ORONO — The Senator George J. Mitchell Center for Sustainability Solutions at the University of Maine will host the talk “How can we be honest brokers in an honestly broken system?” at 3 p.m Monday, Sept. 19. The speaker will be Sonja Birthisel, director of UMaine’s Wilson Center.
Birthisel will share stories and observations about the challenge of finding vocation and personal sustainability in a complex social change ecosystem. She has spent much of the last decade seeking to address the pressing reality of climate change. As a scientist, she has done her best to wear the hat of “honest broker” through projects like Forest Climate Change Initiative’s Natural Climate Solutions Initiative. In 2019, she decided to step beyond roles that felt reputationally “safe” as a scientist and become increasingly involved in advocacy and activism, including civil disobedience. She will share stories and observations about the challenge of finding vocation and personal sustainability in a complex social change ecosystem.
Birthisel is an agroecologist, educator, faith leader, activist and member of the Orono Town Council. She is passionate about pursuing environmental and social justice through systems change, and seeks to engage this work on multiple levels, wearing a colorful array of hats. She graduated from UMaine in fall 2018 with a Ph.D. in ecology and environmental sciences and a focus in sustainable agriculture.
All talks in the Mitchell Center’s Sustainability Talks series are free and will be offered both remotely via Zoom and in person at 107 Norman Smith Hall on the UMaine campus in Orono. Registration is required to attend remotely via Zoom. Visit the event webpage to register and receive connection information.
Please note that face coverings are required for all persons attending Mitchell Center Sustainability Talks. For the latest UMaine health and safety guidance, please see umaine.edu/return.
Updates for this event will be posted to the event webpage. To request a reasonable accommodation, contact Ruth Hallsworth at 207-581-3196 or email@example.com.
The Mitchell Center for Sustainability Solutions at the University of Maine aspires to be a leader and valued partner in understanding and solving problems related to the growing challenge of improving human well-being while protecting the environment. We collaborate with diverse stakeholders and bring together faculty and students from many different fields. By connecting knowledge with action, we seek to create a brighter environmental, social and economic future in and beyond Maine.