John and Lauren Douglas joke that they’ve spent so much time on the water, they have “salt in their veins.”
Almost 20 years ago, after getting his feet wet as a fisherman, John started the first covered vessel whale watching company in Victoria. He met his wife Lauren, whose family operated a marine company in Port Alberni, on the job, and the rest as they say, is history.
Together, they set the industry standard for eco-tourism in the region. Focused on environmental stewardship, aboriginal engagement and wildlife education, John and Lauren never lost sight of their responsibility to the natural habitat as their crew, fleet and services expanded.
Today, Orca Spirit Adventures and sister-company Orca Spirit Marine Transport provide water-based transportation services to a wide variety of industries – from travel and tourism to entertainment, energy and beyond. With more boats, capacity and departure options than any other organization in the region, Orca Spirit is the whale watching, private charter and marine transport provider of choice to tourists, school groups, tour operators and commercial organizations alike.Join Our Team
The Orca Spirit crew lives, breaths and thrives on respecting the environment, and having fun on water. We're passionate about creating extraordinary experiences for our guests, keeping you safe, and educating you along the way.
Standing 6'4”, Alex is nothing short of an outstanding individual. Originally from Calgary, Alberta, Alex moved to beautiful Victoria, BC five year ago. He joined our pod in 2012, working as a naturalist aboard our covered vessels. Alex holds MED A1/A2, SVOP and ROC-MC certifications, and is in the process of completing a biology degree with a concentration in marine biology at the University of Victoria.
Breanna has been with Orca Spirit Adventures for over five years and is responsible for all aspects of customer service, from the initial point of contact, to greeting customers and responding to enquiries. She handles organizational logistics, including maintenance of the gift shop, and coordinating the boat crew and fleets.
Victoria-born Sarah Keenan has spent her life pursuing her passion for the natural world. From summer through fall, she’s a Naturalist with Orca Spirit Adventures, and always eager to share knowledge, tell stories and point out her favourite animals on tour. Winter finds her guiding show shoe tours in Whistler. Sarah’s dream is to eventually captain her own vessel and lead wildlife tours in less explored corners of the world.
After thirty-seven years in the Canadian Coast Guard, with the last thirty as Captain, Mark retired to seek new adventures. He joined Orca Spirit Adventures in June 2014 and quickly learned the idiosyncrasies of whale watching and providing passengers with a safe, environmentally conscientious and thrilling encounter with wildlife around Victoria.
Lauren oversees the smooth operations of Marine Transport and Orca Spirit Adventures, including finance and marketing. She has been with the organization for over 15 years.
Rachael has been a Naturalist with Orca Spirit since 2010. Highly qualified for the role, she has a Degree in Biology from the University of Saskatchewan, a Diploma in Wildlife and Fisheries Conservation, and a Certificate in Marine Science from Bamfield Marine Sciences Centre. Rachael also volunteers as a Board Member Cetus Research and Conservation Society, a local whale conservation organization.
John began his career in the marine industry over 30 years ago. Now General Manager and vessel Captain, he holds a Master 500GT Near Coastal certification, Small Vessel Machinery Operator (SMVO), and has completed programs in Marine Emergency Duties STCW95 and Marine First Aid.
Paul joined the Orca Spirit team in 2012 and loves meeting and educating guests from around the world. He’s honoured to be part of their “Bucket List” experience and finds their excitement around whale watching for the first time truly infectious.
Walter joined Orca Spirit Adventures in 2003 after many years in the commercial fishing industry, while Mabel’s background includes multi-generation ownership of larger vessels. Walter and Mabel leverage their extensive marine experience to bring exciting ideas and streamlined processes to OSA, such as cost savings methods for vessel ownership and management.
Every Orca Spirit tour is led by a certified Marine Naturalist with a completed or in-progress degree in biology or marine biology. Not only are they experts on marine ecology, local wildlife, naturalist interpretation techniques and regional landmarks, our Naturalists also trained in marine emergency duties.
Their deep knowledge of the sea and its inhabitants allows them to deliver informative, educational tours to guests of all ages and experience.Join Our Team
We're creating exceptional natural experiences for guests from all over the world. Want to join in on the fun? It's easy to apply online. Simply select an available position from the list below, fill out your contact details and attach your resume.Apply Online
Orca Spirit Adventures, a Climate Friendly company, is proud to provide carbon neutral whale watching tours and harbour cruises. We thrive on not only maintaining but improving environmental standards by being a leader in the eco-tourism industry.Learn More