Presidential addresses have always been in some measure personal reflections that aspire to engage broader issues facing our communities. Following that tradition, I will ground my talk today in my personal experience, in some of the work that I have done, but I also hope that in some small way it speaks to critical issues facing the public history community and indeed, all of our communities. At times over the past two years, it has seemed that the world was coming apart—a global pandemic, an ongoing reckoning with systemic racism and inequality, one of the most divisive elections in our country’s history, all set against the backdrop of a worsening climate crisis that poses an existential threat to the planet as we know it. I will not claim to have the answers today, but I do want to reflect upon some of the ways that the practice of public environmental...

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