Sheila Watt-Cloutier


Sheila Watt-Cloutier

Environmental, Cultural and Human Rights Advocate

Nobel Peace Prize nominee Sheila Watt-Cloutier is in the business of transforming public opinion into public policy. Experienced in working with global decision makers for over a decade, Watt-Cloutier offers a new model for 21st century leadership. She speaks with passion and urgency on the issues of today—the environment, the economy, foreign policy, global health, and sustainability—not as separate concerns, but as a deeply interconnected whole.  At a time when people are seeking solutions, direction, and a sense of hope, this global leader provides a big picture of where we are and where we’re headed.

In 2007, Watt-Cloutier was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize for her advocacy work in showing the impact of global climate change on human rights—especially in the Arctic, where it is felt more immediately, and more dramatically, than anywhere else in the world. Watt-Cloutier an Officer of the Order of Canada; the recipient of the Aboriginal Achievement Award; the UN Champion of the Earth Award; the Norwegian Sophie Prize; and the Right Livelihood Award, which she won in November, 2015 and is widely considered the “Nobel Alternative”.

From 1995-2002, Watt-Cloutier was elected the Canadian President of the Inuit Circumpolar Council (ICC). She was later elected in 2002 to become the International Chair of the ICC, representing the 155,000 Inuit from Canada, Greenland, Alaska and Russia–she held this post until 2006.

Watt-Cloutier is the author of the memoir, The Right to Be Cold: One Woman’s Story of Protecting Her Culture, the Arctic and the Whole Planet, published in 2015. The book was nominated for the 2016 BC National Award for Canadian Non-Fiction and the Shaughnessy Cohen Prize for Political Writing. Watt-Cloutier was also shortlisted for the Kobo Emerging Writer Prize.

Everything is Connected: Environment, Economy, Foreign Policy, Sustainability, Human Rights and Leadership in the 21st Century

“We must now speak environment, economy, foreign policy, health and human rights in the same breath,” says Sheila Watt-Cloutier.

In this truly globe-spanning talk, Watt-Cloutier provides a clear, meaningful, and comprehensive understanding of the way these issues are interconnected, and what it means for the future of our planet.

Speaking on leadership, she shows how your organization fits into the grand scheme of things, and organizations can fulfill their mandate by understanding how the local connects to the global, and vice versa.

With a focus on solutions, Watt-Cloutier brings the realities of the Arctic―where Inuit today face profound challenges to their environment, their economy, their health and their cultural well-being―to light. The challenges they face are clearly connected to the industries we support, the disposable world we have become, and the non-sustaining policies we create. Because her Inuit culture faces the most extreme challenges of globalization, Watt-Cloutier speaks from firsthand experience, and couples that with her extensive experiences as a global leader.

Drawing upon her ancient culture, and speaking from a position of strength, not victimhood, she helps audiences find common ground. Her Arctic voice–not as far away as we might imagine–enlightens and inspires. With inclusive good will, it bridges some extremely divided gaps around the world.