Vern Etzerza was born January 11th, 1953 in Telegraph Creek, British Columbia, to the Wolf Clan of the Tahltan people.
In 1982 Vern received instruction in Northwest Coast design from Glen Wood. Soon after this, he met Gene Brabant and started carving under his tutelage. As a teacher, Gene Brabant placed heavy emphasis on the study of old pieces in all the styles of the Northwest Coast and from this Vern draws the inspiration for his own original work. Vern's other influences include Russell Smith, Stan Hunt, Tony Hunt Jr. and Joe Peters Jr.