The Lagoon Society is extremely grateful for the valuable contributions of the many community members who support our work through their generous private donations.
We would also like to acknowledge the ‘Founding Families’ listed below, whose substantial gifts have helped us to accomplish so much in the past five years.
DENISE & KEN CARGILL
In 2002, the 90 acre lot, which included the majority of Ruby Lake Lagoon came up for sale when the then land owner faced bankruptcy. The Lagoon Society and local community members raised a campaign together to “Save the Lagoon”, and Denise Cargill responded to our cry for help.
As an educator and naturalist Denise Cargill has loved BC all her life. Honeymooning on the Sunshine Coast from Eastern Canada, Denise and her husband Ken saw the opportunity to contribute to a worthy cause. A wonderful gesture in honour of her late daughter, Denise’s generous financial assistance enabled the 90 acre Lagoon property to be purchased by the Cogrossi family at Ruby Lake Resort.
In 2005, Denise also generously donated a 7.5 acre lot to the Ruby Lake Lagoon Nature Reserve Society as a gift. This parcel of land contains both a marshland and a small clearing and is across the Highway from the site of the Iris Griffith Interpretive Centre. Plans are now underway to feature this land also in the Society’s projects.
Denise Cargill is our very special Founder. The Society’s 10-acre wetland restoration area in front of the Interpretive Centre is being named The Denise Cargill Wildlife Sanctuary in her honour. Denise and Ken still visit Ruby Lake Lagoon whenever they can.
We wish to acknowledge Denise Cargill as the Reserve’s founding angel and express our heartfelt appreciation for her generosity and encouragement.
THE COGROSSI FAMILY
Since moving to the Sunshine Coast from Milan, Italy in 1993, the Cogrossi Family has owned and lived at Ruby Lake Resort. The family has successfully combined their love of nature and good food at the popular Resort over looking Ruby Lake and Ruby Lake Lagoon. It is thanks to their generosity and appreciation of the natural world that long term protection has been secured for the Lagoon and the surrounding area.
The Cogrossi family has generously granted occupancy rights to the Lagoon Society for 80 years of the 20 acre site of the Iris Griffith Interpretive Centre and wetland restoration area. For the very long term, the family is protecting Ruby Lake Lagoon and the wetland area with a Conservation Covenant held by The Land Conservancy of BC. This will ensure protection of the land in perpetuity regardless of any change in ownership in years to come.
When the Lagoon Society was formed in April 2002, two of the five Directors included Aldo Cogrossi and his partner Brigit Garrett. Three generations of the Cogrossi family live and work at Ruby Lake Resort – Antonio and Gabriella (grandparents), Giorgio and Aldo (brothers) and children of Brigit and Aldo – Paulo, Oliver, and Benjamin. Brigit and Aldo are active Society Directors and are the original forces behind the popular Wood Duck and Wilderness Festival held each May. They are both dedicated naturalists and contribute in a multitude of ways to the Society and the promotion of wildlife conservation and education.
We wish to express our gratitude and thanks to all the Cogrossi Family for their generosity, support and friendship.
THE GRIFFITH FAMILY
As a founding family, the Griffiths are involved in countless ways in the Ruby Lake Lagoon Nature Reserve Society and its endeavours.
The late Iris Griffith was a dedicated naturalist and community activist in the Pender Harbour area. Named in her honour, the Iris Griffith Field Studies and Interpretive Centre recognizes her life-long commitment to environmental awareness in this community. The Pender Harbour Wildlife Society, of which Iris was one of its original members, established an Iris Griffith Memorial Fund after her death in March 2002, that was generously donated to the Lagoon Society.
Billy Griffith, widower of Iris, is a Lagoon Society Board Member. Billy’s experience in West Coast life and industry (fishing, logging, and the skills of the homestead) have whetted his ingenuity and given him deep respect and appreciation for the plant and animal life on which all our activity depends. When he speaks, his wisdom is respected in coastal communities.
Maureen Parrott, eldest daughter of Iris, became a Board Member in 2004. She brings her enthusiasm and keen interest in all things natural – especially marine life. A fourth-generation local and third-generation commercial fisherman, Maureen has a down-to-earth approach and is very supportive of the educational role of the Field Studies and Interpretive Centre. Mother of Iris’s grandson Michael, Maureen is very aware of the importance of teaching children the value of the natural world and Michael often attends with her at many Society occasions.
We wish to thank the Griffith family for their enormous contributions and support towards the Lagoon Society – the whole family’s dedication, financial support and knowledge have been awesome!
Thank you to the following people for their generous donations to help the Lagoon Society grow!
Sylvia and Bruce Woodsworth
The Pender Harbour Rotary Club