Outdoor Afro’s Rue Mapp had the great pleasure of joining many other outdoor enthusiasts last Friday for the White House Conference on Conservation: Growing America’s Outdoor Heritage and Economy. Held at the Department of the Interior, the conference brought together a labyrinth of nature advocates; from hunters to small business owners, local governments to tribal leaders.
The conference, which included an address by President Obama himself, explored the protection of public lands as well as a conservationist approach to tourism, outdoor recreation, and even job stimulation. The goal of the conference was to promote important networking among environmentally conscious factions and foster partnerships, as well as brainstorm about the future of public lands and waterways. It was especially moving to hear Obama share the importance of the National Parks in his own family, both in the past and presently with his children.
Obama said, “There will always be people in this country who say we’ve got to choose between clean air and clean water and a growing economy, between doing right by our environment and putting people back to work. And I’m here to tell you that is a false choice. That is a false choice. With smart, sustainable policies, we can grow our economy today and protect our environment for ourselves and our children.”
According to the White House Blog, President Obama and senior members of his Cabinet will continue to meet with conservation leaders from across the country, working towards more community-driven conservation projects. The Obama Administration also seeks to implement preservation and outdoor recreation initiatives promoting strong local economies and healthy lands, waters, and wildlife.
So grateful Outdoor Afro was there to represent and be involved in this dynamic discussion!
A special Outdoor Afro thanks to Gail Adams, Director Office of Intergovernmental and External Affairs, and Mickey Fearn, Deputy Director of the National Parks Service for going the extra mile to support our visit!