Mario Rigby
2021

Mario Rigby

Advocate

documenting, promoting, preserving

meet mario

Mario Rigby is an explorer and advocate of inclusion and diversity in the outdoors. He encourages people to explore sustainably. Born in Turks & Caicos Islands, he spent his childhood in Germany and then moved to Toronto, Canada, as a teenager. In 2018, Mario completed a two-year trek crossing Africa by walking and kayaking from cape town, South Africa, to Cairo, Egypt. This expedition allowed him to connect with communities and share their stories. His goal was to inspire people locally and globally to be brave and get out to see the world. His stories are gripping and thought-provoking as he learns about humanity and overcoming fear.

documenting, promoting, preserving
Nominated by: George Kourounis FI'09 Anna Jackson TM'15 Bob Atwater LF'05
Class of 2021 Location Toronto, Canada

Mario Rigby’s ultimate vision is to push the advancement of humanity through sustainable, human-powered expeditions that promote social and environmental justice through adventuring and storytelling. His stories are gripping and thought-provoking as he learns about humanity and overcoming fear. Mario believes his life lessons are worth sharing and hopes to inspire others to have more courage while addressing global issues that affect us all.

My hope for the Crossing Africa expedition was to find authenticity through humanity. I wanted to see what it meant to be away from superficial materialism. Not only was it an exploration of vast terrain, but also a genuine interest in the people who lived there. To learn from them. I wanted to take on a modern challenge and show Africa in a way that’s unique, by walking side-by-side with Africans, staying where they stay.

“My hope is Indigenous and non-native peoples in Arctic Canada and all over the world will learn to see and hear each other and move forward in a sustainable way, with arms linked and both sets of eyes fixed on a better future.”

- Mario Rigby

Africans are ingenious and creative. What I found in Africa was a beautiful array of diversity from the way they live to their religious and cultural practices and communities. I wanted to show our commonalities with everyday African people through their perspectives; the best and most authentic way to do this was to walk. This allowed me to encounter so many different people and to give voice to their story. Another part of my journey was the awe inspiring encounters I had with wildlife across magnificent terrain.

Ultimately the more diversity there is in the exploration world, the more people will be interested in nature and the outdoors. Having multiple expeditions under my belt, I feel I am now paving the way for a new era of diverse explorers.

never stop exploring

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