Executive Director, Centre for Indigenous Environmental Research, Canada
Merrel-Ann Phare is Legal Counsel and Executive Director of the Centre for Indigenous Environmental Resources (CIER), and has been with the organization in these capacities since its inception in 1994. In addition to her management role at CIER, Ms. Phare has engaged in research and policy development in the environmental assessment and licensing, Aboriginal rights, consultation, sustainable development, and environmental education for First Nation, governmental, and private sector clients.
She holds an economics degree and a law degree from the University of Manitoba. She is currently completing her master’s degree in Law dealing with the impacts of international trade and NAFTA on Aboriginal freshwater rights. Previously to her work at CIER, Ms. Phare practiced law privately in the areas of Aboriginal, labour, and corporate law.
Ms. Phare serves on numerous advisory committees and consultation bodies, including the Joint Public Advisory Committee (JPAC) of the NAFTA Commission for Environmental Cooperation, and Regulatory Advisory Committee (RAC) of the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency. She was a core-group member of the Consultation on Sustainable Development Implementation (COSDI) for the Province of Manitoba. She has been a member of Canada's delegation to the United Nation's Commission on Sustainable Development and a member of the federal Interdepartmental Working Group on the Convention on Biological Diversity.