WXXI AM News

nature

We’re joined by Rue Mapp, the founder and CEO of Outdoor Afro, a nonprofit organization that celebrates and inspires African American connections to and leadership in nature.

Mapp will be in Rochester next week as a guest of the Genesee Land Trust, but first, she joins us on Connections to discuss the value of relationships with the outdoors. Our guests:

  • Rue Mapp, founder and CEO of Outdoor Afro
  • Gay Mills, Executive Director, Genesee Land Trust
  • Regina Geames, Community Programs Coordinator, Genesee Land Trust

We're joined by the team behind the PBS show, "Nature." Executive producer Fred Kaufman and filmmaker Ann Johnson Prum are in Rochester for a (sold out) screening at The Little Theatre.

We get a behind-the-scenes look at how the episodes are produced, including how Kaufman and Johnson Prum coordinated shoots at national parks during the government shutdown. We also discuss "Nature's" upcoming special series, "American Spring LIVE," and how local community members can team up with WXXI to become citizen scientists. In studio:

  • Fred Kaufman, executive producer of "Nature"
  • Ann Johnson Prum, filmmaker for "Nature"
  • Betsy Ukeritis, inter-regional environmental educator for the Western Adirondacks, Central New York, and the Finger Lakes regions with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation

What can small, grassroots groups do to stand up to corporate interests, especially when it comes to environmental issues? Fred Tutman is the riverkeeper and CEO of the Patuxent Riverkeeper organization. It's a nonprofit whose mission is to conserve, protect, and replenish the Patuxent river basin. Tutman calls himself a "grassroots troublemaker:" his work focuses on protecting the river from corporate pollution, and helping smaller, nonprofit groups ban together to fight corporate interests.

He'll be in Rochester next week as a guest of the Gandhi Institute for Nonviolence, but first, he joins us on Connections. Our guests:

  • Fred Tutman, riverkeeper and CEO for the Patuxent Riverkeeper
  • Kit Miller, director of the Gandhi Institute for Nonviolence
  • Dorian Hall, member of the PLEX neighborhood

Are American children suffering from Nature Deficit Disorder? That term has gained currency over the past decade, and a number of local parents and professionals feel it's on the mark. So what is it? Broadly speaking, it's a deficit from interaction with the outside world. 

Our guests go beyond that simple definition to discuss how education plays a role. In studio:

  • Lindsay Cray, CEO of Earthworks Institute
  • Evan Lowenstein, communications and special events/projects coordinator for the City of Rochester Public Market
  • Amy Jeary, director and teacher at Wren's Nest Waldorf Preschool
  • Jen Green, Ph.D. student in teaching and curriculum at the University of Rochester

When it comes to zoology, conservation, and nature studies, America has a significant lack of diversity. At the Seneca Park Zoo, when such jobs become open, there are rarely any nonwhite candidates. Kids in urban centers -- particularly impoverished centers -- tend to grow up disconnected from nature.

The Seneca Park Zoo Society is bringing in Drew Lanham, author of The Home Place: Memoirs of a Colored Man's Love Affair With Nature. Lanham discusses race, conservation, and how to broaden America's connection to our land. Our guests:

  • Drew Lanham, author of The Home Place: Memoirs of a Colored Man's Love Affair With Nature
  • Pamela Reed Sanchez, executive director of the Seneca Park Zoo

A Penfield resident decided she had seen enough cookie-cutter subdivisions springing up, and she stepped in to make sure 18 acres of green space wouldn't become another. Mindy MacLaren bought the land across from Rothfuss Park, and soon it will be turned over to the Genesee Land Trust. What will they do with it? Should we be more concerned about preserving natural spaces?

This nature preserve will be named for Irene Gossin, the first woman elected to an executive political office in Monroe County history, and one of the first prominent local environmentalists. Gossin is 97, and we talk to her about the honor, and her history of environmental advocacy. Our guests:

  • Mindy MacLaren, Penfield resident
  • Gay Mills, executive director of The Genesee Land Trust
  • Kate McArdle, current leader of the Penfield Democratic Committee