The Board provides advice on planning, management and development of the provincial park system, including, but not limited to, such items as development of annual business plans, marketing strategies, strategic plans, capital development programs, and fees, engagement and increased public awareness of the Ontario Parks system and to advise on other matters such as policy and program direction as requested by the Minister.
Under the Agencies and Appointments Directive and the Travel, Meal and Hospitality Expenses Directive, provincial agencies are required to post their governance documents. These include business plans, annual reports and expense information for designated individuals. Individuals at provincial agencies can claim and be reimbursed for necessary travel, meal and hospitality expenses they pay for during the course of ordinary work. They need to follow strict rules, outlining what can be repaid with public funds and what maximum amounts can be claimed. All claims must include original receipts. Under the Agencies and Appointments Directive and the Travel, Meal and Hospitality Expenses Directive, provincial agencies are required to post their governance documents. These include expense information for designated individuals.
The Lieutenant Governor in Council appoints a Chair and from six to twelve members. Board members are volunteers but do receive compensation for travel expenses. The Board strives to maintain a diverse membership representing a variety of interests and geographic regions.
Ken Phillips (Chair) is semi-retired after a 25-year career with Ontario’s conservation authorities. He served as the Chief Administrative Officer for Conservation Halton, the General Manager of the Crowe Valley Conservation Authority and held operational field positions with the Hamilton and Niagara conservation authorities. He has chaired numerous committees during his career at both the local and provincial level in areas such as environmental education, health and safety, and parks operations. He helped to foster the Cootes to Escarpment Eco-Park project as Vice-Chair of a multi-stakeholder group. He has a life-long commitment to environmental recreational spaces and education. Ken received his Master of Arts and Bachelor of Arts (honours) degrees from McMaster University and currently resides in the greater city of Hamilton.
Lynn Cox has served on numerous boards and committees across Northern Ontario over the past 25 years involving resource conflict use resolution, marketing and tourism development. Lynn has also acted as Director of Flight Operations and Managing Director for an adventure eco-tourism operation that provided adventure trips across the north and up to the coast of Hudson and James Bay, Other previous employment included Chief Financial Officer for a charter airline and aviation fuelling business. Her formal education includes a Bachelor of Arts in Geography, Honours Bachelor of Outdoor Recreation and a Graduate Business Diploma in Business Administration from Lakehead University. Currently Lynn owns and manages an accommodation and catering operation as well as a waste management business in Pickle Lake and is involved with economic development for the Township of Pickle Lake.
Jeremy Dickson is the President and Owner of Canoe Canada Outfitters, an adventure tourism company in Atikokan, Ontario that provides canoe trips into Quetico Park and fly-in wilderness outpost vacations. He is also the Company Operations Manager at Atikokan Aero Services which is a small float plane operator. He has been recognized with the Northern Ontario Business Award’s “Young Entrepreneur of the Year”. He is a graduate of Brock University’s four year Business Administration degree program and holds a private pilot’s licence. Mr. Dickson’s community involvement has included serving on the Board of Directors of the Atikokan Chamber of Commerce, where he is a former Vice-President. Mr. Dickson has also been a guest speaker at a variety of tourism workshops and was an executive board member of the OTMP partner “Paddling Ontario” Alliance.
Dr. Rocky Dwyer, FCPA, FCMA is a former Principal with the Department of National Defence. Dr. Dwyer has over 20 years' experience in providing strategic advice and recommendations in the areas of human resources and corporate social responsibility to non-profit, private and public sector senior management with such organizations the Aboriginal Financial Officers Association, Canada Revenue Agency, Canadian Red Cross - Water Safety Division. In addition, Dr. Dwyer is a Fellow of the Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada; and the Society of Management Accountants of Canada. Dr. Dwyer holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Bemidji State University (USA), a Master of Science degree in Career and Human Resource Management from the Rochester Institute of Technology (USA), and a Doctor of Philosophy degree in Organization and Management from Capella University (USA).
David Edgar is a retired master plumber and licenced in four other related trades. He served 25 years in municipal politics as a councillor and reeve of Prince Township and for 20 years as a board member of The Regional Conservation Authority. He is a long time advocate for the protection of our Great Lakes and Rivers Systems and while as a member Of The Saint Mary’s River Advisory Board we were successful in having the river declared a Canadian Heritage river. David and his wife are nature enthusiasts and are aware of the need for all Canadians to respect and protect are valuable natural resources.
Don Huff was born and raised in Northern Ontario. He currently resides in Toronto and is the owner of a media relations and strategic counsel consultancy which specializes in environment and energy issues. Increasingly his work has a significant First Nations component. Don travels extensively throughout Ontario for business and pleasure.
Julia Madden is a parks and recreation professional with over 20 years’ experience. She holds a degree in park and recreation management and a Masters in Business Administration. Ms. Madden has been a member of the Kawartha Highlands Signature Site Park Management Advisory Board since 2006 and Acting Chair since 2012. Her past volunteer work has included the Lake of Bays Tourism Task Force and the Muskoka Trails Advisory Committee.
Richard Raper, R.P.F. is a forest consultant and volunteer President, Otonabee Conservation Foundation with a keen interest in conservation and protection of Ontario's natural resources. During a 36 year career with the Ministry of Natural Resources (currently Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry) his assignments included positions in the forests and protected areas programs in field and policy positions across Ontario. Richard graduated from the University of Toronto in 1977 with a B. Sc. in Forestry and has been a member of the Ontario Professional Foresters Association since 1978. As an avid hiker, canoeist and camper, he enjoys Ontario's provincial parks and is a volunteer with several Ontario Parks Friends groups.
Earlene Worrall has over 20 years of strategic business leadership experience, with a focus on brand-building marketing and breakthrough innovation. As Vice President, Healthcare Practice Lead with In-sync Strategy, she works with pharmaceutical clients in North America and globally to uncover human-centric insights, apply innovative strategies to address business challenges, and ultimately improve the lives of patients. Earlene has served on various Boards of Directors over the years. She considers the Ontario Parks Board an exceptionally strong fit given her passion for enjoying the beauty of nature when cycling, kayaking and hiking - often while camping with her family at various Ontario Provincial Parks.
Board of Directors
Ken Phillips – Chair
Lynn Arnold Cox, Pickle Lake
Jeremy Dickson, Atikokan
Dr. Rocky Dwyer
David Edgar, Goulais River
Don Huff, Toronto
Earlene Worrall, Unionville
Term: Board members serve a term of three years and may be reappointed for additional terms.
Meetings: The board meets at least four times a year or as required. Meeting locations are rotated to allow the Board to become familiar with parks and issues across the province.
For more information on the Ontario Parks Board of Directors please contact:
Mandy Bidwell, Director's Office, Ontario Parks at firstname.lastname@example.org