Skip to main content

Timothy Burkhart

Peace River Break Coordinator
Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative
Timothy Burkhart | Coordonnateur à Peace River Break
Timothy Burkhart | Coordonnateur à Peace River Break
Location Born
Location Now
Education Pathway
School Subject

Timothy Burkhart is a Peace River Break Coordinator for the Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative.

About me

I was born/grew up in: Vancouver, BC, Canada

I now live in: Chetwynd, BC, Canada

I completed my training/education at: I did a BA in History and Political Science at the University of British Columbia. I followed with a Masters in Environmental Studies and Natural Resources at the University of Northern British Columbia.

What I do at work

I spend most of my time connecting people and ideas. I work with communities to identify good projects that will help advance conservation in Northeast BC. Then I help them find the funding, science and capacity to get the work done. I help write proposals to get funding for community projects. I also work with First Nations to ensure our work is in line with their Treaty rights, and connect with Government to solve difficult conservation problems.

I also do a lot of mapping, as conservation is all about the land. For this, I use a computer mapping program called ArcGIS—Geographic Information Systems. GIS is a powerful tool in helping to solve conservation problems. Some conservation problems I work on are: identifying where wildlife, such as Caribou, need to roam for food and mates, and what barriers, such as mines, roads, or forestry sites, are in their way. I make decisions based on priorities. For example, what projects should we support and spend our time and money making happen.

I have a community-driven vision that grounds my work and I make sure all our projects are connected to that. I work remotely with my colleagues mostly working in other parts of North America. Most often I engage with them online through Skype and email. I read a lot of research reports and documents so that I can understand the conservation biology behind the work that we do.

My career path is

I did my undergraduate studies in History and Political Science, which gave me the research, writing and critical thinking skills to succeed in almost any field. I had no set career in mind, and was hired after graduating as a Historical Researcher. I worked on a study of the decline of Sockeye Salmon in the Fraser River. This sparked an interest in wildlife and ecology. So later I went on to work for BC Parks, managing marine protected areas off the coast of BC. I also worked in politics, as a desire to make change on the ground is something I've always had. I realized I wanted to merge these two passions: making change, and a love of wild places. I decided to look for a career as a conservation campaigner, and started a Masters course at UNBC in Environmental Studies and Natural Resources. From there I was hired by Y2Y to work on northern issues. So while my career path was a winding one, it all added up to this job, which I love.

I am motivated by

The work that I do is part of a continental-scale conservation strategy is recognized as a global model for reconciling the needs of nature and people. Being part of this huge, collaborative vision is a very exciting thing, and I love connecting the communities in my region with this globally significant initiative. I also get to go out on the land, or up in helicopters, tracking Grizzly Bears and Caribou with wildlife biologists and working with local guides and outdoors clubs to clear pollution from beautiful natural sites. For me, it's these connections that matter the most. Being able to help solve a community problem with something like pollution, while knowing that it is part of this huge strategy from Yellowstone to Yukon, is very rewarding.

How I affect peoples’ lives

My career is focused on connecting and protecting habitat so that both people and nature can thrive. Wild places provide us with the things that keep us alive: fresh water, clean air, productive soil, and protection from natural disasters like drought and floods. When animals, birds, fish, plants, soil and water interact as they should, not only does wildness thrive—so do we.

Outside of work I

I love a healthy mix of getting outdoors and being a couch potato playing computer games. Both are super rewarding and relaxing, and a healthy mix of down-time and outdoors-time is really important to me. I like to ski, hike and camp and fish, I sail and paddle canoes. I volunteer with my local Search and Rescue.

My advice to others

Don't worry about planning everything out. Follow your passions and instincts, they will lead you to the right path. Always try to be learning, whether in school or not.

When I was a student, I enjoyed:
  • Art
  • Geography
  • History
When I was a student, I would have described myself as someone who:
  • Brought people together
  • Enjoyed working with my hands
  • Engaged in volunteer activities
  • Liked reading
  • Played video games
  • Wasn't sure what I wanted to do

Related Topics

Explore Career Profiles

  • Sarah Eaton headshot

    Sarah Jane Eaton


    I lead a team that is responsible for licensing small modular reactors.
  • Sarah Lockwood headshot taken outside with snow in the background

    Sarah Lockwood (she/her)

    Mine Geologist

    I study the geology of an area to figure out where diamonds are located.
  • Nancy Duquet-Harvey standing next to Agnico Eagle gold mine sign, at Meadowbank, Nunavut.

    Nancy Duquet-Harvey

    Environmental Superintendent

    I make sure that we don't harm the environment with our mining activities.
  • Sara Knox headshot

    Sara Knox (she/her)

    Assistant Professor (biometeorology)

    I study ways to restore and protect ecosystems to help fight climate change.
  • Stephanie Arnold flying drone in potato field.

    Stephanie Arnold (she/they)

    Climate Services Specialist (PEI)

    I help others understand how climate change affects themselves, their communities and their work.
  • Jim Wei tenant un drone

    Jim Wei

    Associate GIS Analyst

    I use online mapping software and programming skills to help solve real-world problems in the environmental and health industries.
  • Marg Rutka sitting on bench

    Marg Rutka

    Geoscience Editor

    I edit geoscience maps, reports and digital data to ensure clarity in writing, consistency and accuracy prior to publication
  • Portrait de Graham Ballachey

    Graham Ballachey

    Vice President, Engineering

    I manage and oversee all the engineering work for a lithium mine development company.
  • Mike Stanzel headshot

    Mike Stanzel

    Technical Sales Manager

    I’m a sales professional who specializes in selling technical or scientific products.
  • Steve Lawrence headshot with trees in the background

    Steve Lawrence

    Sales Manager

    As sales manager for Eos Positioning in Canada, I work with the Sales Reps, Marketing and Production.
  • Hayleigh Conway posant sur une carte des TNO et désignant Inuvik sur la carte. Pris lors de la Journée du SIG 2017.

    Hayleigh Conway (she/her)

    Geomatics Technician

    I make maps that help answer questions about the health of the environment in the Western Arctic.
  • Jessica Rideout

    Jessica Rideout

    Quarry Materials Compliance Officer

    I inspect quarries to ensure that they are operated in compliance with provincial regulations.
  • Dr. Jackie Dawson faisant des recherches sur le terrain sur l'île Beechy, Nunavut.

    Jackie Dawson (she/her/they)

    Professor and Canada Research Chair in Environment, Society, and Policy

    I work with large teams of academics, Inuit knowledge holders, and decision makers to understand the risks and solutions to environmental change.
  • Caroline Richard - Engineer in the mining industry

    Caroline Richard

    Geotechnical Engineer

    I work in the mining industry and manage the waste materials created during ore extraction.
  • Chris Derksen en train de faire ses recherches sur le terrain en Arctique.

    Chris Derksen (he/his)

    Climate Scientist

    I use satellite data and climate models to understand how climate change is impacting snow and ice across Canada.
  • Peter Visscher devant un tableau blanc

    Peter Visscher

    Robotic Vehicle Development, General Manager

    I work with my team to develop extreme robotic vehicles designed to operate off-road and off-planet.
  • Amanda McCallum

    Amanda McCallum

    Geologist, Communication Specialist, Business Owner

    I'm a prospecting geologist, a science communication specialist and business owner.
  • Lesley Hymers à côté d'une pépite de cuivre géante à l'extérieur du musée McBride, à Whitehorse, au Yukon.

    Lesley Hymers

    Manager, Education and Outreach Programs

    I work for an organization that provides Earth science and mineral resources education.
  • Lisa Phiri dans une mine souterraine

    Lisa T. Phiri

    Mining Geologist

    I examine rocks in an underground mine to determine the amount and location of gold.
  • Max Salman aux commandes d'un avion.

    Max Salman

    PH.D. Student / Affiliate Researcher

    I ask questions to things that don’t have answers yet.