Standard Development Group (SDG) Update

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FSC welcomes three new members; seeks to fill open position on SDG Indigenous Chamber

FSC Canada is pleased to welcome three new members to its Standard Development Group (SDG): Tina Biro from Alberta-Pacific Forest Industries, Isabelle Allen from Wahkohtowin Development and Chris Wedeles from ArborVitae (AVES) Environmental Services. It is also actively recruiting for a new representative for the SDG Indigenous chamber – FSC members may apply by contacting Elaine Marchand at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

The eight-member SDG plays a crucial role in the development and evolution of the requirements within FSC Canada’s National Forest Stewardship Standard. This team, focused on forest management, includes two members for each chamber: Indigenous, Environmental, Social, and Economic. Members generously volunteer their time and expertise to provide oversight and strategic direction in the development of normative requirements related to the forest management standard, such as Intact Forest Landscape and Indigenous Cultural Landscape indicators, as well as other standard-related tasks.

Thank you to our departing SDG member for their contributions: Gillian Chow-Fraser from Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society, Troy Stuart from Bigstone Cree Nation, and Brenda Hopkins from Hopkin Forest Management Consulting Ltd. 

Here is a look at our incoming members: 

Isabelle Allen
Isabelle Allen is a Registered Professional Forester with a master’s degree in sustainable forest management from the University of British Columbia. She also holds a bachelor’s degree in environmental sciences and resource management. Isabelle has worked as a Projects Forester at Wahkohtowin Development since 2018, specializing in Indigenous engagement with forest management planning.

As a member of the Timiskaming First Nation, Isabelle has also been a representative of the FSC Canada Aboriginal chamber since 2019 working to make standards and indicators more accessible to First Nations communities. Passionate about building relationships with Indigenous communities and forest professionals in Ontario and across Canada, in March 2023 Isabelle organized the first Indigenous Forestry Forum in Chapleau, Ontario.

Tina Biro
A forest industry professional for more than two decades, Tina has spent 16 years with Alberta-Pacific Forest Industries Inc. (Al-Pac) working with stakeholders, landowners, contractors and Indigenous communities to maintain high environmental and social standards. For the past seven years, she managed their Forest Management certificate and three FSC Chain of Custody / Controlled Wood certificates for Al-Pac and two conifer tenure holders.

Tina is a highly active FSC member who has gained knowledge through auditor training on standards, and is committed to working within the SDG to develop robust, workable FSC requirements in Canada. Her career began with a broad post secondary education centred around the complex management of renewable resources.

Chris Wedeles
A seasoned ecologist and resource management consultant since the mid-1980s, Chris has spent the past 14 years focused on the integration of ecological values into forest management. In that sphere, he has worked for each Canadian province and two territories, as well as in the United States and Central America.

Chris is a principal at ArborVitae Environmental Services Ltd and keys in on efforts linked to wildlife and ecological values, including extensive projects involving many stakeholders. He excels at synthesizing important information and performing field assessments and quantitative analyses. He holds both a master’s and bachelor’s degree in wildlife biology.

Source: FSC Canada