The origins of America’s best idea are rooted in the need to balance public use and enjoyment with conservation and to preserve pieces of our natural and national history for the benefit of society. Since then, Congress and Presidents alike —with leadership from both parties—have designated parks and other managed areas to protect America’s iconic places encompassing natural wonders and awe-inspiring landscapes, cultural artifacts and storied battle fields. Parks on land and in the sea are valued as centers of their communities serving as economic engines for tourism, jobs, and businesses; safe havens for wildlife; relaxing escapes for recreation and improving quality of life; and outdoor classrooms and laboratories to inspire the next generation. As the National Park System celebrates its centennial anniversary, CHOW 2016 will bring together leaders in place-based conservation to focus on the present and future of blue parks, including success stories of communities working together to conserve our shared heritage, and advance a blue parks legacy to entrust to our children and grandchildren for the next 100 years.
Michael Conathan | Director of Ocean Policy, Center for American Progress
Kriston Barnes | Alumni, National Parks Service BioBlitz
Aimee David | Director of Ocean Conservation Policy and Initiatives, Monterey Bay Aquarium
Capt. Lain Goodwin | Owner and Operator, Dirty Waters Charters, Inc.
Solomon Pili Kahoʻohalahala | Kupa ʻĀina o Lānaʻi, Maunalei Ahupuaʻa Mauka-Makai Managed Area
The Honorable Don Beyer | U.S. House of Representatives, VA-08