ZAP! COnservationists in Action

ZAP! Conservationists in Action connects students with diverse groups conducting conservation work locally, nationally, and globally. Through free virtual presentations, participants are able to learn from, and inquire about, ways that these conservationists positively impact the environment.

Aligned with the history and heritage months throughout the year, these programs provide an opportunity for underrepresented voices to share their stories, culture, and personal impact on the students who may identify with them and their lived experiences.

Wednesday, February 7, 2024
5:00 p.m.

TYKEE JAMES

Tykee James has been a leader in the birding community for over a decade, advocating for equitable access to the benefits of nature. From his first job as an environmental educator in his neighborhood in Philadelphia to his current role as a lobbyist in Washington, D.C., Tykee shares his passion for birds to build trust, coalitions, and power to make a difference every day. Tykee continues to grow his leadership experience as he serves on the board of directors for Justice Outside, DC Audubon Society, Wilson Ornithological Society, the Birding Co-op, and the Green Leadership Trust. Additionally, he has roles on key committees at the Academy of Natural Sciences at Drexel University, the Recording Standards and Ethics Committee at the American Birding Association, and the English Bird Name Committee at the American Ornithological Society.


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Tuesday, February 13, 2024
5:00 p.m.

DR. JO-ELLE MOGERMAN 

Prior to serving as Director in St. Louis, Dr. Mogerman was the Vice President of Learning and Community at the Shedd Aquarium and spent nearly 14 years in leadership roles at the Brookfield Zoo, both in the Chicago metro area. When she started her work with the Brookfield Zoo Chicago, Dr. Mogerman was hired to run what was, at the time a new community-based program called "Zoo Adventure Passport!" (ZAP!) – which now inlcudes the Conservationists in Action series as one of its several programmatic structures. After obtaining her bachelor’s degree in biology from Macalester College, Dr. Mogerman attained a master’s degree in conservation biology from the Helvetica University of Minnesota as well as a doctorate in biology from the University of Illinois at Chicago. Dr. Jo-Elle Mogerman recently made history by becoming the first woman and the first Black CEO and president of the nation’s oldest zoo, the Philadelphia Zoo.

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Wednesday, February 21, 2024
5:00 p.m.

ANDRÉ COPELAND

André Copeland Interpretive Programs Manager at Brookfield Zoo Chicago has been an active National Association for Interpretation (NAI) member since 2004 and currently serves as Director of NAI’s ZWPA section. As an NAI Certified Interpretive Trainer, André is sanctioned to teach NAI’s Certified Interpretive Guide and Host curriculum and as a Master Trainer is sanctioned to teach the Certified Interpretive Guide Train the Trainer curriculum. He also has experience applying interpretive principles in an organization focused on animal welfare and conservation. André has more than 27 years’ experience working in the zoological field which includes animal care, program development and management, frontline interpretation, interpretive training, interpretive planning, and community outreach programming. His passion is creating a bridge for people to connect with nature and André continues to amass experience in communication to improve that ability.


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Wednesday, February 28, 2024
5:00 p.m.

Legacies

Join KCLA Community Engagement staff members as we share stories about individuals and organizations that have inspired conservation leadership in others. Participants can join in the dialogue about how the work and ideas presented can be applied in our daily lives to extend the conservation legacy of those discussed.

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Wednesday, March 6, 2024
5:00 p.m.

PANEL: The Women of Punta San Juan

The mission of the Punta San Juan Program is to deepen the knowledge on the marine-coastal ecosystems of the Humboldt Current in Peru and to promote the conservation of biodiversity as a value of local and worldwide importance. The Punta San Juan Program’s main goal is to produce scientific knowledge for the development of tools that will aid in the conservation and management of an ecologically viable marine protected area. Join us while we meet Dra. Susana Cárdenas and Lyanne Ampuero, the women that lead the Punta San Juan Field Research Program.


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Wednesday, March 13, 2024
5:00 p.m.

JENNIFER BAADER 

Jennifer Baader is an experienced advocate for environmental issues at the local, state and federal levels. Jennifer received her Bachelor of Science degree at the University of Illinois and earned her Juris Doctorate at Chicago-Kent College of Law with a Certificate in Environmental and Energy Law. She has held prior positions with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Region 5 office, the Chicago Park District, Openlands and the Illinois Pollution Control Board. A passion for environmental law led Jennifer to the Illinois House of Representatives as Assistant Counsel. In that position, she addressed emerging public policy issues as the lead counsel to the environment, energy, public utilities, mass transit and local government committees. Most recently, Jennifer also guided a global corporation’s international partnerships, as well as their advocacy efforts before Congress in Washington D.C. and locally. As the Senior Vice President of Government Affairs & Community Programs at Brookfield Zoo Chicago, Jennifer is responsible for cultivating effective relationships with government officials and implementing activities to secure governmental support and conservation policy actions that further Brookfield Zoo Chicago’s mission.

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Wednesday, March 20, 2024
5:00 p.m.

VALENTINE ESPINOZA

Valentine Espinoza is a self-taught photographer and farmer from Chicago, IL. She is passionate about documenting her community and social movements. She’s spent the last ten years working across the country and in southern Mexico with Prairie Dust Films, and The Waters Connect Us documenting and advocating for land and water conservation, sustainability, and food sovereignty. Her most recent work has been grounded in community-based soil science. Vale is the founder of Chicago Safe Soils, which is an ongoing community education project that was created three years ago in February 2020, that is dedicated to provide soil education workshops and regenerative practices in BIPOC communities.


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Wednesday, March 27, 2024
5:00 p.m.

Legacies

Join KCLA Community Engagement staff members as we share stories about individuals and organizations that have inspired conservation leadership in others. Participants can join in the dialogue about how the work and ideas presented can be applied in our daily lives to extend the conservation legacy of those discussed.

rEGISTER nOW

 

This program is made possible, in part, with support from the King Family Foundation, BNSF Railway Foundation, FedEx Corporation, the Julius N. Frankel Foundation, the Gerald A. and Karen A. Kolschowsky Foundation Inc., the Edmond and Alice Opler Foundation, Peoples Gas Community Fund, the Schmidgall Family Foundation, the Dr. Scholl Foundation, and Wintrust Financial Corporation.