Hello all, thank you for taking the time to read my application for a position on the Saskatchewan Herpetological Society board.
While I may be a relatively new member of the reptile community, I have been a rather outspoken one. My first real reptile is only a couple of years old now, but I have quickly fallen for them. Snakes are my primary reptile interest, but I have a growing collection of lizards to go with them now.
My addiction to animals in glass boxes started over 20 years ago with my first fish. A tiny neon tetra that I kept in a small rose bowl for nearly a year. Looking back I have no idea how it survived at all let alone that long. The aquarium hobby became a part of my life from then on. I have kept hundreds of species over the years, and bred many of them as well. I have been an active member of the Regina Aquarium Society and an Executive member for about 6 of those years, holding director, president and vice president roles. In that time I also worked towards and received my judging certificate from the Canadian Association of Aquarium Clubs, and have judged fish shows in Calgary, Regina, Saskatoon and Winnipeg. I have also played a role in creating a new judging standard that will hopefully be applied across western Canada.
My interests grew to include arachnids shortly after I started into keeping aquariums, much to the disapproval of my mother. I have kept many variety of true spider, and have been keeping Tarantula for the last 6 years or so. My collection of them is now up to 30 with plans to increase that number with breeding pairs of a few select species.
My professional life has led me in a different direction which I also find at least slightly applicable, given what will likely become a key function of the SHS. While I am in the IT world, I have also been a contributing member of the union movement in Saskatchewan. Being a local union executive has given me an understanding of many of the processes required to run a board meeting. That position also led to provincial executive positions with CUPE and the SFL. Both of these appointments gave me experience with organizing regional meetings, creating call to action campaigns and the legwork required to get others involved, and a fluency in the legalese that makes up many of the government acts in Saskatchewan. It also presented me with many opportunities to lobby political officials at municipal and provincial levels of government.
I envision the herpetological society as having two primary functions in the province. First, building awareness among the public, animal welfare organizations and governments about the reptile hobby, and the species commonly kept. Ensuring that fair and equitable laws are put into place allowing hobbyists to keep what they have and to expand collections to include species that are, at present, banned. Secondly, to provide a contact point and support network for reptile, amphibian and invertebrate hobbyists across Saskatchewan. By facilitating the creation of events, like expos, a true community can be built in this province.
I look forward to the work involved in making Saskatchewan a great place for the herp hobby.
CITY OF RESIDENCE