Blackstock combines university education with positions at international bodies and an artistic First Nations heritage. Holding a Master of Art degree in First Nations Studies from the University of Northern British Columbia, 1997, he is also a chartered mediator with the ADR Institute of Canada (Alternative Dispute Resolution), and served as a member of the UNESCO-IHP (Intergovernmental Hydrological Programme) Expert Advisory Group on Water and Cultural Diversity for four years. In addition, Blackstock helped draft a water policy paper for the United Nations.
Of Gitxsan/European heritage, he is a member of the House of Geel, Fireweed Clan, where he is known as Ama Goodim Gyet. Blue Ecology™ theory benefited greatly when, in 2000, Blackstock interviewed the Elder, Millie Michell, shortly before she died. Passing the torch to him, she asked what he would do with her worries about water. His uncle, Walter Harris, mentored him as a northwest coast carver, and he has produced over a dozen limited edition northwest coast art prints. As the resident artist at Echo Valley Ranch and Spa and curating an art project on water, he is an inspiration to youth artists around the world.
Among his awards is the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Medal and the Bill Reid Scholarship.
With his Water First framework, Blackstock is building bridges of intercultural understanding that enable a new vision of sustainable survival.
Michael Blackstock was influenced to take action and start the Blue Ecology movement by Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring.