About Us

The Skeena Knowledge Trust (SKT) is a purpose trust and registered Canadian charitable organization formed in September 2017 following multi-year collaboration between the Bulkley Valley Research Centre, Office of the Wet’suwet’en, SkeenaWild Conservation Trust, and the Pacific Salmon Foundation in order to address the need for greater knowledge management and more informed decision making pertaining to salmon and salmon habitat within the Skeena River watershed and estuary.

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The purpose of the SKT is to provide public education on salmon and salmon habitat in the Skeena River watershed with the overarching goal of promoting sound decision making by ensuring that land-use decisions relevant to salmon ecosystems are made using the best possible information.

Our History

Governance

A trust model was adopted as the governing framework for the SKT as it provides the necessary structure to ensure high quality, unbiased data is gathered, stored, and disseminated in an objective and impartial manner. The SKT is a purpose trust with registered Canadian charity status governed by the Skeena Knowledge Trust agreement and related SKT Information Management Framework and Annual Knowledge Plans.

The Skeena Knowledge Trust is supported through grants and donations from a variety of foundations and partner organizations. While donations may be accepted from other organizations, industry, and individuals, the trust model safeguards the SKT against political interference and ensures SKT operations remain unbiased and focused on public education and knowledge management based on the best available information. Please visit our Get Involved! page for more information on our funding partners and engagement opportunities.

Trustees

David DeWit

David de Wit is a Wet’suwet’en member of the Laksilyu Clan, belonging to the House on Top of Flat Rock (Tsekalbaiyex). David is the Natural Resources Department Manager for the Office of the Wet’suwet’en, representing the Wet’suwet’en Hereditary Chiefs’ vision for their territories, working as one for the betterment of all. David studied Integrated Resource Management in British Columbia and completed a Biology Degree at the University of Calgary.

Don Morgan

Don Morgan is a natural resource management and systems researcher with the BC Ministry of Environment. His main research area focuses on methods for describing and analyzing socio-ecological systems with an emphasis on wildlife habitat supply. He applies innovative methods to explore uncertainty, particularly the impact of climate change on ecological processes and its interaction with resource management decisions. He is a Registered Professional Biologist in British Columbia, and has a B.Sc. in wildlife biology and computational mathematics from Trent University, Peterborough, Ontario (1984), a B.Sc.(honours) from Carleton University, Ottawa, Ontario in Quantitative Ecology and Computer Science (1991), and a M.Sc. in Natural Resources and Environmental Studies – Biology from the University of Northern British Columbia (2011).

Greg Knox

Greg Knox has been the Executive Director of SkeenaWild Conservation Trust since 2007. He earned a Bachelor of Science in Geography from the University of Northern BC in 2000, after which he became a certified Fisheries Technician and Field Supervisor with Nisga’a Fisheries. In 2013, Greg completed a Master’s degree in Environmental Management at Royal Roads University, where he developed a framework for implementing a collaborative freshwater salmon habitat-monitoring program in the Skeena watershed. Greg sits on the Northern Panel of the Pacific Salmon Commission, is an advisor to the Pacific Salmon Watershed Fund, and a Steering Committee member of the Friends of Wild Salmon Coalition.

William Elliot

Originally from Montreal, William Elliott has lived, worked, and played in the Skeena Watershed at various intervals since 1975. William studied Forest Technology at Selkirk College, Wildlife Ecology and Resource Management at the University of Northern British Columbia, and Geographic Information Systems Technology at the College of New Caledonia. William is a former silviculture consultant, researcher, spatial analyst and data manager. He currently works as an Advisor in Indigenous Relations with the BC Ministry of Forest, Lands and Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development in Smithers, BC. William is the Regional Director for the British Columbia Institute of Agrologists.

Allison Oliver

Dr. Allison Oliver received her doctorate in Ecology from University of California, Davis, USA in 2013.  She currently resides in Hazelton, BC and works for the Skeena Fisheries Commission as an Aquatic Ecologist.  Her extensive scientific research, field work, and data analysis experience as an aquatic scientist is a great asset to the board of trustees and will help guide the SKT to ensure our community engagement activities are relevant and meaningful.

Michael Price

Michael Price is currently finalizing his doctorate at Simon Fraser University under the mentorship of Dr. John Reynolds and currently holds the position of Science Director with SkeenaWild Conservation Trust. Based in Smithers, BC, Michael’s extensive research into the history and diversity of salmon populations across the Skeena watershed will bring a valuable perspective to the SKT.

Technical Team

Johanna Pfalz

SKT Coordinator

Johanna Pfalz has worked as a consultant with Eclipse Geomatics since 2006 providing geospatial and information management services across BC, Alberta and Canada. Her work has focused on ecological land classification, land use planning, land use monitoring, and environmental impact assessment, as well as documenting traditional knowledge for First Nations. Eclipse Geomatics has been involved with the formation and development of the Skeena Knowledge Trust since 2009. Our team at Eclipse Geomatics explores open-source tools to develop creative solutions to spatial problems and information management.

Richard Overstall

Legal Advisor

Richard Overstall is a Smithers lawyer with a particular interest in administrative, environmental and land use law. Prior to practicing law, Richard worked as a mining geologist, then as a researcher for a number of public-interest and aboriginal organisations, including as expert evidence coordinator for the aboriginal plaintiffs in the Delgamuukw title trial. Richard has published and presented in a number of legal research areas, including aboriginal law and history, criminal evidence, human rights, and monitoring trusts.

Ekaterina Daviel

Data Visualization Specialist

Ekaterina Daviel is a Data Visualization Specialist with Eclipse Geomatics Ltd. Originally from Richmond, British Columbia, Ekaterina completed a B.Sc. in Environmental Science from the University of Northern British Columbia and a Master’s in Environmental Science from the University of Toronto. Ekaterina’s work with the Skeena Knowledge Trust focuses on improving the accessibility of information through the use of engaging and interactive data visualizations, connecting with citizen scientists through the Water Rangers water quality monitoring program, and working with project partners to leverage the Skeena Salmon Data Centre for their data management, collaboration, and communication needs.

Lizzy Hoffman

Information Management Specialist

Lizzy Hoffman works with Eclipse Geomatics as an Information Management Specialist, focusing on the Skeena Knowledge Trust project. Lizzy grew up in Victoria, British Columbia and completed a B.Sc. in Biology at the University of Victoria, followed by an M.Sc. in Land Reclamation and Remediation at the University of Alberta. There she studied the development of vegetation communities at reclaimed surface mine sites and became interested in using open source tools for data analysis and management. Following her Master’s, Lizzy moved to Williams Lake where she taught at Thompson Rivers University, the College of New Caledonia and other institutions.

Monica Oliva

Business Coordinator

Monica Oliva is the Business Coordinator at Eclipse Geomatics. Over the past three years, she has worked as the Bookkeeper and Business Administrator for two different organizations in Smithers. Monica is responsible for recording revenues, expenses, assets, liabilities and equity for all the projects Eclipse Geomatics undertakes in addition to providing general administrative support for the company; Eclipse couldn’t do it without her. Originally from Peru, Monica lived in Alberta for 2 years while attending college.

Claire Thornton

Information Technician

Claire is an Information Technician for Eclipse Geomatics, focusing on the Skeena Knowledge Trust project. Originally from Banff, Alberta, she completed a B.Sc. in Earth and Environmental Science from the University of British Columbia – Okanagan. After graduation she moved to Smithers in 2020 to explore Northern BC. In her spare time, Claire enjoys skiing, mountain biking, hiking and gardening.

Reine Vizcarra

Information Technician

Reine is an Information Technician for Eclipse Geomatics and works on the technical side and web development of projects. She was born and raised in the Philippines and completed a B.Sc. in Information Technology focused on developing Web Applications. She moved to Smithers in 2017 with her family. Reine enjoys walking with her dog, cooking, photography, and reading books in her spare time.

Jasmine Liudzius

Intern

Jasmine is an undergraduate student at the University of Victoria, working towards a B.sc. in Geography and Environmental Studies. She is looking forward to developing her technical skills while working as an intern with Eclipse Geomatics during the summer of 2022. Jasmine enjoys snowboarding, hiking, scuba diving, and travelling whenever she gets the chance. 

With your help, we can expand our knowledge base and educate more people about salmon