Muskoka Watershed Council

Muskoka Watershed Council is a volunteer-based non-profit organization incorporated in 2019 with the mandate to champion watershed health.

MWC is comprised of representatives from a wide range of stakeholders, including municipal, provincial and federal governments; lake and area ratepayer associations; local industry, academia, tourism, real estate and other interests from across our watersheds.

MWC is governed by a set of Operating Procedures.

Members

Chair - GEOFF ROSS, Skeleton Lake Association

Geoff RossEXECUTIVE COMMITTEE – Geoff Ross moved to Muskoka in 2010 after a career as a Professional Engineer developing water and air pollution control standards and programs with Environment Canada. His work included control of coal-fired power plant emissions contributing to acid rain, smog, climate change and other major air issues. He represented Canada in technical work under the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe and participated in negotiation of the Ozone Annex to the Canada/U.S. Air Quality Accord. Geoff holds degrees in Engineering and Physiology. He is a past President and member of the executive of the Skeleton Lake Cottagers’ Organization, and devotes his spare time to carpentry, sailing, canoeing , curling, XC skiing and tennis. He joined the Muskoka Watershed Council in 2012.

Vice-Chair - KAREN MAXWELL, McKay Lake Association

EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE – Biography not available.

Past-Chair - KEVIN TRIMBLE, Community/Brandy Lake

Kevin TrimbleEXECUTIVE COMMITTEE – Kevin Trimble is an ecological consultant with more than 25 years of experience assessing the impacts of many types of land use change in Ontario, most recently with Golder Associates in Barrie. Originally from an aquatic background, he integrates a number of terrestrial and aquatic disciplines with the water resource and groundwater sciences and has directed many types of restoration projects. After cottaging on Lake Simcoe his entire life, Kevin and his family relocated to Muskoka in 2014.

NANCY ALCOCK, District of Muskoka/Town of Huntsville

EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE – Biography not available.

PATRICIA ARNEY, Community - Muskoka Lakes

Patricia ArneyPatricia Arney joined MWC in 2001 and served as Chair from January 2012 to January 2014. She operated a summer business in Bala for years and moved to Muskoka full time in 1998. Patricia is a dedicated volunteer having held executive positions on the Muskoka Ratepayers Association, Habitat Restore Muskoka, Moon River Property Owners’ Association, Muskoka Lakes Chamber of Commerce, Georgian College Board of Governors, and currently is on the Standing Advisory Committee for the Muskoka River Water Management Plan. She offers strong governance skills and a passion for education in all aspects. Patricia has a MEd in Applied Psychology.

LISA BARRY, Township of Algonquin Highlands

Biography not available.

SANDY CAIRNS, Town of Gravenhurst

Biography not available.

JAVIER CAPPELLA, Westwind Forest Stewardship Inc.

Biography not available.

MARGARET CASEY, Community - Lake of Bays

Margaret CaseyAs a seasonal resident on Lake of Bays for over half a century, Margaret Casey has been active with many local organizations and initiatives including the Lake of Bays Association, the Lake of Bays Heritage Foundation, the Muskoka River Water Management Plan PAC and various advisory committees to the Township of Lake of Bays. She was a District Councillor from 2003 to 2010. She and her husband have 4 sons who also share their passion for Muskoka’s clean water and forested landscapes. In addition to cross country skiing, kayaking and canoeing, she is also involved with the Don Watershed Regeneration Council and the Ontario Forestry Association from her home in Toronto.

JOHN COOPER, Community - Gravenhurst

Biography not available.

CHRIS CRAGG, Muskoka Lakes Association

Biography not available.

LOUISE CRAGG, Community - Muskoka Lakes

Louise Cragg Louise Cragg grew up in Toronto cottaging on Lake Simcoe but has now been in Muskoka for more than 40 years. Louise and her husband Chris live in a century cottage on Lake Muskoka. They have a daughter and 2 sons in Guelph, Montreal and Stockholm Sweden and 2 grandchildren. Louise has an undergraduate degree in Math and Computer Science from Waterloo and a MBA from York. She worked in the high tech area for 35 years and was a Vice President of Information Technology for a number of billion dollar companies in the Toronto area for more than 20 years. She is now retired and spends half the year in Muskoka and the rest as a “snowbird” in Florida. She is a past president of the Muskoka Ratepayers’ Association and is a member of the Water Quality Committee of the MLA. Louise places a very high importance on keeping the environment clean in Muskoka particularly the lakes, which is why she is active in so many environmental areas. She also serves on the boards of a Muskoka Golf Club and a Toronto non-profit housing development. She is an avid golfer, gardener, world traveller and antique boater.

PAUL DINNER, Consultant

Biography not available.

ALLEN EDWARDS, District of Muskoka/Township of Muskoka Lakes

EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE – Biography not available.

PIRET HURRELL, Community - Bracebridge

Piret HurrellBorn and raised in Hamilton, Piret went to McMaster University, obtaining BSc degrees in Chemistry and Geology and, more recently, an Environmental Techniques Certificate from Georgian College. Her career spans work in mineral processing, manufacturing, foundry, government, private and commercial laboratories, and R&D, in supervisory and managerial capacities. Piret moved to Bracebridge in 1997 and has been a Bracebridge Horticultural Society director for 15 years and involved with the Muskoka Watershed Council since 2010. Piret believes that our natural environment is a wonderful gift. By protecting it today, it will continue to sustain us in the future.

NEIL HUTCHINSON, Consultant

Biography not available.

CAROLINE KONARZEWSKI, Lake of Bays Association

Caroline KonarzewskiCaroline Konarzewski is a liaison between the Lake of Bays Association and the Muskoka Watershed Council. She graduated from Université de Montreal and worked as a teacher in Montreal and Toronto. She retired to Muskoka in the Lake of Bays area in 2003 where she became a member of the Lake of Bays Association. She currently coordinates an extensive FrogWatch program in the Lake of Bays area for the Lake of Bays Association.

RICHARD LAMMERS, Community - Bracebridge

Richard LammersRichard Lammers is a Research Assistant Professor at the Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans, and Space at the University of New Hampshire. Richard was one of the founding members of the Water Systems Analysis Group and has been Co-Director since 2008. He received a PhD in Physical Geography from the University of Toronto in 1998 and has been a researcher at the Institute since 1996. The focus of his research is on pan-Arctic and global-scale hydrometeorological modeling and analysis. His research interests include understanding the high latitude hydrological cycle; convergence of human and biogeophysical datasets, modeling, and analysis; global-scale hydrometeorology; uncertainty of estimates based on future scenarios; physically-based hydrological models; spatial datasets and geoprocessing; river networks; and techniques of Internet-based data serving and analysis. Richard now resides in Bracebridge.

PETE LeMOINE, Community - Gravenhurst

CHAIR of the WORKING GROUP – Biography not available.

ROB MILLIGAN, Community - Lake of Bays

Rob Milligan, President and Chief Strategist at Perimeter Public Affairs, is an award winning public policy practitioner and has been described as a policy entrepreneur. Prior to starting PPA in 2008, he spent over thirty years with provincial ministries including: Natural Resources, Environment, Northern Development and Mines; Office for the Greater Toronto Area; Municipal Affairs and Housing; and Finance. Originally trained as an applied geomorphologist and snowmelt hydrologist, Rob has specialist knowledge in water security, watershed planning, management, and institutional arrangements. He was the prime author and editor of the Ontario’s 1984 Bi-centennial publication “The Water Quantity Resources of Ontario” and Head of Basin Planning with Ontario’s Conservation Authorities and Water Management Branch. He has an Honours Bachelor’s Degree in Environmental Studies from the University of Waterloo, is a registered professional planner and member of the Canadian Institute of Planners. In addition to his professional activities he is currently Chair of the Planning Sub-committee; a Past Chair of the Muskoka Watershed Council; a Past member of the Board of the Muskoka Conservancy; and a Past President of the Lake of Bays Heritage Foundation.

Treasurer - DARYLE MOFFATT, Seguin Township

EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE – Biography not available.

MICHAEL PEPPARD, District of Muskoka/Township of Lake of Bays

Michael PeppardEXECUTIVE COMMITTEE – Michael Peppard is the founder and Executive Director of EcoMuskoka Conservation, a not-for-profit corporation whose mission it is to engage communities in local greening projects. For the past fifteen years Michael has been engaged in managing environmental programming for not-for-profits across Ontario. He holds an Honours Bachelor of Science degree in Zoology from the University of Guelph and a Certificate in Restoration Ecology from Niagara College. Michael is a community engagement specialist who is striving to bring his skills to his new home in Muskoka.

AARON RUSAK, Muskoka Conservancy

Biography not available.

PETER SALE, Academia

Peter SaleEXECUTIVE COMMITTEE – Peter F. Sale is an environmental scientist whose research into ecology of coral reefs spanned a career at the University of Sydney, (1968-87), University of New Hampshire (1988-93), University of Windsor (1994-2006), and most recently United Nations University’s Institute for Water, Environment and Health (2007-2014). He remains University Professor Emeritus at the University of Windsor. Educated at the University of Toronto and the University of Hawaii, he now lives with his wife Donna in Muskoka, continuing to write and speak on critical environmental issues. His recent book, Our Dying Planet, tells the story of our impacts on the environment from the perspective of an ecologist who has seen environmental decline with his own eyes. He brings his expertise in aquatic ecology to the deliberations of the Muskoka Watershed Council.

ANDREW STRUTHERS, Town of Bracebridge

Biography not available.

PAUL WIANCKO, District of Muskoka/Township of Georgian Bay

Paul WianckoEXECUTIVE COMMITTEE – Paul Wiancko has a degree in Aquatic Biology from the University of Guelph and a degree in Environmental Engineering from the University of Toronto. Following a brief time as an environmental consultant, Paul spent most of his career with Ontario Hydro/Ontario Power Generation in various environmental positions for fossil and nuclear stations, including fisheries, radiological emissions and zebra mussels, before retiring in 2002. A long time cottager on Six Mile Lake, Paul is involved in the Six Mile Lake Cottagers’ Association, Baxter Snow Riders, and the Southeast Georgian Bay Chamber of Commerce. Paul was a Township of Georgian Bay councillor from 2003-2006 and is currently serving as a councillor for Georgian Bay as well as the District of Muskoka.

MWC Staff

CHRISTY DOYLE, Director of Environmental & Watershed Programs

REBECCA WILLISON, Watershed Planning Technician

DMM Liaisons

SAMANTHA HASTINGS, Commissioner of Community & Planning Services

KEVIN BOYLE, Climate Change Initiatives Coordinator

CHRISTIANE MASTERS, Laboratory Assistant

How to Join

If you are interested in becoming a member of the Muskoka Watershed Council, please review the Statement of Council Member Responsibilities and then contact us to express your interest.