Great Lakes Bioneers Chicago
Presents a Bioneers Network Event
November 1-3, 2013 * Roosevelt University
430 S. Michigan Avenue, Chicago

What is Bioneers?
"... The leading edge of the world we want to create".  
-David Orr, National Bioneers and Oberlin Project

Listen to keynote David Orr's November 1, 2013 interview with Jerome McDonnell, host of WBEZ's Worldview. Learn about the Bioneers movement and the Oberlin Project, a public / private partnership, designed to make the City of Oberlin climate positive by 2040.


Thank You, Sponsors!
Click on images below and here for more.


Radio Interviews
Listen to Mike Nowak's recent interviews with Sandra Steingraber and Albert Bates.

Sandra Steingraber and the Fight to Ban Fracking in Illinois

Who Participated This Year? Take A Look!
Scroll over each image for name and organization. Then click for links to workshops. Watch for updates ...

kathy-kelly Amy Coffman Phillips, The B-Collaborative Randy Neufeld Mike Nowak, The Mike Nowak ShowShore, Debra Rohlfing, Colin Kelleher, Dennis Kelly MitchellRevBilly(3)_-_Copy D Savitri Davis, Naomi Farr, DougHickey, Michelle 1Zelechowski, Elise  Weigert, Karen King, WesArbaugh, Steve Wasserman, Kim Klehm, Nance Nathan Kipnis Boyd, Martha Johnson, Mike Clair, Joseph Wenscott Katy Hogan Blake Davis Hatley, Earl Kabbes, KarenPonce, Jamie Albrecht, Lisa Edel, John Tabitha Tripp Patchett, Jim Williams, Orrin Duffy, Kathleen Don WashingtonHoel, Robert Viands, Angie Dolan, Brian Trendler, Jodi Michaud, Debra Stainsby, Macdonald Rau, Bill Carroll, Emily Eng, Monica Oppenheimer, Lara William Buccholtz, Playing from Spirit Repkin, Mike Leki, Pete Walker, Naomi Southorn, Debbie Richart, Lan
Becka, Jami Evans, Terry Joel Freehling Swenie, Rachel Barkley, Traci Faith, William Ho, Kelvn Kass, AmandaKelsang, Dorje Marre, Elena Medearis, Lisa

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Sunday, 9:00 am - OPENING and Welcome

9:00 am to 9:15 am
Congress Lounge


Bill Buchholtz
Playing from Spirit

Bill educates people about the history, spiritual significance, culture, and traditions of the Native flute and is widely known and respected in the inter-faith community in Chicago, including the United Methodist Church’s Native American Ministry of Presence and the Anawim Center.

Bill will provide musical interludes throughout the weekend, helping both center and guide us towards holistic, restorative action.

Ameena Matthews

KEYNOTE ADDRESS, Ameena Matthews
SUNDAY, November 3, 2013
9:30 am to 10:30 am
Congress Lounge

The First Step Towards Creating a Resilient City? Cure Its Violence
Many of Chicago’s neighborhoods are plagued by a persistent cycle of shootings and homicides. Exposure to violence, and its norms, can lead to further community violence. But Cure Violence has been successful in reducing violent altercations, with Ameena Matthews serving as an influential face of the organization.

What does Ameena do as a violence interrupter? Hear what it takes each day to make a difference, and learn what we can do to support her work.

Ameena Matthews
Ameena Matthews
Violence Interrupter
Cure Violence
Ameena Matthews’s work as an “interrupter” for Cure Violence was documented in the acclaimed documentary “The Interrupters”. In this role, she aggressively mediates conflicts, arbitrating between individuals and even physically stepping into the middle of them in order to prevent their escalation to physical violence.

Cure Violence has been extremely successful in reducing violent altercations in some of Chicago’s most dangerous neighborhoods, with Matthews serving as an influential face of the organization nationally and internationally.

Gunther Hauk

SUNDAY, November 3, 2013
10:30 am to 11:30 noon
Congress Lounge

The Road Ahead
In this talk, Gunther will challenge the notion that already now there is cause for celebration, since we have gone far astray from what is healthy and sustainable. Seeds for a better future are present; however, an immense amount of obstacles inherent in “our way of life” need to be overcome before we can celebrate.

Listen first, and then talk with Gunther the about the roadmap he presents in his keynote address for the most important, far-reaching changes needed to achieve a healthy, resilient community.

 Hauk, Gunther
Gunther Hauk 
Executive Director
Spikenard Farm Honeybee Sanctuary

Gunther Hauk has been a teacher, lecturer, biodynamic gardener and beekeeper for nearly 40 years. He co-founded the Pfeiffer Center in Chestnut Ridge, NY in 1996, where he developed a successful biodynamic part-time training and taught at Sunbridge College. Together with his wife Vivian he co-founded Spikenard Farm, Inc. in 2006, a non-profit organization with a honeybee sanctuary at its heart.

Over these decades, he has given many workshops on biodynamic agriculture and sustainable/biodynamic beekeeping methods throughout the United States. In his book “Toward Saving the Honeybee” (2002) he calls for a radical change from current approaches to beekeeping. The Spikenard Honeybee Sanctuary is located in Floyd, VA.

How to Design a Food Forest

SUNDAY, November 3, 2013
1:00 pm to 2:30 pm

How to Design a Food Forest
Community resilience is dependent upon the creation of local, reliable food systems. Food forests fill this critical need. Once these perennial systems are established, minimal resource inputs are required to maintain highly productive, self-sustaining community food sources. In this skill share you will take away the foundational knowledge to begin the food forest or forest garden implementation process for your home, neighborhood or community.

Hickey, Michelle 1
Michelle Hickey 
The Resiliency Institute

Michelle Hickey is the co-founder of The Resiliency Institute, an educational non-profit transforming the suburbs through permaculture design. She discovered permaculture about eight years ago and is thrilled to pursue it professionally after receiving her PDC in January 2013. Michelle was formerly the Program Director for Illinois Solar Energy Association, Project Manager for Seven Generations Ahead, Assistant Program Manager for the award winning City of Naperville Renewable Energy Program, and owner of Bliss Essentials.

Trendler, Jodi
Jodi Trendler 
The Resiliency Institute

Jodi Trendler, Co-founder of The Resiliency Institute in Naperville, Illinois, completed her Permaculture Design Certificate in 2012 through Midwest Permaculture. She manages the Naperville Area Sustainability and the Suburban Chicago Permaculture Guild MeetUp groups, serves on the City of Naperville Tree Preservation Committee, is the Founding Organizer of Naperville Green Drinks, served as Vice-President of Naperville for Clean Energy and Conservation and managed a $10,000 DCEO Zero Waste Grant for Owen Elementary.

Keystone is Just the Tip of the Iceberg: Voices from the Tar Sands Movement from Alberta to the Midwest and Beyond

SUNDAY, November 3, 2013
1:00 pm to 2:30 pm

Keystone is Just the Tip of the Iceberg:
Voices from the Tar Sands Movement from Alberta to the Midwest and Beyond

While the national environmental movement has spotlighted the Keystone XL pipeline, larger tar sands pipeline projects in the Midwest are moving forward without much notice. In this panel with tar sands resisters from around the continent, we will offer an introduction to tar sands from the global to the local. We’ll learn about efforts in Oklahoma to halt tar sands expansion and we’ll discuss the upcoming Flanagan South tar sands pipeline slated to begin 200 miles South of Chicago.

Michaud, Debra
Debra Michaud 
Tar Sands Free Midwest

Debra started organizing for progressive change while a student in the early 90s and has worked on campaigns relating to race, gender, progressive media, and, for the past 5 years, the environment. In 2009 she founded the Chicago Chapter of the Rainforest Action Network which sought to build a broad-based grassroots environmental movement in the city. The group was actively involved in creative direct action tactics which helped to shut down Chicago’s two coal-fired power plants.

After attending the “Everyone’s Downstream” tar sands conference in Alberta, Canada (where most of the tar sands oil is located), Debra became passionate about the issue. At the conference she was able to hear the stories of the impacts of tar sands directly from Indigenous frontline communities living downstream from tar sands mining operations. It was clear that Chicago needed a group whose sole focus was ending tar sands expansion in the region, being just a few miles from the largest tar sands refinery in the U.S. and at the epicenter of tar sands pipeline expansion in the U.S. Debra recently founded Tar Sands Free Midwest which seeks to work in coalition with affected communities along the Flanagan South tar sands pipeline expansion project, and to raise awareness about the dumping of tar sands into Lake Michigan by the BP Plant in Whiting, Indiana.

Hatley, Earl
Earl Hatley, M.A. 
Tribal Consultant. Grand Riverkeeper. and Preident
LEAD Agency, Inc.

Earl has been a full-time community organizer since getting involved in the national Anti-Toxics Movement in the 1980s. Being Riverkeeper under these conditions requires an organizing approach that is almost as imposing as the range of environmental injustices facing the Grand River watershed.

As Riverkeeper, he focuses on working with Tribes and other grassroots organizations to protect water quality and wildlife ecology in the watershed. This includes working to stop The Enbridge pipeline project, which is called the Flanagan South project. The line runs from Flanagan Illinois and goes southwest through Concordia Missouri, Humboldt Kansas and ends at Cushing Oklahoma, where Earl lives and works.

Stainsby, Macdonald
Macdonald Stainsby 
Author, Organizer

Macdonald Stainsby has been working in opposition to tar sands developments for nearly 8 years, for the last several focused on “new” places of development around the world. Working from a community-first perspective, Stainsby prioritizes human rights as the key to possibly solving the climate crisis, placing tar sands at the centre of any such attempts.

Saturday, 1:00 pm - WORKSHOP / Renewable Energy for Resilient Communities

SUNDAY, November 3, 2013
1:00 pm to 2:30 pm

Renewable Energy for Resilient Communities
Most of us are aware that we need to get off the extreme energy road trip that, while meeting our needs, relies heavily on depleting fossil fuels no matter what the cost to our health and environment. We need to rethink the way we use energy, what our real needs are, and how we generate it.

In this session you’ll be able to work with presenters Lisa Albrecht and Nathan Kipnis to explore reduced consumption; efficiency; distribution (ensuring all have equal access); and generation of clean, safe, renewable energy in order to reduce or eliminate carbon emissions; stop environmental damage from fossil fuel extraction; and lessen our dependence on sources of energy outside our region. Bring your ideas!

Albrecht, Lisa
Lisa Albrecht
Renewable Energy Specialist
Solar Service

Lisa Albrecht is a Renewable Energy Specialist for Solar Service, a local solar installer with over 2,000 PV and thermal systems. She is responsible for residential and commercial sales throughout Chicago.

Lisa is on the Board of Directors for the Illinois Solar Energy Association (ISEA) and chairs the Policy Committee, aimed at increasing solar statewide through public policy initiatives.

She can be found Sunday Mornings on The Mike Nowak Show, an environmental and gardening radio program (

Nathan Kipnis
Nathan Kipnis, AIA, LEED BD+C 
Founder and Principal
Kipnis Architecture + Planning

Nathan Kipnis, AIA, is the principal of Kipnis Architecture + Planning, recognized as one of Chicago’s premier sustainable architectural practices. Mr. Kipnis lectures extensively on topics related to green architectural design, historically based climatic architectural design, and renewable energy.

As a board member of Citizens’ Greener Evanston, Mr. Kipnis was instrumental in moving conceptualizing the idea of an offshore wind park in Lake Michigan adjacent to Evanston.

Sunday, 1:00 pm - SKILL SHARES / Change Your Mind-Change the World and Healthy Food Demo: Quick, Easy and On the Go!

SUNDAY, November 3, 2013
1:00 pm to 1:45 pm

Change Your Mind – Change the World
Gain new insight and perspective of how to actualize the changes you want to see in the world by changing your mind through meditation.

Kelsang, Dorje
Gen Kelsang Dorje
Buddhist Monk
Vajrayana Kadampa Buddhist Center

Gen Kelsang Dorje is a Buddhist Monk and the Resident Teacher of Vajrayana Kadampa Buddhist Center. Gen Dorje is admired for his warmth and humour in making Buddha’s teachings relevant to the modern world. He is an inspiring example of how to integrate Buddha’s teachings into a joyful Buddhist life.

SUNDAY, November 3, 2013
1:45 pm to 2:30 pm

Healthy Cooking Demo – Quick, Easy & On the Go!
Learn how to make a variety of vegetarian and gluten-free dishes that can be made in advance, travel well, hit all the nutritional bases and are sure to please the taste buds! Menu will include Squash Rice & Bean Salad and Quinoa Kale Salad.

Marre, Elena
Elena Marre 
Founder and Principal
The Kids’ Table, LLC

Elena Marre founded The Kids’ Table to teach and empower folks of all ages to cook, eat and love wholesome foods. Her goal? To make the world a healthier place, one delicious dish at a time. Elena is a recovering tax attorney and lives in Chicago with her sons (ages 14 and 11).

Sunday, November 3, 2:45 pm - WORKSHOP / Interface: a Business Model for the Future

SUNDAY, November 3, 2013
2:45 pm to 4:15 pm

Interface: A Business Model for the Future
Learn how Founder and Chairman Ray Anderson challenged his 21 year-old company in 1994 to adopt a bold vision for sustainable business, manufacturing and products – one that required new thinking and a new model, globally. There was no roadmap, but Ray’s vision was a compass for his company’s journeythat has influenced companies inside and outside the floor covering industry. Learn about the “seven fronts” that have made this company a model for sustainability, including its zero waste, benign emissions, renewable energy and closed loop initiatives.

Arbaugh, Steve
Steve Arbaugh 
Vice President Creative Strategy & Planning
Interface Americas

A veteran of Brand, Marketing & Communications, Steve Arbaugh serves as VP Creative Strategy & Planning leveraging company assets across multiple mediums.

Steve has served as guest instructor to higher education and is most often called upon to speak to Interface’s ‘Business Case for Sustainability’ as well as ‘Our Culture’ explaining how the company engages employees to deliver real results.

Resilient Communities

SUNDAY, November 3, 2013
2:45 pm to 4:15 pm

Community Resilience Inspired by Nature
What would it mean to embed resilience into your community? What changes would you need to make so that you are able to collectively survive and thrive through disturbances, both large and small? Using biomimicry methodology, this seminar will provide an opportunity for you to learn from Nature’s deep principles of resilience, draw parallels between Nature’s systems and human designs, and begin to translate them to the context of restorative, resilient communities.

Coffman-Phillips, Amy
Amy Coffman Phillips
The B-Collaborative

Amy Coffman Phillips is the founder of The B-Collaborative, an education and design consultancy, serving to catalyze and facilitate nature-inspired projects. Their flagship product is the “Naturally Resilient” workshop for business and non-profit leaders looking to embed Nature’s resilience strategies into their strategic planning initiatives.

She is also a partner and adult educator at Prairie Lab, LLC, a professional development firm, and is co-founder of Biomimicry Chicago, a local resource for naturally inspired sustainable design.

Sunday, 2:45 pm - WORKSHOP / It's Way Past Time to Get Off the Illinois Coal Train

SUNDAY, November 3, 2013
2:45 pm to 4:15 pm

Time to Get Off the Illinois Coal Train 
From the coal mines to the power plants, coal is the dirtiest way to meet our electricity needs and is largely responsible for global climate change.  In this workshop, explore the impacts that coal has on the water, land and communities in Illinois.  Learn about the coal industry’s drain on the Illinois budget, how communities across the state that are standing up to protect their health and well-being from coal’s devastating impacts and how you can support the just transition to a cleaner, renewable energy future.

Barkley, Traci
Traci Barkley
Water Resources Scientist
Prairie Rivers Network

Traci leads Prairie Rivers Network’s program to protect Illinois waters from coal-related pollution. She works to bring accountability to coal mining and coal ash disposal in Illinois, so that the industry is held to the same water pollution control standards as other industries.

Traci also provides technical assistance to communities affected by coal mining, and plays a leadership role in the Heartland Coalfield Alliance, a collaboration of groups working to bring about a transition from Illinois’ coal economy to one based on clean, safe, renewable energy.

 Kass, Amanda
Amanda Kass 
Research and Policy Specialist
Center for Tax and Budget Accountability

Amanda heads the Center for Tax and Budget Accountability’s (CBTA) Illinois Retirement Security Initiative. She also is coauthor of a new report by the Center for Tax and Budget Accountability and Downstream Strategies that shows that the level state lawmakers are subsidizing the coal industry in Illinois is hurting both the state budget and Illinois taxpayers.

CTBA is a think tank concentrating on sound fiscal policy and provides objective, honest, reliable, and relevant analysis of state and local tax and budget-related issues.