J. Drew Lanham, PhD

Inviting diversity and race to play an active role in conservation: 2019 Doug Walker Lecture

As an African American raised in the south who had a love affair with nature, Dr. J. Drew Lanham grew up feeling like a “rare bird”. Join us for the 2019 Doug Walker Lecture where Dr. Lanham, will discuss what it means to embrace both his history and relationship to nature, and how these two intertwine as an ornithologist, wildlife ecologist and college professor. Considered a superhero of advocacy for the natural world, Dr. Lanham will examine how conservation must be a rigorous science and evocative art – and that love of nature is not restricted by race and should play an active roles in celebrating our natural world.


When: Wednesday, October 30, 2019 | 6:30 p.m.
Where: Benaroya Hall | Illsley Ball Nordstrom Recital Hall | 200 University St., Seattle, 98101
Cost: $8

About J. Drew Lanham, PhD

J. Drew Lanham is a distinguished alumni professor, provost’s professor, and alumni master teacher at Clemson University in the Department of Forestry and Environmental Conservation. In his teaching, research, and outreach roles, Lanham seeks to translate conservation science, making it relevant in ways that are evocative and understandable. As a Black American, he’s intrigued with how culture and ethnic prisms can bend perceptions of nature and its care. His “connecting the conservation dots” and “coloring the conservation conversation” messages have been delivered internationally.

Lanham is a widely published author and award-nominated poet, writing about his experiences as a birder, hunter and wild, wandering soul. His first solo work, The Home Place: Memoirs of a Colored Man’s Love Affair with Nature (Milkweed 2016; Tantor Audio 2019), was awarded the Phillip Reed Memorial Award for Outstanding Writing on the Southern Environment in 2018. Lanham is poet laureate of his home place county of Edgefield, SC, and the author of Sparrow Envy – Poems. His essay “Forever Gone” (Orion Magazine 2018), which laments the passage of the Carolina Parakeet and the roles culture may have played in that demise. It was selected as an American Best Essay (by Rebecca Solnit) in 2019.

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