Meet Our Team

Sonia Strobel

Managing Director

Sonia married into the Strobel family in 2001 and quickly became involved in helping connect Otto’s sustainably harvested seafood with friends and family in Vancouver. She worked in a variety of community-based organizations, non-profits, and as a high school teacher for many years, striving for social and environmental justice. Sonia has been a member of Community Supported Agriculture programs since the early 90’s and brought her knowledge of CSA’s to the family fishery, first conceiving of the idea for the CSF in 2008.

Shaun Strobel

Lead Fisherman

Shaun is Skipper Otto’s son, who began fishing with his father when he was just 7 years old. In addition to fishing, Shaun selects and maintains solid relationships with other fishermen and navigates the complex logistics of getting fish from the hands of our fishermen to the hands of our members. Dismayed at the dwindling salmon fishing fleet in the wake of the big business Seine fleet and fish farms, Shaun wrote an M.A. thesis at SFU on the labour history of fishing in BC. Shaun was a high school Social Studies teacher for many years, taught SCUBA diving, and is a technical diver.

Chris Kantowicz

Director of Operations

Chris has spent his career growing businesses that support environmental, social and cultural missions. He first worked with Skipper Otto’s in 2014 as their business coach at the Sauder School of Business’ Centre for Social Innovation & Impact Investing. Chris has an MBA from the Sauder School of Business at UBC and genuinely enjoys all his strategic business planning and financial management responsibilities.

Lizzy DuGuay

Member Services Manager

 Lizzy comes to us from a career in Human Resources at UBC bringing her exceptional interpersonal, problem solving, logistics, and coordination skill set. Her degree in Human Geography helped develop her interests in the intersections between social and environmental justice and community. Lizzy genuinely loves getting to know people, supporting them, and working to make meaningful connections with them! Her values, skills, and interests make her a great fit for the Skipper Otto’s team!

Tamar Batrawi

Business Systems Specialist

Tamar recently graduated from UBC’s Sauder School of Business with a specialization in Finance. Born and raised in Palestine, she aims to use her business knowledge to create a positive impact on society wherever she goes. She is excited to start her career with Skipper Otto’s and grow personally and professionally as the company grows. She loves to travel and explore – hence moving to the other side of the world – and speaks three languages: Arabic, English, and French.

Maery Kaplan-Hallam

Distribution Team

Maery is a graduate student at UBC’s Institute for Resources, Environment and Sustainability where she researches resilience and adaptation in coastal communities. In addition to her expertise in sustainable fisheries, Maery is also a real people person — she’s always happy to chat about people, fish and community so feel encouraged to say ‘hi’ when you see her on the wharf!

Jeff Scott

Distribution Team

Jeff is a Master’s student in the Fisheries Science program at UBC. He spent 6 years working as a Fisheries Observer around the US and is excited to be working on the Distribution team at Skipper Otto’s.

Sahir Advani

Distribution Team

Sahir is a doctoral student at the UBC Fisheries Centre. He hails from India where he has done research with indigenous fishing communities in the Andaman Islands. You’ll find him working proudly on the Distribution team at Skipper Otto’s.

Steve Penfold

Distribution Team

Steve has worked as a fisherman and charter boat captain for many years. After his recent move to Vancouver from the Island, Steve began looking to connect with the local fishing community. He’s delighted to have found the Skipper Otto’s community and to be working on our distribution team.

Anna Barford

Distribution Team

Anna is a born and bred Pacific Northwesterner who loves getting out into the mud.  She has herself caught one salmon, one time, and loves being part of the amazing distribution team at Skipper Otto’s.  When not being near the ocean, on the ocean, or hiking to views of the ocean, she dedicates her time to the intersection of environment and politics.

Lisa Dekleer

Distribution Team

Lisa brings a diverse background in environmental and social justice from business, non-profit, and political sectors to Skipper Otto’s.  She studied Natural Resources Conservation at UBC and intends to do graduate study in environmental policy.  Lisa is excited to be working on the Distribution Team to connect consumers with their fishermen and build a sustainable, local seafood community.

Gordon Havlaar

Distribution Team

Gordon is a performing artist and recent graduate from Simon Fraser University’s School for Contemporary Arts.  Raised on Saltspring Island he loves exploring tide pools, swimming and has a new passion for spinning wool.  As a previous CSA member he is proud to now be a part of the Skipper Otto’s CSF, contributing to local food security.

Rick Havlak

Distribution Team

Rick spent the last five years helping folks connect with their food at his company Homestead Junction, Metro Vancouver’s only urban homesteading store. Now transitioning out of day-to-day management at “the Junction,” he enjoys volunteering with Foodline radio and on several non-profit boards. He has moonlighted as a scuba instructor, holds a B.Sc. in Ocean Sciences from UBC, and enjoys fishing, crabbing, and any excuse to get outside.

Juliano Palacios

Distribution Team

Juliano is a first year doctoral student at the UBC Institute for the Oceans and Fisheries. His work focus on the social-ecological impacts of climate change in the distribution of fish. As a Biologist Juliano hopes to improve his knowledge on the social aspects of fisheries while working in Skipper Otto. If he is not selling fish, he is eating fish, diving with fish, or working with fish data, he’s all about fish-stuff!

Jessika Woroniak

Distribution Team

Jessika grew up ice fishing in the Montreal winters and angling off her canoe in the summer. She is an avid beachcomber and an aspiring marine biology researcher with dreams of someday becoming a voice for the oceans. She is currently involved in a fisheries research project at UBC’s Institute for Ocean and Fisheries aimed at quantifying the effort put towards fishing worldwide. She has recently joined the Skipper Otto distribution team to complement her research and gain a better understanding of marine fisheries on a smaller scale here in BC.

Aaron Clarke

Distribution Team

Aaron has been a Skipper Otto’s member for many years and loves being a part of this food community. Aaron has a background in music composition, engineering and producing, as well as technology & systems. His diverse skillset, ability to learn quickly, and his can-do attitude make him a great asset to the distribution team.

Pedro Daher

Distribution Team

Pedro is born and raised in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and is currently working towards a master’s degree at the Gender, Race, and Sexuality & Social Justice Institute at UBC. He tries his best to support small families’ properties rights and production and social movements that fight against land concentration in favor of giant corporations. He’s happy to work at Skipper Otto’s as a way of supporting a fair working relations, feeding into his goal in life to bring about social justice.

Christina Adams & Greg Merner

Brand Development & Online Marketing

Antenna Social Media & Design is our primary marketing partner, helping us tell our story on social media, the website, labels and signage. Christina, with the help of Antenna’s team, provides marketing advice, social media strategic planning, and web improvements. Greg’s creative direction has helped our brand stand out and he continues to develop our look and feel.

Oliver Strobel

Deck Hand

Oliver is the oldest son of Sonia and Shaun, Skipper Otto’s first grandson, and a 3rd generation fisherman. Dreaming of a better world for her son, his mother, Sonia, first conceived of the idea for the CSF right after Oliver was born in May, 2008. Oliver has been going out on fish boats since he was 3 months old and started deck handing when he was just 5 years old. He loves swimming, fishing, and “working” at fish pick-ups. Oliver hopes to be a fisherman when he grows up.

Lyndon Strobel

Deck Hand

Lyndon is the second son of Sonia and Shaun and was was born in July, 2011, right at the height of the 2011 CSF season! Lyndon’s first fishing trip was when he was just a few weeks old, and, like his older brother, he has been raised with the sounds and smells of fishing ever since. Lyndon loves to tell people that “we are a fishing family” and feels as much at home on the boat as he does in his own house. Perhaps he, too, will carry on the family fishing tradition!