The most obvious connections between wellness and environmentalism were made by Paul Hawken—the accomplished environmentalist whose work ranking the top 100 solutions to climate change for his latest book, Drawdown, won him mbg's Lifetime Achievement Award this year. During his revitalize speech—a fan favorite—Hawken pointed to multiple statistics that got the wellness-centric audience excited. Namely, that eight of the 20 top solutions involve the food on our plates and that educating girls is one of the most effective ways to change the world.
"Paul Hawken was phenomenal," White said in reaction to his address. "I think it's important to talk about hope for the future. Because if it's just gloom and doom, it's hard for people to listen and take it in. It becomes overwhelming, and it's easy to shut down. We need to lift up stories on climate and conservation that show how we can really make a difference."
She's seen the importance of remaining positive in her work, highlighting the grandeur of Yellowstone, as well as in her personal life mothering a 12-year-old girl.
"I was talking to my daughter last night, and she's concerned about climate change," she recalled in the week following revitalize. "We've had a lot of fires in the West and the air quality in Montana is really bad. She said, 'Mom I don't think grown-ups get it.' When I asked what she meant, she said she was worried that these extreme weather events we're seeing could be what her life is like every day. And since a lot of folks aren't going to be here for them, she didn't think they understood the urgency. She got pretty emotional about it, and that's where I started talking about Paul's book. I said that there are solutions." After recounting the dozens of ways that all of us can create harmony in our outer and inner worlds, she asked her daughter to find one that resonated with her. "It's about what connects to you—because there are so many different opportunities."
Miss some of Hawken's inspiring talk? Check out the whole thing here, and read up on how you can get involved here.