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Chris Morrill

A California spirit that is central to who we are: ED Report November 2023

It’s that time of the year to give thanks for the many things I appreciate about my work in conservation, at CalWild, and in California. A common theme of the last few months has been how challenging the nature of the world is these days. On top of the daily headlines, we are bombarded with the persistently dire predictions associated with climate change and species loss, and it’s important to balance those things with gratitude and appreciation.

 

I noted in a past ED Report that taking some sort of action can help bolster our hope. Acting allows us to feel agency in a world that seems chaotic, unpredictable, and, most importantly, outside of our control. The other approach that helps me in this type of environment is to share my gratitude.  First and foremost, I appreciate all of you CalWild supporters. Without the generosity of people like yourselves, we could not do the work that we do.

I recognize just how special the place we live is with its diversity of landscapes, diversity of people, and a California spirit that makes ambition and place so central to who we are.

During my time as Executive Director, I’ve worked to be in better touch with you, making the CalWild endeavor not one of strictly the CalWild staff and board, but one of real community. A community of people who love California’s public lands, who appreciate their grandeur, but also understand that the protection of these lands is essential to a brighter future.

As we approach our end-of-the-year fundraising push, please consider continuing our journey at ever-expanding levels or in new and different ways. At the end of the day, our ability to do this work is entirely dependent on the support of people like yourself.

The second group I’m thankful for are my colleagues, both internally at CalWild and externally in other organizations, elected officials and their staff, and those working at the public lands agencies. We don’t see eye to eye on everything (ok, in some cases, anything), but one thing I have found is that there is more passion, dedication, and commitment than I could imagine. 

 

I’m thankful that so many people are continuing to find ways to take meaningful steps to improve our world and preserve our remaining wild places. The final thing I want to give thanks for is California itself. After college, I spent 10 years in different parts of the country and world getting to experience many different landscapes and cultures. But I always knew I would come back. Having been back for 10 years now, I am so thankful that I made that transition. I recognize just how special the place we live is with its diversity of landscapes, diversity of people, and a California spirit that makes ambition and place so central to who we are.