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Provincial Museum of Alberta

Provincial Museum of Alberta BuildingLocated in Edmonton, the Provincial Museum of Alberta is one of Canada's most popular museums. Set in a park just west of downtown, the Museum offers a full range of exhibitions and activities for every age level and interest. Feature exhibitions at the Museum are changing all the time. Behind the scenes, 12 curatorial programs are responsible for building and making accessible some of the finest human and natural history collections in the country.

The Provincial Museum of Alberta provided access to resources and expert personnel that greatly added to the richness of our website. We would like to thank all the individuals that donated their time and talents towards our project:

Dr. Albert Finnamore
Acting Assistant Director, Curatorial and Collections Preservation, the Provincial Museum of Alberta

Acting Assistant Director, Curatorial and Collections Preservation
Bert was born in New Brunswick, obtained his doctorate from McGill University in Montreal and joined the Provincial Museum of Alberta in 1983 to initiate the Invertebrate Zoology Program. The program focused on systematics of wasps and on long-term biomonitoring. Bert has authored over 50 papers, which include descriptions of 64 new species and 6 new genera. In the process he built the museum collection from 55 wasp specimens in 1983 to the 300,000 pinned specimens today. Bert has been active in database development at the Museum, and supervised development of database structure for museum arthropod specimen management and for environmental analysis, initiated research into electronic capture of label data from museum specimens, and has represented the Provincial Museum at various electronic data sharing (distributed database) workshops including those sponsored by the Canadian Biodiversity Informatics Initiative, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the University of Kansas Natural History Museum. During his tenure as Curator of Invertebrate Zoology he oversaw development of the highly successful permanent exhibit of live arthropods, The Bug Room, and was Managing editor of Alberta Butterflies, a book containing color pictorial keys, descriptions and biology of 181 taxa of butterflies in Alberta.

Bert has served for a number of years on the Biological Survey of Canada and acted as senior editor on the Arthropods of Peat Lands volume produced by the Biological Survey. Bert has extensive experience in Central and South America including the biodiversity program in Costa Rica (All Taxa Biodiversity Inventory at Guanacaste National Park), and has acted as a biodiversity monitoring consultant for the Smithsonian Institute of Conservation Biology, Monitoring and Assessment of Biodiversity Program (SI/MAB), Washington D.C., working with Shell Prospecting and Development Peru (Lima) in which he was involved with biodiversity monitoring at gas extraction platforms and pipelines in the Peruvian Amazon. He was an instructor for several years with the Smithsonian Institution's Biodiversity Monitoring course in Washington D.C. and lectured to registrants from around the globe on monitoring arthropods. Bert is a past chair of the Biodiversity Science Board of Canada (1996-1998), a group that, among other things, provided advice on biodiversity matters to the Federal Government with respect to international agreements pertaining to biodiversity (i.e., Rio Convention on Biodiversity) and was instrumental in development of biodiversity monitoring protocols in Canada. Bert now coordinates the activities of 15 programs at the Provincial Museum ranging from natural history, human history, conservation, and collection management, to information technology.

Bruce McGillivray
Acting Director, the Provincial Museum of Alberta

Dr McGillivray obtained his Ph.D. in Systematics and Ecology in 1981 from the University of Kansas. His specialty is Ornithology and he maintains an interest in avian morphology, distribution and genetics and works on birds when the opportunities arise.

Alwynne Beaudoin

Dr Alwynne B. Beaudoin is the Palaeoenvironmentalist at the Provincial Museum, and is responsible for the curation and maintenance of the Pollen and Seed Reference Collections. Dr Beaudoin holds a B.Sc. (Hons.) in Physical Geography from Leeds University, U.K., and M.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Western Ontario. Her graduate work had a strong Alberta connection, and focused on the landscapes and vegetation history of Sunwapta Pass, adjacent to the Athabasca Glacier, Jasper National Park. Following an interval of university teaching, she moved to Alberta to work for the Archaeological Survey in 1986. Her work concentrates on the investigation of the landscapes and environments of Alberta over the last 10,000 years, especially as they relate to the Province's human history. This involves the examination of plant remains, especially seeds and pollen, and the analysis of soils and sediments. As described in a recent news release, she has recently become involved in SCAPE ("Study of Cultural Adaptations in the Canadian Prairie Ecozone"), a multi-year, interdisciplinary project focusing on postglacial landscape and human history in the Canadian prairies.

Dr Beaudoin has produced over 80 publications related to her area of expertise, including two Annotated Bibliographies published by the Archaeological Survey, The Provincial Museum of Alberta. Dr Beaudoin is a member or Fellow of seven professional societies; she serves on the executive of several of them and is Editor for the Canadian Association of Palynologists web presentation. In addition to her Museum duties, Dr Beaudoin also lectures and supervises graduate student research through the University of Alberta and is an Adjunct Professor in the Anthropology Department and the Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences. She plays an active role in public education, often speaking to societies and special interest groups.

Ron Mussieux
Curator, Geology

Ron Mussieux was born and raised in Edmonton. He attended the University of Alberta for six years obtaining two degrees, Bachelor of Science (Geology) and Bachelor of Education. He joined The Provincial Museum in 1974, working first in the Paleontology Program and later transferring to the Geology Program to become curator. Ron has been a member of the Edmonton Geological Society since the 1970s and served on their executive as President in 1986. Ron has been a member of the Geological Association of Canada since the 1970s, participating in a number of committees, particularly those concerned with geological education. 

Ron's educational background in geology is very broad and he is interested in several aspects of the field. His greatest enjoyment is in building The Provincial Museum of Alberta's mineral collection and using it to interpret this subject to the public.

Mark Steinhilber
Curator, Ichthyology and Herpetology

Mark has been with The Provincial Museum of Alberta since 1981. He began collecting fishes for the Museum in 1987. He has a Master of Science degree (Biological Sciences) from the University of Alberta. His current research projects include investigating morphological diversity in ciscoes (Coregonus spp.) from northeastern Alberta and determining the status and distribution of non-game fishes in the province.

Michael Luchanski
Supervisor, Collections

Mike Luchanski is presently the Collection Manager for the Provincial Museum of Alberta. This position is responsible for museum collections administration and database development.

Mike started his temporary employment in 1981 working with the museum's Ornithology collections. He subsequently remained with the Ornithology and Mammalogy programs as a technician for 12 years. In 1993 Mike became the museum's Botany technician. During this time he worked at combining the vascular and non-vascular plant programs and the cataloging and incorporation of the C.D. Bird collection, comprised of about 120,000 specimens, into the main herbarium.

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