CPAWS Welcomes Appointment of Mary Simon to Lead Development of a New Arctic Leadership Model

OTTAWA – Today, CPAWS welcomed the announcement by the Minister of Indigenous and Northern Affairs, Carolyn Bennett, of the appointment of Mary Simon as a special representative tasked with leading the development of a new Arctic leadership model. “Not only has the Minister made an inspired choice in Mary Simon, given her extensive and distinguished career as an Inuit leader,” said Sabine Jessen, CPAWS National Ocean Program Director, “the federal government is demonstrating its commitment to conservation and sustainable development priorities in the Arctic.” “There are important opportunities in the Arctic for ocean conservation, and a great need to ensure thriving Arctic communities. Having a life-long Inuit leader, who is able to balance the views of Northerners with government and other stakeholders, will be instrumental in creating a successful shared leadership model,” adds Jessen. “CPAWS is looking forward to the development of a shared vision between all parties to serve as a foundation for this and future conservation efforts that also supports sustainable development,” said Éric Hébert-Daly, CPAWS National Executive Director. “By working collaboratively towards a shared goal, great things can be accomplished that will ensure a prosperous future for the Canadian Arctic and its people.” In June 2016, CPAWS released a report on marine conservation progress in North America which highlighted the weak performance of Canada on the world stage when it comes to protecting our oceans. “We look forward to contributing to the discussions on potential new conservation goals for the Arctic,” adds Jessen. “With ecologically rich and diverse Arctic ecosystems that sustain indigenous communities, northern leadership could forge a new approach to their conservation, that is designed by and for the Arctic and its people. CPAWS is a nationwide conservation charity with a vision to protect at least half of Canada’s oceans and land. It works collaboratively with indigenous, provincial, territorial and federal governments, industry, and local communities to achieve its goal . -30- For more information Sabine Jessen, National Director, Ocean Program, CPAWS [email protected] or 604-657-2813