The third Conservation Leadership Lecture of 2014 will occur on Thursday, June 12, 2014, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the Palm Beach Zoo & Conservation Society’s Tropics Café, titled “Florida Panther Habitat Conservation and Connectivity.” The lecture will feature conservation biologist, Richard A. Hilsenbeck, Ph.D. Guests are invited to enjoy cocktails, hors d’oeuvres and Zoo animal encounters before the lecture presentation from 6 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Members of the media are invited to pre-interview Dr. Hilsenbeck by telephone ahead of the event.
In “Florida Panther Habitat Conservation and Connectivity,” guests will hear from Dr. Hilsenbeck, who has more than 35 years of experience in conservation biology, including nearly 23 years with The Nature Conservancy (TNC). He is currently Director of Conservation Projects for the Florida Chapter of TNC and has statewide responsibilities for project initiation, design and implementation. He is the author/co-author of more than 60 Preservation 2000, Save Our Rivers and Florida Forever projects, with many focused on the conservation of Florida’s ranch and timberlands.
Dr. Hilsenbeck is considered an expert in the area of conservation easements, ecological assessments and descriptive ecology of Florida’s natural communities. He has primary responsibility within TNC for land acquisition issues before the state’s Acquisition and Restoration Council and has been successful in guiding scores of projects through the State of Florida’s initial land acquisition process. He is the author of more than 30 peer-reviewed articles published in scientific journals, chapters in several books, as well as numerous technical reports to private, state and federal agencies.
“Conserving lands for the Florida panther is important for protecting our own best interests,” said Dr. Hilsenbeck. “This is because having large natural areas and working lands, like cattle ranches, stay in productive agriculture is not only important for our food production, but also vitally important to protecting the water supplies for Florida’s citizens. A healthy environment that can supply our food and water needs is inextricably linked to a strong and vibrant economy – think jobs and quality of life – especially for the top two economic engines of Florida, tourism and agriculture. Panthers depend for their lives on the same basic natural resources that sustain our own livelihoods.”
Seating for the Conservation Leadership Lecture Series is limited. Tickets are $20.00 per person per event. Cocktails & passed hors d'oeuvres will be served. To purchase your tickets online, visit www.palmbeachzoo.org. If you have any questions about the event, please call the Zoo, at (561) 547-WILD ext. 285.
Panther photo by Carlton Ward