Master of Environmental Studies

Rachel Carson Forum

The Rachel Carson Forum is an annual spring event dedicated to Rachel Carson’s legacy of exploration and understanding of complex environmental issues and questions. The event has been organized by the Master of Environmental Studies Student Association since 1990.

Image of Rachel Carson Forum posterThe 26th Annual Rachel Carson Forum

Urban Ecology

Date & Time:
Thursday, April 23, 2015, 5:30-9:00pm
(5:30pm-6:30pm - environmental organization fair; 6:30pm-9:00pm - speakers)

The Evergreen State College Recital Hall in Olympia, WA

Gail O’Sullivan & Karen Nelson are co-founders of the Commons at Fertile Ground, a non-profit in downtown Olympia whose mission is to demonstrate urban sustainability. For the last 16 years they have been developing the site for use by the community. They host many large and small events and have incubated a number of small, local businesses by adding their support and exposure. The Evergreen State College has played a key role in their development by participating with internships, field trips and panel discussions on urban sustainability.

Kathy Wolf, Ph.D. is a Research Social Scientist at the College of the Environment, University of Washington, and does research that integrates landscape design and environmental psychology. She has a joint appointment with the U.S. Forest Service PNW Research Station to help develop a program on Urban Natural Resources Stewardship. She has worked professionally as both a landscape architect and as an environmental planner. Since receiving her Ph.D. from the University of Michigan, Dr. Wolf has done research to better understand the human dimensions of urban forestry and urban ecosystems. Wolf's professional mission is to discover, understand, and communicate human behavior and benefits as people experience nature in urban settings. Moreover, she is interested in how scientific information can be integrated into local government policy and planning. She is a member of or has advised the Environmental Design Research Association, the International Society of Arboriculture, the Transportation Research Board national committee on Landscape and Environment, the Washington State Community Forestry Council, and the Tariq Khamisa Foundation (TKF). Dr. Wolf has presented her research throughout the United States, in Canada, Europe, Australia, and Japan. An overview of Dr. Wolf's research programs can be found at and the Green Cities: Good Health website.


Free and open to the public. Parking $2.

Rachel Carson Forum History

2014 - "Responding to Climate Change in the Pacific Northwest," panel discussion with Dr. Richard Feely, Senior Scientist, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration; Andy Haub, Planning and Engineering Manager, City of Olympia Public Works Department; Thera Black, Senior Planner, Thurston Regional Planning Council; facilitated by Rhys Roth, Evergreen Center for Sustainable Infrastructure
2013 - "Building A Sustainable Food System in the South Sound," panel discussion with Mayor Stephen Buxbaum, TJ Johnson, Blue Peetz, and Sarah Rocker (5/10/13)
2012 - "The Social, Political & Ecological Implications of Pesticide Use," panel discussion with Dr. Marion Moses, Dr. Steve Herman, Dr. John Perkins, Ciscoe Morris, and Janette Brimmer (5/2/12)
2011 - Lecture by Paul Stamets of Fungi Perfecti
2010 - Lecture by Estella Leopold with breakout session by Billy Frank Jr., Nisqually tribal member and Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission plus the Graduate Program on the Environment's 25th anniversary
2008 - "The Health of  Puget Sound" with speaker William Ruckelshaus of Puget Sound Partnership (5/20/08)
2007 - "Taking Sunbeams Seriously: The Role of Solar Energy in a Healthy, Prosperous, Sustainable Future" with speaker Denis Hayes (5/8/07)
2006 - "High Stakes Conservation" with speakers Delia and Mark Owens (5/2/06)
2005 - "The Tragedy of the Non-commons" by Joshua Farley of Gund Institute for Ecological Economics
2004 - Water & Forests Festival including lecture by author Dr. Eugene Kozloff
2003 - Lecture by nature writer and environmentalist Rick Bass and Northwest novelist/essayist David James Duncan
2002 - "Widening the Context in the Biotechnology Wars" by Dr. David Ehrenfeld of Rutgers University
2001 - "Rewilding: the need for large carnivores for ecological integrity in wildland ecosystems" by Dave Foreman
2000 - "Fighting for Positive Social Change and Environmental Justice" by Dr. Marion Moses of the Pesticide Education Center
1999 - Lecture by poet & environmental activist Terry Tempest Williams
1996 - "Silent Spring, Sacred Landscapes: Sustainability and the American West" with introduction by MES faculty Jovana Brown and lecture by Charles Wilkinson of the University of Colorado, Boulder
1995 - "Labor & the Environment: Building a Coalition in the Northwest" with speakers Richard Feldman, Gwendolyn Lee, & Tarso Ramos
1994 - "Water & Community: A Sense of Place" with speakers Krag Unsoeld, Bob Mead, Billy Frank Jr., Judy Turpin, J.T. Wilcox, Jan Teague, & Bob Gustavson
1993 - "The Endangered Species Act: Reflections on the Past, Prospects for the Future" with speakers Rick Agnew, John Engbring, John Growen, Valerie Johnson, Jim Pissot, & Andy Stahl (4/7/93)
1991 - "Why the Earth Can't Wait - Race,Poverty and Environmental Jusice" with speaker Victor Lewis, Urban Habitat Program of San Francisco (5/22/91)
1990 - "Tropical Forests and Human Welfare" with speaker Gordon Orians of the University of Washington and South American music by Kori-Siku