The Centre has assembled a talented and experienced team of staff and associates. We are also very fortunate to have a fantastic, knowledgeable Board of Directors.
Prior to her role at the Centre, Cheeying was the Executive Director of Smart Growth BC, the leading province-wide non-governmental organization advancing sustainable land use and development that was largely responsible for getting ‘smart growth’ into planning practice in BC.
Cheeying is currently part of the BC Partners for Social Impact. Previously, she served as a member on the Prime Minister’s External Advisory Committee on Cities and Communities, on a term on the Board of Vancity Credit Union and Vancity Enterprises, and as a member of the Mayor of Vancouver’s Greenist City Action Team. Cheeying is a frequent speaker on leading practices in sustainability strategy, engagement and community planning.
Planning and Engagement Specialist, Co-Executive Director
Shannon has worked in sustainability planning and management since 1996, in both the local government and corporate sectors. With the Centre, Shannon specializes in designing efficient and effective public engagement processes, helping organization create order and alignment through strategic planning, and planning for healthy sustainable communities. She holds an IAP2 Certificate in Public Participation, and a degree and post-baccalaureate diploma in environmental science.
Prior to working with the Centre, Shannon worked with the Resort Municipality of Whistler beginning in 2001 on various sustainability initiatives, including policy development, staff training and community engagement. In 2003, her main focus became co-managing the creation and implementation of Whistler2020 – Whistler’s award-winning sustainability plan and engagement process. Shannon’s work in the sustainability field began in Vancouver with Vancity Credit Union’s Corporate Social Responsibility Group, where she co-developed and managed the social and environmental audit and reporting process – the first of its kind in Canada.
Shannon skis and bikes and enjoys her community’s other amenities with her young family.
Community Planning and Monitoring Specialist, Co-Executive Director
Dan has 15 years experience in the sustainability field and specializes in community and neighbourhood sustainability planning, developing implementation tools, monitoring and evaluation systems, and community energy /GHG reduction plans and programs. Dan works primarily with municipal governments in tourist-based economies where he also assists in evaluating tourism development and supporting the creation of tourism master plans. Dan also delivers on-the-ground municipal sustainability projects as well as greenhouse gas reduction training, using a business case approach, and coaching to businesses in the Whistler area.
Dan is a whiz at tying planning to on-the-ground action. Dan co-developed and delivered a citizen task force led action planning program for Whistler’s award winning community sustainability plan, Whistler2020, and developed the community’s comprehensive and robust economic, social and environmental monitoring and evaluation system, upon which many other communities and organizations model their monitoring program. Dan has also worked with the Fairmont Hotel and Whistler Blackcomb Ski Resorts on strategy development and marketing.
Dan has lived on and off in Whistler for 20 years, only moving away to pursue his tourism commerce degree in Victoria, and his master’s degree in business and environmental policy in Sweden, as well as for other tourism business opportunities.
Evaluation and Communications Specialist
In addition to her work with WCS, Kim is a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Toronto where she co-leads the Urban Climate Action Project (UCAP); an initiative aimed at accelerating the City of Toronto’s climate action plan TransformTO through partnership initiatives with U of T. Her doctoral research explored how the learning we do together and in community engaged spaces contributes to systems-change and sustainability transitions. At the heart of Kim’s work is the creation of dynamic and user-friendly evaluation approaches that support such learning.
Kim currently lives in Pemberton with her wonderful husband, Nate and daughter, Olivia, where picking raspberries and riding bikes is a favourite pastime.
Pieter van Gils
Economic and Finance Consultant
Sustainability and Engagement Specialist
Sustainable Community Development and Project Specialist
Storyteller and Social Innovation Strategist
Ione Smith, MSc, PAg
Director, Upland Agricultural Consulting Ltd.
Marketing and Business Strategist
Peter Whitelaw, MCIP
Sustainability and Community Planner
Board of Directors
CEO MarketWurks.com - a Farmers Market Management Software and Consultancy Co.
Chris served as a municipal councillor from 2008 – 2011, which offered him a unique opportunity to work with RMOW staff and VANOC officials to facilitate the execution of the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Games. To Chris, the experience demonstrated the potential of the human spirit and the responsibility to leave our world a better place for all that follow us. Chris has a passion for local economic development and food security, and has served as a mentor and presenter for the BC Association of Farmers’ Markets.
Arthur DeJong (Ex-Officio)
Municipal Councillor, RMOW; Consultant, De Jong Environmental Design
Arthur has been an active member of the Whistler community for many years and believes that the key to effective planning is openness and community involvement.
He puts these beliefs into practice in both of his current roles as a second term councillor for the Resort Municipality of Whistler (RMOW), and as a consultant with De Jong Environmental Design.
Previously, Arthur DeJong worked with Whistler Blackcomb (WB) for 42 years in varied roles including Ski Patrol Manager, Mountain Operations Manager for Blackcomb, and Sr. Manager of Planning. Through these diverse positions, Arthur gained exceptional familiarity with our mountain terrain and a deep understanding of the workings of the mountain ecosystem. His expertise on climate change strategy includes working with all levels of government including the UN.
Outside of work, Arthur dedicates volunteer time to crisis line counselling and international aid programs.
Local Government Advisor and Senior Manager Mentor
Originally from Nova Scotia, Bob came to the west coast to study landscape architecture. After graduating from UBC, Bob worked for a multi-disciplinary resort planning firm before starting his municipal career at the Squamish-Lillooet Regional District. Later, working for the Resort Municipality of Whistler and the District of Tofino, Bob held senior roles including General Manager of Planning and Development, General Manager of Corporate and Community Services, and Chief Administrative Officer.
Since leaving full-time work, Bob provides advice to local governments, mentors emerging senior managers, serves on the Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation Economic Development Corporation board and was previously on the Tofino Housing Corporation board.
Privileged to reside in Tofino in the Ha-Hoothlee of the Tla-o-qui-aht Ha’wiih with his longtime partner, Bob enjoys wood carving, baseball and making delicious dinners.
Director Of Parks Recreation Culture Planning at City of Burnaby
Andre is currently the Director of Parks, Recreation & Culture Planning at the City of Burnaby. Prior to this, they held various managerial positions at the City of Coquitlam from 2013 to 2023, including Manager of Economic Development and Manager of Park Planning & Design. Andre also served as the Director of Planning and Development at the District of Sechelt in 2016 and as Manager of Planning and Community Services at the Village of Harrison Hot Springs from 2010 to 2013. In addition, they have worked as the Executive Director of the Business Improvement Areas of BC from 2008 to 2010. Throughout their career, Andre has demonstrated expertise in strategic planning, policy development, community engagement, and land use management.
Andre is a Registered Professional Planner (RPP) and a member of the Canadian Institute of Planners (MCIP) as well as a Landscape Architect and a member of the British Columbia Society of Landscape Architects (BCSLA) and the Canadian Society of Landscape Architects (CSLA). Andre previously volunteered as a director with Tourism Harrison Hot Springs and Community Futures North Fraser.
Financial Systems Consultant, CPA, Agilyx Group
Philippa is a Chartered Professional Accountant who began her career with Deloitte in London, UK, and has worked in a range of finance positions in both private and public sector industry and professional services. Philippa is currently a consultant for an international organization implementing financial systems. After spending many winters in the French Alps, Philippa relocated to North America and spent her first couple of years living in Whistler having grown a passion for mountain resort communities. As an outdoor enthusiast and Vancouver Island resident who is concerned with protecting the environment, Philippa is proud to support the WCS board with regards to finance.
Director of Stewardship Funding at Coast Funds
Former Mayor of Whistler, Sustainability Champion
Ken has been a board member (among other responsibilities) of Smart Growth BC, Fraser Basic Council and Community Energy Association Mayor’s Council. While Mayor, Ken was responsible for the adoption and implementation of Whistler 2020, and the creation of Whistler Centre for Sustainability. He has extensive experience with community planning issues, strategic planning at the local level and innovation.
Principal, New Climate Strategies