POST Announces Renowned Experts for the 24th Annual Wallace Stegner Lectures

Exploring the Integration of Ecology into our Daily Lives

October 19, 2015

(PALO ALTO, CA) — The Peninsula Open Space Trust (POST) announced four world renowned speakers for their 2016 Wallace Stegner Lectures: food movement leader Alice Waters, land use activist Wendell Berry, wildlife expert Mary Ellen Hannibal, and NASA hydrologist Jay Famiglietti. Beginning in January of 2016, this diverse group of voices will be unified around the theme of Bringing Ecology Home.

Alice Waters, pioneer of the locally and sustainably-grown food movement, and chef and founder of Chez Panisse will kick off the series on January 19, 2016 at a new location  – the Menlo Atherton Center for the Performing Arts. After founding a world-class restaurant rooted in the belief that delectable food and sustainable agriculture were not mutually exclusive, Waters sprang into the national spotlight and catalyzed a change to the American food landscape. The school system benefited when she championed The Edible Schoolyard, a program engaging students in all aspects of growing, cooking, and sharing organically and sustainably harvested food. She has authored eight books, including the Art of Simple Food and the Green Kitchen. The audience at her lecture will have the unique opportunity to hear Waters’ perspective on the importance the local food movement, and her insightful vision for a sustainable future.

Wendell Berry, a founding architect of the organic farming movement and an ethical land use activist, will share his philosophy on the power of place at the Mountain View Center for The Performing Arts on February 22nd. His writing is grounded in the belief that one’s work should be rooted in and responsive to one’s place. His books include the novel Hannah Coulter, the essay collections Citizenship PaperBecoming Native to this Place, and The Way of Ignorance. Berry’s latest works include The Mad Farmer Poems, Whitefoot and Our Only World.  Having spent many years working on the Peninsula, Berry’s lecture will be insightful on both a national and local scale.

Mary Ellen Hannibal, a Bay Area writer and researcher focusing on science and culture, will share the importance of preserving wildlife connectivity on March 22nd at the Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts. She has authored four books, the most recent being The Spine of the Continent, which highlights the importance of connecting landscapes, ecosystems, wildlife, and people in the race to save nature along the Rocky Mountains. Currently, she is working on a book about how citizen science can transform the way we collect data and respond to our changing environment. Hannibal is a winner of Stanford’s Knight-Risser Prize in Western Environmental Journalism and the National Association of Science Writers Science and Society Award.

Jay Famiglietti, senior scientist at NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory and hydrologist, will close the lecture series on April 26th by sharing an expert perspective one of the State’s most urgent resource related concerns, water demand outstripping supply. Leveraging satellite observations, Farmiglietti and his team assess variations in the global water cycle, as well as the availability of fresh water. The success of this cutting-edge approach led him to appear as a featured expert in the water documentary Last Call at the Oasis and on the CBS News show “60 Minutes”. He is a frequent speaker, an avid writer and a regular contributor to National Geographic Water Currents and the Huffington Post.

Series subscriptions range in price from $140 to $400, and can be purchased until November 15th by visiting this page. Single tickets range in price from $20 to $40, and will be available for purchase starting on December 1, 2015. All proceeds support POST’s work to protect open space, farms, and parkland in and around Silicon Valley. Longtime subscribers will note that the lectures are now on Tuesday evenings.

POST’s Wallace Stegner Lectures, now in their 24th year, celebrate the conservation legacy of the late writer and conservationist Wallace Stegner—Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist, Stanford University professor and ardent spokesman for the West’s wild places. The late Ambassador Laurence W. Bill Lane and his wife, Jean, have sponsored the Wallace Stegner Lectures from their inception. Jean continues this tradition of sponsorship in memory of Bill, who passed away in 2010. Media sponsorship is provided by Embarcadero Media, publishers of Palo Alto WeeklyMountain View VoiceThe Almanac and Palo Alto Online. Additional media sponsorship is provided by Edible Silicon Valley.


POST is a leading private, nonprofit land trust that protects and cares for open space, farms and parkland in and around Silicon Valley. Since its founding in 1977, POST has been responsible for saving more than 75,000 acres as permanent open space and parkland in San Mateo, Santa Clara and Santa Cruz counties.

Press Contact

Blair Friedeman
Senior Manager, Communications
Phone: (650) 854-7696 x341
Email: bfriedeman [at] openspacetrust [dot] org


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About Post

Peninsula Open Space Trust (POST) protects open space on the Peninsula and in the South Bay for the benefit of all. Since its founding in 1977, POST has been responsible for saving more than 87,000 acres as permanently protected land in San Mateo, Santa Clara and Santa Cruz counties. Learn more

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