Claire Surgenor, Director-at-large; R.N. (retired)
Claire was born and raised on a homestead-type farm in Manitoba. She is the second oldest of 11 siblings. In her small village, people worked together to create a healthy, caring, resilient and sustainable community.
Claire worked as a cook, teacher, nursing care aid in northern indigenous communities before taking her R.N. Then worked part time in various settings of nursing across the Prairies. Claire has been an avid social justice advocate all her life from the days of grape boycotts, to unions, to Peace and Development…etc.
Claire and Ron have lived in Nanaimo 21 years and have two sons.
Claire loves to kayak, bike, camp, garden, art work, yoga, cook…etc.
Since retirement, Claire has been involved with Nanaimo Community Gardens, promoting organic gardening, sustainability, and working with different groups such as Uplands Walk.
Claire has at heart to reduce her footprint on earth, has become vegan, is trying to eliminate plastics…etc. She has had four near death experiences in her life and sees all forms of life as being precious and needing to be nourished and preserved.
Dallas Collis, Director-at-large; Nanaimo small business owner
- Community Services Advisory Committee, North Vancouver
- Centennial Community Conference Chair, North Vancouver
- Director, North Vancouver Chamber of Commerce
- Social Planning and Research Council of B.C.
- Parksville DBIA Vice Chair
- Past municipal and federal election candidate
- Author of 2013 book: Revolution Bridge: Towards Post Capitalism
- Long-time activist; has studied climate change for over 25 years
- Nanaimo small business owner
Don Giberson, Founder and Board President, Small Business Owner
Don is a former Communications and Electronics Engineer in the Canadian army, worked in direct and retail sales, owned and operated a Subway franchise for 5 years and, since 2004, has been the founder and President of DreamCrafters, Inc., an international training and coaching company.
Don worked on The People’s Platform, a civic engagement project for the municipal elections in Hamilton, Ontario in 2014, that invited people to propose policies they wanted their next city council to adopt. He went on to launch The People’s Platform, a federally incorporated not-for-profit that worked on the 2015 federal election.
Don is also a volunteer instructor for the “Global Challenges, Local Solutions” course at Vancouver Island University’s Elder College.
He is a member of IAP2 Canada (International Association for Public Participation, Canada) and serves on the Boards of several other organizations including the Island Community Solar Cooperative (Board Secretary) and the Partners in Possibility Foundation (Board Treasurer).
Lee Solstory, Board Secretary; RN (retired), Herbalist, Aromatherapist
Lee is been actively engaged in sustainability for decades.
She was active in the fledgling promotion of recycling in the 80’s and engaged as an activist to secure clean food. Since those early days she’s partnered in creating a food forest, been an early adapter to alternative energy and was the originator of the Sooke Slow Food Cycle.
Lee is active in promoting community and believes that sustainability begins with building inclusive, connected communities.
Terry Koch, BA, MBA; Board Treasurer; Principal, Terrydele Consulting Services:
Terry is a new Nanaimo resident, relocating from Alberta in September 2019 with his soul mate and wife Adele and Sammy, a lovable bernadoodle. Adele and Terry have four adult children. They are patiently awaiting the arrival of grandchildren!
Terry has been in private practice for 12 years following his work on interesting and innovative projects during his time working in local government and with consulting firms in Alberta. His career focus is on public engagement design and implementation, project management and meeting facilitation.
Terry has served on numerous boards and committees. He loves to travel, volunteer and meet with friends over good food and drinks. Formerly involved in competitive sports of all kinds, he now enjoys an occasional round of golf, cycling, gardening and fitness training.