To our community,
I hope this finds you and your loved ones safe and well.
I’m writing today with the news that Stephen Cornish will be resigning from his post as David Suzuki Foundation CEO this November.
The global pandemic, which has upended all our lives, has also sparked humanitarian crises worldwide, leaving millions in need of support. To contribute to addressing this massive challenge, Steve has accepted the role of general director of the Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières operational centre in Geneva, Switzerland. Although we are saddened by his departure and will miss him dearly, we are proud of Steve and wish him all the best with this courageous next step.
Thanks to the incredible support of our community and team, Steve’s three years at DSF have seen major achievements for the environment. These include Salish Sea orca protection measures; carbon pricing court case victories; launches of the Sustainable City initiative and our Charged Up program; Indigenous Protected and Conserved Area partnerships; unprecedented Fridays for Future youth climate marches, notably Greta Thunberg’s visits with our teams in Montreal and Vancouver; implementation of the Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change. The list goes on.
As the David Suzuki Foundation board chair, I bid Steve farewell with confidence in the Foundation for the time ahead. The team Steve has led and strengthened will continue to seize the opportunities and face the challenges of this moment in history. At DSF, expertise and creative commitment run deep. I know we can succeed in achieving many more positive steps for people and the planet — starting with a green and just recovery from COVID-19 — in the months and years to come.
Our co-founder, David Suzuki, wanted to share this message with you:
“Steve has been a powerful voice, advocating for movement toward a sustainable path on this planet. I am proud of his leadership of our foundation. The experience and skills he brings to Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières will be priceless in confronting this unprecedented global pandemic. We wish him all the best as he rededicates himself to this battle.”
In response, Steve wanted to pass along these words:
“It is truly a heart-wrenching decision to step away from the Foundation at this time, but considering the impacts of COVID-19 and the need for enhanced supports around the world, it’s a decision I feel I must make. This unexpected change of course is less about leaving, and more about answering a call to help combat the global pandemic. I am honoured and humbled to have had the opportunity to lead this amazing team. Thank you for your continued support of this organization and movement.”
The David Suzuki Foundation team remains deeply dedicated to our mission of protecting nature and the well-being of all life, now and into the future. We will continue to help create a sustainable future.
Thank you for joining with us in championing the environmental cause. I wish you and your loved ones health, safety and hope.
Chair, David Suzuki Foundation Board of Directors
Professor, Peter A. Allard School of Law, University of British Columbia