Jill Heinerth

Jill Heinerth

Explorer-in-Residence, The Royal Canadian Geographical Society

More people have walked on the moon than have visited many of the places that Jill Heinerth has seen on Earth. From the most dangerous technical dives deep inside underwater caves, to searching for never-before-seen ecosystems inside giant Antarctic icebergs, Jill’s curiosity and passion about our watery planet is the driving force in her life. In her remarkable presentations, Jill encourages audiences to reach beyond their limitations, challenge the unknown, and overcome their fears, while applying her practical experience when it comes to lessons on risk management, discovery learning, failure, and collaboration strategies.

Named the first Explorer-in-Residence of The Royal Canadian Geographical Society in 2016, Jill’s other many accolades include induction into the Explorer’s Club and the inaugural class of the Women Diver’s Hall of Fame. She received the Wyland ICON Award, an honor she shares with several of her underwater heroes including Jacques Cousteau, Robert Ballard and Dr. Sylvia Earle. She was named a “Living Legend” by Sport Diver Magazine and selected as Scuba Diving magazine’s “Sea Hero of the Year 2012.”

In recognition of her lifetime achievement, Jill was also awarded the inaugural Sir Christopher Ondaatje Medal for Exploration. Established by the Royal Canadian Geographical Society in 2013, the medal recognizes singular achievements and the pursuit of excellence by an outstanding Canadian explorer.

Challenging The Unknown

Audiences are inspired by Jill’s upbeat, multimedia presentations to reach beyond their limitations, challenge the unknown, and overcome their fears. She shares remarkable experiences and lessons learned in the deadly arena of extreme underwater exploration and adventure filmmaking, applying her practical knowledge to talk about lessons on risk management, discovery learning, failure and collaboration strategies.

Explorations in Excellence

Jill shares her experiences as a team leader in the dangerous world of extreme cave diving. Drawing on decades of planning cutting-edge underwater life support missions, she presents basic principles and practices for ensuring success in challenging circumstances. Sharing stories from enthralling National Geographic projects and difficult expeditions to unseen places, she passes on her hard-won lessons about leadership, strategy and problem solving.

Dive into The Life You Want to Lead

Jill leverages her adventurous life experiences to empower every woman to take on new challenges with confidence. Early in her career in advertising, Jill shifted gears, pivoting to a remarkable career as a creative professional in the underwater world. But it was not an easy path. Battling misogyny, financial ruin, and a devastating diving accident, she emerged to build a successful life on a road less traveled. She shares her original vision about mapping a path to success in a non-traditional role, while sharing heartwarming human stories about the challenges she encountered and overcame along her journey.

We Are Water

An imaginative, entertaining, and enlightening presentation, Jill teaches audiences about our planet’s endangered freshwater resources. Featuring breathtaking underwater images and videography, Jill takes viewers right into the heart of the planet, swimming through the underground arteries that are the source of all life on earth. She shares her passion about water literacy; guiding audiences to learn where their water comes from, and how it runs through every facet of their lives.