Originally from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada, I graduated from Acadia University, Wolfville, Nova Scotia, Canada with a B.Sc. (Honours in Biology) degree in 1970 and obtained my Ph.D. degree in 1977 from the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. I subsequently taught botany at the University of Rhode Island, Kingston, Rhode Island, USA, before moving to Ottawa, Ontario Canada in 1978 to join Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's (AAFC) Research Branch.
As a research scientist at the Biosystematics Research Centre (BRC), I was responsible for a research program on the biology and taxonomy of toxigenic fungi, with emphasis on Fusarium species. In 1982, I was seconded to Research Branch headquarters in Ottawa as a Special Adviser and from 1983-85 I served as head of the Mycology Section at BRC.
In 1986, I was assigned to Research Branch headquarters as an acting Research Coordinator for crop protection and in 1988 I was appointed as a Research Coordinator and was involved in a wide range of activities related to biotechnology, crop protection, biological resources, apiculture, and sustainable agriculture.
I was appointed Assistant Director, Lethbridge Research Centre, Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada in 1990 and was subsequently appointed as acting Director, Swift Current Research Centre, Swift Current, Saskatchewan, Canada in 1994 and Director in 1995. In 1996, I was transferred to Summerland, British Columbia, Canada, as Director of the Pacific Agri-Food Research Centre.
In 2001, I was given the responsibility to lead the national AAFC Bioproducts and Processes team and, in 2003, appointed Director General, Bioproducts and Bioprocesses, a position I held until my retirement from the Public Service of Canada in 2008.
I currently work as a private sector
consultant and am the owner of Nature Niche Scientific Consulting based in London, Ontario, Canada (formerly in Penticton, BC, Canada).
I have extensive experience in managing public sector scientific research involving a wide range of disciplines; in managing public-private collaborative research programs; and, in technology transfer and commercialization of technologies.