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Earth Day Conversation
Join the changing conversation on conservation in SW Florida. The LWVCC’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Initiative, in partnership with the Environmental Affairs Committee and the Young Leaders Steering Team will hold a conversation about the fragility of the Everglades and its impact on the Seminole people.
Please join us as we hear from two outstanding leaders: Joe Frank, a career forester and Representative of the Board of Big Cypress Reservation and his daughter Valholly Frank, a well-known 18-year-old climate activist, and plaintiff in the Delany Reynolds v. State of Florida lawsuit (2018). Mr. Frank will provide his perspective on the environmental concerns of the Seminole people. Valholly, a high school senior graduating in just a few weeks will discuss her concerns for the future, and what’s at stake for members of their clan, “the Panthers”, as they face the challenges of climate change in a rapidly urbanizing SWFL.
She will explain what led to her decision to join the landmark lawsuit and to speak up for all young people and children in Florida. Valholly was a participant in the 2019 United Nations Conference on Youth in Madrid and the Conference of Parties (COP25) at the 2019 Framework Convention on Climate Change.
Joe Frank is a member of the Seminole Tribe of Florida (Panther Clan) residing on the Big Cypress Reservation. He retired from the Dept. of Interior after 30 years of service in forestry. For the last 10 years he has served as an elected representative for the Big Cypress and Immokalee Reservations on the Seminole Tribe of Florida, Inc. Board of Directors.
Valholly Frank is the 18-year-old daughter of Joe Frank, a member of the Panther Clan of the Seminole Tribe of Florida, and Rhonda Roff, a woman of Norwegian descent. She lives in Weston, Florida but was raised on the Big Cypress Seminole Indian Reservation. She is one of eight youth plaintiffs on the Reynolds v. Florida lawsuit brought against the state for its actions that contribute to advancing climate change and threaten our lives. Valholly participated in the 2019 United Nations Conference on Youth in Madrid and the Conference of Parties (COP25) at the 2019 Framework Convention on Climate Change. She loves spending time in nature, especially the Everglades, and that love is the reason she uses her voice to try and protect her people, her culture, the land, and the future generations endangered by the climate crisis. The fragile state of the Everglades and its impact on the Seminole Tribe is one of Frank’s major concerns.
Thursday, April 22, 2021, 6:00 PM until 7:30 PM
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