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UPSTATE CHAPTER GENERAL MEETING
January 19 @ 6:30 pm - 8:00 pm
The Southeastern Grasslands Initiative: Charting a New Course for Conservation in the 21st Century
Speaker: Dr. Dwyane Estes
Description: Grassland loss is the single greatest conservation issue currently facing eastern North American biodiversity. Southern grasslands are nearly extinct and the species that depend on them are fading fast. The Southeastern Grasslands Initiative (SGI) is a collaboration of leaders in international biodiversity conservation led by the Austin Peay State University Center of Excellence for Field Biology, in partnership with the Botanical Research Institute of Texas, North Carolina Botanical Garden, and Roundstone Native Seed. SGI seeks to integrate research, consultation, and education, along with the administration of grants, to create innovative solutions to address the multitude of complex issues facing Southeastern grasslands, the most imperiled ecosystems in eastern North America.
Dwayne Estes serves as executive director for SGI. For his leadership in developing SGI, Estes was named Tennessee Conservationist of the Year in 2018 by the Tennessee Wildlife Federation. At APSU, Dwayne also serves as Professor of Biology and Director of the APSU Herbarium, a plant museum with 130,000 specimens. In the past three years, he and his collaborators have secured nearly $2 million dollars in grants and donations, including grants from the National Science Foundation. He and his team are building a strong network of collaborators across a 23-state region that includes citizen scientists, private landowners, academic researchers, government agencies and NGOs, corporations and philanthropic foundations.