David Suzuki and foundation staff to mentor winners, help develop the next generation of science communicators

VANCOUVER — The David Suzuki Foundation has awarded $50,000 one-year David Suzuki Fellowships to three leading Canadian scholars, who will spend 2018-19 studying climate change solutions.

The winners are:

  • Nicole Davies, Indigenous Knowledge and Climate Change Fellow
  • Maxime Fortin Faubert, Climate Change Adaptation and Sustainable Cities Fellow
  • Tara Mahoney, Climate Change Communications Fellow

“Climate change is the defining challenge of our time,” foundation co-founder, renowned scientist and broadcaster David Suzuki said. “But we’re caught in an age when communication challenges are impeding our ability to solve major environmental issues. We must develop new generations of scientists who not only excel in laboratories and in the field, but also tell stories and communicate effectively to engage masses of people in the global shift toward a clean energy economy.”

“Solving the climate crisis is possible, but we’ll need to do it united, not divided,” David Suzuki Foundation CEO Steve Cornish said. “With these talented scholars focused on making our cities sustainable, ensuring traditional ecological knowledge and modern science together help us mitigate the climate crisis, and finding new and innovative ways to tell the stories people need to hear, we’re confident we can cut through the polarization and help build a safer, better world.”

The David Suzuki Fellowships program will help the next generation of environmental leaders tackle complex problems and inspire change. Fellows will be mentored to perpetuate David Suzuki’s model of communicating science in ways that are easy to understand and act on.

The 2018-19 fellows will be celebrated at a reception in Vancouver in September, where they will present short overviews of their research proposals.

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For more information or to arrange an interview, please contact:

Brendan Glauser: bglauser@davidsuzuki.org; 604-356-8829

Note: Photos of the three 2018-19 fellows and a fellowships fact sheet are available by contacting the David Suzuki Foundation.

About the fellows:

Maxime Fortin Faubert, PhD candidate, Climate Change Adaptation and Sustainable Cities Fellow

Maxime has been pursuing his PhD in biological sciences with a research focus on phytotechnology at the Université de Montréal. He aims to develop alternative, innovative and sustainable biotechnology solutions using plants and fungi to decontaminate polluted soils and fight climate change.

In his fellowship, Maxime will create an up-to-date portrait of contaminated lands across the Island of Montreal to identify vacant spaces that most contribute to the heat island effect and to target those with the potential to transform into green spaces to help improve Montreal’s climate change resilience.

Nicole Davies, MA in Indigenous Governance, Indigenous Knowledge and Climate Change Fellow

Nicole (Anishinaabe and Métis) has a master’s degree in Indigenous governance from the University of Victoria with a focus on land-based knowledge revitalization, ecological restoration, plant medicine and Indigenous queer ecologies.

For the fellowship, Nicole will focus on the requirements and impacts of Indigenous approaches to food sovereignty and ecological restoration and the barriers communities face in revitalizing their practices. Nicole will mobilize insights to support communities’ sustenance sustainability initiatives and to inform ethics and protocols that better direct climate change solutions and effective partnerships.

Tara Mahoney, PhD candidate, Climate Change Communications Fellow

Tara is completing her PhD in communication at Simon Fraser University, specializing in new forms of participatory political culture in Canada. Tara has a bachelor’s degree in international relations from the University of Calgary, a master’s degree in media production from Ryerson University, and a certificate in civic engagement and dialogue from Simon Fraser University. She is co-founder and creative director of Gen Why Media.

In her fellowship, Tara will integrate qualitative research, mapping, crowdsourcing and digital storytelling to better understand how to leverage media and culture in ways that empower renewable energy champions across Canada.