Jordan Burke

Raised so far


Dr. Jordan Burke’s boisterous good nature was a fixture at UBC’s Faculty of Forestry for nearly eight years, beginning in 2012 after he completed his MSc at the University of Georgia. First as a PhD student, then as a postdoctoral fellow, Jordan shared his love of beetles and science with everyone he met — sometimes at great length, but always with a great sense of humour.

Often accompanied by his trusty canine sidekick, Cody, Jordan could be found analyzing beetles in the Forest Insect Disturbance Ecology Laboratory; buried waist-deep in snow chopping down trees in BC or Alberta; or sometimes just relaxing with a good beer and music. (He was, to put it mildly, an expert at relaxation.) Above all, though, teaching gave him the most fulfillment. He loved encouraging students to discover their passions both inside and outside academia.

Deeply kind, enthusiastic, opinionated, and hilarious, Jordan never lost the mischievous qualities of his somewhat misspent youth. He was a beloved friend, colleague, and teacher to many at UBC and beyond, and his legacy of intellectual curiosity and kindness will live on through them.

While a postdoc, Jordan found and married the love of his life, Caleigh Minshall. They were devoted to each other. At age 36, Jordan died of cancer on July 14, 2019. He is survived by his wife, mother and step-father, father and step-mother, and sister. We love him still.

The impact of your support

To honour Jordan’s life and passion for forestry, his family will be establishing a scholarship in his memory. Your gift will pay tribute to Jordan by supporting graduate students studying forestry at UBC. Final decisions on the award description and student eligibility will be made in consultation with the family.

Update on award recipients

On March 5, 2020, the Faculty of Forestry at the University of British Columbia made the inaugural selections for the Jordan L. Burke Memorial Award in Forestry to two outstanding graduate students. Kathleen and Stefanie were selected out of a dozen applicants because of their devotion to teaching and student development. The Award is endowed with the generous donations from family, friends, colleagues and the Faculty of Forestry made since Jordan died on July 14, 2019, and there will continue to be awards every year. Jordan’s family, friends, and colleagues joined together on March 5 at the Faculty to recognize the 2020 awardees. Thanks also to Assistant Dean Emma Tully and Dean John Innes.

- April

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