· Grew up in Camrose, a small farming community in central Alberta
· Graduated from Queen’s University in Commerce in 1981 and received a Master of Industrial Relations degree from the University of Toronto in 1983
· For 20 years, has worked as an entrepreneur and management consultant with cooperatives, businesses, communities, not-for-profit organizations and governments to help them achieve their economic, social and environmental goals
· In 1997, moved with his wife Heidi Schaeffer, their daughter and son to a reforested farm just north of Campbellford
· Actively involved in his local community; has volunteered as a hockey and soccer coach, a founding member of the Campbellford/Seymour Community Foundation and the Corporate Secretary for Westben Arts Festival Theatre.