Our dynamic team members.

Our Team

Staff & Instructors

"The way the mentors interact with the children is exemplary and strikes the perfect balance of expecting the kids to be independent and take risks, while knowing they are supported."

— Parent of a Pine participant

"We love Pine camp - in particular, your instructors are a cut above all other day camps."

— Parent of a Pine camper
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Board of Directors

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Andrew McMartin

Andrew McMartin

Executive Director

Andrew believes that dirt under children’s fingernails and rain in their hair are essential components to growing up healthy, resilient, and connected to the place we call home. Following this passions for education and nature, Andrew founded the Pine Project in 2008. He is a certified teacher in Ontario and brings 20+ years of experience in outdoor teaching, nature-based mentoring and community-building work with organizations across North America.

Jennifer Peer

Jennifer Peer

Director of Operations

Jennifer loves gantt charts, budgets, strategic planning, and number crunching almost as much as she loves the great outdoors. After adventuring abroad for 12+ years, she returned home to Toronto and joined the Pine Project in 2016, where she eagerly applies her project management, fundraising, financial, and communications skills. She holds a master’s degree in International Development from the London School of Economics and has 15+ years of experience working in program management for conservation and development organizations.

Hannah Dabrowski

Hannah Dabrowski

Program Manager

Hannah grew up engaging with nature through weeks at summer camp, weekends at the family cabin, and many days spent climbing the maple tree in her front yard. She joined the Pine Project in 2019, bringing with her a myriad of experience in program management, recreation research, and field work. Hannah holds a master’s degree in Leisure Studies from Brock University and has 10+ years working with camps and leading backcountry expeditions.

Tatiana Hayek

Tatiana Hayek

Operations Manager

Tatiana is a nature-loving global citizen with an analytical mind and a passion for working with people. After taking time to sail across the Pacific Ocean and van-camp across Canada, she moved to Toronto and joined the Pine Project in June 2018. Tatiana holds a master’s degree in Environmental Management from Yale University and has 10+ years of experience working in environmental research, outreach, and project management for non-profit organizations and academic institutions.

Natasha Rutters

Natasha Rutters

Office Administrator

Natasha spent her childhood snowboarding, camping, catching frogs, and watching Fern Gully on repeat. Her passion for all things nature coupled with her savvy organization and customer service skills led her to the Pine Project in 2018. Natasha holds a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Studies from the University of Waterloo, with a focus on Environment, Resources, and Sustainability.

Lee Earl

Lee Earl

Lead Instructor & Volunteer Coordinator

Lee is an avid naturalist and frequenter of the wilds. Some of her favourite activities include looking at beautiful birds, tracking deer throughout the city, geeking out with field guides, and foraging for plants. Lee has travelled the northeast to learn from various mentors, including ongoing studies of plant medicine and wildlife tracking with Earth Tracks Outdoor School and White Pine Programs in Maine. Lee is also co-founder of Wild Foragers Society, facilitating hands-on exploration of wild plants with a large group of plant-lovers in Toronto.

Paul Kitz

Paul Kitz

Lead Instructor & Cultural Coordinator

Paul grew up eating beach mud (to his parent’s dismay), finding special places in the neighbourhood to be with animals, and venturing out on canoeing and camping trips. Following his passions for laughter, lessons learned from nature, and supporting holistic growth of young people, he joined the Pine Project in 2017. Paul is a Child and Youth Care Practitioner with experience working for non-profit organizations focused on inspiring people to protect the natural world, and supporting the healthy development of young people in order to build healthier families, communities, and a healthier society.

Nikki Satira

Nikki Satira

Lead Instructor & Social Media Coordinator

Nikki holds a Bachelors Degree in Environmental Studies with a specialization in culture and education and a certificate in Community Arts Practice. She has 10+ years of experience in outdoor education and is passionate about facilitating experiences for people of all ages that cultivate a love and respect for nature. She uses her skills in friction fire, edible and medicinal plants, storytelling, song-leading, theatre, tracking, bird language and bushcraft to deliver programming that serves Pine’s mission and vision. Nikki has been working for the Pine Project since the spring of 2013. Since then she has completed both Wild Deer Wilderness Skills Program 1 and 2, her certificate in herbal studies, and is currently studying plant biology and ethnobotany. She is also an accomplished songwriter and musician, using her love for nature as inspiration for her music.

Lucas Donald

Lucas Donald

Lead Instructor

Lucas first started his journey into deep nature connection as a teenager in Massachusetts at Coyote Camp. In the mountainside wilderness he learned about friction fire, how to carve, identify plants, navigate the forest at night with no lights and build shelters out of sticks and leaves to sleep in overnight. The same summer he was introduced to the Pine Project as a participant of the teen program at Art of Mentoring, and that winter he began volunteering at Pine. Since then, Lucas has completed a 7 month apprenticeship program at Sticks and Stones Wilderness School and the Pine Project’s own Wild Deer 2 apprenticeship program. Lucas has accumulated years of experience as a volunteer and instructor working in outdoor programs with kids and adults and maintains a strong commitment to learning and teaching naturalist studies and survival skills.

Christie Whyte

Christie Whyte

Lead Instructor

Christie joined the Pine Project in 2019, bringing 5+ years of experience working in outdoor education. Christie studied history and art history in university and discovered her love for outdoor education while working at camp in Algonquin Park during the summer breaks. She has experience guiding canoe trips and winter camping expeditions with students in Algonquin Park and Temagami. Recently, she has been diving into birding and tracking and hopes to inspire the same curiosity and excitement in program participants. Christie loves exploring nature mysteries and building fires with students.

Eileen Tran

Eileen Tran

Lead Instructor

Eileen grew up exploring ravines, making mud soup, and pretending to live in her family garden. With passions for wilderness survival and primitive living skills, Eileen eagerly became involved with the Pine Project in 2012. Eileen has been teaching and mentoring children and adults inside and outside of the classroom since 2010, is a nature connection consultant for several schools, and also loves taking on major organizational projects.

Elissa Penfound

Elissa Penfound

Lead Instructor

Elissa grew up in the City of Toronto and spent the summers at her cottage near Halliburton, exploring the forest, climbing trees, building forts and swimming. After completing her Undergraduate degree in Geographic Analysis, Elissa began working for The Pine Project in 2013. Throughout her time working at Pine she has also completed a Masters degree in Environmental Applied Science and Management and is currently working on a PhD in Environmental Applied Science and Management. She is passionate about getting kids outside and has fallen in love with urban parks and wilderness living skills. She loves bird language, plant identification, tracking, games, nature crafting, and exploring outside with kids.

Chris Gilmour

Chris Gilmour

Adult Program Instructor & Coordinator

Chris is passionate about wildlife tracking, herbal medicine, bow making, and ancient wilderness living skills, and is a devout student of the natural world. He is a professional outdoor educator, wilderness guide and skills instructor, and emergency management planner. He has 12+ years of experience helping people of all ages deepen their knowledge of the natural world through experiential education, wilderness guiding and wilderness & urban survival training. Chris runs the Pine Project’s adult Wild Deer Program and founded our Red Wolf Overnight Camp.

Andy Wood

Andy Wood

Chair

Despite a background in geography and primary education, Andy now finds himself working for a bank in a shiny glass tower. He keeps his connection to nature alive through family bike rides, paddles along the French River, and volunteer work. Andy’s passion for giving kids the opportunity to explore nature and take risks on their own terms led him to the Pine Project, where he applies his expertise in customer experience and success management.

Tracy Parker

Tracy Parker

Vice Chair

Tracy developed a deep connection to nature as a child in rural Nova Scotia. While searching for similar opportunities for her own children, she discovered the Pine Project and felt a strong call to action. As a corporate social responsibility professional, Tracy brings her expertise in strategic development, stakeholder engagement, reporting and communications to the Pine team. She holds an MBA degree from the Schulich School of Business (York University) and a Bachelor of Public Administration from Carleton University.

Cory Wanless

Cory Wanless

Secretary

Cory is happiest in a canoe in Killarney, on top of a mountain in the Rockies, or climbing cliffs in the escarpment. His belief in the power of nature to shape kids and adults alike into caring, grounded and thoughtful humans led him to join the Pine Project. On days he isn’t outside (which is the vast majority of them unfortunately), Cory is a lawyer with a practice focused on corporate accountability, human rights, Indigenous rights, environmental law, police accountability and defending human rights defenders. Cory devotes a sizable portion of his practice to access to justice cases.

Kim Stevens

Kim Stevens

Treasurer

The granddaughter of a dairy farmer, Kim grew up as a city girl but spent her summers camping, bailing hay and picking corn. She also has very fond memories of helping her grandfather make maple syrup at the family sugar bush in the eastern townships of Quebec. Kim has over 25 years of experience working in finance, bringing her expertise in governance, business advisory, strategic planning and forecasting, and financial reporting to the Pine team. Kim is a graduate of McGill University, a Chartered Professional Accountant and Chartered Business Valuator.

Magali Louche

Magali Louche

As a child, Magali spent her summers climbing trees, carving sticks, building forts and harvesting mushrooms in the mountains of France’s Cévennes. Deep respect for mother nature remains a key part of who she is and how she lives. After connecting to the Pine Project through the Montessori school community, Magali saw an opportunity to make a meaningful impact in children's lives. As a marketing & business development professional, Magali brings her expertise in communications and fundraising to the Pine team. She holds an MBA from the University of Ottawa.

Cathy Barrick

Cathy Barrick

Cathy’s love of nature was inspired by a canoe trip, when she experienced the power that nature can have on a life, an attitude and a person. This first-hand experience of being in close contact with nature drew Cathy to the Pine Project. Cathy brings years of experience in not-for-profit leadership and governance to the Pine team. Cathy believes in the capacity of Pine programs to create meaningful change and hopes to contribute to the next generation of nature lovers.