the great outdoors at a very early age. She is extremely passionate about Norfolk County and everything it has to offer. Patti has spent her entire career working in the not-for-profit world, and appreciates the amazing work volunteers contribute to make our world a better place. The last 26 years, Patti was the Executive Director of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Grand Erie, formerly BBBS Haldimand Norfolk. She retired/redirected at the end of 2015, in search of a balanced lifestyle and more "nana" time.

    Patti can be reached at

  • Linda Warren | Community Conservation Project Manager

    Linda Warren | Community Conservation Project Manager

    Linda Warren was born and raised in Niagara Falls, Ontario and grew up spending every summer and warm-weather weekend at her family cottage at Long Point. Now a “resident” of the Long Point area, she spends more time enjoying local activities than ever before.

    An educational background in Biology and Geography (Bachelor of Science, Brock University) and Ecosystem Restoration (Graduate Certificate, Niagara College), combined with her constantly growing passion for the natural resources available in the Long Point area, prepared Linda for a career in the environmental conservation workforce. The newest member of the Biosphere’s staff, Linda joined the Biosphere Reserve in January 2016 as the new Community Conservation Project Manager.

    Beyond her interests of enjoying the local natural attractions, Linda can often be found enjoying other activities on her spare time including: conservation hunting, fishing, hockey, horseback riding and running.

  • Cynthia Brink | NatureHood Program Coordinator

    Cynthia Brink | NatureHood Program Coordinator

    Cynthia Brink from Chateauguay, Quebec grew up amongst a family of naturalist and outdoorsmen. Spending most of her developing years exploring her natural world and traveling with her family to exotic places like Peru, Cayman Island and Manaus, Brazil.

    She is a mother to 4 feral children that now resides in Norfolk. With her passion for the natural world she has spent many hours in the field with her children homeschooling them through the use of their surroundings. In her spare time, she works as Administrative support to the St. Williams conservation reserve. She has also worked as the Nature Educator for Nature’s Calling Environmental Education teaching outdoor education and providing interpretive programs to the Provincial Parks in Haldimand & Norfolk areas.

    The newest member of the Biosphere’s staff, Cynthia joined the Biosphere Reserve in January 2017 as the new NatureHood Coordinator.

    Conscious of her impact on the environment Cynthia is always busy making improvements to achieve the goal of a low carbon foot print. Cynthia also enjoys what the Carolinian life zone has to offer in natural attractions. You may cross paths with her while hunting, fishing or harvesting wild foods to feed her family in the hope to be self-sustainable. Always learning and improving herself she continues to take classes on herbology and passive solar home building.

  • Rick Levick | The Causeway Improvement Project Coordinator

    Rick Levick | The Causeway Improvement Project Coordinator

    Rick Levick has been a Long Point cottager since age 3; his experiences here have fostered his passion for local projects and he has been an avid volunteer in the local community for many years.

    Rick’s initial involvement in the Biosphere was as a volunteer representing the Long Point Bay Anglers Association for the Causeway Improvement Project. Rick has been the coordinator of this community-based initiative in road ecology since 2007, and as such he takes is responsible for all aspects of the project including fundraising, project management, financial administration, and communications. Rick brings more than 30 years of experience in public relations, project and non-profit management, and science outreach to this project.

    Rick can be reached at:


2017 Board of Directors

  • Brian Craig | President

    Brian Craig | President

    Brian’s varied interest have led to careers as a musician with a southern rock band that toured Ontario, Quebec and the Maritimes, a teacher with the Oxford County Board of Education, a Senior Science Advisor with Environment Canada’s Ecological Monitoring and Assessment Network and most recently until retirement as a Restoration Ecologist and Project Manager with Parks Canada. Brian sits on the Board of Directors of the Canadian Biosphere Reserves Association, the Carolinian Canada Coalition, and is the current President of the Long Point World Biosphere Reserve. He has degrees in Geography, and Environment and Resource Studies from the University of Waterloo, a Bachelor of Education from the University of Western Ontario, and Masters Certificate in Project Management from York University. Brian’s passion is working with community members in Norfolk County and the Long Point Biosphere to ensure social, cultural, economic and ecological sustainability for future generations. Norfolk County is the best place to live in the world!

  • David Okines | Vice President

    David Okines | Vice President

    David Okines was born and raised in Britain, but has spent most of the last 20 years in North America, mostly in Canada. David has always been interested in nature; he is a biologist by trade, specializing in birds.

    David moved to the Long Point area in 2003 when he bought a 50-acre natural area just north of St. Williams, Ontario. Most of his work involves bird banding, including a current 15-year stint as the Station Manager at the Prince Edward Point Bird Observatory in Prince Edward County, Ontario. In his spare time, David enjoys bird watching, fishing, hunting, and other natural history pursuits. He is a proud member of several local organizations such as the Long Point Fish and Game Club, Norfolk Field Naturalists, and Bird Studies Canada. David has always enjoyed being in the Long Point area and tries to help where he can; joining the LPWBRF seemed to be a “must do” commitment.

    David joined the Board of Directors in 2011 as a Director-at-large, and he is currently the Vice President.

  • Shirley Rothery | Chair

    Shirley Rothery | Chair

    After graduating from the University of Toronto with her degrees in Honours Philosophy and Library Science, Shirley Rothery left the Greater Toronto Area shortly after to raise her two sons.

    Shirley discovered Norfolk County in 1988 while looking for a cottage within driving distance from Toronto. She fell in love with Norfolk’s rural landscape – and by the next year, she and her husband Mike bought a 53-acre farm vacation homestead. Over the years they have had thousands of trees planted at the farm, primarily through the Long Point World Biosphere Reserve Foundation and OPG Forest Corridor program.  Although Shirley and Mike moved into Port Rowan at retirement in 2002, they retained the farm so that Shirley could continue to pursue her love of vegetable and flower gardening while enjoying the natural progression of her maturing trees and planted prairie habitat.

    Participating in her community is second nature for Shirley. Since coming to Norfolk she has been involved in many local organizations including: The Port Rowan Village Garden Club, The Port Rowan South Walsingham Heritage Association, Bird Studies Canada Citizen Science Programs, the Norfolk Field Naturalists and the Norfolk Woodlot Owners Association. As a member of the LPWBRF, she also acts as a representative on the Port Rowan Wetland Steering Committee and the Long Point Causeway Improvement Project Committee.

    Shirley has been a member of the LPWBRF Board of Directors for 5 years, serving the past 3 years as Board Chair.

    Shirley can be reached at:
  • Evan Engell | Treasurer

    Evan Engell | Treasurer

    Evan Engell was raised on a tobacco farm just north of St. Williams, Ontario. Over the years he has lived as far south as Florida, and as far north as Northwest Territories. Evan settled back in the Norfolk Area in 1999, and shortly thereafter started Northshore Tax Consulting in Port Rowan.

    When he’s not in south Texas where he spends four months of each year, you will find Evan on the trails at Turkey Point – he lives for mountain biking! Evan is also an avid pickleball player, enjoys jogging the NCC trails with his dog Charlie, and especially loves travelling and spending quality time with his wife Ann.

    Evan has served on administrative Boards for various organizations at regional, provincial and national levels through his volunteer and career commitments. Currently Evan holds the position as Treasurer on the LPWBRF’s Board of Directors.

  • Paul Givens | Secretary

    Paul Givens | Secretary

  • Paula Jongerden | Board Member

    Paula Jongerden | Board Member

    Paula Jongerden has been volunteering with the Long Point World Biosphere Reserve Foundation since 2001; serving as President from 2004 to 2006.

    Originally from Brantford, Paula kindled her love of the north shore of Lake Erie with summers at the family cottage in Turkey Point in the 50's and 60's.  A lifelong nature lover, she realized her 'environmental niche' in life with her involvement with the Biosphere Foundation. "I truly believe in the holistic ideals of the Biosphere Reserve program - that we humans should try to live in balance with nature; helping to leave the world a better place."

    In Paula's earlier Biosphere years, she participated in citizen scientist activities - monitoring and education; promoted environmental awareness and commitment by speaking at conferences, and helped with fund-raising activities. Probably her most successful and personally memorable Long Point Biosphere Reserve fund-raiser was when in 2002, she swam solo 49 km across Lake Erie from Erie, Pennsylvania to Long Point, Ontario. Not surprisingly, Paula's favourite place in Norfolk County (besides her home along Big Creek!) is the spot on Long Point where she 'touched down' on the beautiful sand of Long Point. After her swim, Paula was proud to accept further public speaking engagements, helping to promote the Biosphere Reserve concept locally, nationally and internationally.

  • Madeline Wilson | Board Member

    Madaline Wilson | Board Member

    Madaline Wilson was born and raised in Norfolk County. With an educational background in Bachelor of Arts from University of Western Ontario, she has always viewed education as a major factor in helping current and future generations respect and protect the amazing place in which we live, and to understand how quickly it can change. Madaline channeled her passion for educating the next generation through her 33 years as an elementary school teacher. She has been a long-term volunteer at Backus Heritage Conservation Area, a member of the Norfolk Field Naturalists, and expresses her keen interest in the Arts and Historical Societies through her membership with the Norfolk Fibre Arts Guild.

    Madaline lives for her connection to the natural environment – enjoying the gift of nature on a daily basis. Facilitated by living on her 50-acre farm, bordered by conservation land on three sides with over 11 acres designated as Provincially Significant Wetland, and some significant forest too. With family across the road, Madaline loves spending time with her family; she is a proud mother of 4, and grandmother of 6 granddaughters!

    Madaline speaks passionately about her appreciation for the gift of the natural world: “As a child we lived in the woods every time we could escape chores so I have a great respect for forests. A favorite experience for me is to take a thick blanket into a pine plantation-big white pines – away from roads and people and just lie there and listen to the trees sway, sigh and whisper.”

  • John Everett | Board Member

    John Everett | Board Member

    John Everett grew up in Dundas, Ontario. Growing up, his parents rented a cottage at Long Point starting in the 1950’s and in 2009 John purchased a cottage at Long Point; he has been a frequent traveller of “The Causeway” for over 60 years.

    John received his Bachelor of Arts, major in Geology at University of Western Ontario in 1973; he has been a Certified General Accountant since 1987, and a Licensed Trustee in Bankruptcy since 1995.

    In 2013, John’s wife Jan wrote a children’s book about him, “Johnny,” saving turtles crossing the busy Causeway Road. The surprising ending to the book parallels the goal of the Long Point Causeway Improvement Project (LPCIP). The Biosphere Foundation adopted the book to promote the message of the LPCIP and John became a member of that committee in 2013; in 2014 John joined the Long Point World Biosphere Reserve Foundation’s Board of Directors.

    Identifying and collecting fossils is one of John’s passions, along with saving turtles and promoting the message of the LPCIP by demonstrating to children “how to save a turtle crossing the road.” John tells anyone who will listen that his blood pressure drops 20 points every time he crosses the Causeway to reach his favourite spot in Norfolk County – Long Point.

  • Jack Worton | Board Member

    Jack Worton | Board Member

    Jack Worton was born and raised in London, Ontario where he worked as a building designer for 32 years. Jack first discovered the Long Point area with a co-worker in the early 1960’s, when he was introduced to popular local activities such as fishing and waterfowl hunting. He has loved Long Point ever since! Jack purchased a cottage on Long Point in 1975 and rebuilt in 1987. Upon retirement and after some cottage renovations, Jack and his wife Marianne, decided to move to Long Point; they have been permanent residents of Long Point for 20 years now.

    For 10 years, Jack did some consulting, prepared drawings and specifications for many new cottages and homes in the Long Point area. He is a lifetime member of OACETT (Ontario Association of Certified Engineering Technicians & Technologists).

    Jack and his wife Marianne love to travel, having made several trips to Victoria, British Columbia and Western Europe. Jack is an amateur astronomer and former bird carver (wood). His newest passion is artistic sculpting in alabaster, soapstone, local walnut and cherry; he has also volunteered his time and woodworking skills over the past few years for several projects with the Port Rowan Thrift Shoppe.

    Jack joined the Board of Directors in 2012 to represent full time Long Point residents; he continues to enjoy his position and being part of the Biosphere very much.

  • Casey Whitelock | Board Member

    Casey Whitelock | Board Member

    Born and raised in Norfolk County, Casey Whitelock inherently adapted a great passion for all of our local conservation areas. An educational background in Conservation Biology (Bachelor of Science, University of Western Ontario) and Ecosystem Restoration (Graduate Certificate, Niagara College) prepared Casey to contribute to local research and conservation organization efforts, showcasing the promising start to her career.

    During the week, Casey advocates for Alternative Land Use Services Norfolk (ALUS), working with local farmers and landowners to increase conservation of the landscape within Norfolk County. In her free time, you will find Casey walking, cycling or snowshoeing the rail trails, paddle boarding at Waterford Ponds, or even experimenting in her kitchen!

    Casey joined LPWBRF Board of Directors in 2015, and looks forward to continuing her work with the community to help keep our Biosphere Reserve a truly beautiful and unique area.

  • Melissa DeDecker | Board Member

    Melissa DeDecker | Board Member

  • Adam Chamberlain | Board Member

    Adam Chamberlin | Board Member

    Adam Chamberlin joined the Board of Directors in 2015 and he holds an undergraduate degree in Landscape Architecture (University of Guelph) and specialized in Arboriculture and Urban Forestry (Sir Sandford Fleming College). His career has focused on working in municipal parks and urban forest management programs which involve balancing the social, environmental and economic needs of communities.

    Adam’s familiarity with the forests of Norfolk County and interest in forest conservation has prepared him to assist with monitoring the five Smithsonian Institution Biodiversity Monitoring Plots and analyzing terrestrial salamander abundance at two plots within the Biosphere.

  • Karin Cassidy | Board Member

    Karin Cassidy | Board Member

    Karin joined the LPWBRF Board of Directors in 2016.

  • Billie Helm | Board Member

    Billie Helm | Board Member

    Billie Helm has lived in Long Point for 2 years. Originally drawn to Long Point’s beach, she has fallen in love with the community, ecosystem, and the biodiversity Long Point has to offer. She is a recent graduate of Adventure Expeditions and Leadership diploma program with Fanshawe College. Billie is the head astronomer with Long Point Eco Adventures where she has built a reputable status. She fosters teamwork and provides an outpouring need of stewardship in the community. She possess’ an alternative outdoor lifestyle, raising her children with a very environmentally conscious mindset. A natural born leader, Billie has finally found her footing in Long Point where she continues to thrive.

    Billie joined the LPWBRF Board of Directors in 2017.

  • Dave Cameron | Board Member

    Dave Cameron | Board Member

    Dave Cameron has been at Long Point for over 25 years. He is a retired business executive, having managed Canadian divisions of multinational medical technology companies for over 30 years.

    Dave holds a Bachelor of Science from the University of Toronto and enjoys travel and an outdoor lifestyle of sailing, surfing, cycling, skiing and hiking. Dave is a member of Pathways for People which is a committee that advocates for the development and improvement of walking, running, hiking and cycling trails across Norfolk County. Dave also serves on the Long Point Rate Payers Association Board of Directors.

    Dave joined the LPWBRF Board of Directors in 2017.

  • Tara Carpenter | Board Member

    Tara Carpenter | Board Member

    Tara Carpenter has had a love of nature and the outdoors from an early age thanks to growing up on a Norfolk County farm and regularly engaging in wildness camping trips with her family as a child. Having travelled many parts of the world for 17 years extended Tara’s knowledge of the natural world and her love for this earth we call home. The most memorable experience of her travels was being a deck hand on a sailing ship exploring the Great Barrier Reef in Australia for 6 years. Now being a mother to a very active, creative, and outdoors-loving six year old has inspired Tara to encourage other parents and their families to get outdoors. Delivering family outdoor events at Whistling Gardens, one of the “Amazing Places” of Norfolk, has given Tara the opportunity to put her passions into action. It is her enthusiasm for the great outdoors, conservation, sustainability and education that motivated her desire to volunteer for the Long Point Biosphere Reserve. She is a recent graduate of the Adventure Expeditions and Interpretive Leadership Diploma program at Fanshawe College, Simcoe Campus.

    Tara joined the LPWBRF Board of Directors in 2017.