Robyn Barker has served on the Hope Mountain Centre board since December 2016 and recently took on the role of co-chair along with Rod Peters. It is an honor to be on the board of this great organization and she looks forward to supporting it in this new role. Robyn grew up in Hope and moved back in 2012, in part because of the great recreational lifestyle that Hope offers. She has ties to Manning Park, and loves to ski, bike and hike in the area. She and her spouse have two young children that they love to explore with in this beautiful town.
Hope Mountain Centre Team - Staff & Board Members
Board of Directors
Glen Keil moved to Hope from Vancouver in 1984 to manage, and soon after, purchased, the Hope Pharmasave store. From his early days he enjoyed nature at his doorstep, and took advantage of the hiking trails, ski trails and magnificent vistas in the area. Owning the Pharmasave store for 25 years, he enjoyed his pharmacy career, connecting with so many locals, and enjoying the great outdoors. It was an easy decision to retire in the community he loves.
Since 2011 Glen has been a member of the board of Hope Mountain Centre. He enjoys the positive energy and collaboration of the board members, and he appreciates the opportunities to participate in its diverse offerings. Glen likes to encourage people to get outdoors and experience connecting with nature with respect and without fear.
He remains passionate about the outdoors, especially trail building and hiking. He has volunteered for work on the HBC, Tikwalus and Dragon’s Back Trails. In 2015 Glen realized a dream by hiking the entire length of the HBC Trail. His other interests include, golf, Nordic and downhill skiing, biking and cooking.
Mike has been a resident of Hope for 40 plus years. He loves the small-town life – the slower pace, the connection with a wide variety of people, the ease by which you can access nature, and the single traffic signal. He worked as a schoolteacher, first at C. E. Barry school, teaching math, science, and PE to grade 6 and 7 students and then at the high school where he taught math, computer science, and some general science.
His great joy and comfort are his family, his wife, two daughters and their partners, and his granddaughter. Being a grandpa is the BEST but also enjoys hiking, kayaking, trail work, skiing, reading, riding bike and woodworking.
Mike joined HMC in 2007 and volunteered to be the treasurer, a position he still holds. He says “It has been very fulfilling for me to be able to support our mission and give back to my community. I have had the opportunity to work with some dedicated people and help to bring the natural world to life for people of all ages.”
Lydia was born in Switzerland where she graduated as a registered nurse. Moved to the Netherlands where she got married and had her two girls. She immigrated to Canada, Lillooet BC and settled down in Hope when her girls got older. Ever since arriving in Canada she has been volunteering at the kids’ schools, the community youth centre and lots of other events. She did child minding all the years while her kids were at school, retired when she moved to Hope.
Lydia started the Hope Mountain Black Bear Committee in 2011 when a bear was shot close to her home for no reason. She felt like she had to change people’s understanding about coexisting with bears. Since she expanded HMBBC with giving educational presentations to all ages from pre-school to adults, Friends of the Skagit program, fruit gleaning and even orphaned bear cub rescue.
Matt Turner joined the Hope Mountain Centre’s board of directors in 2017. A professional writer and editor in the health, education, and environmental sectors, Matt joined the board to advance environmental stewardship, outdoor education, and overall health and wellness in Hope and the surrounding area. With a background in education, Matt has also participated in delivering many of our youth education programs and is passionate about creating opportunities for all people to participate in, learn about, and protect the great natural spaces that offer so much to all of us in B.C. Matt holds a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature from the University of Ottawa, and a diploma in Journalism from Langara College.
Jo has a passion for all things interpretation. Often found wearing a costume she could be dancing on the amphitheatre stage at Manning Park where she runs the interpretation program or prancing around her classroom teaching grade 4/5 at Silver Creek Elementary. When not working you’ll find her scooping pond critters, chasing butterflies with her camera or kayaking and cross-country skiing (sometimes even on the same day!) Trying to fit everything in means she doesn’t have much brain space left for counting, but Jo thinks she’s been on the board since 2018.
Nat Baker moved to Hope in 2009 from Nova Scotia and has owned Baker’s Books since 2012. He has been active with Hope Mountain Centre by helping with building local trails, volunteering for the Skagit Bird Blitz, and assisting at various events. He fell in love with the local mountains and has been hiking, bird watching, swimming, exploring and living in them ever since. He believes that introducing folks to the outdoors brings a sense of appreciation and wonder at the natural order and will make us better stewards of the world that surrounds us. A love of local history and tying the stories to their natural settings has been feeding his curiosity since living here. While he spends most of his time at his bookstore his other activities include adventuring with his family, playing disc golf at the local course, listening to some vinyl, or getting lost in a stack of books. Nat looks forward to working with the Hope Mountain Centre to help establish a connection of the wilds of Hope and the people that live within them.
Vanessa, of Yale First Nation, is a woman with a deep passion for kinship. She is a devoted mother of four, and a part of a large extended family.
Vanessa enjoys sustaining her local Indigenous culture; you can often find her fishing and hunting with family, foraging for mushrooms or nettle, and stepping into a knowledge keeper role. Vanessa joined Hope Mountain Centre in 2023 and we are excited to have her on board.
Kristine Pérez de León
Kristine’s number one passion in life is mountain adventure, especially hiking. She would spend every waking moment outdoors if she could. Hiking, backpacking, trail running, mountaineering, rock climbing, paddleboarding, backcountry skiing, snowboarding, mountain biking. If it’s an outdoor mountain sport, you can bet she’s done it and loves it. In the past few years, Kristine completed a 55km ultra trail marathon up and over more than 3,000 metres through the Whistler mountains, a 9-day backpacking thru-hike along the 180km Sunshine Coast Trail gaining over 8,000 metres elevation, she has summited hundreds of BC’s most magnificent peaks, completing many of these adventures solo. Kristine has previously worked as a snowboard instructor in Whistler, as a primate and forest conservation manager in Nigeria, a PNW wildlife education non-profit Executive Director, and hiking community platform founder in Vancouver. Kristine and her family moved to Hope in 2021 and officially joined Hope Mountain Centre in January 2022 as Executive Director.
Kelly has led Hope Mountain Centre in various capacities since the society was formed in 2005. Most notably, he served as Program Director from 2009 through 2021, establishing many successful programs and projects that contributed to the rapid growth of the organization. In 2022, Kelly took on the new role of Trails Director, responsible for maintaining local trails and building new trails in partnership with a variety of partners including Indigenous communities and government agencies. Kelly studied resource management at BCIT and SFU, and has 30 years’ experience in outdoor education.
Tunde joined Hope Mountain Centre as Office Manager in March 2020. In 2022 Tunde transitioned into the role of Administrative Director, taking on more diverse responsibilities. She has a family including young kids, with whom she loves exploring the outdoors. She loves growing her knowledge in different directions and in her free time she enjoys taking pictures of nature and tiny creatures the most.
Moon joined the HMCOL team as Program Director in September 2022. After spending many years working in Nepal and New Zealand, she made Canada her home. Her background is in Early Childhood Education, and she has nurtured her passion for nature and wildlife throughout her life. Moon has experience as a backcountry mountain guide and studied Wildlife and Forestry Conservation. She is certified in Wilderness First Aid, Avalanche Skills Training and has experience as a bushcraft/survival instructor. Moon loves to share her knowledge and love of the outdoors with people of all ages. Her special interest is for wildlife, especially grizzly bears. She spends a lot of her free time out in nature, on foot or horseback, exploring the outdoors with her puppy, Kenai.
A graduate from the University of Guelph Institute of Development, Rowan has dedicated her career to being a part of youth empowerment, education, and connection to the land. With a diverse background in community-based development, Indigenous archeology, food security, sustainability, and global health, Rowan has had the privilege of working in a variety of Canadian and international contexts. Her most recent research focused on learning from Indigenous and settler communities across the Yukon territory in order to understand their community resilience and return to traditional food methods in the face of food security and climate crisis.
Rowan is driven to explore paths where she can contribute to positive impacts at the community level or spark curiosity for the world. She is an experienced thru trekker and canoe tripper, with an eager draw to whitewater adventure. Whether up a tree, covered in mud, or in the thick of river rapids she believes there is so much play and peace to be found on the land and in the wild spaces we share.
Rowan says feels so lucky to be able to spend her days living in Hope, sharing her learning and supporting youth in our community as they learn to be stewards of the natural world and grow to feel empowered in their climate futures.
Natalie joined Hope Mountain Centre in 2016 as Outdoor Educator delivering school programs throughout SD78. She quickly grew herself into all the kids’ heart with her energy, passion for teaching and love of everything nature. Natalie grew into lead many of our Marketed Programs taking people on hikes, snowshoe trips, backpacking trips and lots more over the years, transitioning into the role of Program Director from January to August 2022. Currently she manages our Water Quality Monitoring program.
Natalie is fascinated by nature and has spent her life trying to protect and enhance aquatic habitats. Her favourite animals are fish and horses. She thinks they are both so beautiful and strong! She has two children that love exploring the outdoors and she adores witnessing their passion as they learn about the intricate relationships between plants and animals.
Assistant Trails Director
Nate has lived in Hope for the past 16 years and spends most of his time on the local trails with his family. He joined Hope Mountain Centre for Outdoor Learning as a volunteer in 2019 and since been working on the trails team as well as volunteering on a variety of projects. His first trail building project with HMCOL was the Kw’okw’echíwel Stl’áleqem trail (Dragon’s Back). Trail work is his main passion. He loves creating accessibility to nature and encouraging others to get outside.