“Moving Forward with Our Neighbors to Protect Our Mother Earth”
This year’s conference will be held on the campus of Northern New Mexico College, at the Nick L. Salazar Center for Performing Arts, on October 3rd & 4th, 2014
In order for us to properly plan for enough food and conference materials, it is suggested that you pre-register online today. Admission prices are listed on the registration form. Register here >
Click here to see the tentative program schedule Program Schedule 20141
With all of the wonderful speakers we have lined up, we expect a complete sell out, so register early to ensure your participation in this year’s event!
Download and print application here; Vendors-Registration
This year’s host hotel is the Santa Claran. For conference rates visit www.santaclaran.com
Percy and Louise Schmeiser were born in 1931 into farming families in Saskatchewan; one of Canada’s ten provinces. Percy became a leading farm figure in the area, and with his family he also owned a successful farm equipment dealership. In 1998 Percy Schmeiser and his wife received a letter from the US agribusiness giant Monsanto claiming that they had used Monsanto seeds without a license in planting their 1997 crop. However, the Schmeisers had never bought Monsanto seed nor intended to have it on their land. It turned out that some Monsanto ‘Round-up Ready’ genetically modified canola (rape) seeds had blown over from the Schmeisers’ neighbor or from passing trucks. Thus, genes that Monsanto claimed to “own” under Canadian patent law had ended up in the Schmeisers’ seeds. Monsanto threatened to sue the Schmeisers for ‘infringement of patent’, seeking damages totaling $400,000 (CAD), including about $250,000 in legal fees, $105,000 in estimated profits from the Schmeisers’ 1998 crop, $13,500 ($15 an acre) for technology usage fees and $25,000 in punitive damages. At the same time, Monsanto offered to withdraw the legal challenge if the Schmeisers signed a contract to buy their seeds from Monsanto in the future and to pay the technology use fee.
But the Schmeisers neither gave in nor did they accept this blackmailing attempt. They contested the case up to the Canadian Supreme Court, whose ruling supported Monsanto in their claim to own the gene. Thus the Schmeisers lost their breeding research, which they had built up for decades, and the varieties that they had painstakingly adapted to their local environment for years through cross-pollination, because they now contained the Monsanto-“owned” gene. However, the court also concluded that the Schmeisers should not have to pay anything to Monsanto because they had not in any way benefited from having the seeds on their property.
Jeffrey M. Smith
The leading consumer advocate promoting healthier non-GMO choices, Jeffrey Smith’s meticulous research documents how biotech companies continue to mislead legislators and safety officials to put the health of society at risk and the environment in peril. His work expertly summarizes why the safety assessments conducted by the FDA and regulators worldwide teeter on a foundation of outdated science and false assumptions, and why genetically engineered foods must urgently become our nation’s top food safety priority.
Mr. Smith’s feature-length documentary Genetic Roulette — The Gamble of Our Lives was awarded the 2012 Movie of the Year (Solari Report) and the Transformational Film of the Year (AwareGuide). Described as a “life-changer” and seen by millions world-wide, the film links genetically engineered food to toxic and allergic reactions, infertility, digestive disorders, and numerous problems that have been on the rise in the US population since genetically modified organisms (GMOs) were introduced.
His books include: Seeds of Deception: Exposing Industry and Government Lies about the Safety of the Genetically Engineered Foods You’re Eating, which is the world’s bestseller on GMOs; and Genetic Roulette: The Documented Health Risks of Genetically Engineered Foods, which is the authoritative work on GMO health dangers.
An admired keynote speaker , Mr. Smith has lectured in nearly 40 countries, counseled leaders from every continent, and has been quoted by hundreds of media outlets including: The New York Times, Washington Post, BBC World Service, The Independent, Daily Telegraph, New Scientist, The Times (London), Associated Press, Reuters News Service, LA Times, and Time Magazine. Also a popular guest, he appears on influential radio shows and television programs, such as the BBC, NPR, Fox News, Democracy Now, and the Dr. Oz Show.
He is the founding executive director of The Institute for Responsible Technology (IRT), a leading source of GMO health risk information for consumers, policy makers, and healthcare professionals. IRT’s educational programs are driving the tipping point of consumer rejection against GMOs, which is already starting to push genetically engineered ingredients out of the market in the US.
Mr. Smith lives in Iowa, surrounded by genetically modified soybeans and corn.
Nina Simons is an award winning social entrepreneur and visionary thinker. In 1990, she co-founded Bioneers with her husband and partner, Kenny Ausubel. As President, she has helped to lead the organization through 23 years of identifying, gathering and disseminating breakthrough innovations that reveal a positive and life-honoring future that’s within our grasp, today.
Nina’s work currently focuses on writing and teaching about women, leadership, diversity, systems thinking and restoring the feminine in us all. She is the co-founder and co-facilitator of the Cultivating Women’s Leadership Leadership trainings. Nina edited the anthology, Moonrise: The Power of Women Leading from the Heart, which contains 30 essays by over 40 contributors, who collectively help to redefine the leadership landscape. The book is being used by educators in college and graduate-school classrooms and has garnered passionate and positive reviews.
MEMBERS OF THE INTERNATIONAL COUNCIL OF THIRTEEN INDIGENOUS GRANDMOTHERS
Los Masis of Sucre, Bolivia
Los Masis, In 1969, a handful of aspiring young Bolivian musicians from Sucre, Bolivia, took a bold step to use native Andean music and dance as a way to change prevailing attitudes of discrimination against the country’s indigenous peoples. They organized the city’s first traditional Andean music group, Los Masis, dressing in the colorful ponchos of the region’s Tarabuco indigenous peoples. Los Masis has been performing throughout Bolivia and abroad for over three decades. They started a music school for young people to ensure that traditional music, especially Quechua lyrics and melodies, would live on for future generations. Part of their methodology has been to conduct music research in Andean communities to incorporate diverse repertoires and dance costumes in their programs. They helped establish the region’s first bilingual Quechua-Spanish school in the rural Tarabuco community of Miskhamayu, a model for Bolivia’s path-breaking bilingual educational reform incorporating the Quechua language for the first time after a long history of exclusion.