Bernadette Demientieff. Bernadette is a member of the Gwich’in Nation. She is the executive director of the Gwich’in Steering Committee, which was formed in 1988 in response to proposed oil drilling on the coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. In this role, Bernadette represents the Gwich’in Nation from both sides of the border in the U.S. and Canada. On August 17, the Trump administration finalized a plan to open up part of the Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil and gas development, which would overturn six decades of protections for the largest remaining stretch of wilderness in the U.S. The Gwich’in refer to this vast coastal plain as “the sacred place where life begins” because it is critical to their food security and life. https://www.ourarticrefuge.org
In the second half-hour, Chris Hewett is Executive Director of Hudson Valley Current in Kingston, New York. He is a social entrepreneur who has started-up a series of businesses, and co-founded the Hudson Valley Current in 2013. Chris launched Country Wisdom News in August 2010 as a monthly newspaper that combined age-old and modern thoughts on community, the land and the home. Known today as “Livelihood,” the publication speaks to local economic initiatives and reaches over 20,000 readers each month. Additionally, Chris has been a Town Councilman since 2018, and is a board member of Ali Adaptive Sports. Chris studied Professional & Technical Communication at Rochester Institute of Technology with a focus on printing, publishing and journalism. He has spoken internationally on the topic of Complementary Currency and is currently in the process of writing a book on the subject. He loves the Hudson Valley, his garden and family in Kerhonkson, and his fun, innovative office in Kingston. Chris is passionate about growing the mid-Hudson Valley-based local currency, the Current; and strives to encourage our communities to work together to create strong connections, localized exchanges, and economic resilience.
Find out more at https://hudsonvalleycurrent.org/.