The Gila Centennial Speaker Series: Live from Silver City, New Mexico

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The Gila Centennial Speaker Series: Live from Silver City, New Mexico

By Aldo Leopold Foundation

Virtual broadcast of the Gila Wilderness Centennial Speaker Series
Live from Silver City, New Mexico

In 1924, the U.S. Forest Service accepted a proposal that would forever impact conservation on the American landscape: the designation of the Gila Wilderness as the first federally-recognized Wilderness area in the United States. The rugged headwaters of the Gila River, with more than 750,000 acres of mountains, rivers, forest, and desert, were designated at the recommendation of Aldo Leopold, the father of wildlife ecology and one of the leading conservationists of the 20th century. Today, the Gila is a source of exemplary outdoor recreation, environmental research, connection with the natural world, and a place of complicated relationships between cultures and land.

The history of the Gila is a microcosm of a long-standing debate: what is wilderness? Does Wilderness–big W–even exist in the way that Aldo Leopold imagined? When additional voices are included, namely those of Indigenous cultures that have lived in the region for thousands of years, how is the conversation reframed? These are the questions at the center of the upcoming Gila Centennial speaker series in Silver City, New Mexico. Join us to learn from the diversity of wilderness perspectives and to challenge your own understanding of land and wild spaces.

With one registration, you have access to each program below. Attend one, attend all!
Events below are in Mountain Time. Once you've registered, the Schedule will show the events in your local time zone.

9:00-10:30 AM MT
Wilderness: Explorations in Understanding
with Aldo Leopold biographer Curt Meine, Latinx and environmental writer Priscilla Solis Ybarra, and Gila trout biologist Leeanna Torres

10:45-11:45 AM MT
Explorations in Understanding Panel Discussion
with Curt Meine, Priscilla Solis Ybarra, and Leeanna Torres

1:00 PM MT
A Century of Wilderness
with Gila trail steward Melissa Green, wilderness historian Doug Scott, and professor of environmental studies Doug Hulmes

2:30 PM MT
A Century of Wilderness Discussion Panel
with Melissa Green, Doug Scott, and Doug Hulmes

6:00-8:00 PM MT
Land Relationships Across Cultures
with the Director of the Acoma Pueblo Historic Preservation Office Theresa Pasqual and Fort Sill Apache historian Michael Darrow

This speaker series was organized and supported in part by:
The U.S. Forest Service
New Mexico Wild
Trout Unlimited
The Aldo Leopold Foundation
WildEarth Guardians
Gila Resources Information Project
Heart of the Gila
Continental Divide Trail Coalition









hosted by

Aldo Leopold Foundation

Aldo Leopold Foundation


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