MAUDE BARLOW Maude Barlow is the National Chairperson of the Council of Canadians, Canada’s largest pubic advocacy organization with 50,000 members. She was a founding member of the Council in 1985, and has served as its voluntary chair since 1988. During these years, the Council of Canadians has become a leading voice in Canada and around the world for social, environmental and economic justice. The Council fights to protect Canada’s public social programs, natural resource heritage, and food security. It also advocates for fair trade and sustainable economic policies, in Canada and around the world, and promotes a peacekeeping role for Canada’s armed forces. The Council is currently leading a national campaign to stop the creation of a “Fortress North America” designed to harmonize continental economic, resource, foreign and security policies with no regulatory safeguards. Maude Barlow is also a founding board member of the International Forum on Globalization (IFG), a San Francisco-based think-tank made up of international activists, scholars, writers and economists dedicated to creating sustainable alternatives to economic globalization. She is a contributing author to the highly acclaimed IFG report, Alternatives to Economic Globalization, which has been studied by scholars and politicians around the world. In 1997, she led a global fight with other members of this group to defeat the Multilateral Agreement on Investment, a proposed global treaty that would have given transnational corporations immunity from nation-state laws. Maude is an acknowledged leader in the international water justice movement, often called the “Al Gore of water.” She founded the Blue Planet Project, a Council of Canadians project that works with grassroots groups around the world to stop the commodification of the world’s fresh water resources. She is a founding member of Friends of the Right to Water, a North-South Coalition seeking a UN Convention on the Right to Water. Maude is currently chairperson of the board of Food and Water Watch, the foremost U.S. organization fighting for the right to water. In 1998, she wrote a groundbreaking analysis on the global politics around water for the International Forum on Globalization and is the co-author of the 2002 book, Blue Gold: The Fight to Stop Corporate Theft of the World’s Water, which is now published in over 40 countries and 15 languages. Her newest book, Blue Covenant, The Global Water Crisis and the Coming Battle for the Right to Water, published in 2007, is also an international best seller. In 2008, Maude wrote Our Water Commons, a report for a new international network to promote water as a global commons. Maude’s work on this issue has taken her to every continent where she stands with local indigenous and community groups to defend their right to water. Before founding the Council of Canadians, Maude Barlow was a leader in the women’s rights movement in Canada. In 1975, she co-founded a consultancy group that worked at every level of government to promote equality for women. Maude was the first woman to teach at the Canadian Police College; put hundreds of CBC women employees through career and assertiveness training; helped develop curriculum on women’s equality for many school boards and universities; and led a national campaign against media violence. In 1980, Maude became the Director of Equal Opportunity for the City of Ottawa where she helped introduce women into non-traditional jobs; created a pay equity system; established the first municipal cross-sectoral working group to help women victims of abuse; and led a successful human rights challenge on behalf of women prisoners at the Kingston Prison for Women. In 1983, Maude became the Senior Advisor on Women’s Issues to then Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau; in this capacity, she advised the Prime Minister directly on all aspects of national equality initiatives for women. Maude is the best-selling author or co-author of 16 books and is a frequent contributor to many journals, textbooks and magazines. She is an internationally sought speaker who has presented all over Canada and the world. She has won numerous high level awards from teachers’ federations across Canada for her contribution to education and social justice and is the recipient of honorary doctorates from seven Canadian universities (Memorial, Victoria, Lakehead, Western, Mount Alison, Sir Wilfrid Laurier and Nipissing). Maude Barlow was one of the “1000 Women for Peace” nominated for the 2005 Nobel Peace Prize. In the same year, she received the prestigious Lannon Cultural Freedom Fellowship as well as the Right Livelihood Award. Known as the “Alternative Nobel” and given by the Swedish Parliament, the Right Livelihood Award cited her ”exemplary and long-standing worldwide work for trade justice and the recognition of the fundamental right to water.” She also won the Citation of Lifetime Achievement Award at the 2008 Canadian Environmental Awards, Canada’s highest environmental honour. Recently Maude was named the first Advisor on Water to the United Nations where she advises Father Miguel d’Escoto Brockman, the new President of the General Assembly. Maude is married to Ottawa lawyer Andrew Davis and the proud grandmother of four.