“The Lifetime Members category recognizes the contributions of key individuals who have played a pivotal role in the genesis and/or evolution of the Partnership. The Directors created the Lifetime Membership category to achieve two outcomes. First, we believe this is a material way to recognize the valued contributions of those who have been involved in developing and/or delivering program elements. Secondly, this provides those key individuals with formal standing in their retirement so that they can continue to identify with the Partnership,” stated Tim Pringle.
The story of how David Mackenzie became involved in the Vancouver Island Symposia Series on Water Stewardship in a Changing Climate shows what is possible for a concerned citizen who wishes to make a difference. In 2018, he went to the first symposium looking for leadership. He found it. He was energized by the experience. Afterwards, he volunteered to provide videography oversight for subsequent symposia. Beginning with his video work for Parksville 2019, he became a valued member of the team.
The early and strong support of Debra Oakman for demonstrating the benefits of the ‘regional team approach’ in the Comox Valley was a key to the success of CAVI-Convening for Action on Vancouver Island. Her support helped to lay the foundation for successfully launching the Georgia Basin Inter-Regional Education Initiative in 2012. Comox Valley activities and successes have stimulated interest and action in the vision for “Sustainable Watershed Systems, through Asset Management”.
“The Regional District of Nanaimo’s water sustainability goals have meshed very well with those of the Partnership over the many years we have worked together. The working relationship enhances the ability of both organizations to reach their common goals in water sustainability while supporting each other. A highlight of that relationship was being part of the Inter Regional Education Initiative, an excellent forum for learning and passing on hard won experience,” stated Mike Donnelly.
Through collaboration, the four Comox Valley local governments are striving for a coordinated approach to watershed-based rainwater management in the Comox Valley and across boundaries. There is region-wide commitment to develop Watershed Blueprints. Kevin Lagan’s leadership helped make this possible. Kevin played an important role in building credibility in the local government setting for the CAVI, Convening for Action on Vancouver Island, initiative. This credibility was a critical consideration in the decision to incorporate the Partnership as a not-for-profit society in November 2010. The City of Courtenay is a charter member.
Dale Wall embraced the long term benefits of a new idea. In essence he was supportive of innovation with potential, as he saw it, both within and outside of government. In particular, his staunch support and timely participation in the Green Infrastructure Partnership provided the ‘convening for action’ initiative with credibility. “We are using the slogan The New Business As Usual to convey the message that, for change to really occur, practices that until now have been viewed as the exception must become the norm moving forward.,” stated Dale Wall in 2008.
Under the stellar leadership of John Finnie as Chair of CAVI-Convening for Action on Vancouver Island, the success of the CAVI initiative built a practitioner network and the credibility with local government that in large part made it possible to incorporate the Partnership for Water Sustainability as a not-for-profit society in November 2010.
Under Paul Ham’s leadership, the Green Infrastructure Partnership achieved a great deal – for example, the Showcasing Innovation Series helped local government practitioners immeasurably by creating forums for them to share their experiences and lessons learned. This created a ripple effect that spurred even more innovation.
A decade ago, Erik Karlsen crafted a series of ‘think-pieces’ that shone the spotlight on what it means to convene for action and move from awareness to practice. He has the ability to assess the situation as it is and develop a roadmap for going forward based upon realistic assumptions. The work he did in the area of leading and managing change is standing the test of time.
John’s experience covers the full range of engineering practice, from developing master plans and municipal design criteria to implementing both piped and natural drainage systems. He walks the talk. He re-landscaped his own property to restore the absorptive capacity of the ground.