Chief Executive Officer
Eric Eikenberg is a seasoned political strategist and environmental policy expert who leads one of the country’s most prestigious and respected environmental non-profits – The Everglades Foundation, which has an annual operating budget of more than $10 million dollars.
As CEO, Eikenberg oversees a team of nationally recognized scientists, educators, lobbyists, and communications and development professionals, all working together to achieve a decades-long campaign to restore America Everglades – roughly three million acres of endangered habitat that is vital to Florida’s economic and environmental viability.
Appointed CEO by the Foundation’s board of directors in 2012, Eikenberg has extensive policy and political experience in Tallahassee and Washington, D.C., and served as chief of staff to former Gov. Charlie Crist and former U.S. Rep. E. Clay Shaw, Jr., the latter who authored the landmark Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan.
A sought-after public speaker on the importance of preserving one of America’s most unique natural habitats, Eikenberg is a regular OpEd columnist and a widely quoted source for national and local media outlets, including National Public Radio, CNN, The Associated Press, U.S. News & World Report, Politico, The Miami Herald, and many others.
Eikenberg was named one of Florida’s most influential business leaders by Florida Trend and selected to the 2019 panel of 50 Influential Floridians as part of an initiative launched by The Miami Herald, El Nuevo Herald and The Bradenton Herald, where he opines on issues facing the State. Recently, Eikenberg was recognized by South Florida Business & Wealth magazine with a 2019 APOGEE Award for his leadership in the Non-Profit sector.
Eikenberg also served on Governor Ron DeSantis’ Environment, Natural Resources and Agriculture Transition Team where he participated in a process that lead to Governor DeSantis outlining a bold, comprehensive environmental agenda.
On Earth Day 2019, he was named Chair of the Ocean to Everglades campaign by the Miami Host Committee for Super Bowl LIV. In this role, Eikenberg is leading a diverse group of partners focused on educating the public South Florida community on the issues facing the Ocean and America’s Everglades.
Eikenberg has been a long-time champion for expediting Everglades restoration, with a knack for innovation and engaging partners in the corporate, philanthropic and political arenas. This included, most recently, leading an intense public awareness campaign that ultimately led to the passage of critical state and federal legislation authorizing construction of a $1.6 billion reservoir south of Lake Okeechobee – a key component of the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan (CERP).
During his tenure as CEO, Eikenberg has helped bring widespread national and international attention to the perennial toxic algae crisis in Florida that threatens the state’s waterways and tourism industry; launched the world’s largest water incentive prize – the $10 million dollar George Barley Water Prize; expanded the Foundation’s Everglades literacy program to reach tens of thousands of students across Florida; and provided scientific, technical and policy support to numerous decision makers in executing the aforementioned CERP.
A graduate of The American University and Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, Eikenberg, his wife Tonya and four children reside in Palmetto Bay, Florida.