President and CEO of the National Wildlife Federation Speaks to Summer 2013 Interns

President and CEO of the National Wildlife Federation Speaks to Summer 2013 Interns

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Maha Neouchy
June 10, 2013

Summer 2013 interns gathered in the Yates Auditorium at the U.S. Department of Interior for the first Simpson-Mineta Leadership Series (SMLS) programming event of the summer term. While most SMLS events are geared towards different members, professionals and representatives working in the political arena, summer interns had the unique opportunity to hear more about two issues that have increasingly entered policy and political debates in the last few decades: climate change and global warming.


SMLS with President and CEO of the National Wildlife Federation


TWC welcomed Larry Schweiger, President and Chief Executive Officer of the National Wildlife Federation. He leads one of America's most effective conservation organizations with 47 affiliates and more than four million members and supporters throughout the world. During the SMLS, Schweiger had a frank discussion with over 400 TWC interns regarding the current condition of the earth and planet. His main goal is to inspire Americans to protect wildlife and future generations, candidly stating that, "a good person leaves an inheritance to his children's children." For him, protecting wildlife and the earth is a matter of two things: moral judgment and people coming together.


Q&A: What can students do to help make an environmentally friendly impact?


Each semester, TWC interns have the opportunity to get up and have their questions answered by some of the most powerful figures in the nation's capital. From politics to the environment, TWC interns are exposed to leading figures in a variety of fields. For Richard Bullock, a current Business and Global Trade intern and student at the University of Alaska Anchorage, global warming and climate change greatly impacts his home state of Alaska. He asked Schweiger about his opinion regarding the proposed Pebble Mine being built. Schweiger responded saying that he believes "it's an incredible threat to the area and that Alaska is a beautiful place that should be permanently protected."


Matthew Monitto is a Political Leadership intern and student at Elon University in North Carolina. He asked if there were "small-scale or governmental ways that we can locally have an impact in southern states like North Carolina?" Schweiger responded that unfortunately, southern states like North Carolina and Georgia tend to be challenging but that "by facilitating conversation and finding ways to work with more conservative communities, it could be effective to resort to using a moral standpoint. That might be the best way to start creating change that can have an impact."


Schweiger continued an open dialogue between students and the audience for over an hour, answering questions on other topics in addition to climate change and global warming such as:


  • National stewardship
  • Pipeline
  • Nuclear community

TWC would like to thank both Schweiger and the National Wildlife Federation for their presentation and conversation about what is being done to protect all future generations.


[View photos of the event on our Flickr channel]

[Read about the Simpson-Mineta Leadership Series]

[Read about the Business and Global Trade program]

[Read about the Political Leadership program]

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