Dr. Keith Chaulk is the new director of Memorial University’s Labrador Institute (LI). The appointment was approved by Memorial’s Board of Regents at its Sept. 6 meeting.
Born in North West River, Labrador, Dr. Chaulk holds a B.Sc. in biology from Dalhousie University and a M.Sc. in biology from Acadia University. He completed his PhD in cognitive and behavioural ecology at Memorial in 2006.
He comes to Memorial from the Canadian Wildlife Service where he managed the service’s field office in Happy Valley-Goose Bay, Labrador. Prior to that, Dr. Chaulk served as chief of staff with the Department of Lands and Natural Resources with the Nunatsiavut Government, and a research scientist with the Labrador Inuit Association.
He also sits on the board of the Regional Planning Authority, the Harvest Research Steering Committee, as well as the Central Advisory Committee for the Atlantic Salmon Conservation Foundation and has served on the Atlantic Migratory Game Bird Technical Committee.
“I’m very excited about this new opportunity and I look forward to working with Labradorians and the university community in an effort to meet the education and research objectives of the Labrador Institute” Dr. Chaulk said.
Based in Happy Valley-Goose Bay, Labrador, and reporting to an associate vice-president (academic), the director of the Labrador Institute facilitates research in and about Labrador, as well as access by Labradorians to the university’s education, research and professional development opportunities. The director is guided by an advisory board representing the various regions and peoples of Labrador.
Dr. Chaulk’s appointment at the Labrador Institute begins on Nov. 19, 2007. Dr. Ron Sparkes, the LI’s Labrador associate, has been acting director during the search process.
“Dr. Chaulk’s appointment will undoubtedly invigorate the Labrador Institute’s operations,” said Dr. Michael Collins, Memorial’s associate vice-president (academic), who oversees the LI’s activities. “I look forward to working with him and the community as we continue to build the Labrador Institute into an effective, community-based organization. Dr. Chaulk’s background and experience will be valuable in light of the Institute’s educational, research and community mandates.”
Meanwhile, the Labrador Institute will move to its new location on Friday, Sept. 14, at 2 p.m., when the College of the North Atlantic officially opens the new extension to its Happy Valley-Goose Bay campus.
The move affects administrative offices for the institute, as well as the Labrador Institute Library and Archives, which houses an extensive collection of publications, videos, photographs and slides relating to Labrador and which will be integrated into the College of the North Atlantic Library.
“Memorial University is committed to offering and pursuing education and research opportunities in Labrador,” said Dr. Axel Meisen, president of Memorial. “We see the Labrador Institute as a way to build a larger Memorial University presence in Labrador in order to respond better to the needs of its people.
Dr. Chaulk has the expertise and academic background to help us do this effectively. We have asked him to focus particularly on the participation of aboriginal students, young and old, in university-level education”.
The Labrador Institute’s mission is to identify the needs of the Labrador community and the opportunities for applying Memorial’s research and educational capabilities toward the primary goal of promoting the well-being of the people of Labrador. The institute also works with other educational institutions, aboriginal groups and other agencies and associations in determining and developing programming specially designed for Labradorians and in pursuing shared facilities for research development.