Who We Are
Who We Are
All 8 members are involved in education in differing streams – some middle and high school teachers, others university research assistants and thinkers.
While all under the age of 30, our collective canoe trip guiding experience spans over 175 weeks and thousands of kilometres.
KIRA BURKETT has her Master's in Political Science and is currently in the Faculty of Education at the University of Winnipeg. She has worked for YMCA –YWCA Camp Stephens for a number of years including last summer leading a 6 week canoe trip in Northern Manitoba and Ontario. AND she just bought a house!
HADLEY BURNS will graduate this spring from the Faculty of Education at the University of Winnipeg. She worked at Camp Stephens for 8 years. Last year she spent the summer on a 10 week canoe trip as the Trail Ambassador for Trans Canada Trail's Path of the Paddle. She also owns the infamous distinction of being the only person to fall asleep during Star Wars: The Force Awakens.
AUGUSTA STOBBE has completed a BA in International Development, Religion and Culture, and is currently working on a BSc in Biology at the University of Winnipeg. She has previously paddled the Manigotagan, Gammon, and Bloodvein Rivers, and looks forward to undertaking something more challenging!
STEVE KESSELMAN is completing his Master's in Anthropological Linguistics at the University of Manitoba. He has worked for YMCA-YWCA Camp Stephens as Wilderness Coordinator and has led multiple 6 week canoe trips. Steve’s excessive body hair will help him save on thermal underwear this summer.
IAN GIRARD is finishing his Master's in Molecular Plant Biology at the University of Manitoba. He is a certified Paddle Canada Moving Water Instructor and has worked as Wilderness Coordinator and a trip leader for YMCA-YWCA Camp Stephens. He’s been delegated the task of dealing out puns and dad jokes during the trip.
PAUL SCHRAM will graduate this spring from the Faculty of Education at the University of Winnipeg. Along with Hadley, he was a Path of the Paddle Trail Ambassador last summer on a 10 week canoe trip. He has also led canoe trips for Camp Stephens and experiential education company Momenta. Having grown up on a cattle farm, he is confident in his ability to milk a caribou, if need be.
JAMES SWAN teaches Outdoor Education and English at River Heights Junior High School in Winnipeg. He has led remote wilderness canoe trips for YMCA-YWCA Camp Stephens, and John Island Camp and coordinated outdoor education programming for Momenta. James has random gaging attacks when drinking coffee, yet optimistically drinks it every morning!
SYDNEY TONI has completed her Master's in Environmental Studies. She has led remote wilderness canoe trips for YMCA-YWCA Camp Stephens and is currently chasing coyotes and pronghorn in Montana. When not paddling a canoe, you will likely find her drinking tea and conquering crosswords, or just being sassy. Syd won't be on the trail, but she has taken on primary contact and logistics chief for the trip.