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Green Mountain College Presents Fall "Voices for Sustainability" Lecture Series

POULTNEY, VT--Green Mountain College regularly hosts writers, naturalists, activists and businesspeople with fresh perspectives on sustainability and protecting our natural heritage. The College is offering three programs this fall as part of its 175th Anniversary Lecture Series "Voices for Sustainability." All programs are free and open to the public.

Dr. Dan Botkin: Global Warming and the Balance of Nature
Thursday, September 11
7 p.m., The Gorge (Withey Hall)

Dr. Daniel Botkin, one of the preeminent ecologists of our time, is a scientist who studies life from a planetary perspective, a biologist who has helped solve major environmental challenges, and a widely-read nature writer.

A professor at the University of California, Santa Barbara since 1979, Dr. Botkin is currently professor emeritus in the department of ecology, evolution and marine biology at UCSB. He is also president and founder of The Center for the Study of the Environment, a non-profit research and educational corporation. Author of twelve books, Dr. Botkin explores the role of scientists, businessmen, and government agencies, often using historical accounts by Lewis and Clark and Henry David Thoreau to discuss the character of nature and the relationship between people and nature.

Dr. Botkin is the 2008 visiting scholar for the Masters of Environmental Science program at Green Mountain College.

Diane Wilson: The Courage to Advocate
Monday, September 15
2:30 p.m., Ackley Auditorium

Diane Wilson, a fourth-generation commercial fisherwoman and mother of five, has been an activist since 1989. Her first book, An Unreasonable Woman, chronicles her battle against multi-billion dollar corporations that were covering up spills, silencing workers, flouting regulations and dumping toxic waste into the bays near her Texas Gulf Coast hometown. She took her case to court, meeting with bribery and death threats along the way, and eventually resorted to civil disobedience and hunger strikes.

Publisher Chelsea Green describes An Unreasonable Woman as “a page-turner to rival the stories of Erin Brockovich or Karen Silkwood. Wilson’s vivid South Texas dialogue is captivating; her dazzling prose evokes an American magical realism, replete with dreams and prophesies."

Wilson’s work on behalf of the citizens of the Texas Gulf Coast has won her a number of awards including the National Fisherman Magazine Award and Mother Jones's Hell Raiser of the Month.

An Unreasonable Woman was required summer reading for incoming GMC freshmen, all of whom will be enrolled in the College’s Images of Nature course. This program is co-sponsored by Chelsea Green, publishers of books on sustainable living since 1984.

Victor Morrison: Sustainable Business Challenges for Effective Organizations and Careers
Friday, September 19
3:30 p.m., The Gorge
Victor Morrison, president of the American Flatbread Company, is a nationally-recognized leader in sustainable business practices. Morrison brings perspectives gained from over 20 years of working in finance, administration, and business development. He has served as financial operations manager for IBM in Essex Junction; as the CFO for SkiTuner/Grindrite; as CFO/VP of Finance and Administration for Planned Parenthood of Northern New England; as CFO and later CEO of the Elan Ski and Snowboard Company; and as Operations Manager for Efficiency Vermont.

The American Flatbread phenomenon began as a small restaurant in Waitsfield, VT, serving homemade pizza baked in a wood-fired oven. Today it is a privately-held company with four restaurants and a national sales operation of frozen baked goods. The business started as “an experiment in post-modern bread baking,” using traditional methods and simple wholesome ingredients produced locally.

Morrison is the visiting scholar for Green Mountain College’s 2008 MBA residency.

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