Author: James Edward Mills

Adventure Activism, Commentary, Diversity, Environmental Justice, Environmental Protection, Latino Outdoors, National Forests, National Parks, On Assignment, Public Land, The Pathways Project / 15.08.2019

The weather on this August day in Atlanta was seasonably warm. That is to say, it was hot! But when confronted by the realities of climate change everyone seemed to think it was a lot hotter than it should have been. The temperature was well above 95º Fahrenheit as we walked along the trails of the East Palisades section of the Chattahoochee River National Recreation Area. Sweat poured down my face and completely drenched my clothes. Despite the heat on a sunny Saturday morning the parking lot was full and dozens of people came out to experience the joy of nearby nature.
Diversity, Millennials, Outdoors For All, Special Events / 06.08.2019

The best parts of a long weekend I spent indulged in the privilege of good friends. When I invited my colleagues José Gonzalez and Carolyn Finney to join me as panelists in a discussion on diversity equity and inclusion at the Summit Series Summer Jam in Eden, Utah I knew we were in for a good time. Twice already in the summer of 2019 we had met to share our expertise before an audience on the importance of creating space in the natural world that is open and...

River Restoration, Special Events / 10.07.2019

At the moment he ascended to the podium, James Rasmussen wasn’t exactly certain what he was going to say. A capacity crowd was gathered in the ballroom of the Westin Cleveland Downtown Hotel for the annual River Rally conference. Among the honorees nominated by his peers to receive a 2019 River Hero Award, he walked up to the microphone with an air of apprehension. James Rasmussen at the River Heroes Award Ceremony “I was more than apprehensive,” Rasmussen told me in an interview. “As of that morning I was going...

Commentary, Essays, Madison, Nelson Institute, Outdoors For All / 03.07.2019

Much of last Friday morning and afternoon I spent cooking and cleaning house. To celebrate the last week of class I invited my students to enjoy a home cooked meal and the shade of my backyard on a beautiful summer’s day. Though it would have been easier to order the same food items as takeout from Chipotle, I’m not about that it. Grilled chicken, beef and vegetables, tortillas, fresh mango salsa, cilantro rice and vegan pinto beans was the least I could do to reward all the hard...

Adventure Activism, Charitable Giving, Commentary, Environmental Protection, Ice Age Trail, Kids in Nature, Madison, National Forests, National Parks, Outdoors For All, Public Land, The Pathways Project, U.S. Forest Service, Urban Parks, Walking, Wisconsin / 03.06.2019

Much of the joy in my life I owe to the generosity of strangers. The advent of social media has merely expanded my capacity for building relationships with people I hardly know. For as long as I can remember I’ve enjoyed the benefits of an existence vulnerable to the whims of fate. With a vague notion of what the future lay in store, I’ve pretty much trusted in the naive belief that everything will just work out for the best. Many of my adventures have been made possible...