Mike Toffan

Executive Director

An outdoor enthusiast, Mike knew early on that he wanted a job that let him explore nature. As the founder of Project Forest and General Manager of Reclamation and Forestry for Tree Time Services, he’s contributed to the reforestation of tens of thousands of hectares across Western Canada. Aside from earning his B.Sc. in Forest Business Management, Mike also has a Technical Diploma in Forest Technology. His happiest moments? In the field, among the trees, where he gets to make a difference every day.

Bess Callard

Communications Specialist

As the Communications Specialist at Project Forest, Bess is instrumental in sharing our rewilding projects with our partners and supporters. With an extensive background in design and communication, Bess brings her passion for storytelling and sustainability to our online media and marketing platforms. After running her own design studio for over a decade, Bess is excited to join the Project Forest team and use her design and communication skills to promote projects that remove carbon from our atmosphere and make our world a better place to live, work and play. As a self-described Jr. Naturalist, Bess is always honing her plant identification skills and looking to nature for inspiration to bring back to her desk.

Angela MacKinnon

Community Engagement Coordinator

As the Project Forest Community Engagement Coordinator, Angela combines her two passions: the environment and Indigenous Relations. Over the last 16 years working in the environment industry focusing on land, environment and indigenous relationships, Angela brings her expertise to the Project Forest team and helps us help others. Some of Angela’s best professional moments include meeting new indigenous partners and learning about their culture and history. She sees Project Forest as an opportunity to further develop these skills and work on projects that impact landscape function at scale. She is excited to continue to make a difference, be it through environmental reclamation or relationships with Project Forest’s partners. Knowing she is creating a legacy to leave in this world means everything to her.

Scott Formaniuk

Project Forest Senior Silviculturist

As a long time Silviculturist, Scott has overseen the reforestation of more than one hundred million seedlings and been involved in the growing of over five hundred million seedlings. His love for trees began at an early age when he was mentored by several professional foresters through Scouting and the Junior Forest Wardens. This led Scott to a B.Sc. in Forestry, followed by a lengthy career in the private sector in both Alberta and British Columbia. His love for what he does is motivated by his desire to leave a positive legacy on the environment for future generations. 

Mike Ardiel

Project Forest Senior Silviculturist

Born and raised in Whitehorse, Yukon with Norwegian Heritage, Mike’s love for the outdoors started at birth. As General Forestry Manager with a diploma in Forest Technology, Mike effectively coordinates and manages the procurement of Reclamation and Forestry Division trees and shrubs, overseeing the planting of 70+M seedlings in his career. Aside from being able to hike Mount Everest base camp, fly in helicopters and ATV across some cool trails, Mike loves his job because it allows him to do something that is valuable to others.

Larry Lafleur

Project Forest Senior Seedling & Nursery Advisor

With over 50 years of experience in the Alberta forestry industry, nobody knows trees better than Larry. A graduate from NAIT’s forestry program, Larry has been involved in growing over 1.5 billion seedlings throughout his career—and he isn’t stopping any time soon. Currently, he acts as an advisor for Tree Time Services, where he provides vast knowledge to the team. He also ensures Project Forest is in good hands by handling the production and delivery of all seedlings.

Kurtis Blaikie-Birkigt

Project Forest Heritage Advisor

It was a desire to work outside and not behind a desk that motivated Kurtis to hit the fields. His interest in the past led to a Masters in Archaeology, followed by a history of helping the forestry sector minimize their impacts on archaeological and cultural landscapes. Through his career, Kurtis has explored at least 350,000 hectares of Alberta’s forest, and over 1,000 days hiking and quadding to locate and protect historic sites. Saving these sites and stories for future generations is what matters to him most.

Drew Patterson

Project Forest Education Manager

Drew’s passion for forests stems from his family’s garden greenhouse when he was young. From there, he earned his MBA, before branching off into a career as General Manager for TreeTime.ca. In this role, Drew’s provided hundreds of educational presentations and sold and shipped millions of trees to people throughout Canada. Being able to introduce unique varieties of trees and projects to others keeps his job interesting, while also knowing he’s making the world a better place.