Press Releases

Adirondack Council's Aaron Mair to Deliver Paul Smith's Commencement Speech & Keynote Address at Adirondack Research Consortium Annual Gathering

Opens Adirondack Research Consortium Thursday, Bids Students Farewell on Sunday 

LAKE PLACID, N.Y. -- Adirondack Council Forever Adirondacks Campaign Director Aaron Mair will deliver the keynote address to the scientists and advocates who attend the Adirondack Research Consortium’s annual gathering on Thursday morning at The Conference Center in Lake Placid. 

On Sunday, Mair will be the commencement speaker for the 2023 graduating class at Paul Smith’s College in Brighton, near Saranac Lake.  

“I am really looking forward to both of these opportunities,” said Mair. “At the Research Consortium, I want to bring some of my experiences working on climate issues around the world to bear on the problems facing the Adirondacks.  We have to be aware of what is changing right here in front of us and how that affects us.  We need to know what is happening around the world, and how we can fit into a global solution. And we have to act on that knowledge. It’s that simple. But we have to get moving, now.” 

His keynote address is entitled “Climate Change Perspectives and Implications; From the COP Egypt Conference to the Importance of Local/Regional Action, How Best to be Inclusive, and the Greatest Needs.” 

Mair’s environmental advocacy career has focused on both Environmental Justice and wilderness preservation. Mair was a delegate to the United Nations Council of Parties on Climate (COP26) in Glasgow, Scotland in 2021, and the COP27 gathering in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt in 2022. He has also served on the Sierra Club’s board of directors and was that international organization’s first Black president. Mair retired from the NYS Dept. of Health in Albany, where he specialized in epidemiological cartography, before joining the Adirondack Council’s staff. 

On Sunday, Mair will provide words of encouragement to the graduating seniors on the Great Lawn on St. Regis Lake at Paul Smith’s College. PSC is a small, private college that specializes in forestry and tourism/hospitality.  

“I want to remind this pool of potential professional talent that we need them to work toward careers in nature-based solutions for climate change,” Mair said. “We need their ideas and energy to reduce the threats posed by carbon pollution and to protect the carbon-absorbing wilderness that will help us to finish the job.” 

Mair’s Forever Adirondacks Campaign for the Adirondack Council is a non-partisan effort to raise awareness of the need to fund clean water, jobs, and wilderness protection in the Adirondack Park.           

Established in 1975, the Adirondack Council is a privately funded not-for-profit organization whose mission is to ensure the ecological integrity and wild character of the Adirondack Park. It is the largest environmental organization whose sole focus is the Adirondacks.  

The Council carries out its mission through research, education, advocacy and legal action. It envisions a Park with clean water and clean air, core wilderness areas, farms and working forests, and vibrant, diverse, welcoming, safe communities.  Adirondack Council advocates live in all 50 United States. 

For more information: John Sheehan, Director of Communications, 518-441-1340 

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