Acknowledging the Land & People Where I Live…

I’m Dan Gardoqui (he-him) and I live with my family near the Maine seacoast – lands that have been inhabited by indigenous people for over 12,000 years. Specifically, this land is the traditional territory of the Accominta People of the Penacook Tribe of the Wabanaki Confederacy – at least, that’s what I’ve learned – but much indigenous history has been altered, erased and whitewashed, so please forgive me if inaccurate. I’m always open to learning more.

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Wabanaki peoples have stewarded this land for countless generations and continue to live here today, despite centuries of the devastating cultural and individual effects of colonization. I affirm their inherent sovereignty in this territory, support their efforts for land and water protection and restoration and for cultural healing and recovery. In addition to acknowledging this important history, I’m also committed to learning to be a helpful ally of the indigenous people of this place. To learn more, about Wabanaki health, wellness & self-determination, click here.

When you work with me, you support the following values:

  • INCLUSION. I’m dedicated to becoming more and more inclusive at Lead with Nature. If you have suggestions, please send them my way. In the meantime, I’m doing what I can to help all kinds of folx feel welcome here.
  • CURIOSITY. Wonder and an open mind make space for change in our lives, our businesses and our communities.
  • CONNECTIONS. We truly ARE our connections. Our connections to other people, other species and to specific places are what make us all unique. Connections result in diversity and strength.
  • EQUITY & ACCESS*. Not enough people are able to access and benefit from nature. Lead with Nature selects and donates consulting services to a nonprofit that brings nature to those with the highest need.
  • CONSERVATION** . As keystone species on planet earth, humanity has a responsibility to tend and caretaker to the earth’s resources to ensure a rich future for generations to come.
  • RECIPROCITY. Lead with Nature works to support the protection and restoration of vulnerable human & wildlife communities.
The New Jersey Pinelands. Our nation’s first National Reserve came about because of hard-working, passionate people. Learn more here.

*Equity & Access – in 2020, Dan Gardoqui & Lead with Nature donated consulting services and made financial contributions to support the vital work of Backyard Basecamp – an amazing nonprofit Inspiring Black, Indigenous, and all People of Color (BIPOC) across Baltimore City to find nature where they are and empowering them to explore further.

**What Do I Mean by “Conservation”? Conservation is the mindful management of nature and of Earth’s biodiversity with the aim of protecting species, their habitats, and ecosystems from excessive rates of extinction and the erosion of biotic interactions. Might this definition be fraught with inherent bias, arrogance (e.g. “Human know what’s best for the earth”), etc.? Probably…AND, as a species on this planet with the power to make ecosystem-wide changes (for better or worse), I believe it’s our duty to use that power for positive changes.

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