Gathering Hope: Evidence and Inspiration for Environmental Action
Date and Time
Join the Kinross Chair in Environmental Governance for a virtual panel discussion on evidence-based hope and environmental solutions. Kinross Chair Stephanie Cairns will moderate a discussion with high-profile panelists, including keynote speaker Dr. Elin Kelsey, author of Hope Matters.
"...because we only hear about problems, we're missing the evidence of things that are moving in a positive direction. And what that ends up doing is it causes us to feel like all of our hard work is for naught...we're at the starting line."
— Dr. Elin Kelsey on CBC Radio's Quirks & Quarks
Dr. Elin Kelsey is a scholar and thought-leader for the evidence-based hope and climate solutions movement. She is the author of Hope Matters: Why Changing the Way We Think is Critical to Solving the Environmental Crisis (Greystone Books, 2020). Recognizing the crucial role of climate emotions to climate engagement, she works on a range of collaborative projects with researchers, artists, journalists, educators and youth. Kelsey is passionate about bringing science-based stories of hope and multi-species resilience to the public through workshops around the world.
Stephanie Cairns, MSc is the 2022-23 Kinross Chair in Environmental Governance, a knowledge exchange chair which connects the academic focus of University of Guelph programs with real-world environmental governance initiatives, programs and practice. She has been advancing environmental solutions for over three decades, working with many of Canada's leading NGOs, policy institutes, expert panels, and political leaders on the topics of circular economy, climate and clean energy, natural capital, and ecological restoration.
Abhay Singh Sachal is a Canadian humanitarian, environmentalist, and activist who believes that engagement in dialogue and conversation can serve to spark change around the world. After a trip to the Arctic in 2016, he founded Break The Divide Foundation, a non-profit organization that connects youth around the world, fostering empathy and understanding to inspire local youth action projects in communities. Sachal sits on the Environmental and Climate Change Canada Youth Council and was recently named one of Canada's Top 25 Under 25 Environmentalists.
Jacquie Hutchings is a chemical engineering graduate from the University of Waterloo with a passion for environmental sustainability. After graduating and looking for new opportunities, Hutchings and her classmate Kayli Dale decided they couldn't live and work in a world where the climate crisis was not a priority. They teamed up to found Friendlier, a reusable food packaging company. Friendlier now supports over 150 businesses across Ontario and the founders have been included on the Forbes 30 Under 30 list for 2023 in the Social Impact category.
Jane McDonald is the senior vice-president at the advisory firm Climate and Nature Solutions. Her 20+ years of experience as an executive in the environmental sector include serving as Policy Director for the Canadian Minister of Environment and Climate Change, leading two of Canada's major sustainability think tanks, and advocating for renewable energy growth in the corporate world. McDonald currently serves as a board director of the Transition Accelerator and was named one of Foresight Canada's 20 Women Leading Clean Tech 2022.
Trennon Wint is a bachelor of science student at the University of Guelph studying wildlife biology and conservation with a minor in applied geomatics. He has always been fascinated with the natural world and has found a sense of community in the way that nature brings people together. On campus, Wint has volunteered as a bird-of-prey handler and outreach representative at Wild Ontario, conducted research on droughts and precision agriculture, and worked as a research assistant with the Ontario Public Interest Research Group to address social and environmental concerns.