CPAWS Yukon Staff


Meet the CPAWS Yukon team

Chris Rider
Executive Director

Chris joined CPAWS Yukon as Executive Director in March 2016. A native of Australia, Chris has lived in Whitehorse since 2012 and previously worked as Executive Director of BYTE – Empowering Youth Society, an organization that works with youth in the Yukon’s First Nations communities. Chris has a Masters Degree in Commerce (International Business) from Swinburne University in Melbourne and has worked in non-profit management since 2008. Chris is friend to a black and white dog called Hutch, who comes to work at the CPAWS office most days. Whitehorse residents may recognize them from their daily walks down Two Mile Hill.

In his spare time, Chris is an avid cyclist and loves the outdoors. He also loves Leeds United, a football (soccer) team in the English Championship, the Vancouver Canucks and just about any time a team is competing for Australia.Chris has a passion for environmental protection and feels so privileged that it’s something he gets to talk about every day at work.

Favourite wild place in the Yukon: Tombstone and Kluane
Favourite outdoor activity: Backpacking
Ask him about: Peel legal case and anything else others can’t help with!
Email Chris

Amber Church
Conservation Programs & Communications Coordinator

Amber is CPAWS Yukon’s lead on the Protect the Peel campaign and coordinates a range of other policy and science work for the organization.  Amber grew up a Parks Canada brat, starting out in the Maritimes and growing up in the Rockies, before moving to the Yukon in high school.  Amber studied earth and ocean science at the University of Victoria before moving on to Simon Fraser University to complete a MSc. in glaciology, Quaternary geology, and climate change focussed on the Wheaton River area of Southern Yukon.

Amber’s past work has taken her from the United Nations Climate Negotiations, to ship-based classrooms in Antarctica, to helicopter-supported camps in the wilderness of BC and Yukon.  The uniting thread that ties her diverse past together is her desire to protect wilderness and the environment and she loves that CPAWS Yukon allows her to throw herself into that mission so completely.  She currently splits her working hours between CPAWS Yukon, Yukon College where she teaches physical geography, and her visual art studio.  In her “spare time” you can find her chasing her tiny daughter and friendly pup around, planning her next adventure to a far off land, or running amuck outside.

Favourite wild place in the Yukon: Tombstone and the headwaters of the Wheaton River
Favourite outdoor activity: Hiking, biking, and rock climbing
Ask me about: The Peel campaign, Yukon’s environmental and land use planning processes, and YESAA.
Email Amber

Joanna Jack
Conservation Programs & Outreach Coordinator

Joanna is CPAWS Yukon's liaison with the Peel communities. She also provides support for CPAWS' ongoing conservation policy analysis as well as planning and implementation of campaigns. Born in the Yukon, Joanna left at a young age, ultimately choosing to move back in adulthood. After exploring a number of nooks and crannies around the world, Joanna is inspired by the cultural and biological richness that she continues to rediscover in her place of origin. Joanna studied environmental policy and practice at the University of Toronto and completed a MSc. in conservation biology at Carleton University. She has also worked as a field biologist and as a naturalist in Ontario as well as National and Yukon Parks.

Joanna feels privileged to be continually learning from First Nations people passionate about their traditional territories and environmental well-being. In her spare time, Joanna can be found exploring local trails and rivers or tending to her latest experiments with sustainable living, such as local food production and running her car on bio-diesel generated from waste oil.

Favourite wild place in the Yukon: Tombstone
Favourite outdoor activity: Human-powered travel (including but not limited to skiing, hiking, biking and canoeing) 
Ask me about: The Peel campaign and community initiatives
Email Joanna

Jody Overduin
Community Liaison

Jody fell in love with the Yukon while here to visit a friend in 2008, and moved here for good one year later. Having grown up in Ontario, she was completely amazed that a place as wild and untrammelled as the Yukon still existed. Ever since then, she has been devoted to helping protect it’s beautiful wild spaces. Jody began her involvement with CPAWS in 2007 as a volunteer with CPAWS National and has since been a volunteer and staff member of CPAWS Yukon. In May of 2015 Jody became a mom, which has only increased her passion to protect the wilderness we have left and help connect both children and people of all ages to nature. Jody loves her work and feels extremely grateful for the many friends, mentors and co-conspirators she has met throughout the Yukon and NWT through her work on the Peel Watershed Campaign and other CPAWS projects. The enduring strength of the First Nations that call the Peel watershed home has been a particular inspiration to Jody, and she is proud to partner with them in defence of democracy, the Treaties and the irreplaceable Peel watershed.

Favourite wild place in the Yukon: Although I’ve only been there once, the headwaters of the Hart River in the Peel Watershed have a very special place in my heart, pun intended.
Favourite outdoor activity: Tough question. Hiking would have to be my overall favourite, with rock climbing and paddling close behind.
Ask me about: The Peel and our work with First Nations
Email Jody

Nadine Sander-Green
Campaign & Communications Coordinator

Nadine is a writer and adventure seeker. Growing up in the Kootenay region of British Columbia, amongst the Purcell and Rocky Mountains, gave her a deep appreciation for wild places. She has trekked the Himalayas, kayaked Haida Gwaii, climbed one of the world's highest volcanoes and paddled Yukon's Wind River. She first came to the Yukon in 2011 to work as a Legislative Reporter for The Whitehorse Star and quickly fell in love with the tight-knit community, the intensity of seasons and the incredible wilderness.

Nadine has a BA in Creative Writing from the University of Victoria and is currently finishing a MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Guelph, where she is writing a novel for her thesis. She is thrilled to be back home in Whitehorse and honoured to be working as CPAWS' Campaign and Communications Coordinator. In her spare time, when she's not writing, you can find Nadineexploring the trails on her mountain bike, practicing yoga or jumping into rivers.

Favourite wild place in the Yukon: The Tombstones
Favourite outdoor activity: Backpacking, mountain biking, canoeing, backcountry skiing, snack breaks
Ask me about: Anything related to CPAWS communications
Email Nadine

Wendy Morrison
Operations Manager

Wendy has worked in non-profit organizational management for over 20 years. She has served with NGOs in various sectors: community development, the arts, health, tourism, environment and social justice.  She holds a BA in Political Science specializing in International Relations. Wendy moved to the Yukon in 2006 and committed right away to protecting its amazing wild spaces.  She served on the Board of Directors at the Yukon Conservation Society from 2006 to 2008. 

Favourite wild place in the Yukon: Any spot on the Wind River
Favourite outdoor activities: Paddling, skijoring, mountain biking, hiking, daily toddling and foraging with my young kids
Ask me about: service en Français 
Email Wendy


Susan Gwynne-Timothy
Archival Project

An Ontario native with a background in art, history and the healing arts, Susan came to the Yukon both for the beauty of the wilderness but also due to her desire to live with her family and raise her children in a less polluted environment than she had grown up in herself. With her degrees in social history and art history (M.A), and experience working as an arts administrator and healing facilitator both in London U.K. and Guelph Ontario, she was for several years an instructor in Women’s Studies  at Yukon College and also Administrative Coordinator at Second Opinion Society, Whitehorse. She literally realized all at once in 2012 that the health of the environment is the foundation for the future for everything she cares about, and saw how it linked together her previous apparently disparate interests in health, mental health and wellbeing, social justice, civilization and culture. So she now is very happy to include in her lifelong passion for stewarding things (her family, or teaching about women’s experience within our cultural/historical heritage, or working to help people improve their wellbeing), working at CPAWS.

Favourite wild place in the North: Southern Lakes region at my front door so I can do anything and it only takes a few minutes to get there!
Favourite outdoor activity: Cross-country skiing, hiking and/or boating with my family, in Southern Lakes region


Jobina Tamminga
Conservation & Events Intern

Jobina is CPAWS’ new Conservation and Events Intern for the summer of 2017. Jobina is from all over Ontario and has lived in everything from a beach house on Lake Huron, to living in an off-grid cabin in the Kawarthas. Jobina is a First Nations student currently doing a Bachelor of Science at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, where she does biological and chemical research in many of her classes.

Since she has never been to the Yukon, Jobina will hopefully be exploring as much as she can of the surrounding wilderness. In her free time, you can probably find Jobina hiking in the mountains, camping along the way, or playing with her guitar. Jobina is also a dedicated animal lover, stopping to pet every dog she sees along the way. She is looking forward to an amazing summer in Whitehorse, and is excited to be a part of the CPAWS team. 

Favourite wild place in the Yukon: Anywhere with a view! (Ontario doesn’t have many mountains)
Favourite outdoor activities: Camping in new places (I love getting to know new areas)
Ask me about: First Nations culture