Liber Ero Fellowship Program

Liber Ero River Image

Building Connections

This fellowship will facilitate collaborative research that links research groups, institutions, and conservation practitioners to inform critical conservation and management issues for Canada.


To apply, please see the Fellowship Details.

Scientific Advisory Board


Nancy Baron – Nancy Baron is the Director of Science Outreach for COMPASS. Nancy holds workshops around the world for academic, government, and NGO scientists to help them make their work relevant to journalists, policy makers, and the public. She is the co-leader of the Wilburforce Fellowship for Conservation Science and was the lead communications trainer for the Leopold Leadership Program from 2000 to 2014. Nancy began her career as a biologist in Banff National Park. She spent 6 years as Director of Education at the Vancouver Aquarium, then worked as an international consultant on biodiversity issues before launching a career as a freelance scientist journalist and columnist for the Vancouver Sun. She has won numerous writing honors including several Canadian Science Writers’ Science in Society and the National Magazine awards. An ardent naturalist, she published a popular field guide, The Birds of Coastal British Columbia (Lone Pine Publishing) and a “how to” communications guidebook for scientists, Escape from the Ivory Tower (Island Press). Nancy received the 2013 Peter Benchley Ocean Award for Excellence in the Media for her work at the intersection of science and journalism.

Michael Bradstreet – Michael Bradstreet’s career goals are to protect and enhance Canada’s natural heritage through research, management, and public policy development. Michael currently is Vice President of Conservation at the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC), where he has oversight for delivery of NCC’s conservation programs and contributes to its conservation policies. Previous positions include Director and Chief Executive Officer of Bird Studies Canada (1989 to 2004), as well as 14 years as a biologist with LGL Ltd consulting and managing research on high arctic ecosystems. Michael has served on the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (COSEWIC), as well as on numerous boards including Canadian Nature Federation, Ontario Heritage Foundation, Federation of Ontario Naturalists, BirdLife International, North American Migration Monitoring Council, North American Bird Conservation Initiative, Long Point Bird Observatory, and the United Nations Biosphere Committee on Long Point.

Sarah Otto (Director) – Director of the Biodiversity Research Centre & Professor of Zoology, University of British Columbia. Her research focuses on the evolutionary factors that have been critical to the generation of biological diversity, using mathematical modelling and experimental evolution. Current research explores the limits of evolutionary adaptation to a changing environment and what shapes these limits. Recipient of a 2011 MacArthur Prize and a 2007 Steacie Prize, Dr. Otto earned her B.Sc. and Ph.D. at Stanford University.

Wendy Palen (Assistant Director) – Assistant Professor and Tier II Canada Research Chair in Aquatic Conservation at Simon Fraser University and a founding member of the Earth to Ocean Research Group. Her research focuses on identifying science-based conservation solutions for freshwater species and ecosystems in the Pacific Northwest, British Columbia, and California. Recent projects span population dynamics, food web ecology, and risk assessment and focus on Pacific salmonids, amphibian species, and hydropower development. She holds a B.A. from the University of Virginia and a PhD from the University of Washington.

Louis Provencher – Director of Conservation Ecology of The Nature Conservancy (TNC) in Nevada since January 2002, TNC’s Project Ecologist for the Kissimmee River Conservation Area in Florida (2001), and TNC’s Research Ecologist for the Longleaf Pine Restoration Project at Eglin Air Force Base, Florida (1994-2001). He earned his B.Sc. and M.Sc. in Biology at the Université du Québec à Montréal, and his PhD in Ecology at the University of Tennessee. His current responsibilities primarily include Nevada and cross-boundary (Utah-Nevada and California-Nevada) projects that integrate remote sensing and cost-effective conservation planning with computer state-and-transition modeling with the Bureau of Land Management, U.S. Forest Service, National Park Service, and private industry to find land management solutions to the challenges of limited budgets, climate change effects, and threatened and endangered species habitat decline.

Stephen Woodley – Stephen Woodley is an ecologist, who has worked in the field of environmental management for over 30 years. He has worked as a consultant, a field biologist, manager of a national fire restoration program and forest ecologist. For the last decade, he was the first Chief Scientist for Parks Canada, where he worked on a number of issues related to protected areas, including ecological monitoring, species at risk, wildlife disease, ecological restoration and science policy. In July, 2011, Stephen began working as Senior Advisor to the Global Protected Areas Program of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN).


Past Liber Ero Scientific Advisory Board Members