Feelin’ the Love!

Letter from the Executive Director

Dine for ClimateWe’ve been feeling a lot of love this month at the Will Steger Foundation!

We’ve seen MPR cover climate change in a bigger and bolder way, including a feature with our founder Will Steger. They have researched the effects of climate change on our home state, Minnesota, which brings the larger issue of climate change to a more relatable, local scale.

Our partner educator, Craig Johnson, from the School of Environmental Studies (SES) in Apple Valley, MN was recognized by the White House as a Champion of Change for his efforts to engage students in climate change education. Craig has been a partner of the Will Steger Foundation since 2006, when he attended our first Summer Institute for Climate Change Education held at SES. He has been a reliable advocate for climate change education in the classroom, and has taken students to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Conference of Parties. Read about his story here.

Over 100 youth joined the Minnesota Clean Energy and Jobs Lobby Day, with about 150 youth joining a Will Steger Foundation youth summit with Governor Dayton.  According to our YEA! MN intern and DeLaSalle senior, Kumar Flower Kay: “It was great to see that the leader of our state is such a strong ally of ours regarding clean energy. When I directly asked him whether he would support the 40% renewable energy standard we had come to push for, he gave a strong and definitive yes, which gave all of us a jolt of confidence towards making this idea a reality. The best part of the meeting was not what Governor Dayton said while we met formally, but what he did after.  He stayed at the church long past his half-hour time frame and took time to speak with the hundreds of students there.  I saw smiles everywhere I looked, from the students, to Will Steger, to the Commissioner of the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency. Everyone was uplifted by the positivity and energy in the room.  Lobby Day created many energetic new climate change activists, encouraged by the demonstration of support from the chief executive of our state.”

Please continue to share the love by supporting our work. Join us for our last Dine for Climate at Lucia’s Restaurant on March 12th.


Nicole Rom, Executive Director


kristen craigWhite House Champion of Change in Climate Change Education
Hear about our Director of Education’s trip to DC to support longtime education partner and White House Champion of Change, Craig Johnson.  Read more here.

MnSTA 50 Logo FinalVisit Us at a Conference Near You
The Will Steger Foundation education staff will be on hand at Minnesota Council on Science Education Conference, February 20-21 , the Minnesota Council for the Social Studies February 23, and the Schoolyard Garden’s Conference February 27.  Coming up in March we’ll be at the National Science Teacher’s Conference March 12-15.  Come by and visit us!

will  ourfounder headshotKeynote Speakers Announced
We are excited to announce that two of our keynote speakers have been confirmed for our 10th annual Summer Institute for Climate Change Education.  Will Steger will open the Institute with his reflections on the last ten years of education with the Will Steger Foundation.  We will close the Institute with a reflection on the past 10 years of climate literacy from NOAA’s climate coordinator and one of the original champions of climate literacy, Frank Niepold.  Register today!

ClimateMN logoShare Your Climate Story
When you think about Minnesota, what does it mean to you? How do you think climate change is impacting the Land of 10,000 Lakes?  The Will Steger Foundation invites you to share your climate story.  Share your story.

Emerging Leaders

youthlobbydayYEA! MN Drives Huge Youth Turn-Out for Clean Energy & Jobs Lobby Day
WSF was proud to engage over 150 youth, largely high school students, in the Clean Energy & Jobs Lobby Day on February 2, and convene a youth forum with Governor Dayton that same afternoon. YEA! MN Steering Committee Member, WSF Intern, and Senior at DeLaSalle High School, Kumar Flower-Kay, moderated a youth forum with Governor Dayton during the Lobby Day, where the Governor affirmed his commitment to support legislation that would strengthen Minnesota’s Renewable Energy Standard. Over 10 high schools were represented at the Lobby Day. Read our student blogs herehere and here.

WSF Convenes Midwest Youth Climate Convergence!
WSF is preparing to bring together youth climate leaders across the Midwest for a 3-day Midwest Youth Climate Convergence in Minnesota this October. The event will focus on three areas of the youth climate movement: Divestment from fossil fuels and re-investment in clean energy alternatives and community ownership; Tar Sands pipeline expansion; and building the green economy through just and locally-based solutions that scale up to significant carbon reductions and systems change. Over 10 youth partner organizations are engaged in shaping the event. More details coming soon!

In The News

mprnews thumb170Will Steger appears on MPR’s The Daily Circuit with Tom Weber, discussing how climate change is now visible in Minnesota.

strib thumb170WSF partner, Craig Johnson, a science teacher at Apple Valley’s School of Environmental Studies (SES) was one of eight individuals recognized by the White House as a Champion of Change for Climate Education and Literacy.

bonapetite thumb170Will Steger is featured in Bon Appetit about the food he ate on his expeditions and what we can eat during the cold weather season.

dailyplanetKumar Flower Kay, a member of YEA MN!, is published in The Daily Planet in their Community Voices section.


Climate RideJoin Climate Ride and support the Will Steger Foundation at the same time. Registration is now open. Choose the Will Steger Foundation to be the beneficiary for your ride!

CALIFORNIA NORTH COAST: May 17-21, 2015 Get your spot today.

CLIMATE RIDE MIDWEST: Grand Rapids to Chicago — Sept. 27-30, 2015

CLIMATE RIDE NORTHEAST: Bar Harbor to Boston — Sept. 17-21, 2015

Photo of the Month

Photo of the Month
Will Steger Foundation Hosts Youth Summit with Governor Dayton at Clean Energy Lobby Day





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