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Award-winning photographer reveals rarely seen spectacular and threatened B.C. landscape
Okanagan College Media Release

Ian McAllister Oct 2014The Great Bear Rainforest in British Columbia is globally renowned for its astonishing biodiversity. Encompassing 21 million acres from Vancouver Island to Southeast Alaska, the area is the largest coastal temperate rainforest on earth. Comprised of a complex landscape of ocean, mountains, glacier-carved fjords and old growth forests, it is home to such species as cougars, wolves, salmon, grizzly bears and Kermode—a unique species of black bear in which one in 10 cubs have a white coat. 

“This treasured habitat is also one of the most endangered landscapes on the planet—under significant threat of destruction from massive energy projects,” says Ian McAllister, award-winning photographer and co-founder of the wildlife conservation organization Pacific Wild. 

A long-time Great Bear Rainforest resident, McAllister will reveal his explorations from the headwaters of the region’s river valleys down to the hidden depths of the offshore world in his talk The Great Bear Wild: Why Should We Care About its Protection? on Monday, Nov.3 at 7:30 p.m. at Okanagan College’s Vernon campus Lecture Theatre. 

McAllister is the author of The Great Bear Rainforest, winner of the B.C. Bookseller’s Choice Award, and his images have appeared in publications around the world. He has been honoured by The Globe and Mail as one of 133 highly accomplished Canadians, and he and his wife, Karen McAllister, were named by Time magazine as “Leaders of the 21st Century” for their efforts to protect B.C.’s rainforest. He is a member of the International League of Conservation Photographers and has won the North America Nature Photography Association's Vision Award and the Rainforest Action Network's Rainforest Hero Award. Brother Bear Oct 2014

McAllister’s new book The Great Bear Wild, a stunning collection of photographs and personal narrative, is the product of 25 years of research, exploration, and campaigning within the spectacular area he calls home.

The Great Bear Wild is presented in collaboration with Pacific Wild, and is part of the Science in Society Speaker Series (a joint project by Okanagan College and the Okanagan Science Centre), which is sponsored by the Best Western Vernon Lodge, Cooper’s Foods, Starbucks Coffee, and the Vernon Morning Star.

Admission is $7 in advance or $10 at the door. For tickets, call the Okanagan Science Centre at 250-545-3644 or visit To subscribe or obtain more information about the Science in Society Speaker Series, visit