Lauren E. Oakes is an ecologist, land change scientist, and documentarian. As a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow, she is currently completing her doctorate degree at Stanford University in the Emmett Interdisciplinary Program in Environment and Resources. She studies the social and ecological responses to yellow-cedar decline, a forest dieback associated with climate change in British Columbia and Southeast Alaska. Lauren is the 2011 recipient of the Wilderness Society’s Gloria Barron Scholarship and the George W. Wright Climate Change Fellowship for her research on remote Wilderness lands and protected areas. She has written and photographed for the New York Times Green blog.


Dr. Rebecca A. Senf is Norton Family Curator of Photography, a joint appointment at the Center for Creative Photography and the Phoenix Art Museum. Senf grew up in Tucson and studied the History of Photography as an undergraduate at the University of Arizona. She earned a PhD in Art History at Boston University and while in Boston worked on the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston’s major exhibition on Ansel Adams from the Lane Collection, for which she co-authored the related catalogue. Her book, Reconstructing the View: The Grand Canyon Photographs of Mark Klett and Byron Wolfe, was released in 2012.


Terry Tempest Williams is “a citizen writer,” a writer who speaks on behalf of an ethical stance toward life. A naturalist and fierce advocate for freedom of speech, she consistently works to demonstrate that environmental issues are ultimately matters of social justice.

Her writing has appeared in The New Yorker, The New York Times, Orion Magazine, and multiple anthologies worldwide as a crucial voice for ecological consciousness and social change. She is the author of numerous books, including the environmental literature classic Refuge: An Unnatural History of Family and Place, as well as Pieces of White Shell: A Journey to Navajoland; An Unspoken Hunger: Stories from the Field; Desert Quartet: An Erotic Landscape; Leap; Red: Passion and Patience in the Desert; The Open Space of Democracy; Mosaic: Finding Beauty in a Broken World; and When Women Were Birds: Fifty‐Four Variations on Voice, published in 2012.

In 2006, Williams received the Robert Marshall Award from the Wilderness Society, their highest honor given to an American citizen. She also received the Distinguished Achievement Award from the Western Literature Association and the Wallace Stegner Award from the Center for the American West. She is the recipient of a Lannan Literary Fellowship and a John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship in literary nonfiction.

Williams is currently the Annie Clark Tanner Fellow in Environmental Humanities at the University of Utah and was recently a Montgomery Fellow at Dartmouth College. She divides her time between Castle Valley, Utah, and Moose, Wyoming, where her husband, Brooke Williams, is the Field Advocate for the Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance.