Expansion-Project Technician, Botany

Cassandra Robillard.

Contact Information

Email: crobillard@nature.ca
Tel: 613.364.4281

Twitter: @CMRobillard

Cassandra Robillard handles the movement and organization of specimens within the National Herbarium of Canada as an expansion-project technician.


  • Herbarium collection management.
  • Herbarium specimen digitization.
  • Bryophyte identification and ecology.
  • Microscopic scientific illustration.


  • B.Sc., Biology (Ecology/Evolution/Behaviour), University of Ottawa, 2013.
  • M.Sc., Biology (Environmental Sustainability), University of Ottawa, 2016.


The growing collection of dried plant and lichen specimens at the National Herbarium of Canada has begun to exceed the capacity of the existing collection space, but increasing that capacity requires an immense project with many moving parts. It is Cassandra's job as expansion-project technician to aid the curator in planning and implementing that multi-year project, as well as to update the herbarium's filing system to align with current taxonomic concepts.

Cassandra started working for the Canadian Museum of Nature as an undergraduate herbarium assistant in 2011. Since then, she has served the museum as environmental monitoring technician, cryptogam processing assistant, general collections technician, and co-coordinator of botany's Arctic Digitization Project.

Cassandra is also an avid amateur bryologist and lichen enthusiast. She created over 150 illustrations of bryophyte species for Jean Faubert's Flore des Bryophytes du Québec-Labrador, and her undergraduate research documented the habitat preferences and associated epiphyte communities of the threatened flooded jellyskin lichen. In 2017 she participated in a field expedition to document the bryophyte flora of the southern Northwest Territories.

Hello, Gorgeous! The Rare, Elusive and Exciting Dung Moss (5 min. 32 sec.)

Other Contributions

Doubt, J., C. Deduke, K. Madge, C. Robillard, E. Seed, L. Sharp and P.C. Sokoloff. 2020. [Abstract] Heading North at the National Herbarium of Canada [presentation]. Canadian Botanical Association Virtual Meeting 2020, 1–2 June. https://abc-cba2020.uqat.ca/oral/abc2020cba-program.pdf

Robillard, C., C. Deduke. 2019. Herbaria 2.0: New Adventures in Old Collections [presentation]. Ottawa-Carleton District School Board Science PD Day, Ottawa, Canada, 12 April.

Doubt J., L.C. Gualtieri, C.M. Robillard, L.A. Sharp, P.C. Sokoloff and J.M. Saarela. 2018. [Abstract] Liberating Arctic Botanical Biodiversity Data at the Canadian Museum of Nature. Arctic Biodiversity Congress 2018, Rovaniemi, 9–12 October. https://www.arcticbiodiversity.is/index.php/program/posters/270-liberating-arctic-botanical-biodiversity-data-at-the-canadian-museum-of-nature

Saarela J.M., J. Doubt, L.C. Gualtieri, C.M. Robillard, L.A. Sharp and P.C. Sokoloff. 2017. [Abstract] Realizing the potential of Arctic botanical specimens at the Canadian Museum of Nature: Liberating biodiversity data from cabinets, and (finally) putting it to work. ArcticNet 2017: International Arctic Change Conference, Québec, Canada, 11–15 December, pp. 81. https://arcticnetmeetings.ca//ac2017/docs/AC2017-Abstracts-2018-02-01.pdf