John began his career in the marine industry over 30 years ago. Now Director of Operations 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.
Rachel was born and raised in Niagara Falls, Ontario. She has a Bachelor of Science, with a discipline in Kinesiology from Western University and Brock University. Rachel moved to Vancouver Island for the summer but was captivated by the coastal beauty. Employed with Orca Spirit for almost ten years now, Rachel is head of all sales and also handles organizational logistics, including maintenance of the gift shops, and coordination of boat and office crew and fleet.
Originally from Burlington, Ontario, Hailey’s love for west coast scenery came from spending a lot of time with her family at beaches in Southern California. This made her mind up – move to Victoria in 2018. Having graduated from George Brown College with a degree in Hotel Management, Hailey joined Orca Spirit in 2019 as a Sales Coordinator, specializing in private charters, group bookings and social media. Her favorite whale is K44 “Ripple” and in her spare time, Hailey can be found soaking up some beautiful BC sun either hiking or spending time at the beach with her friends.
Sabrina grew up in Nova Scotia and graduated from Nova Scotia Community College with a degree in Tourism Management. Her love for marine wildlife started when she saw a Fin Whale off the coast of Cape Breton at age 18. Sabrina currently holds her MEDA2, Wilderness First Responder, Marine Naturalist and Marine Basic First Aid certificates. She enjoys learning about our local BC wildlife and sharing her knowledge with guests on board.
This is Antaya’s first summer with Orca Spirit as the Cruise Coordinator. She recently graduated from Camosun College’s Office Administration Program with High Distinction, and plans to pursue a Diploma in Arts & Sciences with a focus on Digital Communication and Design before attending Royal Roads University to attain a degree in Professional Communications. Antaya is passionate about continually gaining knowledge and understanding about the Indigenous cultures and languages of the Songhees, Esquimalt, WSANEC, Tsartlip, Tseycum, Pauquachin, Scia’new, Tsawout and T’Sou-ke Nations that have called Southern Vancouver Island home for time immemorial. Antaya loves to spend her free time biking or hiking on local trails, identifying local flora and fauna, especially birds and amphibians.
Born and raised on Bowen Island, Briar has always been fascinated by the coastal waters that surround her home. After taking a year off from school she moved to Vancouver Island to pursue a concentrated degree in Marine Biology at the University of Victoria. She is newly certified in Marine Basic First Aid as well as her Domestic Vessel Safety and eager to learn about all things ocean.
Born in Vancouver but raised in Ontario, Hannah was always drawn to nature. She spent her summers camping across Canada and the United States, deciding to settle down in Victoria after completing high school. She is currently working towards a career in marine conservation biology, spending her winters working through her degree at UVIC and spending her summers on the water with us, immersed in the environment she strives to protect.
Originally from a small mountain town on mainland British Columbia, Mallory moved to Victoria in 2022. When looking at post-secondary schools the idea of being close to the ocean in Victoria seemed like an exciting change of pace. Mallory quickly fell in love the Pacific Ocean and all of its animals so Orca Spirit was a perfect fit. She has been with Orca Spirit for just over a year and is currently studying tourism and hospitality management at Camosun College
Bill has been in the marine industry for over 15 years and joined the Orca Spirit crew in 2021, working as a vessel captain on the Catalina Adventures. He currently holds his 150 Ton certification.
Born and raised on Vancouver Island, Mick has brought to Orca Spirit Adventures a significant wealth of over 25 years of marine industry experience. Being fascinated with the behavior of Killer whales all his life, Mick graduated from Royal Roads University in 2003 with a Degree in Environmental Science. As our Lead Zodiac Captain for over six years, he was awarded the City of Victoria Hospitality Award in 2016 and has had many incredible, memorable experiences with our local wildlife and guests.
With a background in music, Evan initially moved to the west coast from Dundas, Ontario to work in the audio engineering industry but soon fell in love with the Pacific Ocean and all its creatures. Always being interested in marine wildlife, Evan made the switch to the whale watching industry and started working as a zodiac captain for orca spirit in 2018. As well as being a certified zodiac captain, Evan also holds his PADI scuba diving instructor certificate, and one of his favorite animals is the Pacific white-sided dolphin.
Edward grew up on Piers Island and has been with Orca Spirit for over five years as a Zodiac Captain. Edward graduated from the University of Victoria majoring in Trace Metal Bio Geochemistry and currently holds his SVOP, ROC-MC, MEDA3, Marine Naturalist and Cold-Water Immersion Instructor certificates.
Growing up in Toronto, Adrian spent most of his childhood joining his family on spearfishing trips that started his passion for the ocean. Before moving to Victoria, Adrian majored in Marine and Freshwater Biology at the University of Guelph, Ontario. He joined the Orca Spirit team in 2019 as an Onboard Naturalist and in his spare time enjoys freediving. Now you can find him leading your tours on the zodiacs vessels while sharing his knowledge and passion for the Salish Seas wildlife.
Sailing through the Panama Canal in 2012 is what started Jeremy’s passion for the ocean. Jeremy grew up in Saskatoon and moved to Vancouver Island in 2011. He joined Orca Spirit in 2018 as a vessel captain and currently holds SVOP and master 60GT certifications.
Marisa is originally from a small mountain town nestled in the Selkirk Mountain Range. She always had a passion for nature and could often be found in the forests studying the flora and fauna that came and went with the seasons. At the age of fourteen, she started working in the outdoors, mainly in the snowy mountains and fresh swiftwater. As much as she loved what the interior had to offer, she always felt drawn to the ocean so she moved to Vancouver Island after she graduated high school. Once on the Island, Marisa attended West Coast Adventure College where she obtained her Naturalists of the Salish Sea, SVOP, Med A1, DVS, and ROMC Certification. Soon after, she started working at Orca Spirit where she could share her love for the charismatic megafauna of the Pacific North West
Born and raised in Windsor Ontario, Ryan spent a lot of time on the family boat around Lake Erie. Ryan became very interested in animals and nature at a very young age and so he pursued a degree in Biology at the university of Windsor For 3 years before completing his studies at the University of Victoria where he specialized in marine biology. Ryans passion for marine wildlife was first discovered when I met his fiancé (a huge fan of the Southern Resident Killer Whales) 7 years ago. Ryan has lived in Victoria for 3 years and has been with Orca Spirit for 2 of them as a naturalist. He is on track to obtaining his limited 60 ton master ticket and SVMO certification to further my career in the marine industry as a vessel captain.
Fun fact: if I’m not out on the water with whales you’ll usually find me in the kitchen whipping up tasty creations for my family.
Jake moved from Kingston, ON to pursue his dream of Wildlife Photography, and joined Orca Spirit in 2021. Jake has learned everything he knows by being on the water with all the animals the Salish Sea has to offer. Being on a boat and interacting with guests is where he feels right in his element, and he prides himself on getting a laugh out of people.
Originally Born in England, Megan got her BSc in Marine Zoology at Plymouth University in Cornwall UK. She then went on to get her MSc in Marine Conservation at ATU in Galway, Ireland, after which she became a consultant for the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group.
Looking for a change from the Atlantic to the Pacific Megan moved to Victoria in March and is having the time of her life getting to know the wildlife at this side of the world. In the future she would like to move into research in order to find out how we can protect the wildlife in the Salish Sea better.
Derek grew up on Bowen Island where he spent his time poking around tide pools and scrambling around the rocky shores and towering evergreens. A passion for naturalism and education developed from these child hood experiences and he now hold his bachelors degrees in both Ecology and Education. Derek aims to better understand the natural world which we are a part of and to help others find a sense of awe and care for the more-than-human.
From a young age, Griffin has been passionate about the environment and wildlife, spending most of his time outdoors immersed in nature. Wanting his career choice to reflect what he thrives in, Griffin obtained two ecosystem management diplomas from Fleming College in Ontario, and a Bachelors of Science in Environmental Science from Royal Roads University in Victoria, B.C.
Feeling more at home than ever as a naturalist with Orca Spirit Adventures, Griffin can grow within a career that ignites him, pursuing his interest and love for education and conservation of wildlife and the environment. Griffin has the ability to make anyone feel comfortable on the water, entertaining them with fun facts of a wide variety. He is eager to share his vast knowledge of the Salish Sea.
Sophie was born and raised on Vancouver Island. She attended West Coast Adventure College that gave her many certificates to start her journey in the tourism industry. In her free time she loves to go hiking, camping, swimming and looking for cool things in tide pools. Sophie is currently working towards owning a hostel by attending the hospitality management program in the fall of 2023.
Working with people in nature has been a lifelong aspiration for Matt. He began studying the west coast’s diverse ecosystems when he was 8 years old, and joined the Gulf Islands Center of Ecological Learning as a naturalist when he was only 15. Originally from Salt Spring island, Matt is one of our experienced zodiac drivers.
Born and raised in British Columbia, Sarah has spent her life exploring the Pacific Northwest Coast. At a young age, she realized her passion for natural history and joined the Orca Spirit team in 2014 as a zodiac captain, and marine naturalist. She has now obtained her 60 Ton Masters Limited Captains License and helps with the supervision and maintenance of our zodiac crew and fleet. Sarah spends her summer between the biologically diverse Salish Sea and the remote coast off Port Renfrew. She spends her winters off the Antarctic Peninsula and South Georgia, kayaking and camping amongst penguins and icebergs as an expedition guide. As a citizen scientist, she aspires to create a lasting education for her guests that will inspire and encourage us to protect our natural world.
WALTER CADWALLADER & MABEL WILSON
Walter joined Orca Spirit Adventures in 2003 after many years in the commercial fishing industry. Mabel’s background includes multi-generation ownership of larger vessels. They tap into their extensive marine experience to bring exciting ideas and streamlined processes to the business.