This month Borderlands Restoration Leadership Institute launched its inaugural Institute Forum, an open community meeting for sharing ideas, creativity, and vision towards advancing the creation of a restoration economy in the bi-national Borderlands. The forum is open to all community members, visitors, and practitioners alike with the aim of advancing the mission, vision, and principles of the institute, exploring possibilities for creative collaborations, community-based partnerships, and as a way for community members to inspire, shape, and participate in the great work happening across the region.
Held up at the Institute offices at Old Main, the first Forum brought together a diverse group of people including institute members and community members from the Patagonia area, Nogales, other border towns in Mexico, and around the United States and Canada. It was a much needed chance for those who gathered to celebrate the formal launching of the Institute Forum, reflect upon successes to date, and explore ways to advance the field-based work of the institute.
The meeting began by Joshua Cubista, Interim Institute Director, providing an overview of the development of the institute thus far, including the recent launch of the first Ecological Restoration & Applied Restoration Economy Field School. Ron Pulliam, BRLI Board Member and Institute Sr.Fellow, then provided a visionary talk on the aims of a restoration economy, followed by dynamic and engaging small group discussions focused upon a variety of questions to help shape future forum meetings, advance projects and programs across the region, and explore key elements of the vision of a restoration economy in action.
"A Restoration Economy Seeks to Take Root in the Borderlands" - an interview of BR executive director David Seibert for The Weekly Green on KXCI Community Radio
Listen to the Weekly Green's interview of Borderlands Restoration's Executive Director, David Seibert to learn more about the innovative work of Borderlands Restoration and its partnering organizations including the Borderlands Restoration Leadership Institute.
"When paired with detention structures that stabilize wet or dry systems, native plants effectively knit the landscape together and root our work in place. " - David Seibert
By Bob Brandt, Published in the P A T A G O N I A R E G I O N A L T I M E S
Extract: Enabled by a million-dollar Biophilia Foundation grant, Borderlands Habitat Network got the Borderlands Restoration Leadership Institute ball rolling months ago by convening a work group with a diverse membership drawn from the partner organizations and other stakeholders.
After a national search, Joshua Cubista, a highly recommended facilitation, strategy and leadership consultant, was engaged to facilitate the Institute's critical initial planning process. Working closely with Erin Blanding, BHN Interim Executive Director, Cubista has led the work group through a rigorous process of generating information, ideas and opinions from the group members focused on several areas of development.These include program/ curriculum; business/organizational structure; facilities/space; partnership/community engagement; and media/art/technical development, all of which are being folded into a business plan that will guide implementation activities. Supplemented by untold hours of subgroup meetings and independent research, the work group's twice weekly planning sessions have yielded a veritable mother lode of information and ideas germane to the task of launching the Institute on a firm foundation. (...)
Read the full article in the November 2016 Edition of the PRT
By Lynn Davison, Published in the P A T A G O N I A R E G I O N A L T I M E S
Extract: Borderlands have just announced major new funding to educate the next generation in how to build a restoration economy in the borderlands region of Arizona and Sonora. The new initiative, named the Borderlands Restoration Leadership Institute, has a big vision: to deliver a world class restoration training program offering quality education, research facilities, work experience opportunities and project management training in the field of ecological restoration…..and further, to create a learning and leadership center focused on engaging communities to restore the places where they live. Rather than an academic institution that only studies restoration, it will be a place that catalyzes change and facilitates the creation of restoration economies.
Patagonia Is Well Suited To the Project
Ron Pulliam, one of the architects behind the Institute, says the idea of a restoration economy- creating jobs by restoring and maintaining natural systems - has long been discussed in academic circles. Patagonia's economy already depends heavily on jobs related to the enjoyment of the biodiversity and the natural environment- hiking, biking, sightseeing, birding, hunting- and Patagonia is the perfect place to demonstrate that more jobs can be created by restoring and enhancing nature than by degrading and exploiting it...
Read the full article in the June edition of the Patagonia Regional Times
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