March 13, 2024 | Yahoo! Finance via UVic News

The Tula Foundation, a Canadian organization known for harnessing science and technology to tackle urgent public interest issues, recently received a significant financial boost. Founders Eric Peterson and Christina Munck, announced a final donation of approximately $92 million to the foundation. This generous contribution will enable Tula to continue catalyzing scientific-based innovation while transitioning to independent sustainability.

In addition to the monetary donation, the foundation is also transferring 55 acres of ecologically and culturally important habitat on Calvert Island to the BC Parks Foundation. This land, rich in biodiversity and historical significance, will ultimately be incorporated into the Hakai Lúxvbálís Conservancy.

One individual who has played a pivotal role in the foundation’s journey is Dr. Nancy Turner, Professor Emeritus at the University of Victoria. An ethnobotanist, Dr. Turner’s research integrates the fields of botany and ecology with anthropology, geography, and linguistics. She has a particular interest in the traditional knowledge systems and land and resource management systems of Indigenous Peoples, especially in western Canada.

For over 50 years, Dr. Turner has worked with First Nations elders and cultural specialists in northwestern North America. Her collaborative efforts with Indigenous communities have helped document, retain, and promote their traditional knowledge of plants and habitats. This includes Indigenous foods, materials, medicines, as well as language and vocabulary relating to plants and environments.

Dr. Turner’s work aligns seamlessly with the Tula Foundation’s mission. Her dedication to preserving and promoting Indigenous ecological knowledge mirrors the foundation’s commitment to scientific innovation and conservation. As the Tula Foundation embarks on its next chapter, the influence of Dr. Turner’s work will undoubtedly continue to be felt.

For those interested in delving deeper into Dr. Nancy Turner’s extensive body of work, her research papers and contributions are available in the University of Victoria’s institutional repository, UVicSpace, here.