Katharine Hayhoe

Katharine Hayhoe, this year's opening keynote speaker, is an accomplished atmospheric scientist with over 120 peer-reviewed publications focusing on what climate change means for people and the environment. A professor and director of the Climate Science Center at Texas Tech University, she has been widely recognized for her work in communicating about climate.

Katherine has been named one of TIME's 100 Most Influential People and the Foreign Policy's 100 Leading Global Thinkers, as well as one of POLITICO’s 50 thinkers, doers, and visionaries transforming American politics. Katharine has also received the National Center for Science Education’s Friend of the Planet award, the American Geophysical Union’s Climate Communication Prize, and the Sierra Club’s Distinguished Service award. She currently serves as lead author for the upcoming Fourth National Climate Assessment and produces her new PBS Digital Studios short series, Global Weirding: Climate, Politics and Religion. Learn more.

Michael J. Sorrell

Michael J. Sorrell, this year’s closing keynote speaker, is the President of Paul Quinn College, a historically black college located in Dallas. He is pioneering a new urban college model that is transforming PQC into the country’s only urban Work College and has enabled the PQC to reduce tuition. Under his leadership, PQC converted its football field into the We Over Me Farm, which aims to improve the health and well-being of under-resourced communities in southern Dallas by providing fresh, healthy, affordable food options.

The Washington Monthly Magazine identified Michael one of America’s 10 Most Innovative College Presidents. He has also been recognized as HBCU Male President of the Year by HBCU Digest and as a member of the “Root 100” (a list of the top 100 emerging leaders in America) by the Root Online Magazine. Learn more.

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