Farewell and thanks to Nancy Wilkin
Save the date: Royal Roads faculty and staff are welcome to attend a reception with light refreshments in the castle Drawing Room from 3:00 to 4:30 p.m. on Thursday, May 3 to help celebrate Nancy’s retirement.
Royal Roads is saying goodbye to a remarkable leader in environmental protection and sustainability. Nancy Wilkin is retiring after almost 10 years at the university, with two years as the executive in residence and eight years as the director of the Office of Sustainability.
Nancy and her team are responsible for Royal Roads’ transformation to a leader in environmental stewardship in the post-secondary landscape of British Columbia and Canada. Under Nancy’s leadership, Royal Roads has made remarkable achievements in sustainability on our campus and in the greater Victoria community.
She has been instrumental in Royal Roads’ efforts to reduce energy use and greenhouse gas emissions. The university has been carbon neutral since 2010 and is on track to achieving our long-term greenhouse gas reduction goals. As a result of this success, Royal Roads was highlighted in the government of British Columbia’s report on climate change, which was profiled at the Paris climate change talks in 2015.
During Nancy’s tenure, the university has also achieved a gold rating for its sustainability success from the Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System (STARS), an initiative of the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE).
Nancy spearheaded our latest five-year sustainability plan and has built financial support and enthusiasm for projects on campus and in the greater community, such as the Carbon Neutral Capital Program, Solar Colwood Program and the Royal Roads Sustainability Action for the Environment (SAFE) Fund.
Nancy has protected the remarkable lands on which the Royal Roads campus rests. She championed the Royal Roads Wetland Ecosystem Restoration Project, which works to return areas of the campus to their natural state as a healthy wetland free of invasive species. Her efforts have led to significant funding for the project from the Pacific Salmon Foundation and the Vancouver Foundation.
She helped improve recycling and composting on campus, from paper towel composting in the washrooms to our new outdoor recycling units. She also helped improve cycling infrastructure on campus, including the introduction of bike rentals.
She made time for student learning alongside her efforts, sponsoring and supporting more than 20 applied student learning projects addressing sustainability issues.
Finally, she increased Royal Roads’ profile as an environmental steward through partnering with environmental action groups and committees, including the Nature Conservancy of Canada, Child and Nature Alliance of Canada, the Skagit Environmental Endowment Commission, the Esquimalt Lagoon Stewardship Initiative (ELSI) and the Capital Regional District Roundtable on the Environment.
Nancy has truly endeavoured to have Royal Roads “meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generation to meet their own needs.” Her efforts have borne fruit that will continue to grow long into a greener future.
Thank you, Nancy.