The Elders Council for Parks in British Columbia honours Johnny Mikes with Elders Recognition Award

June 17, 2022

BC Elders Council for Parks honours Johnny Mikes with Elders in Conservation Award

lək̓ʷəŋən (Lekwungen), ɪˈskwaɪmɔːlt (Esquimalt), and Songhees  Territories / Victoria, BC – The Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society British Columbia (CPAWS-BC) celebrates Johnny Mikes, recipient of his year’s Elders Recognition Award at Government House in Victoria, BC on June 14. The Elders Council for Parks in British Columbia bestows this award on individuals for devoting much of their lives to parks and nature protection in BC.

Johnny Mikes use of maps and getting people out to see and experience these landscapes for themselves helped elevate BC’s protected area advocacy to a higher level of success – resulting in the establishment of such iconic protected areas as the Tatshenshini-Alsek, Stikine River, Ne’ah – Horseranch Range and the Muskwa Kechika Management Area. He continues to support Indigenous-led proposals for large, connected protected areas including the Kaska’s magnificent Dene K’éh Kusan Indigenous Protected and Conserved Area (IPCA).

“The Elders Council for Parks in British Columbia created its Elders Recognition Award to recognize individuals who have made significant contributions over several years to BC’s park system. We are delighted to be able to honor Johnny Mikes for his dedication and commitment,” says Bob Peart, Chair – Elders Council for Parks in British Columbia Nominations Committee. 

“Johnny Mikes quiet persistence, knowledge of place, singular approach to ‘on-the-ground conservation’ and ‘getting big green blobs on maps’ has been fundamental in getting landscapes set aside both for their natural wild value and the recreational experience they offer – particularly across northern BC,” adds Peart.

Mikes represented environmental interests in the regional land use plan in the Sea to Sky area. He currently also serves as the Field Director for the Coast to Cascades Grizzly Bear Initiative, which is spearheading efforts to protect and recover threatened grizzly bears and safeguard critical habitats in southwest BC.

“We’re delighted to see Johnny recognized by the The Elders Council for Parks,” says Tori Ball, Terrestrial Conservation Manager at CPAWS-BC. “His tireless work throughout northern BC has ensured that key conservation areas are being safeguarded for generations to come.”


For more information, please contact:
Rippon Madtha
Communications Manager
604-685-7445 (x23)

Pictured (Top left-to-right): Paddy Steward, Her Honour’s Aide-de-camp, Her Honour Janet Austin, Johnny Mikes, Philip Dearden, Vladimir Karjina, (Bottom left-to-right) Scott Benton, Frances Vyse, Derek Thompson (both for himself and Awardee Guujaaw who was unable to attend), Terry Lee for Tom Lee. Elders in Conservation Award at the Government House in Victoria, BC on June 14, 2022

The Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society – British Columbia (CPAWS-BC) is part of one of Canada’s oldest non-profit conservation groups. We protect wilderness in every corner of BC and deep into the ocean. We have been defending BC since 1978, and are dedicated to keeping BC’s natural environment thriving forever. Our work to safeguard large parks, protected areas and wildlife corridors has been instrumental in protecting precious places across the province.