Board of Directors

The Nova Scotia Sea School is governed by a dynamic group of community and business leaders. They include past-participants, parents, donors, sailors. They all have in common a commitment to providing youth in Nova Scotia with life-changing learning experiences.

Sea School Board Members

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Maggy Burns
Board Chair

Maggy is an experienced coach, facilitator and strategic thinker who is passionate about organizational excellence. She has worked in the non-profit sector in NS for the past two decades spanning sub-sectors including environment, entrepreneurship, international development, youth and experiential education. For the past ten years she was the Managing Director at the Ecology Action Centre. Her passion for the NS Sea School emerged while on a Sea School professional enrichment trip in 2005 and has only deepened as she has gotten to know the organization.

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Sarah Dobson
Board Member

Sarah Dobson first encountered the Sea School as a communications intern while studying public relations in 2014 and after participating in the 6-day professional development sailing program she was smitten! Sarah has remained a volunteer since and became a board member in 2017. Sarah has a Bachelor’s Degree in International Development Studies and History from Dalhousie University and an Advanced Diploma in Public Relations from the Nova Scotia Community College. Sarah currently works in fundraising and development for a healthcare non-profit organization. In her spare time she enjoys writing, hiking and working with newcomers to Canada to improve literacy skills.

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Dale Robertson
Board Member

Educated at RMC and Dalhousie University and having been awarded the designation Certified Management Consultant, Mr. Robertson is a Professional Engineer with qualifications in other fields, including Management Consulting.

Mr. Robertson's career includes a variety of business management positions and consulting in addition to having started, owned and operated many businesses of his own in the fields of plumbing and heating, real estate development, manufacturing of hardware for electric utilities and energy management consulting. His energy management consulting has been international in scope and includes work on 5 continents since 1981 and led to hundreds of millions of dollars in reduced energy consumption. His utility pole line hardware business (Enerscan Engineering Inc) has grown consistently and rapidly since 1998, with sales throughout North America and a presence in South America, Latin America, the Caribbean and Europe. Dale is or was a member of several boards and committees, including the Halifax Regional Development Agency, the Greater Halifax Partnership, the Mayor's Economic Strategy Committee and Kings View Academy. He has served as President of Engineers Nova Scotia and as Vice Commodore of the Royal Nova Scotia Yacht Squadron.

Dale sailed briefly in university but then purchased a J24 sailboat in about 2002 and has never looked back, participating in hundreds of races in Canada, USA and Bermuda. His love of sailing, plus the impact the Sea School has on the development and enrichment of teenagers in their pursuit of keeping out of trouble and finding themselves are what has inspired him to participate on the Sea School Board.

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Peter Edwards
Board Member

Peter Edwards enjoyed the privilege of growing up sailing in St. Margaret’s Bay and strongly believes in the benefits of lifelong friendships that can develop through sailing experiences. He enjoys the sense of community and environmental awareness that comes from time spent on the water. Peter has been on the Sea School board since 2012. Peter is a chartered professional accountant and has worked in public practice since 2005 with a focus on small to medium sized owner managed businesses. His education includes a Bachelor of Commerce (2002), the Chartered Accountant designation (2008), and is currently enrolled in the Canadian Institute of Chartered Business Valuators program. He has volunteered services for various non-profit organizations with interests in mental health and youth causes.

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Ella McQuinn
Board Member

Ella McQuinn is a business coach and management consultant working with organizations focused on purpose driven strategies. She works with a variety of owners and senior leaders in a variety of sectors committed to change and making a difference in their roles. She sits on a variety of non profit boards focused on leadership, sustainable community development and coastal conservation. She has been on the board of the Sea School since 2004 and is also the parent of a Sea School participant, which has allowed her to see the remarkable impact the program has on young people. Her own passion extends to the sea having grown up in a sailing family in Nova Scotia.

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Sheryl Scully
Board Member
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Colin Guthrie
Board Member

Over the last 18 years Colin has worked in the general area of health and human performance, specifically in the areas of leadership development and executive coaching, human factors and assistive technology, professional sport, sport psychology and experiential education. His focus is to coach elite performers in business or sport and lead them to deliver high performance under pressure and on demand. Colin has conducted research on the comparisons between novice and expert performers, the similarities between coaching elite athletes and senior business leaders, and the psychological make-up of professional sailors who compete in around-the-world sailing races.

In 2008, after spending time in the United States to finish his education and compete on the sailing circuit in the Etchell Class, Colin returned home to Nova Scotia with a vision to apply his knowledge and insight into developing a stronger and more vibrant business community in Atlantic Canada.

Colin earned a Ph.D. in Behavioural Studies/Kinesiology and a Graduate Certificate in Disability Studies from Temple University in Philadelphia (2008), and completed a Bachelor of Science and Master’s of Science in Kinesiology (Health and Human Performance) from Dalhousie University in Halifax. In addition, Colin holds an adjunct faculty position at Dalhousie University.

Colin’s recent clients in leadership development include Nova Scotia Power, Bangor Hydro and Electric, Nautel Ltd, Highliner Foods, First On Site Restoration, and the Canadian Sailing Team.

Colin volunteers his time with disability advocacy groups and remains active in the local sailing community. He promotes sailing at the grass roots level through club programs as well as not-for-profit organizations such as the Nova Scotia Sea School.

Colin resides in the Halifax area and enjoys an active lifestyle with his wife and two young children.