Special Events

Keynote Speakers and Special Topic Plenaries at AESS 2019

Wednesday, Keynote

Regenerative Hope: Gardens as Embodiments of Biocultural Diversity

Dr. Williams’ research has focused extensively on environmental education, place-based education, garden-based education, and service-learning. Her co-authored book Learning Gardens and Sustainability Education: Bringing Life to Schools and Schools to Life  (Routledge, 2012) presents a practical model of student engagement. She was elected city-wide to the Portland School Board, 2003-2011. She has graduate degrees from Bombay, Syracuse, and Harvard Universities in the sciences, public administration, and education. Dilafruz’s passion for gardens is evident in her own delight of engagement with soil, plants, and wildlife in their multitude of manifestations of wonders and mystery that a garden offers. For her research, curriculum, instruction, and projects see ​https://sites.google.com/pdx.edu/dilafruz/ and http://learning-gardens.org/.

Opening Reception & Keynote - June 26, 4:30-8:30pm

This event is included with AESS conference registration. Read more about Dr. Williams.

Thursday, Plenary

Plenary Panel - June 27, 8:30-10:00am

This event is included with AESS conference registration

Sustainable Futures in Central Florida - opportunities and challenges

Emily Bonilla District 5

Emily Bonilla

Orange County Commissioner

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Yara Watson-Colon

Sustainability and Outreach Coordinator – University of Central Florida Office of Sustainability Initiatives

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Dave Norvell

Assistant Vice President – University of Central Florida Office of Sustainability Initiatives

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Jim Bacchus

Distinguished University Professor of Global Affairs and Director – Center for Global Economic and Environmental Opportunity

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Dr. Patrick Bohlen

Professor of Biology and the University of Central FLorida Land Manager/Arboretum Manager

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Chris Castro

Director of Sustainability at the City of Orlando

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Peter Jacques

Plenary Moderator
AESS President
Professor – Department of Political Science and National Center for Integrated Coastal Research at the University of Central Florida

Friday, Closing Keynote

Leonel Perez has been a key leader of the award-winning human rights organization, the Coalition of Immokalee Workers (CIW), for over a decade. Mr. Perez worked for years in the fields of Florida and along the East Coast harvesting tomatoes, watermelon, and other crops. Today, as a part of the Fair Food Program, Mr. Perez and his colleagues educate tens of thousands of farmworkers’ on their rights in the fields on all farms participating in the Program, including the right to work free of slavery, sexual violence, and health and safety risks.

Awards Reception & Closing - June 28, 5:30-8:30pm

This event is included with AESS conference registration. Read more about Mr. Perez.