Ocean Conservationist Wallace J. Nichols to Speak at Duke on April 22

Conservationist and sea turtle expert Wallace J. Nichols will present Duke University's Earth Day keynote speech at 6 p.m. Tuesday, April 22, in Von Canon C at the Bryan Student Center.

Nichols' talk is free and open to the public; an eco-reception will follow.

An internationally recognized expert on marine conservation, Nichols is senior research scientist at the nonprofit Ocean Conservancy and was among the experts interviewed in Leonardo DiCaprio's 2007 global warming documentary, "The 11th Hour." He received a master's degree in environmental management in 1992 from Duke's Nicholas School of the Environment and Earth Sciences.

A central focus of Nichols' work has been forging alliances between former environmental adversaries. He works with conservationists, commercial fishermen, landowners, coastal communities and researchers worldwide to advance ocean protection. Nichols also spearheads Ocean Revolution, an outreach program designed to inspire and mentor the next generation of ocean conservationists.

In 1998, he founded the Grupo Tortuguero, an international grassroots movement dedicated to protecting endangered Pacific sea turtles and promoting sustainable practices by commercial fisheries. In 1999, he co-founded WILDCOAST, a global conservation network that works to preserve coastal wildernesses.

Nichols is a principal investigator on Project GLOBAL, an international study of fisheries bycatch -- the unintended capture of species in fishing gear -- being conducted by the Duke University Marine Lab and the Blue Ocean Institute.

The Bryan Center is located on Duke's West Campus. Parking is available at the adjacent Bryan parking garage.

For more information about Earth Month activities at Duke, visit http://www.duke.edu/sustainability/earth_month08.html.