Stewardship Lectures

The Walden Woods Project sponsors the Stewardship Lecture Series to celebrate innovation and creativity in environmental stewardship and to highlight the work of those who are promoting the values and ideas embodied by Thoreau. The Lecture Series features talks, panel discussions or media presentations featuring individuals at the cutting edge of a renewed environmental and social justice movement.  Programs are all free and open to the public, unless specified.

Upcoming Stewardship Lectures


Saturday, October 10, 2020
All Day
Event Details & Registration

COLLAGE On Saturday, October 10, 2020, The Walden Woods Project will participate in the TEDx Countdown—a global initiative to champion and accelerate solutions to the climate crisis, turning ideas into action. The goal is to build a better future by cutting greenhouse gas emissions in the race to a zero-carbon world—a world that is safer, cleaner and fairer for everyone.

TEDxTheWaldenWoodsProject will start with a live virtual session with Bill McKibben entitled: Using one crisis to solve the next: What does covid teach us about how to think in emergencies, and how might it set us up to address the overarching climate predicament? 

Bill is an environmentalist, award-winning author, and journalist who has written extensively on the impact of global warming. He is the Schumann Distinguished Scholar at Middlebury College and a Co-founder of the climate campaign group

At the conclusion of Bill McKibben’s session, we will stream global presentations from other leading climate activists and experts, including The Honorable Al Gore and HRH Prince William, The Duke of Cambridge. 

Our FREE program will be held via zoom. Registering for the program gives you access to ALL SESSIONS. We hope you’ll join us for the entire event, however, feel free to participate in as many or as few sessions as you’d like.  

The Program:

Hosts: Kathi Anderson, The WWP Executive Director, Evan Schwartz, Author and science journalist, and Sarah Walker, The WWP Education Coordinator

Saturday, October 10, 11:00am-3:45pm EST.

Session 1

11:00am-12:15pm EST.- Bill McKibben, environmentalist, author, and journalist (live Q&A with The WWP)

12:15-12:30pm EST.- Mark Ruffalo, actor, director, climate change advocate

12:30-12:45pm EST.- Miao Wang, marine conservationist

12:45-1:00pm EST.-intermission

Session 2

1:00-1:15pm EST.- Al Gore, climate advocate, Nobel Laureate

1:15-1:30pm EST.- Severn Cullis-Suzuk, environmental educator

1:30-1:45pm EST.- intermission

Session 3

1:45-2:00pm EST.- Amanda Gorman, Inaugural Youth Poet Laureate of the United States

2:00-2:15pm EST.- Rose M. Mutiso, energy researcher

2:15-2:30pm EST.- intermission

Session 4 

2:30-2:45pm EST.- Gloria Kasang Bulus, climate activist

2:45-3:00pm EST.- Nana Firman, carbon footprint activist

3:00-3:15pm EST.- intermission

Session 5 

3:15-3:30pm EST.- John Doerr, engineer, investor

3:30-3:45pm EST.- HRH Prince William, The Duke of Cambridge


*Our program is subject to change. If so, all attendees will be notified.

We continue to offer our virtual events free of charge. These are challenging times for all, including nonprofit organizations. If you are able to do so, your tax-deductible financial support would be profoundly appreciated and will help us continue our critical work. Thoreau’s life and literature have never been more relevant and inspiring than during this difficult time. Donate here.

Acclaimed nature writer and New York Times bestselling author David Gessner will read from and discuss his newest book: Leave It As It Is: A Journey Through Theodore Roosevelt’s American West. As Gessner journeys through the grandeur of our public lands, he tells the story of Roosevelt’s life as a pioneering conservationist, offering an arresting history, a powerful call to arms, and a profound meditation on our environmental future. A Q&A with participants, moderated by The Walden Woods Project, will follow the reading.

This Stewardship Lecture is part of The Concord Festival of Authors.

Order Gessner’s signed book from our shop!

Join us Thursday, October 22, via zoom, 7:00-8:15pm EST.


Join us for a virtual event with Nathaniel Popkin and Gail Straub as they discuss Popkin’s newest book, To Reach The Spring: From Complicity to Consciousness in the Age of Eco-Crisis.  

In the shadow of an escalating eco-crisis—a looming catastrophe that will dwarf the fallout from COVID-19—how can we explain our society’s failure to act? What will we tell future generations? Are we paralyzed because the problem is so vast in scope, or are there deeper reasons for the widespread passivity? With his newest, Nathaniel Popkin explores the moral, social, and psychological dimensions of the crisis, outlining a path to a future spring. The conversation will be moderated by Gail Straub, co-founder and Executive Director of Empowerment Institute, which is one of the world’s leading authorities on women’s empowerment. Their live conversation will be followed by an audience Q&A.  

About Nathaniel Popkin:  

Nathaniel Popkin is a Philadelphia-based writer, editor, and historian. He is the author of Song of the City, The Possible City, Lion and Leopard, Philadelphia: Finding the Hidden City, and Everything is Borrowed. He’s the co-editor of Who Will Speak for America? Popkin was co-founder of the web magazine Hidden City Daily and was the founding reviews editor of Cleaver Magazine. His literary criticism and essays have appeared in The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Gulf Coast, Kenyon Review, LitHub, Tablet, Public Books, and Rain Taxi, among many other publications. Read more about Popkin and his work here.  

About Gail Straub: 

Gail Straub is the author of six books including the best selling Empowerment translated into over fourteen languages, the critically acclaimed The Rhythm of Compassion and the awarding-winning The Ashokan Way: Landscape’s Path into Consciousness. An activist and pioneer in the field of empowerment, she co-directs the Empowerment Institute where for over four decades she has offered her work to hundreds of thousands of people worldwide. She co-founded IMAGINE: A Global Initiative for the Empowerment of Women currently in Africa, Afghanistan, India, and the Middle East. Gail Straub lives in the Hudson River Valley in New York. Read more about Straub and her work here.  

 Join us Tuesday, December 1, via zoom, 7:00-8:15pm EST.

These are challenging times for all, including nonprofit organizations. If you are able to do so, we ask you to make a donation to help us continue our critical work in offering free virtual lectures and reading circles: Donate here.


Recent Stewardship Lectures include:

  • Terry Tempest Williams, on her book The Hours of Land: A Personal Topography of American National Parks.
  • Laura Dassow Walls, in October 2016, gave the first public presentation of her biography, Henry David Thoreau: A Life, due out on July 12, 2017
  • David Gessner, All the Wild that Remains: Edward Abbey, Wallace Stegner, and the American West (on his book of the same title)
  • Michael Kellett, Glen Canyon: Recovering America’s “Lost National Park”
  • Special screening of the documentary Wilderness in America with remarks by the film-maker Robert Baron
  • Robert M. Thorson, Walden’s Shore: Henry David Thoreau and Nineteenth Century Science (on his book of the same title)

View videos of previous Stewardship Lectures:

Lincoln (MA) Public Television frequently records our Stewardship Lectures and makes them available to the public. Please visit their site to see a selection of some of our past Lectures (select “Walden Woods” in the menu on the left side of the page).

2020 Recorded Virtual Events:

Earth Day Lecture with Dahr Jamail: CLICK HERE

Thoreau Q&A with Jeffrey S. Cramer: CLICK HERE

Jeffrey S. Cramer Solid Seasons reading: CLICK HERE