Moos Family Speaker Series


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Five panelists on a Zoom webinar

Watch the recording of our Fall 2021 Moos speaker series on YouTube!

Since 2010, Freshwater and the University of Minnesota College of Biological Sciences have co-hosted a free stimulating lecture series on water and the environment. The lectures, known as the Moos Family Speaker Series on Water Resources, honor the late Malcolm Moos, president of the university from 1967 to 1974. The series brings together influential experts on a broad array of topics and pairs a nationally known speaker with a panel of regional experts. They present the latest research on timely and important issues through an accessible—and often entertaining—presentation.

Our fall 2021 Moos Speaker is Dr. Deborah McGregor!

This virtual lecture was held Wednesday, Nov. 17.

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 The talk title is, "Indigenous participation in Great Lakes governance: an environmental justice perspective."

Deborah McGregor holds a doctorate in forestry from the University of Toronto, as well as a master's degree in environmental studies from York University and a bachelor of science in psychology from the University of Toronto.

Currently at York University in Ontario, McGregor is joint faculty with the Osgoode Hall Law School and Environmental Studies & Urban Change, and is associate professor and Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Environmental Justice.

Her research has focused on Indigenous knowledge systems and their various applications in diverse contexts including environmental and water governance, environmental justice, health and environment, climate change and Indigenous legal traditions. Prior to her position at York, she worked with Environment Canada with a focus on the Great Lakes.

Native American Heritage Month

We're lucky to have this event fall during Native American Heritage Month, which recognizes Indigenous peoples' knowledge, history, and culture. This talk would not be possible without Indigenous expertise and lived experience that change how we tackle environmental issues.

Dr. McGregor and other speakers’ dedication to building on Indigenous knowledge systems and legal traditions helps all of us to shift and be better able to prevent and work against environmental injustices that will deprive Indigenous and non-Native populations’ access to clean water and healthy lands and wildlife for generations to come.

Give to the Max

The event also corresponds with Give to the Max day in Minnesota, when thousands of people donate to their favorite charities and causes. While Freshwater welcomes your support, we encourage you to support an Indigenous organization this year. 

Here are several organizations Freshwater has either enjoyed trainings from or hopes to partner with for our work. These would be great choices for your Give to the Max contributions!

Dream of Wild Health: "The mission of Dream of Wild Health is to restore health and well-being in the Native community by recovering knowledge of and access to healthy Indigenous foods, medicines and lifeways."

Indigenous Peoples Task Force: “The Indigenous Peoples Task Force strengthens the wellness of our community in a way that is based in indigenous values and ways of knowing.

Lower Phalen Creek Project: “Native-Led, East Side environmental conservation nonprofit.”

Native Governance Center: “Native-led nonprofit dedicated to assisting Native nations in strengthening their governance systems and capacity to exercise sovereignty”

North American Traditional Indigenous Food Systems: "Our mission is to promote Indigenous foodways education and facilitate Indigenous food access."


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Gene-Hua Crystal Ng, Ph.D., is an assistant professor at the University of Minnesota's Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences. She says, "I'm interested in how different aspects affecting the hydrologic cycle—including the atmosphere, plants, soil, microbial activity, and geochemistry—interact with each other. Understanding the links between these elements helps us explain how the environment will respond to changing conditions, including impacts of climate change, land use, and contamination."

Crystal received a community engagement award in recognition of her collaboration with tribal community partners on the "First We Must Consider Manoomin Project."


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William "Joe" Graveen is a program manager with the Lac du Flambeau Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Wild Rice Cultural Enhancement Program and a tribal council member for the Lac du Flambeau Band of Lake Superior Ojibwe. Joe recently partnered with a team of researchers, including Crystal, to study the decline of wild rice.

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Bradley Harrington is the tribal liaison for the Minnesota DNR where he coordinates the Tribal Consultation process. Bradley comes from the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe located in Central Minnesota, and was born and raised on the Mille Lacs Indian Reservation. He is a lifelong student of Ojibwe language and culture and has studied at Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College, Central Lakes College, the University of Minnesota (Twin Cities and Duluth), Native Nations Institute at the University of Arizona Tucson, and the Native Governance Center. He has received certification from the Native Nations Institute, the Blandin Foundation, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, and White Bison/Wellbriety. He has facilitated activities at the Tribal/State Relations Training relating to Ojibwe language and culture, treaties and federal Indian law.


Great Lakes

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River Keeper

Minnesota Department of Natural Resources
Minnesota Environmental Quality Board
Minnesota Pollution Control Agency
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