River Valley Alliance appoints three new Directors to represent Edmonton and Fort Saskatchewan
The River Valley Alliance (RVA) recently appointed three new Directors at Large to its Board of Directors at an Annual General Meeting on April 18.
Andrew Leach and Marcel Chichak will represent Edmonton, while John McGladdery will represent Fort Saskatchewan. They replace retiring Board members Dennis Dembicki, Arlaine Monaghan, and Brent Collingwood (who transitioned in January from Board Chair to RVA Executive Director).
“We are excited to welcome our three new board members who bring diverse skills and backgrounds to the RVA,” says Guy Bridgeman, Chair, RVA Board of Directors. “We know their perspectives will add value to the organization as we move from the completion of Phase I of our Capital Program to the beginning of Phase II.”
The RVA’s Phase I Capital Program is wrapping up this year and included the Terwillegar Footbridge and 100th Street Funicular in Edmonton and the West River’s Edge Pavilion and Primary Trail project in Fort Saskatchewan. Phase II projects will include the Touch the Water Promenade in Edmonton and the Fort Saskatchewan and Sturgeon County pedestrian bridge as part of the Highway 15 twinning project.
Andrew Leach, Associate Professor at the Alberta School of Business at the University of Alberta, is an energy and environmental economist. “The North Saskatchewan River Valley is our favorite part of Edmonton,” says Leach, whose research spans energy and environmental economics with a particular interest in climate change policies. “We’ve lived within three or four blocks of the valley and ravine system since we moved here 12 years ago, and I ride the river valley trails each day to get to work at the University of Alberta. I am excited to work on building our wonderful urban park system and continuing to work to improve the natural ecosystems of the river valley and ravines within Edmonton and the surrounding municipalities.”
A professional civil engineer practicing in the field of bridges, transportation infrastructure, and river engineering, Marcel Chichak has helped to preserve historic Edmonton buildings since the 1980s. “For decades I’ve lived near the river valley and since taking up running I have discovered the ever- changing treasure that the valley trails represent,” says Chichak, an avid trail runner and cycle-commuter who has explored every formal and many informal trails in the river valley. “In my professional practice I have worked with the North Saskatchewan River and its tributaries by either spanning with bridges, protecting their banks, or mitigating against flooding. Combining my passion for the valley and professional practice, I think I can offer my experience with bridges and linear infrastructure to Phase II of the RVA’s Capital Program.”
Fort Saskatchewan’s John McGladdery is a practicing professional agrologist with the municipality of Strathcona County. He is working on completing an MBA and Masters of Agriculture combined degree at the University of Alberta. “I joined the RVA because I am an active user of the river valley within my community,” says McGladdery. “I believe the river valley gives a unique identity to the Metro Edmonton Region, providing a large, natural park for everyone to enjoy. The capital projects undertaken by the RVA will ensure it is accessible for everyone and sustained for future generations. I am excited to continue the work that has been completed and contribute to making the river valley a world class park system.”
The RVA welcomes all new Board members to its vision of creating one connected River Valley park system that extends from Devon to Fort Saskatchewan. Click for the complete list of Board of Directors.