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Headshot of Carolyn Finney Photo by Lynnly Labovitz

Keynote Speaker: Carolyn Finney

Carolyn Finney is a writer, performer, and cultural geographer. As a geography professor at the University of Kentucky, she is deeply interested in issues related to identity, difference, creativity, and resilience. In particular, she explores how issues of difference impact participation in decision-making processes designed to address environmental issues.

    Black Faces, White Spaces book cover by Carolyn Finney

The aim of her work is to develop greater cultural competency within environmental organizations and institutions, challenge media outlets on their representation of difference, and increase awareness of how privilege shapes who gets to speak to environmental issues and determine policy and action. Finney has appeared on MSNBC, NPR, and the “Tavis Smiley” show, and has been interviewed for numerous newspapers and magazines. An interview with Finney in the Boston Globe was cited as one of the newspaper’s top 10 Ideas stories of 2014.

Along with public speaking, writing, and consulting, she serves on the U.S. National Parks Advisory Board that is working to assist the National Park Service in engaging in relations of reciprocity with diverse communities.

Her first book, “Black Faces, White Spaces: Reimagining the Relationship of African Americans to the Great Outdoors,” was released in 2014 by UNC Press. NOTE: Copies of the book — priced at a 45 percent discount — will be available for purchase at the conference.


25th Anniversary

Celebrating 25 Years

    1992 through 2017, 25 years

Join us Sept. 15-16 to visit campus and reconnect with alumni, faculty, staff, and friends.

Celebrate with Us

Read the Summer Newsmagazine

    CNRE Newsmagazine Spring 2017


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