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Future Forest Reimagined

Day 1 – Inspiring Action

On Day 1 we seek inspiration to create an inclusive and ecologically focused future in the bioregion.  After a moving opening by Elder Gordon LaBillois (Eel Ground First Nation),  Jon Erickson, Gund Institute, focuses on bioregionalism as the foundation for creating an era of change.   He makes the case for collaboration as a social movement toward large landscape restoration and resilience “…beyond artificial boundaries at scales that define a community’s possibilities and strengths”.  Steve Ginnish (Eel Ground First Nation) shares insights into indigenous experience over the last 400 years to today. Karen Beazley, Dalhousie University discusses the re-indigenization of biodiversity principles as expressed in “Awakening the Sleeping Giant”, followed by David Foster, of Harvard Forest broadening the discussion of climate, biodiversity and conservation to include human well-being and kin relationship to the land.  As the day ends, we hear about a case study from Larry McDermott (Shabot Obaadjiwan First Nation – Algonquin), highlighting the success of broad partnerships. 

The “Future Forests Reimagined Workshop Series Report” is now available for download. (pdf)


Opening Thoughts and Acknowledgements

●        Elder Gordon LaBillois, Eel Ground First Nation

●        Land Acknowledgement: CDR

●        Land Acknowledgement: Roberta Clowater, CPAWS NB

Opening Remarks

  • Roberta Clowater, CPAWS NB, FFR Planning team

Keynote Speaker: Presenting from a Bioregional Perspective

●        Jon Erickson, GUND Institute, UVM


Full Recording of Day 1

Visioning & Small Group Discussions

Conversation: Grasping the Big Picture

Case Study Model

We Rise Together: Larry McDermott, Algonquin Nation, Ontario

Small Group Discussions / Activity


  • Elder Gordon LaBillois, Eel Ground First Nation
  • Nancy Patch, FFR Planning Team


Additional resources for Day 1

Map of the Northern Appalachian – Acadian – Wabanaki Ecoregion (Image)

“The Anthropozoic era revisited”, by Valenti Rull (pdf)

“The Northern Forest Forum (1992-2002)” (pdf)

“‘Awakening the sleeping giant’: Re-indigenization principles for ttransforming biodiversity conservation in Canada and beyond”, by M’s-it No’kmaq, Albert Marshall, Karen F. Beazley, Jessica Hum, shalan joudry, Anastasia Papadopoulos, Sherry Pictou, Janet Rabesca, Lisa Young, and Melanie Zurbac (pdf)

“Radical Pragmatism: Policymaking After COVID”, by Geoffrey Gertz and Homi Kharas (pdf)

Land Acknowledgement

We would like to acknowledge that we live and work on the traditional and unceded territory of the Wabanaki Confederacy and other Indigenous peoples, who have been caretakers and stewards of this land since time immemorial. These Indigenous nations and peoples include the Abenaki, Massachusett, Mi’gmaq/Mi’kmaq, Pennacook, Penobscot (Penawapskewi), Peskotomuhkati, Wampanoag and Wolastoqiyik peoples. This territory is governed by the Treaties of Peace and Friendship which were signed with the British Crown in the 1700s, and the rights of Indigenous peoples described in the Jay Treaty of 1794 between the US and Great Britain. These treaties did not deal with the surrender of lands and resources, but in fact recognized Indigenous title and established the rules for what was to be an ongoing relationship between nations.

Recognition and respect are essential elements of establishing healthy, reciprocal relations. These relationships are key to reconciliation, to which we all need to be committed, as we are all Treaty peoples. In conserving these lands and waters, we need to embrace the essential leadership of Indigenous stewards who continue to care for them, including Elders, Knowledge Holders and communities.  Working together on shared responsibilities to the lands and waters, and to each other, is a key part of our ongoing Treaty relationships and collective kinships with nature.