Headwaters Conference

Wild Healing
October 12-14, 2018

Register for the 2018 Headwaters Conference

Headwaters Conference

“Wilderness” is a word that resonates on a different frequency for each of us. While some see adventure, sacredness, or solace, others find trauma and voids. The 2018 Headwaters Conference explores these wide-ranging wilderness values, and considers the possibility that diversifying the wilderness conversation presents an opportunity to heal.


This year’s Headwaters Conference culminates a week of wilderness conversations among land managers, community groups, and interested citizens at the National Wilderness Workshop, to be held at Western on October 9-13. Dr. Drew Lanham presents the keynote address on Friday night, and participants from both conferences will join with the community in tours, panels, and artistic presentations on Saturday. For more information click here.

Keynote Speaker: Dr. Drew Lanham

Friday October 12th 7:00 PM Taylor Auditorium

"I'm a man in love with nature-- a wanderer finding foundation in wild places."  - Drew Lanham


Dr. J. Drew Lanham is an Alumni Distinguished Professor of Wildlife Ecology at Clemson University, where he researches how forest management impacts wildlife and how humans think about nature. Through his outreach, “Coloring the Conservation Conversation,” he aims to make conservation science relevant in ways that provoke and educate. He strongly believes conservation must be a blending of head and heart; rigorous science and evocative art.

Dr. Lanham describes himself as “a wondering wanderer in love with nature.… In the evolution that now merges professional and personal into passion, I desire time and space to define nature in ways that move others to live it in their own way. Coloring the conservation conversation is my mission. Words are my paint.”

Drew Lanham

He is a widely published author and award-nominated poet. His book, The Home Place: Memoirs of a Colored Man’s Love Affair with Nature, won the 2017 Southern Book Prize and was a finalist for the John Burroughs Medal.

From his research on human impacts on songbirds and butterflies, to studies on how Black Americans relate to wildlife, Dr. Lanham is interested in moving science into action beyond the ivory tower. He is active on a number of conservation boards including the South Carolina Audubon, Aldo Leopold Foundation, North American Association for Environmental Education, BirdNote, the American Birding Association, and the Audubon-Toyota Together Green initiative. He is a Fellow of the Clemson University Institute for Parks and a 2016 Brandwein Fellow.