Les Oystryk

Les is a retired Conservation Officer and lives in Creighton, Saskatchewan. He retired in 2010 after a 36 plus year career with the Saskatchewan Ministry of Environment as a Conservation Officer and Compliance Manager.

After graduating from the Canora Composite High School in 1970 Les completed one year of Arts and Sciences at the University of Saskatchewan in 1971. He went on to graduate from the Kelsey Institute of Arts and Sciences in Saskatoon, with a Diploma in Renewable Resources Technology, in 1973 after having spent the summers of 1972 and 1973 working at Tsiigehtchic (Arctic Red River), N.W.T.

Les’s career took him to many postings across northern Saskatchewan with a variety of district, park and area responsibilities that revolved around resource and environmental conservation, protection and management, with a strong emphasis on First Nations and community stakeholder consultations.

Having lived, worked and raised a family in remote northern locations, Les has acquired a unique insight and a greater sense of individual and family health care, educational, resource management and culturally appropriate heritage needs and challenges in the north.

Les has a keen interest and love for the northern part of Saskatchewan, as that is where he has lived and worked for the majority of his life. He has a passion for the history of the north particularly with respect to the people that have been involved with the fish and fur trade. Carrying out northern historical research is one of Les’s personal passions. A rich northern heritage and culture is a huge piece of the traditional fabric of the Churchill River region.

Les believes that northern residents are now sharing a common desire to understand and reconnect with the past and apply those lessons in order to create an even stronger cross-cultural community across the entire north. Healthy people living in healthy communities. He also believes that this broader perspective challenges us to accept that what we value is constantly evolving from one generation to another as we learn more from our shared history.

Les has served as Vice Chair on the Board of Directors for the Churchill River Enterprise Region, Vice Chair on the Board of Directors for the Mamawetan Churchill River Regional Health Authority and past board member of the Northern Regional Health Authority in Manitoba. In 2013 Les completed the Health Director Education and Certification Program through the Johnson-Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy to obtain his Professional Director designation. Since being elected to the Board of Directors for Heritage Saskatchewan in 2013 Les has taken an active role and has served on several committees as well as being re-elected President for a two year term in February of 2015.

Les and his wife Karen live in Creighton and have a family of five children with eight grandchildren in various locations across western Canada. They spend time at their remote cabin on Athapapuskow Lake in northern Manitoba; where visiting with family and friends and growing a garden is a source of real enjoyment.