Our Team & Board

The London Environmental Network (LEN) has one full-time staff person, one part-time communications coordinator and a few volunteers, as well as a Board of Directors. LEN was hosted and incubated for 3 years by Thames Talbot Land Trust and ReForest London and is now a non-profit organization.

We frequently seek volunteers to help with LEN event planning and setup, marketing, communications, and outreach. Contact us to learn more about current opportunities with the London Environmental Network.


Our Team


Skylar Franke | Executive Director


Skylar Franke is a community mobilizer and engagement specialist. Skylar is happiest when talking to new people and eating good food with friends and family. Skylar is passionate about building community, environmental advocacy, local food systems, great wine and ethical coffee.

She graduated in 2013 from King’s University College at Western University with an honours B.A. in Social Justice and Peace Studies and French Studies. Skylar currently sits on the Agricultural Advisory Committee to the City of London as the Vice Chair and on the Urban League of London Board of Directors as Secretary.


Leah Derikx | Communications Coordinator


Leah completed her Honors Bachelor of Science Degree in Biology at Western University. Raised in London, she is passionate about waste reduction and sustainability, and loves to take a big-picture approach to assess the social, environmental, and economic spheres related to sustainability issues. She's a huge fan of building and fostering community connections, and is eager to develop strategies to make London's environmental sector grow and thrive.

As Communications Coordinator, Leah's work includes developing and promoting outreach material for London Environmental Network and its members, creating e-newsletters, and maintaining the LEN website. Leah can help members with graphic development, events promotion, story-writing, and blogs.


Lauren Ferguson  | Content Specialist


Lauren is a fourth year undergraduate student at Western University pursuing an Honours Specialization in Media and the Public Interest. Throughout undergrad, Lauren embraced many opportunities to learn and grow as a student leader, community member, and philanthropist. Most recently, she is beyond thrilled to work with LEN’s incredible members and put her theoretical training into practice!

She is passionate about environmental sustainability, taking time to slow down, unplug, and reconnect with the people and planet around us. She firmly believes there is so much to learn from engaging with the environment and other human beings, from challenging perspectives, and keeping an open mind.

Can help members with: proofreading, infographic development, media release development.


Ben Switzer | Content Specialist


Ben is a writer, musician, neurohacker, and social innovator. When not reading Leaves of Grass up in a tree, you can find Ben petting animals or dropping poems in unusual places. With the power of storytelling, Ben aims to inspire, educate, and motivate on environmental issues, putting the spotlight on LEN's member organizations and the causes they champion.Can help members with storytelling, newsletter writing and article development.

Board of Directors & Special Advisors


Deidre Crilly - Chair  | Let’s Talk Science (Coordinator, Report and Proposal Writing)

Deirdre has been working in the non-profit field for eight years, holding a variety of positions in the fields of development and communications and is currently the Coordinator of Report and proposal Writing at Let’s Talk Science. Deirdre has studied Biology and Not for Profit Management at Western University and is currently finishing her CFRE designation. In her spare time, Deirdre enjoys hiking, yoga and spending time outdoors with her family.


Sonja Teichert - Vice Chair  | Donorworx (Fundraiser)

Sonja has been working as a postdoctoral researcher and project manager for the past year after graduating with a PhD (2016). With an academic background in ecology and an interest in species monitoring, over the past 20 years Sonja has worked in various capacities with citizen science programs and is passionate about community outreach and stewardship. Her best job ever was coordinating the Nova Scotia Herpetofaunal Atlas Project, with teaching Biology labs at Cape Breton University coming in as a close second. Most recently her work involves examining the drivers of change in the Boreal. Sonja has been contributing research to, and managing the teams across Canada who are conducting a scenario analysis to better understand risks to Boreal ecosystem services resulting from climate change’s impacts on the physical and social landscape of Canada.


Nicholas Rothernel, CPA, CA - Treasurer  | CARPROOF (Controller)

Nicholas is the Controller at CARPROOF Corporation, holding an Honours Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Windsor, an advanced diploma of Business Administration from Conestoga College and a certificate of Human Resources from the HRPA of Ontario. Nicholas has used this advanced financial training to support London’s business and not-for-profit communities. He has worked with various not-for-profits in business, consulting and volunteer based roles – most notably with Camp Oochigeas as the Ontario team captain for an international firm, and as building captain for KaBoom! Nicholas enjoys hiking, travelling, working with a local start-up on environmental education programs and spending time outdoors with his family.


Conor Brennan - Secretary  | 2cg (Consultant)

Conor is a consultant with 2cg (2 composting guys) in London whose primary focus is on waste management projects for the municipal, provincial, and commercial sectors. His experience in project management, field work, data analysis, research, and report and proposal writing through this 2cg has further developed his deep care for how we use our resources. Conor is excited to continue engaging Londoners on ways to reduce waste and use our resources efficiently and sustainably (Tool Library anyone?!) but also through a variety of other interests – transportation, natural areas and trails, biking, and energy. In the meantime, Conor will continue to be seen at the dog park or with a frisbee.


Carol Dyck | Thames Talbot Land Trust (Board Member)

Carol was born and raised in Vancouver, British Columbia. She has degrees in International Relations (BA), Environmental Law (LLM), International Environmental Policy (MA), and Biodiversity, Conservation and Management (MSc). A resident of London since 2007, Carol has served on London’s Environmental and Ecological Protection Advisory Committee, and the Trees and Forests Advisory Committee. She has also been a volunteer with Reforest London, and was a candidate for the Green Party in 2015.


Page Forron | West 5 (Discovery Centre Assistant)

Page is a recent graduate of Western University with a Bachelor of Science – Specialization in Environmental Science and is continuing studies in International Business Management at Fanshawe College. She is an enthusiastic and engaged London-local who has been involved with various community organizations including the London Food Bank, the Thames Valley Education Foundation and the Sister’s of St Joseph. She was co-captain of her community-driven committee while working at Best Buy Canada and facilitated countless fundraisers, community and employee events and leadership opportunities for her peers. Page has 10 years of experience in the customer service and hospitality industry and can always be found up to her head in projects and work, she loves being busy and involved in her community!


Heenal Rajani | Innovation Works (Community Animator)

Born and raised in England, Heenal is a newcomer to Canada who has lived and worked on four continents and has visited over 60 countries. After graduating with a MA (Hons) from Oxford University, Heenal spent his early career working in local government. Following three years as a union organizer, he moved to Central America and founded a green building and environmental education non-profit and a voluntourism social business, before spending two years in India studying tools and processes for collective social change. A new father, Heenal works at Innovation Works in Downtown London, as a community animator and sower of the seeds of collaboration.


Gillian Barker | Western University (Assistant Professor)

Gillian Barker is an Assistant Professor of Philosophy at Western University. Her research and teaching focus on scientific and ethical aspects of global environmental challenges, especially climate change. She is a founding member of the Rotman Institute of Philosophy, which brings together researchers from the humanities and the natural and social sciences to tackle multi-faceted problems and to promote public engagement and philosophical reflection on scientific issues affecting Canada and the world.


Andrea Von Wahl | Goodwill Industries (Employment Counsellor)

Andrea is an Employment Counsellor and the Green Advisory Co Chair at Goodwill Industries Ontario Great Lakes. This might seem like a strange mix but her views on environmental sustainability and social justice are definitely connected. Goodwill has over 600 staff across South Western Ontario and the Green Advisory Team’s biggest project is implementing a Green Ambassador program to improve buy in and communication on green initiatives across the organization. Andrea feels more motivated when she sees people volunteering their time and energy to contribute to a project and is a firm believer there’s power in numbers!


Suzanne McDonald - Special Advisor | Thames Talbot Land Trust (Executive Director)

Suzanne McDonald is the Executive Director at the Thames Talbot Land Trust. McDonald has directed several capital campaigns including the Children’s Museum, the Merrymount Children’s Centre, the Brescia University College Foundation and most recently the Goodwill Industries campaign. Suzanne has served on several boards including the United Way of London and Middlesex, Fanshawe Pioneer Village, the Centre for Philanthropy, UWO Alumni Board, the Stratford Festival and recently completed her appointment to the Ontario Heritage Trust Board and the Western University Senate.


Dean Sheppard - Special Advisor  | ReForest London (Executive Director)

Dean Sheppard is an environmental consultant owning and operating his own consulting firm since 1996, specializing in management processes and systems. He has been the Executive Director of ReForest London since 2012 and also teaches a capstone project course in the Masters of Environment and Sustainability program at Western University. Being active in making his community a better place for today and for tomorrow is a hobby and a passion. He has served on several City of London Advisory Committees and taskforces.


Jay Stanford - Special Advisor  | City of London (Director of Environment, Fleet & Solid Waste)

Jay joined the City of London in 1995 and has held number of senior management positions. In 2012, he became the Director of Environment, Fleet & Solid Waste in the Environmental & Engineering Services Area. He has responsibilities for Solid Waste Services; Fleet Services, and Environmental Programs (including energy conservation, active transportation, urban watershed management, and outreach and behaviour change initiatives). Prior to joining London, he worked for 8 years for an environmental consulting firm in Toronto. He is currently on the Board of Directors at the Ontario Waste Management Association and involved in waste management policy development for the Association of Municipalities of Ontario and the Regional Public Works Commissioners of Ontario.


The London Environmental Network helps protect our environment and build a sustainable community by doing everything we can to help our member organizations deliver on each of their own important missions.The London Environmental Network provides our member organizations..Read More

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Tel: 226-700-6945