Advisory Council

John Bacher, PhD
John is the author of Two Billion Trees and Counting: The Legacy of Edmund Zavitz, published in 2011 by Dundurn Press. John’s book was shortlisted for the 2012 Speaker of the Legislative Assembly of Ontario‘s annual book award.

He is employed as a researcher by the Preservation of Agricultural Lands Society and since 1994 has served as a director of the Niagara Restoration Council. It has undertaken major afforestation projects in Niagara in such as Short Hills Provincial Park and the adjacent Lake Gibson to Welland Canal Corridor. St. Catharines, ON

Danny Beaton

Danny has dedicated his life to protecting Mother Earth as a Turtle Clan Mohawk of Grand River Six Nations Territory.
He was very active (along with John Bacher) in the protection of the Alliston Aquifer (Walk for Water, Site 41) and the successful Mega-Quarry opposition.

In 2010, Danny received the lifetime National Aboriginal Achievement Award for protecting Mother Earth. In 1992, he received the Governor General’s Medal for outstanding contributions to his fellow Canadians. His environmental stewardship extends worldwide.

He has decades of experience in defending against environmental destruction while bringing native values and philosophy to main-steam society. Toronto, ON

Richard Gates, PhD

Dr. Richard Gates mother’s family’s lived in the Barrie/Midhurst area for almost 200 years. He completed high school at Barrie Central, a B.A. at McMaster University and postgrad studies in neurosciences in Australia.

Richard’s been the Director of MBA and Professional Practice Development Programs at UNE and consulted widely to the judiciary, legal and medical professions and all levels of government. He’s chaired a National Parks Advisory Committee and served on an Advisory Panel for World Heritage for the Federal government.

He prepared a successful application for State Heritage listing of a World War II Training facility similar to CFB Base Borden and is foundation chair for a museum and community technology centre. Richard’s published several books including Wings at War, many scientific papers and technical reports/reviews. His photographs are used for the Australian Sustainability Awards.

Richard worked at Springwater Park as a Ranger in 1963 and prepared draft plans for two Provincial Parks in the late 1960’s. Australia

Les Stewart, MBA
Since 1961, Les and his family have lived in Midhurst, ON. He attended Cedarview, Forest Hill, St. Mary’s and St. Joseph’s and Barrie North (1978) and went onto Western University (BA, MBA).

Les worked at St. Thomas Psychisatric and Victoria Hospital in London until, in 1992, he and his family moved back to Midhurst to start a lawn care franchise. His franchise industry experience, research and commentary are expressed on several digital platforms (1, 2, 3). In 2000, Les was an public hearings witness which resulted in the ON Arthur Wishart Act (Franchise Disclosure) Act, 2000. He continues is a business consultant to national independent franchise associations while retaining an interest in local land use and history. He’s is collecting material to write a book on the the Midhurst Forest Station, Springwater Park, and the Midhurst CPR Station. Midhurst, ON LinkedIn, The Apprenticeship of Les Stewart  ,,

In September 2015 Les started from the lessons learned.


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