The Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI), Project Learning Tree (PLT), and PLT Canada are growing!

Get to know the newest members of our team and learn about what drives them to support our Standards, Education, Community, and Conservation work.

Emily Anderson joins SFI as Coordinator of Conservation Partnerships. She is putting her natural-born collaboration skills to build relationships with the SFI network to advance conservation and sustainability. Outside work, Emily’s passion for the natural world sees her volunteering at an animal rescue in Toronto and spending time with Roo, her lovable German Shepherd Mastiff rescue dog. She also loves to hike, camp, ski, backpack, and travel. Emily holds a Master of Science in Sustainability Management from the University of Toronto.

Manu George joins SFI as Director of Information Technology (IT). Manu brings more than two decades of experience designing and overseeing IT systems to the organization and is diving into SFI’s systems with the oversight of a new CRM implementation. A third-culture kid who grew up in India, Nigeria, and the United Kingdom, Manu enjoys travelling and spending time with his friends and family, which includes an expressive English bulldog named Karl. Manu looks forward to helping staff be more efficient and better collaborate through technology. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Engineering Business and Technology from Coventry University in the UK and multiple IT certifications, including a Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer certificate from Georgetown University.

Shuya Huang joins SFI as PLT’s Education Systems Coordinator. Originally from Tianjin, a coastal city in China, she now calls Toronto home and is looking forward to building her future in Canada and indulging in her love of hiking. Shuya was recently elected to the Board of the Canadian Committee of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (CCIUN) after volunteering on the CCIUCN Young Professionals Committee and has recently taken on this important role to continue to stress the importance of including youth voices (SFI and PLT Canada are both members of the CCIUCN). Fluent in English and Mandarin Chinese, Shuya is on her way to becoming trilingual by learning French. Shuya holds a Master’s in Environmental Sciences from the University of Toronto.

Catherine Langille joins SFI as Indigenous Relations Coordinator after starting as an Indigenous Youth Opportunities Intern. She grew up in Thunder Bay, Ontario and is a member of the Seine River First Nation. Today, Catherine lives in Peterborough, where she is enrolled in the Indigenous Environmental Studies and Science program at Trent University. She is passionate about working with Indigenous youth in the forest and conservation sectors and studying Indigenous ways of living in nature. Her approachable style helps her share stories with Indigenous youth to inspire them to take their career anywhere they want. Challenging hikes, camping, and fishing are some of Catherine’s favourite activities.

Kate Nagle joins SFI as Director, Education and PLT Network. As a former classroom educator, Kate is focused on shifting the way we structure education on a national scale to more real-world oriented and student-driven learning experiences. When she’s not busy changing the world, this Spanish speaker and live music lover can be found knitting hats, cooking, or honing her semi-professional photography skills. In a past life, Kate made and sold hula hoops at music festivals. Now, hiking with her son and partner and relaxing with her cats are her favorite things to do. Kate holds a Master of Education in Secondary Chemistry from Boston College and Bachelor of Arts in Art Conservation Chemistry from Sarah Lawrence College.

Sukhjina Nijjer joins SFI as Program Accountant for PLT Canada. Sukhjina currently lives in Oakville, Ontario, but Montreal, where she was born and raised, will always feel like home. With more than a decade of financial services experience, she loves putting her number crunching to good use in support of sustainable causes. Sukhjina is working towards her Chartered Professional Accountant designation. Her creative side finds its expression through sewing projects. Spending time with her family brings her joy, and her monthly book club keeps her entertained. Sukhjina speaks English, French, Punjabi, and Hindi.

Bettina Ring joins SFI as the Chief Sustainability and Diversity Officer, leveraging SFI’s scale to drive meaningful change in the forest and conservation sector through collaboration with SFI’s network. In previous roles, Bettina served as Secretary of Agriculture and Forestry for the Commonwealth of Virginia and as Virginia’s State Forester—the first woman appointed to both positions. Inspired by the leadership of SFI’s team and the drive and commitment displayed by staff, Bettina is right at home and hitting the ground running! Outside of her professional pursuits, Bettina loves to practice yoga, read, cook, garden, hike, and kayak. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Forestry and Wildlife from Virginia Tech., a Master of Business Administration from James Madison University, and is a graduate of the Harvard Kennedy School’s Senior Executives in State and Local Government Program.

Emma Roehrig joins SFI as an Education Intern with a primary role identifying potential funding and collaboration opportunities to expand PLT’s education programming. Originally from Southwest Florida, Emma put her love of nature to the test last year when she learned how to become a beekeeper. The other buzzes in her life in Washington, DC include baking, crafting, reading, and yoga. The summer of 2022 will be her chance to put her triathlon training to work with her first official race. Emma is pursuing a Master’s in Environmental Resource Policy from George Washington University.

Calie Schaefer joins SFI as a Sustainable Products Intern, supporting the SFI standards team by updating and maintaining the SFI database and by collecting and organizing information on sustainable products. She firmly believes that to address environmental issues and achieve sustainability many disciplines must work together. Helping grow recognition of the SFI name so that consumers can make smart and informed purchasing decisions motivates her every day. Her supply chain experience has given Calie a keen eye for spotting waste and seeing new ways to green operations. During her free time, she enjoys hiking, biking, days spent at the lake, and travelling. Calie has a Masters of Environment and Sustainability from Western University, in London, Ontario.

Meggan Sleep joins SFI as a Communications and Marketing Intern, excited to connect with the forestry, conservation, and education sectors. She is inspired to help others find the resources they need to educate themselves to make better choices for the planet, people, and a more sustainable future. Meggan has a degree in public relations from Algonquin College in Ottawa, and is an all-round communicator experienced with websites, social media, and newsletters. She is a self-described “excellent Googler,” and her creative skills extend to her hobby designing beer and cider labels. Meggan’s two dogs, Bailey and Ava, keep her busy, but she still finds time to hike, cycle, fish, paint, work out, garden, and cook. Watching reality TV is her guilty pleasure.

Danika Strecko joins SFI as Senior Manager of Education. Working on the forefront of curriculum design, digital culture, and technology integration, she has helped advance online learning programs and provide strategic leadership in the education community. Her experience teaching high school sciences gives her great insight into what today’s teachers need to inspire kids to solve environmental challenges. Her work includes helping to launch and implement the Forest Literacy Framework for both U.S. and Canadian audiences. The framework translates the complex language of forests and sustainable forest management into accessible concepts for grades K-12. Danika enjoys baking and taking advantage of Vancouver’s access to nature with local hikes, kayaking, and snowboarding. She is working towards a Master of Educational Technology from the University of British Columbia.

Jerri Taylor joins SFI as Director of Diversity in Career Pathways, leveraging PLT and PLT Canada’s successful tools and resources to build support programs for diverse communities of young people as they navigate their career pathway. Jerri also supports the organization’s diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts across all pillars, as well as leading the Green Mentor program and Green Jobs employer training efforts. Originally from North Carolina, she is a passionate and experienced K-12 professional school counselor with a Masters of Education from George Washington University and a Bachelors in Family and Consumer Sciences from the University of Maryland. In her free time, she enjoys writing poetry, practicing drawing graffiti, and playing with her chocolate labradoodle Bruno.

Kirsten Whitford joins SFI as Human Resources Coordinator, helping manage SFI’s HR processes, including assisting with the hiring of new staff, administering benefits, and supporting payroll processes. A former seventh grade math teacher and AmeriCorps Urban Education Fellow, Kirsten is now in the process of pursuing a Master of Science in Human Resources from Western Carolina University in addition to her Bachelor of Arts in English Literature from Ohio Wesleyan University. On the weekends she relaxes with her two cats Wiggy and Moop, loves listening to live music, and is writing her first children’s book.

Mira Williamson joins SFI as Manager of Communications and Media Relations. She conducts research and interviews and produces a wide range of content, including editorials, news articles, and media releases, but the most rewarding part of her job is working with young adults in Canada to help them identify and address barriers faced in finding employment success. Seeing someone advance on their career pathway is personal for Mira because she is also new to the workforce. She has also put her skills to good use helping create a website and content for Sidra Treehouse, a non-profit that eases the transition to life in Canada for newcomer and refugee children. When she isn’t working, Mira loves to go on walks with her Schnauzer-Poodle, Phineas. She studied at Western University, in London, Ontario, where she earned a Master of Media in Journalism and Communication.

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