2019 New Horizons in Conservation: Diversity, Equity, and Justice
The second annual New Horizons in Conservation conference, held in Chicago on April 24 -26, built upon the success of the inaugural 2018 conference in Washington D.C. Through a full program of lectures, panel discussions, and workshops, more than 200 students, faculty, SEAS alumni, and leading conservation professionals—the majority of them people of color—gathered to understand the status of diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) within the environmental sector and assess critical gaps.
The New Horizons in Conservation conferences are the brainchild of Dorceta Taylor, James E. Crowfoot Collegiate Professor, author, and Director of DEI at SEAS. As an early pioneer of both the Environmental Justice movement and efforts to enhance DEI in the environmental field, she has long focused her research, teaching, and activism on the institutional dynamics that influence diversity in conservation organizations.
“Despite the prevalence of complex global problems such as climate change,” Taylor writes, “the conservation movements in the U.S. and other post-industrial countries lack robust pools of ethnic minorities in their workforces. This is not sustainable over the long haul because problems like these can be solved only through collaborative efforts that involve talented people from a wide range of social and cultural backgrounds.
“The students and young professionals who attended this conference represent the future of conservation,” Taylor continues, “They are multicultural, multi-faceted, and talented, and they are poised to take on leadership roles in this sector. Diversity benefits us all, and there is strength in it.”
The 2020 New Horizons in Conservation conference will be held in Ann Arbor as part of a year-long celebration of the 50th Anniversary of Earth Day, and the 30th Anniversary of the SEAS “Race and the Incidence of Environmental Hazards Conference” which helped to springboard environmental justice as a legitimate academic endeavor.
You know that feeling like you found your people? Yeah I love that feeling! #NewHorizons19
— Jaynell Nicholson (@JaynellDN) April 25, 2019
Getting ready for another great session at #newhorizons19 conference on Diversity, Equity, & Justice in conservation. An inclusive and committed community that is making conservation work in this changing human and natural world. @BESlter pic.twitter.com/DrffYegnap
— Steward Pickett (@UrbanSteward) April 26, 2019
— Auditi Guha (@audispeak) April 25, 2019
— Rachel Leon (@Leon11Rachel) April 26, 2019
— Forrest Cortes (@UrbanTarzann) April 26, 2019
— Nathan Carpenter (@nathan_carp) April 26, 2019
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Thank you to everyone who attended the 2019 New Horizons in Conservation Conference! It was an incredible experience to witness the passion among our speakers and attendees as we fight for a more equitable and just environmental future. It’s amazing to see the momentum the conference has gained since Dr. Taylor, the conference’s visionary and host, first launched it last year. We are excited and hopeful for the journey ahead, and grateful to all those involved in the movement. Check out our Facebook page for more pictures . . . #NewHorizons19 #diversity #environment #sustainability #environmentaljustice #conference #conservation
A post shared by University of Michigan SEAS (@um_seas) onApr 29, 2019 at 11:05am PDT