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Who is Severn Cullis-Suzuki?

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  • Written By: Treasure Ingels-Thompson
  • Edited By: Lucy Oppenheimer
  • Last Modified Date: 09 November 2016
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Since the age of five, Severn Cullis-Suzuki has been committed to making the world a greener better place. By the age of nine, she had formed the Environmental Children's Organization (ECO) with an assembly of concerned children at Lord Tennyson Elementary School in Vancouver. She became an activist whose presence transcended previous notions of age and gender.

In 1992, at the age of 12, Cullis-Suzuki took her activism to the next step as she and her friends raised enough money at neighborhood bake sales to attend the United Nations (UN) Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro. Addressing the assemblage of world leaders, Cullis-Suzuki became the world's most youthful ecological hero and her name became recognizable by the leaders of the world. In just over six minutes, Severn Cullis-Suzuki had become synonymous with environmental change and world community.

Severn Cullis-Suzuki's dedication to improving the earth's ecological treatment is no accident. Born to internationally respected environmentalists Tara Cullis and David Suzuki, it would seem only natural that Cullis-Suzuki adopt a role as global protector. Cullis and Suzuki named their daughter for the United Kingdom's unusual Severn River, known for the rare tidal wave occurrence known as the Severn Bore. Their expectations seem precognitive as Severn Cullis-Suzuki's activism continues to take the world by storm.

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Achieving her Bachelor's of Science in ecology and evolutionary biology, Severn Cullis-Suzuki proved that her commitment far exceeded her endeavors in her youth. While at Yale, Cullis-Suzuki and her friends collaborated to pen the "Record of Responsibility," a confessional document that acknowledged each signer's own responsibility in potential ecological disaster and listed numerous suggestions for correcting many environmental problems. Demonstrating the tenacity that had drawn world attention to her childhood speech, Severn Cullis-Suzuki took a broad step toward her future goals as she carried the "Record of Responsibility" to the 2002 UN Earth Summit.

Along the way, Severn Cullis-Suzuki's path toward planetary healing has become a distinct one. Proud of her parents' dedication to environmental issues, Cullis-Suzuki maintains that her specific interests are in the social roots and ramifications of ecological issues. With those interests in mind, she pursues her Master's degree in ethnoecology at the University of Victoria. Studying the various social interactions of various communities and how those interactions affect the earth's ecology, Cullis-Suzuki hopes to continue to affect environmental and ecological improvement.

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