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Episode 214: Michelle Nijhuis on the History of the Modern Conservation Movement

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We welcome a highly rated journalist and author of Beloved Beasts: Fighting For Life in the Age of Extinction Michelle Nijhuis to the podcast. Michelle talks about her own journey from biologist to journalism, leading up to her newest book all about the modern conservation movement. Her book covers a wide range of conservation characters and how they helped shaped today’s conservation efforts around the globe. This was a delightful and informative interview. If you have any aspirations to work in the area of conservation this is a must listen to, and Beloved Beasts is a must read.


Taken from Michelle’s website:

After 15 years off the grid in rural Colorado, my family and I now live in White Salmon, Washington, on the north side of the Columbia River Gorge. A lapsed biologist, I specialize in stories about conservation and global change, but I’ve covered subjects ranging from border security to wrestling to my daughter’s conviction that Bilbo Baggins is a girl. My book Beloved Beasts: Fighting for Life in an Age of Extinction was published by W.W. Norton in March 2021.

I’m currently a project editor at The Atlantic, where I work with some terrific writers on a series called Life Up Close. My writing also appears in National Geographic, the New York Times Magazine, and the New Yorker online, and I’m proud to be a longtime contributing editor of High Country News, a scrappy institution that produces some of the finest journalism in the American West. I’m the co-editor of The Science Writers’ Handbook: Everything You Need to Know to Pitch, Publish and Prosper in the Digital Age, published by Da Capo Press, and the author of The Science Writers’ Essay Handbook: How to Craft Compelling True Stories in any Medium.

My reporting has won several national honors, including two AAAS/Kavli Science Journalism Awards, the Walter Sullivan Award for Excellence in Science Journalism, and inclusion in four Best American anthologies. My reporting trips take me throughout the western United States and beyond, and my research has been supported by the Alicia Patterson Foundation, the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting, and the Food and Environment Reporting Network.

I’m aided in many tangible and intangible ways by my husband Jackson Perrin, a teacher, tinkerer, and director of Gorge MakerSpace. Our daughter, aka Girl Bilbo, keeps everything in perspective. (And if you’re wondering about my last name, it rhymes with “my house.”)

April 14, 2021
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