Gillian Sanders grew up in Vancouver and has been homesteading in the North Kootenay Lake area since 1994. While raising honeybees and small livestock Gillian learned that bears could be easygoing neighbours provided they didn’t find food at her farm. In 2007 Gillian began her MA in Environmental Education and Communication, with her thesis research identifying bridges and barriers to coexisting with grizzly bears in the rural community of Meadow Creek. Since 2013, Gillian has expanded her work throughout the Kootenay region as coordinator of Grizzly Bear Coexistence Solutions. This project aims to improve grizzly bear-human coexistence through education, collaboration, and use of practical tools. Gillian works closely with hunters, farmers, ranchers, recreationalists, environmental groups, and government to promote effective tools and education that enable people to reduce conflicts with bears and to ensure the long-term persistence of healthy populations of grizzly bears in B.C. Gillian loves all wildlife species and is especially interested in the interconnectedness of ecosystem ecology. She has worked on various wildlife research projects, including helping with the Kootenay Community Bat Project and netting local bats to assist in their conservation.