Rick Simpson has been the Chair of the BCWF Region 8, fisheries committee from 2003 to 2018. He is also the Interior representative for the BCWF Inland Fisheries Committee.
He has been a member of the BCWF since September of 1981 when he and his family moved here from Edmonton. He has been a continuous member with the Federation for 37 years. The first club he was a member of was the Port Coquitlam and District Hunting and Fishing Club.
“I went there originally to make sure my family had the proper safety and proficiency training for the firearms that were in our house.”
Some of the club members thought Rick would be interested in what they were doing in the Coquitlam Watershed with the new hatchery.
I did that with them from 1981 to 2003. I did things all over the Lower Mainland with that club. We got some amazing work on fish and habitat restoration done in that watershed. There were 12 or 15 really good projects that we were involved in.
When considering the BCWF, Rick believes it began with very noble intentions to do fish and wildlife conservation management, to conserve the resources as best they could. But he thinks there has been a evolution away from what it’s roots were and what the Federation believes their roots are. Rick is hopeful though for a brighter and sunnier future for our fish and wildlife.
“I want to hear that the BCWF were leaders, were pioneers, were innovators, that you were out front, that they are looking straight into the future with a vision of where they are going to go.”
One of the reasons why Rick became involved was for the projects he did with the Coquitlam Hatchery.
“It made me feel like I was giving back. I had been a hunter and an angler, and I was given the opportunity to do habitat restoration, and salmon enhancement work, I was given the opportunity to give back to the resource. I could do hands on stuff and see the results. It’s very gratifying.”
Rick hopes the future will hold more projects that will help conserve B.C’s resources for his children, his children’s children, and his children’s children’s children to enjoy.
I want to make sure that we leave this place that we’re in right now in a better state. I’m talking about the environment, I’m talking about fish, and I would like to see gender equity and equality in the Federation. When I die I want to be able to say to St. Peter, ‘I got a lot of black marks, but I really did try hard to make this a better place for my children.
~By Cheyenne Bergenhenegouwen