Ethel Gardner

In Memoriam: Ethel Gardner

December 22, 2021

SFU mourned the loss of Stó:lō member Ethel Gardner, a former SFU faculty member and SFU PhD alumnus who most recently served as an Elder-in-Residence.

Gardner passed away on January 23, 2020 and is greatly missed by the many students, faculty, friends and colleagues whom she worked with and supported over many years. Her work in revitalizing Indigenous languages, Halq’eméylem in particular, contributed significantly to scholarship and touched the lives of many at SFU and at other postsecondary institutions where she was known and loved.

As an SFU faculty member, Gardner led work to design and develop Indigenous teacher-education programs across Canada, and was most proud of the many Indigenous language teachers she helped train who are now training others.

As Gardner once said, “through my PhD, I was able to establish how language tied us together with our identity, land, spirituality. It was an epiphany. I came to understand what it means to be Stó:lō.”