About Michaela Pye
Title: Crew Leader
Team Member Since: May 2016
Education: Bachelor of Science with a focus in Environmental Science
Industry Organizations: Terrace Search and Rescue
Certificates: Occupational First Aid Level 3, Canadian Avalanche Operations Level 1
Q: Describe your career path. How did you get into what you do now?
A: In high school, I worked for Gros Morne National Park. I spent my summers outside, sharing information on natural spaces, it was here I started wilderness guiding and developed a strong reputation for carrying myself well in the outdoors. After high school, I deferred university for a year, as I was selected to be a Canadian delegate on an international development program, Canada World Youth. I spent a year volunteering with environmental projects and women’s health organizations in Western Ukraine and Northern Ontario. My experience in these projects led me to believe there is a lot of positive work to be achieved in the Environmental Sector, and in a life spent outdoors. I started tree planting that summer, for a small company in Northern Ontario, and quickly realized the industry is as much a reliable and well-paying job as it is a lifestyle. Over the past 8 years, I’ve stayed in the industry each summer, tree-planting, silviculture surveying, and for the past four years running my own crew! In the winters, I’m a professional ski patroller, working towards a winter career in avalanche forecasting and ski guiding!
Goals & Passions
Q: What are your goals for you and your team?
A: The tree-planting industry has so many ways it can grow to be a safer and stronger workforce. For me, being part of a camp with a strong and growing safety culture, with great, fair tree prices and an equitable workforce is my goal. I hope in my leadership role I can continue to support the evolution of this type of work environment.
Q: What are you most passionate about professionally? What excites you most about your work?
A: Sustainable practices, both environmentally and in the workforce. Many tree-planting companies have a high turnover rate, but they don’t need to. I’m passionate about sustainable camps that create a home away from home for planters due to a safe workplace and the strong ethics of the camp. Environmentally, the ability to work outside every day, reforesting areas in an effective way is a strong passion of mine.
Hobbies & Interests
Q: What do you like to do when you aren’t working?
A: I am a strong believer in the work hard play hard philosophy! I am an avid ski mountaineer, rock climber, and ultramarathon runner. I’ve recently gotten back into surfing, which has been a humbling and extraordinary experience! I also have a really cute dog named Greta, who I take on as many adventures as possible!
Q: What’s something about you that not many people know?
A: I went on an exchange program in my second year of university, to the University of Alaska Fairbanks, I worked at a reindeer farm there!
Q: What is a value statement or quote you live by?
A: A life outdoors is a life well spent.
Q: Who was the most influential person in your life?
A: As cliche as it may be, my parents are rock-solid humans! I grew up on the island of Newfoundland, a place full of beauty but also remote and isolated, a place where opportunity isn’t always right on your doorstep! They’ve never limited my far-fetched dreams, and encouraged hard work over handouts! It has shaped how I am today!