One of Canada’s wealthiest people is pledging more than $75 million toward British Columbia’s wilderness, hoping to protect at least 25% of the Western province’s land and water.
“Our vision for our family is providing components for people to live a longer, healthier and more fun life,” says Chip Wilson, Canada’s 13th wealthiest person, whose $5.8 billion fortune primarily comes from his 9% stake in Lululemon Athletica Inc., the athletic clothing company he started in Vancouver. “So it all kind of fits.”
Through the B.C. Parks Foundation, Chip Wilson and his wife Summer intend to buy forests and repurchase mining, forestry, and other resource licenses to transform the land into parks managed by indigenous groups. The Wilsons are no strangers to philanthropic gestures. Indeed, the couple gave millions to build schools in Ethiopia and also in search of a cure for muscular dystrophy, an illness that hits close to home since Chip is afflicted by it.