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Leader Spotlight – Dan Garbell

Dan Garbell – Manager, Walker Environmental Group’s Niagara N-Viro Facility

My name is Dan Grabell and I am currently the Manager for the Walker Environmental Group’s Niagara N-Viro Facility. The Facility processes dewatered biosolids to produce a Class 1 Fertilizer which is sold for agricultural use throughout Southern Ontario.

Prior to managing the facility for the past year and half, I was an operator at the same plant and have used my knowledge of operations to help improve the operating and financial efficiencies of the plant. Before joining Walker in 2012, I spent several years in the consulting industry where I gained insight into Site Assessments and Soil Management.

While different opportunities have given me the chance to work and live outside of the Niagara Region, I found myself back in the lakeside town that I grew up in and call Port Colborne my home with my wife and two children and take every opportunity to enjoy the lake as much as possible! I am thrilled to have this opportunity through Leadership Niagara to expand my leadership tools that will help me give back to the community I Love!


How do you define community leadership?

Community Leadership to me is right in the name. It’s a cohesive team of Individuals with the same core values that can bring different ideas, opinions and skill sets to tackle a certain issue on behalf of the community.

Why are you personally motivated to explore community leadership?

I haven’t personally been involved in community involvements since I was younger and have had the desire to for some time now. With a young family myself, I think it’s important to show them what the impacts of leadership in the community can have. Show them the successes and that they could also make a difference in their community in the future.

“With a young family myself, I think it’s
important to show them what the impacts
of leadership in the community can have.”

What, in your view, is the most significant issue/opportunity facing our community? Why?

I have two.

I live and was born and raised in a lakeside community. The issues surrounding general pollution ie trash in and along the lakes seem to be getting worse. The great lakes are an amazing ecosystem that I would love to see flourish for years to come. As a community I think we can do a much better job at working with municipal leaders to help curb this issue through education and more volunteer work, to start.

Second, the population in Niagara is aging and more needs to be done providing affordable housing, beds in long-term care and resources for Mental Health.

“As a community I think we can do a much better
job at working with municipal leaders to
help curb this issue through education
and more volunteer work, to start.”

How you would go about tackling the issue?

I don’t know where to begin but hope to network through Leadership Niagara and see if there are other individuals who feel the same and possibly work together in the future.

In your view, what’s the most important attribute of a leader?

There are so many that work hand in hand. Inspiration is one that comes to mind. Leaders that can inspire others to start leading will keep a wave coming for years to come. They can use that to get others excited about an issue or opportunity.

“Leaders that can inspire others to start
leading will keep a wave coming for years to come.

What individual attributes do you hope to develop or expand upon?

I would like to be more transparent. Sometimes I don’t say things exactly as I want to or communicate my true feelings and would like to develop that.


April 5th, 2019