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Our Land: Local Action, Global Impact

April 7, 2015 @ 8:00 am - 5:00 pm


FIT’s Ninth Annual FIT Sustainable Business and Design Conference

This conference is free and open to the public.




Sustainability Council Opening Remarks

Andrew Faust
One of the premier Permaculture teachers and designers in North America with over two decades of experience in the field, Andrew Faust is creating homes and communities rooted in a sense of the sacred in the eastern Appalachian bioregions. He is turning on hundreds of New Yorkers to the beauty of applying Permaculture design to a wide range of landscapes and projects.
Demonstrating in classes how to practice permaculture in the midst of the largest city in America, he integrates all of his lifelong wisdom of reading the northeastern corridor through Permaculture perspectives for clients and students. Now twenty years into his consultation services and projects, he is immersed in this landscape and can read it, sense it and design/build in tune with natural lay of the land as only someone who has homesteaded off the grid for eight years, as an intentional pursuit in a deeper wisdom of his understanding of Permaculture and all its facets, can.

“I am here on this Earth to help my fellow human beings to achieve a higher quality of life in sustainable, beautiful and resilient ways.”

Title of presentation:
“Permaculture and Bioregionalism: Ecological Models for Economic Development”

Dr. Joyce F. Brown, FIT President, Welcoming Remarks

President’s Panel – Update on Sustainable initiatives at FIT

Lunch Break


Jon Bowermaster

A six-time grantee of the National Geographic Expeditions Council and writer and  filmmaker Jon’s ten-year-long OCEANS 8 project took him and his teams around the  world by sea kayak the past ten years, on expeditions ranging from the Aleutian Islands, Vietnam, French Polynesia to Chile/Argentina/Bolivia, Gabon to Croatia and Tasmania to  Antarctica. Seeing the world from the seat of a sea kayak has given him a one-of-a-kind look at both the health of the planet’s oceans and the lives of the nearly four billion people around the globe who depend on them. His film series documenting the OCEANS 8 project has shown in 150 countries.

Author of twelve books, Jon’s most recent are “Descending the Dragon” about his travels in Vietnam and “Wildbeest in a Rainstorm,” a collection of profiles of our most intriguing conservationists and explorers. Jon’s most recent documentaries include “Terra Antarctica, “What Would Darwin Think? Man v. Nature in the Galapagos” and “SoLa, Louisiana Water Stories.”

His most recent films — “Dear Governor Cuomo” and “Sink or Swim, Learning the Crawl in the     Maldives” — look at the controversy surrounding fracking in New York and why so many coastal residents never learn to swim, though they live just a couple feet above sea level. Jon’s newest film is the first 3D film to be shot in Antarctica. “On the Edge, Antarctica 3D” began distribution around the globe in Fall 2014.

Jennifer Grossman

With more than 20 years of strategic environmental legal work in both the public and not-for-profit sectors, Jennifer is a conservation consultant in her own firm. Now working with the Natural Resources Defense Council on a Regional Foodshed Initiative, she is forging collaborative platforms between rural and urban communities to establish sustainable economic growth via local agriculture.  She is the founder/president of FarmCo New York, a Catskill-based company creating economically-viable and environmentally-conscious family farm business ventures.  FarmCo’s initial venture, Mauer’s Mountain Farms, is the first and only New York State farm raising heritage French Jumbo Guinea Hen, is now followed by Catskill Mountain Dairies, a unique producer of kosher organic farmstead yogurt.  She is also a founding partner of Longdrift, an ecotourism company providing unique angling adventures in Argentina.

Joseph Trumpey

Associate Professor of Art and Natural Resources at the University of Michigan. Trumpey earned his A.B in Art and Biology from Wabash College and his M.F.A. in Medical and Biological Illustration from the University of Michigan.  He was chief medical illustrator for the College of Veterinary Medicine, North Carolina State University. He founded and directs Michigan Science Art, one of North America’s largest groups of science illustrators. Their notable achievement is the 5,000 illustrations for the award-winning Grzimek’s Animal Life Encyclopedia. Trumpey has worked with numerous zoos, museums and publishers. As former Director of International Engagement, Art & Design, he is instituting a school-wide international requirement.

Trumpey’s teaching focuses on sustainability, culture, experiential observation, and creative processes connecting Nature to Society. He is a recipient of the University of Michigan’s Undergraduate Teaching Award and has been a TedX speaker.

With an emphasis on biodiversity, modern agriculture and ecological sustainability, Trumpey’s creative work has been exhibited in a wide variety of venues. His devotion to these issues is evident in the fact that he, his wife and two daughters live and work on a small farm dedicated to their own food production and the preservation of genetic diversity in heritage livestock. He designed and built their solar powered, off-grid, strawbale home.

Have questions about Our Land: Local Action, Global Impact? Contact FIT Sustainability Council


Fashion Institute of Technology


Fashion Institute of Technology
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