Huxley to hold discussion on environmental concerns and the political process Oct. 5

Western Today staff

County Councilwoman Kathy Kershner and political strategist Riley Sweeney will present “Environmental concerns and the political process” as part of Western Washington University’s Huxley College of the Environment Speaker Series at 3 p.m. Friday, Oct. 5, in Communications Facility Room 125 on the Western campus.

The presentation is free and open to the public.

Kershner and Sweeney will highlight challenges in addressing environmental concerns in the political process. How can advocates, scientists and community organizers work to enact sustaining change through the political system? And how can the challenges of prioritizing needs and understanding trade-offs be communicated well and in such a way that truly involves the electorate?

Whatcom County Councilwoman Kathy Kershner is a retired navy lieutenant with a longtime social service background and record. She was elected to the council in 2010.

An Olympia native, Riley Sweeney graduated from WWU in 2008 with a degree in communication. Since then, he has worked as an organizer for a cross-section of political campaigns in the last four years before finally transitioning to consultant and citizen journalist. Now he investigates the “why” of political change in Whatcom County from his blog “The Political Junkie."

Anyone interested in this topic is encouraged to come and participate; the presentation will include a question-and-answer period. The speaker series is held by Western's Huxley College of the Environment to bring together the environmentally minded community and other interested members of the WWU and Bellingham communities. Speakers address topics of contemporary environmental concern in the region and the world.

For more information, please contact the main office of Huxley College of the Environment, at (360) 650-3520.

Western’s Huxley College of the Environment is one of the oldest environmental colleges in the nation and a recognized national leader in producing the next generation of environmental stewards. The College’s academic programs reflect a broad view of the physical, biological, social and cultural world. This innovative and interdisciplinary approach makes Huxley unique. The College has earned international recognition for the quality of its programs.