Jeffrey Whiting, President & Founder

Jeffrey Whiting - President & Founder of Artists for Conservation

Jeff is a sculptor, author and illustrator, environmental advocate, naturalist, instructor, and social entrepreneur. With a formal education in biology and earth sciences, he has been an accomplished and award-winning artist since the age of 15, being recognized as one of the world’s top 15 sculptors of wildfowl, and one of the youngest exhibitors ever to be juried for inclusion in the Birds in Art, the world’s foremost bird art exhibition.

At 16 years of age, the Prime Minister of Canada presented one of Jeff's sculptures to Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. At 18, Jeff completed his first of 5 books and won first prize at the World Championships for Wildfowl Carving. He has published close to ten books in the nature art genre, including educational workbooks, journals and exhibit books. His expertise in nature inspired art stems from 23 years of experience in the field as author, educator, and practitioner. 

An entrepreneur since his teens, Jeff has spent much of his professional time as the key driving force and visionary behind Artists for Conservation, which he founded in 1997. With AFC, he has found a way to combine his creativity as an artist and his skill as an entrepreneur with the passion for environmental advocacy to bring about change on a global scale. He is a Signature Member of Artists for Conservation, the Society of Animal Artists and Fellow International of the Explorer's Club. In 2010, Jeff was a recipient of Business in Vancouver's 2010 Forty under 40 Awards. Jeff is also co-founder and partner in a leading technology consulting firm, ISCAPE Consulting, based in Vancouver, Canada.

Jeff has served as an advisor to a range of projects, including as a member of the Circle of Advisors for Science Art-Nature, founded at Stanford University, and the Vancouver Development Committee for the Robert Bateman Centre for Art and Environmental Education.  Jeff resides in North Vancouver, British Columbia with his wife Yasaman and their two children.

Jeff is a Fellow International, Explorer's Club, Signature Member, Society of Animal Artists. Birds In Art Alumnus and Business in Vancouver 40-Under-40, 2012 award winner.


Board of Directors & Advisory Board

With the assistance of our international Board of Directors and Advisory Board, AFC continues to set a standard of excellence as the world's leading non-profit group dedicated to support the environment through art. We are grateful to the people who help strengthen our mission, business practices, partnerships and financial stability by providing their time, talent and expertise to our cause.


Robert Bateman

Honorary Chair AFC Advisory Board, AFC Signature Member

Robert Bateman

Born in Toronto, Robert Bateman has been a keen artist and naturalist from his early days, and is renowned internationally as a force for environmental education and conservation of our natural world. Bateman's artwork has received international critical acclaim and has attracted an enormous and distinguished following. Bateman's realistic painting style, featuring wildlife in its habitat, encourages the viewer to examine the natural world. His work is in many public and private collections, and several art museums. He has had one-man museum shows throughout North America, including an exhibition at the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, DC; most of these shows have drawn record-breaking crowds. Bateman's art reflects his commitment to ecology. He is a spokesman for many environmental and preservation issues, using his art to raise millions of dollars for these causes. He has been the subject of numerous books and films; his honours and awards include 12 honorary doctorates, 3 schools named after him and Officer of the Order of Canada. Bateman now channels much of his support and efforts to leave a lasting legacy through the Bateman Foundation and the Robert Bateman Centre for Art & Environmental Education in Victoria, Canada.

Bateman has been a Signature Member of AFC since 2005. In 2011 - 2013, Bateman served as Patron of the Artists for Conservation Festival. In 2008, he received the organization's highest honor - the Simon Combes Conservation Award, during AFC's inaugural annual exhibit.

Bateman explains "AFC is doing fantastic work. In a world crowded by many who voice concern over the changes to our planet, AFC and its leadership are doers - leading the charge in an international artistic and cultural movement toward understanding, appreciating, and protecting nature's diversity. I applaud AFC's work and am proud to accept this honor in the hope that it might help the cause further."


Dr. Robert Butler

Special Advisor, AFC Signature Member

Brent Cooke - Members, Board of Directors, Artists for Conservation

Dr. Rob Butler is an ornithologist, author, and artist. He holds a graduate degree from Simon Fraser University (MSc) and the University of British Columbia (PhD). He spent 40 years mostly with the Canadian Wildlife Service as a biologist and then a scientist researching birds. Rob is an adjunct professor of Biological Sciences at Simon Fraser University and has published over 140 works for scientific and popular audiences. He has scores of appearances on television, radio and in newspapers on bird related storiees.

He serves on many boards including the executive of the The Nature Trust of British Columbia, President the Pacific WildLife Foundation, Chair of the Vancouver International Bird Festival and is Honorary Director of Nature Kids.

He is a fellow of The Explorers Club, Royal Canadian Geographic Society, and American Ornithologists Union, an outstanding alumnus of Simon Fraser University and Capilano University, and Signature Member of Artists for Conservation.


Brent Cooke

Board Member, AFC Signature Member

Brent Cooke - Members, Board of Directors, Artists for Conservation

Brent's is an award-winning bronze artist and world-authority on museum exhibits. A marine biologist by education, Brent's background includes underwater photography, TV and film production and large-scale cultural and natural history projects for museums and cultural institutions,

Brent's love of nature is the inspiration in all of his artwork. Brent strives for anatomical accuracy and detail with each sculpture undertaken. It is important to him that each work conveys a story or engages the viewer by eliciting memories of their own in the subjects depicted. He has been influenced by the Art Noveau/Art Deco period of design and often those elements appear in is own designs. He believes that a sculpture has been successful when the viewer is compelled to touch or move the piece around for a different angle of apprecation. As the bronze medium is so heavy, he is always trying to find ways to give his pieces movement, speed, or a lightness through the use of empty space.

Brent worked as the Director of Exhibitions for the Royal British Columbia Museum in Victoria B.C. Canada for 33 years. He is now a museum consultant bronze artist and Executive Director of the Deeley Motorcycle Museum in Burnaby BC.


Darcy Dobell

Board Member, Conservation & Sustainability Consultant

Brent Cooke - Members, Board of Directors, Artists for Conservation

Darcy Dobell is a seasoned NGO executive known for creativity, authentic community and stakeholder engagement, inspired alliance-building, and operational excellence. She has a strong record of success in organizational leadership and development, and a proven ability to unite diverse interests and teams around shared goals.

Darcy also draws on a firmly-rooted personal commitment to ecology and community. From 2009 to 2013, Darcy worked with WWF Canada as Vice-President, Conservation & Pacific. She is an expert in the complex and dynamic interplay of indigenous rights, economic and community interests, social and political issues, and ecological trends that characterize Canada's unique public policy context.

Since founding the wabe in 1996, Darcy has delivered strategic planning, program development, and communications expertise to philanthropic foundations, indigenous groups, NGOs, governments, and community organizations. the wabe's recent clients include the Coastal First Nations - Great Bear Initiative; the Tides Canada Marine Planning Fund; Port Metro Vancouver; and the SFU Shared Decision-Making Project. Darcy joined AFC's Board of Directors in 2014.


Victor Elderton

Special Advisor, AFC Education Program

Victor Elderton - Members, Advisors, Board of Directors, Artists for Conservation

In June 2016 Victor retired from his formal education work as a Vice Principal at Norgate Community Elementary in North Vancouver SD. At Norgate he continued his primary work on nature and placed based experiential learning for children and families. Prior to this appointment Victor was a teacher and Principal Co-Administrator for the North Vancouver Outdoor School (re-branded as the Cheakamus Centre) where he worked for 28 years. In May 2016 he began work as a mentor with SFU for Nature-based Learning. He continues to consult and volunteer for NVSD, throughout the Lower Mainland and internationally to enable "Learning with Nature" initiatives. He is a member of various environmental, education and sustainability committees as well as working groups; principle among these are: Director at Walking the Talk Society (Environmental Educators of BC), Association of Nature Center Administrators (ANCA), NatureKids BC (board member), VancouverMetro Education Advisory Committee, North Vancouver and Archives Commission (Chair) and past member of BC Premier's

Citizen's Conservation Council.

Over the decades Victor's work and accomplishments through Environmental Learning endeavours including North Vancouver Outdoor School have included the Hilroy Fellowship Program Award (CTF), BC Ministry of Environment Excellence Award, Roger Tory Peterson Institute, ROEE Jim Jackson Award, NS Chamber of Commerce Business Excellence Awards (Environment), Canadian Environmental Awards (Silver), Habitat Canada Excellence Award, Fraser Basin Council Salmon Hero Award, Coho Society Excellence Award and the Queen's Diamond Jubilee Medal.


Tony Fins

Board Member

Tony Fins- Board of Directors, Artists for Conservation

Antonio (Tony) Fins has been a staunch supporter of AFC for several years and brings a unique and powerful combination of skills and experience in journalism, and leadership in both the arts and conservation communities. Political Editor at the Palm Beach Post in Florida, Tony served for three years as executive director of the Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation where he led conservation and education efforts. His signature achievements included the creation of a network of schools engaged in marine conservation and the Conservation Village concept for public events, including the Tortuga Music festival. 


Stephen C. Quinn

Board Member, AFC Signature Member

Stephen Quinn - Member, Board of Directors, Artists for Conservation

Stephen C. Quinn is an award-winning artist, naturalist, author and world-authority has spent a lifetime exploring the natural world and working in a career at the intersection of art and science. Quinn joined the staff of the American Museum of Natural History in 1974, after graduating from the Ridgewood School of Art and Design, where he apprenticed under such diorama-art masters as Raymond deLucia, Robert Kane, and David J. Schwendeman.

In his current capacity as Senior Project Manager for Exhibitions at the museum, he oversees all aspects of new diorama creation including field expeditions, exhibit fabrication, and installation, as well as diorama conservation and restoration. He was a project leader for the 1995 field expedition to the Central African Republic, which resulted in the rain forest diorama in the museum’s Hall of Biodiversity and was a project manager for the 2003 renovation of the Milstein Hall of Ocean Life.

Mr. Quinn provided the illustrations for the 1994 book What Color is That Dinosaur? by Lowell Dingus, and was co-author of Inside the Dzanga-Sangha Rain Forest (1998) and author of Windows on Nature: The Great Habitat Dioramas of the American Museum of Natural History (2006). He has been a member of the Society of Animal Artists since 1978 and a member of Artists for Conservation since its founding. He lives in Ridgefield Park, New Jersey with his wife Linda and their two children, Tom and Claire.


William Whiting

Managing Director & Artist Member Relations

Bill Whiting - Managing Director of Artists for Conservation

Bill has 30 years of industrial and trade policy experience with the Canadian Federal Government. A Professional Engineer with a Masters degree in Business Administration (MBA), he was a senior executive for a number of years with the Industry Department, where he managed a staff of senior professionals before his retirement. He has traveled internationally in his work, and has been involved with AFC from its inception as a volunteer and strategist.

As Director of the Automotive Branch of Industry Canada, Bill was exposed to many of the latest alternative fuel initiatives and became familiar with fuel cell technologies. Bill has had a life filled with creativity-from woodworking, architecture and wood sculpture, to landscape design. He is an avid outdoorsman, amateur naturalist, and operator of a small organic Christmas tree plantation. He currently works for AFC from his rural 1830s log home on one hundred acres of boreal forest, just one hour's drive from Canada's capital.

When not corresponding with AFC members, digging holes with his tractor, or tending to his gardens, Bill is working on a long-term strategy to retire from his retirement.

Advisory Board

  • Robert Bateman,  Honorary Chairman 
  • Rob Butler, Special Advisor, Conservation
  • Victor Elderton, Special Advisor, Education & Conservation
  • John Seerey-Lester, Honorary Appointee

Board of Directors

  • Jeffrey G. Whiting, AFC President & Founder, Artist, Conservationist
  • Brent Cooke, Artist, Conservationist, Past Exhibit Director for Royal BC Museum 
  • Darcy Dobell, Former WWF- Canada Vice President, Conservation and Pacific Region
  • Tony Fins, Conservationist, Editor, Past Executive Director of the Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation
  • Stephen C. Quinn, Artist, Conservationist, Past Sr. Project Mgr, American Museum of Natural History


  • William Whiting, Managing Director and Member Relations
  • Yasaman Whiting, Co-Founder and Special Programs 
  • Rosslyn Shipp, Education and Volunteer Manager
© Copyright 2022 Artists for Conservation Foundation, Inc. All rights reserved. "Artists for Conservation", "AFC" and the butterfly logo are registered trademarks of Artists for Conservation Foundation, Inc. AFC International Foundation is a registered charity in Canada (860891761 RR 0001).