The executive director of the Forest Practices Board has left his position to take up new pursuits closer to his West Kootenay home.
Fred Parker joined the independent watchdog as an appointed board member in 1999. In 2002, he took over as its senior staffer and remained there for a decade.
Board chair Al Gorley said in a statement Parker has competently guided staff, board members, and three different chairs “through innumerable challenges, and has left an enduring stamp on the board’s work.”
“Perhaps one of Fred’s greatest assets has been the relationships he built and maintained with a wide variety of individuals with an interest in the forest,” Gorley said.
“People from all levels and perspectives have taken him into their confidence and benefited from his thoughtful advice.”
Gorley said Parker’s “straightforward approach” and broad knowledge of BC’s forests and forest-dependent communities served the board and the people of BC well.
“I have come to consider him the poster-boy for trustworthy advisers – knowing when to ask, when to tell, and always grounded by a forest stewardship ethic and caring about the people.”
Parker, formerly of Castlegar, was a manager with the Interior Lumber Manufacturers Association and is a past director of the Columbia Basin Trust.
He lives in Argenta, coincidentally not far from the headquarters of Meadow Creek Cedar, whose operations the board found “unsound” in a recent audit.
This story will appear in the West Kootenay Advertiser on July 12.