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Our Team


Amy Baxendell-Young


Amy began her career with us as a member of the Animal Care Team in July 2016, after moving to Canada from Sydney, Australia in 2014. She attended the University of Western Sydney where she graduated with a Bachelor's degree in Animal Science. Her extensive career has involved working with five of the eight extant species of bears, which include Sun bears, Asiatic Black bears, North American Black bears, Brown bears and most recently, Polar bears. 

Over the years, Amy has played a role in all aspects of The Habitat, including conservation projects, education and fundraising. A highlight for her has been taking part in Polar Bears International's 2019 Climate Alliance program. Since then, Amy has worked with Polar Bear's International as a Field Ambassador during the polar bear season in Churchill, Manitoba for the past two years.


Amy was promoted to the position of Manager in March, 2022. The bears will always remain her greatest love, and she has used her experience and passion for the Polar Bear Habitat to help strengthen and further the Centre, in order to continue providing the best care for polar bears in need. 


Brooke Etherington

Animal Care Team Leader

Brooke joined the Habitat team in May, 2023. After graduating with a Bachelor of Science from Carleton University in 2021, Brooke's area of focus has been in  conservation and research of aquatic environments.

Brooke has maintained her passion for conservation biology, and now focuses on arctic ecology. In her spare time, she enjoys being outdoors with her rescue dogs. Her personal experience with behavioural training and managing chronic medications for her rescue dogs, as well as professional experience in the veterinary field has proven advantageous in her work here at the Habitat.

Gail Palmer

Animal Care Team

Gail joined The Habitat team in May, 2022. Gail holds a Fish and Wildlife Technician diploma from Fleming College and has worked with animals for most of her career and personal life.


As an avid dog-sled racer, Gail brings with her many years of experience with behavioural training. During her first year as part of the animal care team, Gail has used her behavioural skills and calm demeanour to build a strong and trusting bond with the bears. 

Sierra Robin

Guest Services Team Leader

Sierra first began her work with us as a summer student in 2018. Since then, she has proven her dedication and care for the Habitat by continuing on after the summer in a part-time role, and most recently taking on the responsibility of Guest Services Team Leader.


Having grown up in Cochrane and spent many years at the Habitat, Sierra is a wealth of knowledge for all visitors. She has come to know the bears and their personality, and is always ready to educate those who are interested. With her knowledge and passion for the Polar Bear Habitat, Sierra plays an active role growing and strengthening the organization.   

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