Fonds CR-37 - Martin Keeley fonds

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Martin Keeley fonds

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  • Source of title proper: Title based on contents of fonds

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  • 1971-1998 (Creation)
    Keeley, Martin
    Predominantly 1988-1997

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Physical description

2.1 m of of textual records and other material

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Biographical history

Martin Keeley was a drama critic turned environmentalist. He moved to Point Roberts with his wife, Claudette Reed Upton-Keeley, and quickly began supporting a fight against golf course, condominium and hotel development in the area because it threatened the local heron colony. Martin and his wife Claudette worked hand in hand to research their passion of herons and to preserve the Point Roberts heron rookery. Keeley then helped to found the Point Roberts Heron Preservation Committee (PRHPC) in 1989 and remained on as director for many years until the organization's membership interest spread from just Point Roberts to the entire span of Boundary Bay, at which point the B.C. Great Blue Heron Society was created to encorporate all of the surrounding areas interests. The PRHPC then became a sub-committee of the BC Great Blue Heron Society, linking it to other environmental groups and environmentalists. With the work Keeley was doing for the Point Roberts Heron Preservation Committee, he came into contact with the Fraser for Life Communications Society that the PRHPC then worked with.

In July 1990, Martin Keeley along with the Fraser for Life decided to create another company under the umbrella of the Communications Society, calling it the Friends of Boundary Bay. The intention was to get Martin Keeley to be the executive director of the organization. The Friends of Boundary Bay was an environmental advocacy group working to preserve the Boundary Bay area in Delta. It acted as a lobbyist for the preservation of the Boundary Bay area as a wildlife preserve, and for the prevention of golf course development in the area. The organization's activities in this area included attending Delta Council meetings, issuing press releases, and staging demonstrations. The organization also worked to launch interpretive programs and a mobile interpretive unit regarding the preservation of Boundary Bay. The organization also staged fundraisers, including a reading by W. P. Kinsella and a silent auction held December 15, 1990, and a "Blues for the Bay" benefit concert held February 15, 1991.

In October 1990, Martin Keeley accepted a position as an executive member of the Boundary Bay Conservation Committee. He worked closely with them on matters pertaining to the Boundary Bay area, wetlands and other environmental concerns that were linked with the PRHPC and the FOBB.

By 1991, Martin Keeley was heavily invested in at least three environmental groups around the Boundary Bay area. He remained active in most of them until his leave in 1998/1999. Other organizations that were in direct contact with Martin Keeley were the Fraser Wetlands Committee (FWC), the Delta Naturalists Society (DNS), the Burns Bog Conservation Society (BBCS), the Nature Trust of British Columbia, the Western Canada Wilderness Committee, the Vancouver Natural History Society, the Tsawwassen Nature Park Society, the Surrey/White Rock Naturalists and the Puget Sounders.

In 1998, Martin Keeley began looking for a replacement for his position as Executive Director of the Friends of Boundary Bay. His other organizations had slowly given control to other people. By the end of 1998, he had replaced himself and began his departure for the Cayman Islands.

In 1999, following Keeley's departure, the Friends of Boundary Bay changed its name to the B.C. Wetlands Society to reflect its changing role in education and research involving wetlands ecosystems. By 2000-2001, the funding for the organization had significantly decreased and the organization's research and programs were integrated into other organizations duties.

Martin Keeley has continued his environmental activism following his move to the Cayman Islands in 1998. He taught environmental science at a college level in the Cayman Islands before he developed and implemented the Mangrove and Reef Curriculum with teachers, NGOs and Education Ministries worldwide. Martin has been International Education Director for the Mangrove Action Project (MAP) for 13 years, and will continue much of his work in that position. More information can be found at or through articles collected and placed in accession folders for 2010-029.

Custodial history

The materials are believed to have been maintained only by Martin Keeley during his time with the Point Roberts Heron Preservation Committee, the Fraser for Life, the Friends of Boundary Bay and the Boundary Bay Conservation Committee. Other members of the organizations may have contributed to the collection and maintenance of these materials.

Scope and content

Fonds consists of materials collected by Martin Keeley, and others, during his time as founder/director of the Point Roberts Heron Preservation Committe, member of the Fraser for Life Communications Society, executive director of the Friends of Boundary Bay, and executive member of the Boundary Bay Conservation Committee. The materials were generated from both his home in Point Roberts as well as the offices in Ladner, B.C. and Point Roberts, Washington.

Textual materials include Corporation of Delta reports, court case documents, transfer of lease agreements, other reports, notes, correspondence (both to and from), letters, emails, newsletters, publications, studies, proposals, brochures, notices, membership information, financial information, meeting minutes, questionnaires, application forms, workshop brochures, newspaper articles and other various materials that Martin Keeley or others may have thought pertained to a research interest or their organizations. The newspaper articles have been removed from the textual material and placed in the Martin Keeley and Friends of Boundary Bay Newspaper Clippings Binders. These binders can be found on the Reference Library bookshelves.

Audiovisual media materials include VHS, videocassettes for a camera recorder, cassette tapes and reel-to-reel format audio. Photograph materials include photograph negatives, prints, transparencies and contact sheets. The material spans many different topics, such as administrative records, local development, airport development, golf course development, wildlife and wildlife protection, environmental concerns and impacts for the region, local areas of concern (Boundary Bay and Point Roberts), as well as photographs of events relating to, attended by or hosted by the various organizations.

The fonds has been arranged into the following sous fonds/series/sub-series:

  1. Friends of Boundary Bay sous fonds
    1.1 Envrionmental Reserach Topics series
    1.2 Other Environmental Organizations series
    1.2.1 Boundary Bay Conservation committee sub-series
    1.2.2 Fraser Wetlands Commitee (FWC) sub-series
    1.2.3 Delta Naturalists Society (DNS) sub-series
    1.2.4 B.C. Great Blue Heron Society (BCGBHS) sub-series
    1.2.5 Burns Bog Conservation Society (BBCS) sub-series
    1.2.6 The Nature Trust of British Columbia sub-series
    1.3 Friends of Boundary Bay Administrative Records series
    1.4 Friends of Boundary Bay Photograph series
    1.5 Friends of Boundary Bay Audiovisual Media series
  2. Fraser for Life sous fonds
    2.1 Fraser for Life Photograph series
    2.2 Fraser for Life Administrative Records series
  3. Point Roberts Heron Perservation Committee sous fonds
    3.1 Point Roberts Heron Perservation Committee Photograph series
    3.2 Point Roberts Heron Preservation Committee Administrative Records series

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Dates of creation, revision and deletion

June 14, 2014
Revised by BCANS Coordinator, August 27, 2014

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