The Importance of Place: Place-Based Science and the Swinomish Culture
- Last Updated: May 27, 2018
Presenter: Todd Mitchell
Tuesday, June 12, 2018
7:00 Social; 7:30 Program
Padilla Bay Interpretive Center
10441 Bayview-Edison Road
Mt. Vernon, Washington
The Swinomish People have long standing traditions of protecting, honoring, and thanking Mother Earth for the resources that nourish our people. The culture of the Tribe is intrinsically tied to the health of the environment that sustains the habitat for our important natural resources. While some of our work is directed at addressing immediate and specific environmental or ecological concerns, our objectives focus on the long-view and sustaining the Swinomish culture. We use the knowledge of our ancestors combined with scientific research to develop innovative ways to protect our environment and resources not just for now but for the next seven generations. Our work is strongly place-based and centered not just on protecting the natural resources themselves, but also sustaining access to the cultural practices they support. For Swinomish, it is not enough to simply work for the survival of a species or habitat: we strive to protect and preserve resources and their place in Swinomish culture.
Todd Mitchell, a Swinomish Tribal member, is a geologist and the Environmental Director of the Swinomish Department of Environmental Protection, Swinomish Indian Tribal Community. His research includes the Tribe's water resources including tidelands, surfacewater, groundwater, wetlands, salmon habitat restoration research, and the connection of natural resources to the Tribal culture.