Co-founder & President
Eli Enns is an internationally recognized expert in Indigenous-led conservation. From Tla-o-qui-aht Nation on his father’s side, and of Dutch Mennonite heritage on his mother’s side, Eli promotes holistic solutions for community and ecosystem health and well-being. With a background in political science, Eli is a ‘Nation-builder’ with values and approaches rooted in Indigenous economic theory and practice.
In 2017, a decade after co-founding the Ha-uukmin Tribal Park in his own territory, Eli co-chaired the Indigenous Circle of Experts (ICE) for the Pathway to Canada Target 1, which culminated with the groundbreaking 2018 report, We Rise Together: Achieving Pathway to Canada Target 1 through the creation of Indigenous Protected and Conserved Areas (IPCAs) in the spirit and practice of reconciliation. IPCAs are now a central component of Canada’s conservation efforts. Eli supports Indigenous Nations across Canada to advance their conservation efforts via his roles with the IISAAK OLAM Foundation and the Conservation through Reconciliation Partnership.
Nuu-chah-nulth values and concepts that guide Eli’s life and work:
- hishuk-nish-tsa-wahk – “Everything is one and everything is interconnected.”
- iisaak – “To observe, appreciate, and act accordingly.”