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Exceptional Achievements Recognized: ECO Canada President and CEO Honoured at 2023 Calgary Leaders Awards

ECO Canada

ECO Canada

ECO Canada proudly announces its President and CEO, Kevin Nilsen, was recently honoured at the 2023 Leaders Awards in Calgary, AB.

CALGARY, AB, CANADA, December 11, 2023 / -- ECO Canada, a leading organization dedicated to environmental sustainability and fostering green careers, proudly announces its President and CEO, Kevin Nilsen, was recently honoured at the 2023 Leaders Awards in Calgary, AB. The awards ceremony, now in its 15th year hosted by Business in Calgary, took place on November 9th at the TELUS Convention Centre. This event celebrated outstanding leaders and organizations for their contributions to the growth and economic strength for the city of Calgary.

Kevin Nilsen was awarded as one of Calgary’s top leaders in recognition of his commitment to excellence, innovation, and leadership. The award highlights Nilsen’s remarkable achievements and positive impact on the environmental industry and workforce.

“These leaders demonstrated that they were highly interested in investing in Calgary’s people and communities. I was particularly interested in how and what the leaders invested into their companies, their people and the Calgary community,” says Catherine Grygar, one of this year's Leaders Awards judges.

Additional criteria the judges looked at included leadership characteristics; the level of direct involvement of the leader in terms of vision and strategy; resiliency of the business; and the involvement and support of the broader community and industry.

Since becoming President and CEO in 2016, Nilsen has grown the organization from 15 employees to 65. Originally an officer in the Norwegian Army, Nilsen has employed a disciplined and strategic leadership style. Nilsen is determined to help all environmental workers, as well as see an increase in underrepresented groups with diverse skill sets entering the sector. He has made this possible by ensuring employment programs are in place for these opportunities in partnership with the Government of Canada. This includes a growing number of Indigenous peoples, foreign-trained professionals and women in leadership roles.

Nilsen has also been instrumental in launching regional networking events nationwide, academic partnerships and the growth of professional certification. In this respect, ECO Canada certifies Canada's environmental workforce with the only nationally recognized designation - Environmental Professional (EP®). The EP® designation is based on education, experience, work ethics, and proficiency, with the option to choose from 14 specializations that evaluate over 300 competency statements. As part of Nilsen’s leadership at ECO Canada, and himself an EP®, the certification has increased by over 20 per cent. Today, ECO Canada has certified over 7,000 members since created.

Nilsen supports ECO Canada in helping First Nations, Métis and Inuit communities across Canada develop local environmental professionals and foster job creation in the green and blue economies. ECO Canada’s BEAHR program offers locally customized training courses, providing accessible and meaningful career development to Indigenous youth. Nilsen relentlessly continues to work with Indigenous communities, organizations and local educational institutions to provide individual training geared toward building skills for entry-level employment. Over 6,000 Indigenous learners have participated in BEAHR training across Canada and more than 250 different communities in all provinces.

The team at ECO Canada is thrilled to see the recognition of their leader’s accomplishments. It serves as a testament to the hard work, dedication, and innovative spirit of the employees under Nilsen’s leadership. Nilsen’s dedication to ECO Canada has not only earned industry recognition but also contributed significantly to its overall success and growth.

For more information about ECO Canada, visit

About ECO Canada:

ECO Canada is the steward of the Canadian environmental industry. From job creation and wage funding to training and labour market research – we champion the end-to-end career of an environmental professional. We aim to promote and drive responsible, sustainable economic growth within the industry while ensuring that environmental care and best practices are priorities. Over the past 30 years, we have forged academic partnerships, tools, and research to train and certify environmental job seekers and help fill the labour market.

We work alongside government, policymakers, academia, students, employers, professionals, industry, and international audiences to ensure we support Canada as a global leader in innovative workforce solutions and job creation. We remain the go-to source in the environmental labour market; our research provides unmatched statistics and analysis on the industry's economic and labour trends that identify workforce gaps.

Aaron Wilson
ECO Canada
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