Zita Botelho

POLIS Affiliate; Director, Watersheds BC

Zita Botelho is the Director of Watersheds BC where she works to catalyze, support, and strengthen local watershed governance and security. She is also the Co-Director of the Healthy Watersheds Initiative (HWI). In her HWI role, Zita works with the Real Estate Foundation of BC to design and support program and project development, shared learning, and team collaboration. She works with a variety of provincial and local governments, Indigenous communities, water funders, and water organizations in a variety of roles from advisor, collaborator to facilitator or innovation catalyst.

Zita is drawn to examining the challenging intersection of social-ecological systems and the complex human-environmental challenges that we face in water management and governance. She has woven together both environmental issues and public policy throughout her education and career working on a variety of environmental issues for the non-profit, private, and public sectors, both domestically and internationally. She spent 15 years working in different roles for the federal and B.C. government. During her time at the B.C. Ministry of Environment she led the development of Living Water Smart – BC’s Water Plan and the policy development for the BC Water Sustainability Act. She also spent time working as a consultant on water policy and governance issues in BC and abroad.

Zita has BA (Hons) from Queens University in Political Studies and Geography and an Interdisciplinary MA in Environmental Policy and Governance from the University of Victoria.