Winona LaDuke Coming to 22nd Headwaters Conference, “Small Steps, Big Stories: Climate Solutions in the Headwaters,” Sept. 16-18
Sept. 7, 2011 -- The 22nd Headwaters Conference at Western State College of Colorado (WSC) will be held Sept. 16-18 at the WSC campus in Gunnison.
The 22nd Headwaters Conference at Western State College of Colorado (WSC) will be held Sept. 16-18 at the WSC campus in Gunnison.
This year’s theme is “Small Steps, Big Stories: Climate Solutions in the Headwaters.” Conference speakers and attendees will share small steps to addressing climate change found throughout Headwaters communities. They also will examine what "big stories" emerge from those steps to make climate solutions more compelling, feasible and desirable to diverse citizens with differing views on the issue of climate disturbance.
"Rather than focusing on the 'doom and gloom' of climate change predictions, or arguing over the politics of climate skepticism, this event will feature effective problem solvers and how their stories empower our Headwaters region to become a global model for sustainability," explained conference organizer John Hausdoerffer, professor and director of the WSC Center for Environmental Studies.
Winona LaDuke, executive director of Honor the Earth, will present the keynote address at 7 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 16 in the Taylor Auditorium. LaDuke served as Ralph Nader’s vice-presidential running mate on the Green Party ticket in the 1996 and 2000 presidential elections. An author, rural development economist and activist, LaDuke has devoted her life to protecting the lands and life ways of Native communities. LaDuke has been honored for her work, having been named by “Time” magazine as one of America’s 50 most promising leaders under 40, as well as being a Ms. Magazine Woman of the Year. In 2007, she was inducted into the National Women's Hall of Fame. Other honors include the Reebok Human Rights Award, the Global Green Award and the prestigious International Slow Food Award for working to protect wild rice and local biodiversity.
The conference also features a panel discussion with community leaders, which will focus on climate change solutions in the Headwaters region and expand upon the audience’s own stories. Panelists include: Colo. Rep. Roger Wilson; world champion extreme skier Alison Gannett, founder of Save our Snow Foundation; Tom Easley, director of programs of the Rocky Mountain Climate Organization; Julie Feier, WSC associate vice president for finance and administration; and Estevan Arellano, journalist, writer, researcher and a Fellow of the Washington Journalism Center.
Enrique Salmon, director of American Indian Studies at California State University East Bay, will facilitate a workshop, "Finding the Story." The four-hour workshop on Saturday afternoon will empower participants to begin translating the "small steps" discussed at the conference into "big stories" for their respective communities.
Conference attendees also will have the opportunity take experiential tours with local environmental organizations, including the Office for Resource Efficiency, Mountain Roots Food Project, Full Circle Collaborative and the WSC Institute for Applied Sustainability.
Saturday culminates with a “Film Night” featuring filmmakers Melinda Levin and Jack Lucido. Levin, chair of the Department of Radio, Television and Film at the University of North Texas, will screen and discuss her film, “The New Frontier: Sustainable Ranching in the American West.” Jack Lucido, WSC assistant professor of communication, will screen and discuss his documentary film, “Sustainability in Ranching,” regarding ranching in the Gunnison Valley.
Early bird registration fees (received by Sept. 14) are: $30 for students and WSC alumni; $50 for teachers and nonprofits; $65 for individuals; and $120 for couples. Registration fees include all events and some meals. For more information or to register, visit www.western.edu/headwaters or call (970) 943-7011.
The Headwaters Conference is organized by the Headwaters Project and the Center for Environmental Studies at Western.