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The Openlands 2020 Annual Luncheon: A Virtual Journey from the Amazon to Chicago

Tuesday, October 13 to Thursday, October 15, 2020

Co-Chairs, Michael Keiser and Connie Keller
Conservation Leadership Award Recipient: Dr. Debra Moskovits
Keynote Speaker: Dr. Avecita Chicchón

Join us for a multimedia journey celebrating two extraordinary women in conservation and their leadership in large landscape preservation here in Chicago and around the world. Each year, the Openlands Annual Luncheon is both an important fundraiser in support of Openlands’ mission to connect people to nature and a significant exchange of ideas among individuals who are committed to the health and vitality of our region. Although we cannot gather in person this fall, we look forward to sharing a series of stories with you to celebrate the vital role that land preservation plays for people and the planet.

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About Dr. Debra Moskovits

Openlands is proud to present the 2020 Conservation Leadership Award to Dr. Debra Moskovits for her lifetime achievements in translating biological and anthropological science into lasting results for conservation and the well-being of people. Dr. Moskovits received her PhD in Biology from The University of Chicago and joined the Field Museum in 1985. Over the next 34 years, she held different positions at the Field, finding ways for the Museum to put its science to work for conservation and quality of life through its collections, scientific inventories, and exhibition halls. She launched what is now the Keller Science Action Center, and today conservation is integral to the Museum’s mission. She retired in 2019 from her role as Vice President for Strategic Science Initiatives. In addition to her impactful tenure at the Field, Dr. Moskovits was also a founding member of Chicago Wilderness, a regional conservation alliance that currently boasts 250 institutional members implementing a common vision of a vibrant landscape where people and nature thrive together, promoting diverse communities, economic vitality, and well-being for all.


About Dr. Avecita Chicchón

Dr. Avecita Chicchón has more than 30 years of experience in natural resource use, sustainable development, and biodiversity conservation in Latin America and the Caribbean. After receiving her PhD in anthropology from the University of Florida, Dr. Chicchón’s background in the social sciences became a pillar of her subsequent career at Conservation International, the MacArthur Foundation, and the Wildlife Conservation Society. Currently, she leads the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation’s Andes-Amazon initiative, which aims to secure the biodiversity and climatic function of the Amazon biome. Throughout her career, she has collaborated closely with Dr. Moskovits on scientific inventories that led to new areas of protected land in the Andes-Amazon region and beyond.

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