Precipice - Fall 2023

November 10, 2023

Dear Supporters,

I am pleased to send you this 54th issue of Precipice, which I expect will be my last to you as Interim CEO of Escarpment Biosphere Conservancy (EBC). For the last 8 months, it has been my privilege to lead EBC’s work to confront the twin crises of climate change and biodiversity loss. The urgency of our work has not abated. As tragedies unfold on the world stage, development pressures continue to threaten Ontario’s precious ecological resources. EBC needs a new leader to maintain the organization’s focus on our mission. 

Many of you know I have volunteered my skills as a lawyer to help EBC for over 10 years. Much of my time as your CEO has focused on organizational health – making the ship seaworthy, so to speak, for the leader who follows me. To my delight, I got a call from Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) on October 23rd informing me that EBC was being audited! For a lawyer like me, that’s like hearing “show time.” The systems and processes I’ve implemented to comply with CRA’s exacting requirements will now be vetted by our regulator. I have arranged for the audit to occur at the outset of the CEO’s term, so the new leader can be fully versed on the policies and rules that exist to ensure EBC is safe and its conservation work can continue in perpetuity.

Over the last two months, we’ve been working with a search firm headed by Paul Taylor (former ED of FoodShare Toronto) to find that special person. Please review our job ad and consider carefully whether you know anyone who should be entrusted with the responsibility of safeguarding our 234 nature preserves. The leader will also build on our strengths and continue our “lean and mean” approach to acquisition, which earned us a ranking on the list of the top 100 charities in Canada by Charity Intelligence. To learn more about that ranking, search for EBC on charityintelligence.ca.

We hope you enjoy the Fall, 2023 edition of Precipice. It contains details of a new trail guide available for free to donors who contribute a minimum of $250 (a donation in this amount also qualifies as payment of dues for a new 4-year membership). Alternatively, you could choose to offset a year of driving, or for a gift of $195, you can get a free 2024 calendar, which features twelve stunning trail photos and handy cut-out maps to take with you on your next hiking adventure!

I am so proud of all the work we have done together to make EBC among the top 100 most effective charities in the country. There is still so much to do. Please do donate so we can protect more threatened species, sequester more carbon, and continue our emphasis on reconciliation. 

A picture is worth a thousand words and a video is worth a million. With that, I ask you to please hear Dr. Alan Corbiere explain the name of Manitoulin Island or “Manidoo Mnis,” which is home to many of our preserves. The video explains who we are, and who we aspire to be, better than my words can convey. See this video.

Thank you for being a part of our remarkable story! Miigwetch.

Precipice Fall 2023