Author Archives: tobytresidder

Ancaster resident Lisa Burnside named HCA’s new CAO

The Hamilton Conservation Authority (HCA) Board of Directors is pleased to announce that Lisa Burnside has been named HCA’s new chief administrative officer.  Lisa was the Director of Human Resources with the HCA before accepting the new position.

Lisa Burnside held the first Human Resources position with the Hamilton Conservation Authority, starting with the HCA in July 2002.  She was designated as an alternate acting CAO, holding the position during vacation periods over the past several years.  Lisa has also worked closely with past CAOs, who have inspired and challenged her with leadership projects and roles to develop her skills for this position.

Lisa holds an Honours BA in Labour Studies from McMaster University and the Certified Human Resources Leader (CHRL) professional designation from the Human Resources Association.  Her previous experience includes working for Tempel Steel (formerly SIEMENS) with the process engineering department on safety initiatives, transitioning to manage the human resources department and working with internal departments for ISO 9000 training and audits.

Lisa Burnside was born and raised in Hamilton and now resides with her family in Ancaster.  She has a passion for natural areas and grew up enjoying outdoor recreation in conservation areas including hiking, cross-country skiing, canoeing, fishing and exploring the outdoors.

She began her new position at the HCA on Friday, February 3.

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on LinkedIn

New Membership Structure for AGM

After modernizing the Foundation’s by-laws in 2016 to comply with upcoming legislation, the Foundation’s Board of Directors have approved a new membership structure. Individuals donating $500 or more in our most recently completed fiscal year (Dec 2015 to Nov 2016) are now members of the Hamilton Conservation Foundation and are eligible to vote at our Annual General Meeting in May. Members will receive a Save the Date notice in the mail shortly.

If you have any questions, comments or concerns about this new change. Please don’t hesitate to contact us at 905-525-2181 ext 129 or by emailing

Please note that Foundation membership allows individual donors to play an oversight role in the Foundation’s governance and is not to be confused with an HCA Nature’s Rewards Pass which provides purchasers with access to HCA Conservation Areas.

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on LinkedIn

Three fundraising successes to celebrate!

Top: The Burlington Runners’ Club supports the Dundas Valley Trails Fund
Middle: Heritage Green Community Trust renews their support for a new conservation area
Bottom: Friends of the Eramosa Karst support new plantings

Three groups warmed our hearts this winter season with their extraordinary generosity. Their donations will be put to work at the Dundas Valley CA, the newly planned East Escarpment CA and at the Eramosa Karst CA. The Foundation is lucky to enjoy the friendship and generosity of these community groups which help us do far more than we ever could on our own.

The Burlington Runners’ Club renewed their support for the Dundas Valley Trails Fund once again this winter with a donation of $12,000. The funds represent the proceeds of the Club’s annual Sulphur Springs Trail Run and help keep the sprawling 40km Dundas Valley Trail System in great shape year-round.

The Heritage Green Community Trust renewed their support for the new planned East Escarpment conservation area. The donation is part of a three-year pledge of $2 million to support HCA’s efforts to control flooding in Stoney Creek and establish a new conservation area.

The Friends of the Eramosa Karst presented the Foundation with the proceeds of their fundraising efforts in 2016. The Friends group is currently fundraising to establish new native species plantings along Second Road in the Eramosa Karst CA Feeder Lands.

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on LinkedIn

Applications open for 2017 Student Award for Environmental Leadership

Are you a high school student in Hamilton about to start College or University in an environmental field? If you want to make a difference for Hamilton’s environment, you could win $1,000 to help with your education. All you have to do is fill out our application form, send us your resume, a quick little letter telling us how much you love the natural world and anything else that would help us understand why you’re the best candidate!

The award will be presented at the 38th annual Environmentalist of the Year Awards at a dinner at Michelangelo Banquet Centre in June. You can find out more details about the dinner at

Click here to access the printable application form.

Applications are due by Friday, March 31, 2017. You can submit yours by emailing or mailing it to:

Student Award for Environmental Leadership
c/o Hamilton Conservation Foundation
P.O. Box 81067
838 Mineral Springs Road
Ancaster, ON L9G 4X1

If you have any questions or need any help filling out the application please don’t hesitate to call Toby Tresidder at 905-525-2181 ext. 129 or email

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on LinkedIn

Another Successful RBC Blue Water Day

Over 30 staff from two RBC branches came together back in the summer on June 2nd to plant 170 large native trees and shrubs on a farm property in the Logies Creek Subwatershed within the Spencer Creek Watershed. The residents of the property had contacted the Hamilton Watershed Stewardship Program in 2015 as they had decided to retire a portion of their leased agricultural lands and allow for an accelerated regeneration and naturalization of 1.5 acres with a robust diversity of native plant species.

The RBC staff’s time spent volunteering was invaluable to seeing this project through. Thank you to RBC not only for their staff time but also for their donation.  The native plants that were purchased and planted will help to recreate a natural landscape that will provide wildlife habitat for years to come.

It was a great day, and on the day, the Hamilton Watershed Stewardship Program and the Dundas Valley 50 Year Vision teamed up to coordinate this volunteer event.

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on LinkedIn

Conservation Awards celebrate some of our most passionate supporters

Maria Topalovic (left) and Scott Peck (right) present Mark Tamminga (centre) and Joany Verschuuren (not pictured) with their award.

Two of the Foundation’s most generous supporters were honoured at the HCA Conservation Awards on December 8, 2016. Mark Tamminga and Joany Verschuuren are long-time supporters of the Foundation and strong advocates for the conservation cause in Dundas and across the watershed.

Mark and Joany’s support is much greater than their financial contributions. Their passion for conservation is infectious and has inspired gifts from enough of their friends to build a whole new community of supporters. Without that community, projects such as the Maplewood naturalization in the Dundas Valley CA, the Canal Park project and the Hermitage restoration simply would not have been successful.

For their leadership and support, we cannot thank Mark and Joany enough.

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on LinkedIn

Happy Holidays from the Hamilton Conservation Foundation!

As we reach the end of 2016 everyone at the Hamilton Conservation Foundation would like to thank you for your role in making this a great year for our watershed. Plans came together for two new Conservation Areas, at Westfield Heritage Village and on the East Escarpment. Over 8,000 students explored the Dundas Valley CA with their classmates and a new trail system is nearing completion at the Fifty Point CA.

None of this would have been possible without your generosity.

Future generations don’t know yet, but you’ve given them a great gift this holiday season. More of our watershed’s natural areas are protected than ever before.

Thank you!

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on LinkedIn

Join us for a Fall Colour Hike at Christie Lake CA

Free event will showcase stream rehabilitation with a healthy dose of family fun.

Join us Saturday, October 17th, 2015 at the Christie Lake Conservation Area from 1 to 3pm. We’ll be leading a guided fall colour hike around the rehabilitated Spencer Creek tributaries and explaining how donations to the Foundations General Conservation Fund are dramatically improving the ecological function of the area.

The event is free for all Foundation supporters and will feature:

  • Guided ecology hike around restored creek tributaries
  • Children’s crafts
  • Family barbecue
Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on LinkedIn

Gifts pushing Hermitage project along

Work proceeding swiftly but donations still needed to help tell the site’s rich story.

Workers from Rock Solid Stone Masons prepare the Foundation for a new steel structure which will hold the Hermitage ruins together.

Workers have quickly dismantled the existing structure, carefully cataloged each stone and begun pouring the foundation of a structure that will be in place for generations to come.

With construction proceeding, the project is turning heads and attracting new donations. To date, the $600,000 project has received $544,000 worth of funding, enough to begin construction. Donations, however, are still needed to help complete construction and fund the landscaping, benches and interpretive panels which will bring the site’s rich history to life.

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on LinkedIn

Donations help blaze new trails at Fifty Point

Gifts from ArcelorMittal Dofasco and the Helderleigh Foundation showcase natural beauty of Conservation Area.

A 40-metre wheelchair-accessible pedestrian foot bridge will connect refurbished trails with a new loop around the Conservation Area’s lagoon. Fifty Point’s existing trails will be rehabilitated, resurfaced with limestone screenings, and expanded to create two trail loops to the north and south of the new bridge.

Fifty Point, while well-known to local boaters, ball-hockey players and campers, boasts an incredible diversity of natural beauty which often goes unnoticed. Hikers, bird-watchers and nature-enthusiasts will be able to explore the new and refurbished loops in late 2016.

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on LinkedIn