Board of Directors

Board of Directors

The Conservation Council’s Board of Directors have a diverse knowledge that spans the environment, public health, education, engineering, sustainable agriculture and farming, law, psychology and social inequality.

Hannah Grant


Hannah Grant earned a BSc(hons) in Environmental Biology from St. Andrews University, Scotland, as a McEuen scholar. She also has a B.A. in English and Biology from UNB. After working as a research assistant counting songbirds and picking larvae out of pond sediment, she spent a few years studying crustacean neurobiology and teaching ecology before coming back to the Maritimes to attend veterinary college, graduating as a DVM from UPEI.

She comes from a family with a love for wildlife, conservation and the arts, and likes to spend time on Grand Manan Island at her parents’ camp, which has a lovely view of the Bay of Fundy and a 30-year-old Swedish composting toilet.

Stan Choptiany


Stan Choptiany is a lifelong advocate for the environment and is proud for the opportunity to further that advocacy through his teaching career at the high school and university levels. Stan has been involved in many environmental projects including climate change adaptations within Charlotte County, safe drinking water with respect to cyanobacteria threats at Chamcook Lake, and rural transportation opportunities to improve resident quality of life and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Tom McLean


Tom McLean completed his Masters, specializing in Computer Science, at UNB Fredericton, where he met his wife, Lee. After working in Ontario for more than a decade, the two of them moved back to New Brunswick where they raised their son in New Maryland. Tom has volunteered with various organizations, serving on the boards of Fredericton Meals on Wheels as president and Fredericton Family Enrichment and Consulting Services as treasurer, and has held various roles on the provincial council of the Green Party of New Brunswick, including president. His most recent volunteer work with the Green Party of New Brunswick was largely motivated by the need to support action against the causes of climate change. Tom’s desire is to advocate for climate change action, especially in the realm of renewable power and electrification.

Frank Johnston

Executive Member-At-Large

Frank Johnston was born in 1949, Saint John, and grew up in Grand Falls, NB . He holds degrees in the Biological Sciences from the University of New Brunswick, MacMaster University and the University of Calgary. Frank is a “bad birdwatcher” and has advocated for the conservation of the Falls and Gorge and sustainable development in the Grand Falls region as a past member of the Falls and Gorge Commission.

Hannah Westner

Board Member

Hannah Westner has over 30 years of experience working in community development focused on wellness and health promotion. In later years she moved into project management. During this career she has develop expertise in networking, creation of opportunities, partnership development, partner engagement, and effective communication. Hannah and her family lived outside Petitcodiac for 20 years and moved to Fredericton in 2006. She has been a long-time supporter of the Conservation Council and welcomes the opportunity to get more involved in the organization as a Board Member.

Patty Hudson

Board Member

Patty Hudson worked her entire life within the fields of agriculture, forestry and horticulture, first as a student worker at The NB Experimental Farm and later as a greenhouse technician and specimen horticulturists for the University of Toronto, York University and University of Victoria. Patty also worked in the commercial end of horticulture and forestry as a grower and labourer. Her experience informed her knowledge of the vast amount of chemicals used in plant production of all varieties. Her personal focus today is with our use, and normalization, of herbicides as a means of production, and how that is affecting the land, water systems, animals and people.

Peggy Woolsey

Board Member

Peggy Woolsey is an artist, grandmother, gardener, community activist and researcher. A long-time follower and supporter of the Conservation Council of New Brunswick, Peggy is excited to take the next step to serve as a board member and contribute further to the organization. She lives on the Kennebecasis River across from an ancient Indigenous burial site, according to W.F. Ganong.

Andy Secord

Board Member

Andy Secord has a background in research on the economics and resiliency of various energy supply and demand-reduction options for New Brunswick. He was a member of the provincial government’s Market Design Committee for Electricity representing environmental interests, provided analytical support to several CCNB interventions before the Public Utilities Board, and previously served on the Board of CCNB from 2000-2003 and again in 2005. 

His most recent published academic work was a detailed analysis of the public sector decision-making process which resulted in the 1974 decision to build the uneconomic Point Lepreau nuclear reactor in New Brunswick in spite of opposition from the people of southern New Brunswick and economists within the federal Department of Finance. Andy is currently a Professor in the Department of Economics at St. Thomas University. He received his first two degrees at the University of New Brunswick (BA and MA in Economics) and completed his DPhil in the interdisciplinary Urban and Regional Studies program at the University of Sussex. 

Kim Reeder

Board Member

Kim Reeder is an Independent Community Development Consultant with a Master’s of Environmental Management and over two decades of experience in the development and facilitation of community-based projects. 

Kim’s recent professional experience includes working as the project manager for a project looking at water flow dynamics in the upper Saint John River (University of New Brunswick) and a project analyzing climate vulnerability for the lower river (Voices for Sustainable Environments and Communities).

Kim also served as the Senior Project Advisor at the Rural Action and Voices on the Environment (RAVEN) and as Project Lead for a Peskotomuhkati Nation Watershed Management project focused on Specific Quoddy Region Watersheds.

Heather Millar

Board Member

Heather Millar is a researcher with experience in provincial climate and energy politics and policy. She is an associate professor in the Department of Political Science at the University of New Brunswick. Her current research examines barriers to decarbonization in the Canadian electricity sector. Heather holds a PhD in political science from the University of Toronto as well as a master’s degree in public policy and a bachelor of arts from Simon Fraser University.

Prior to her graduate studies, Heather worked in the not-for-profit sector in Vancouver as a fundraiser, working for the Vancouver Foundation, CoDevelopment Canada and the Vancouver Fruit Tree Project, as well as volunteering on the board of several different community organizations. 

Michael Kerr

Board Member

Michael Kerr grew up in Toronto, Ontario and holds a Master’s degree in Geology and Environmental Science from the University of Toronto.  He has always been passionate about preserving our environment.  His environmental work has included investigating and remediating contaminated industrial sites and developing Municipal Waste Management and 3Rs Plans. 

In 1992, Michael earned his Bachelor of Education at the University of Toronto and became an elementary educator in Cobourg, Ontario.  He taught science, math and language for 25 years and then became an Instructional Leadership Consultant with the Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board.  Michael is the co-founder and is on the board of directors for Northumberland Makers – A community Makerlab.  After a 30-year career in education Michael and his wife, Catherine moved to New Brunswick. 

Over the past few years, he has explored the geology of the Fundy coastline in NB and NS by hiking the numerous nature trails.  He currently works at UNB Saint John as an Instructional Technology Specialist.  Michael volunteers on the steering committee of Civic Tech Saint John and works to support Newcomers.  He enjoys camping, astronomy and hiking.  

Krista Uomala

Board Member

Krista Uomala (B.Sc, DDS) was born and raised in Finland. She immigrated to Canada in her teenage years and after graduating from McGill University, chose New Brunswick to settle down in. She is a mother of two, an entrepreneur, a volunteer mentor at her Alma Mater as well as a fitness and outdoor enthusiast. 

Growing up in Finland meant a close connection to nature enjoying the abundance of forests and lakes that is Finland. It is this cultural richness which naturally guided Krista to raise her own children in the same manner, and to gravitate toward the protection and preservation of nature and the environment.

Peter Higham

Board Member

Peter Higham has lived in Sackville with his wife Edna Boland since 1987 when he took the position of Music Librarian at Mount Allison University.  Retiring after 26 years and now Librarian emeritus, he was also a part-time instructor there in the Department of Music.
Peter has been a long-time member of several environmental and climate change organizations.  For the last ten years he has been a dedicated member of the Board of Directors of EOS Eco-Energy.  Aware of the work of the Conservation Council of New Brunswick, he looks forward to joining the CCNB Board of Directors.

Helen Chenell

Board Member

Originally from Toronto, Helen moved to the Maritimes in 1999 where she settled in Nova Scotia until 2004 when she relocated to Moncton, New Brunswick. As a lifelong environmentalist whose mother was an Acid Rain activist, it was natural to seek out an environmental group and join the South-East Chapter of the Conservation Council of New Brunswick. At the Conservation Council, Helen serves as an event volunteer where she created graphics for posters and fundraisers whenever possible.

In 2006, Helen became a founding member of the local riding association for the Federal Green Party of Canada. In this role, Helen worked closely on the campaign to elect Elizabeth May as the national telephone canvass organiser, and served as CEO for the riding association until During this time, Helen also sat on the board for the Moncton Earth Day Committee, which initiated the annual free, family event that hosted many organisations, including the CCNB. Her recreational interests are performing in live theatre and cycling. Helen feels it was an honour to be asked to join the board of the Conservation Council of New Brunswick.

Lynaya Astephen

Board Member

Lynaya Astephen is a well-known engaged environmental activist based in the Red Head community of Saint John. An avid organizer and volunteer, Lynaya cares deeply about working together to find solutions to climate change and informing people about local and global environmental and social justice issue through her social media use!

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