Kelly S. Bricker, an international leader in sustainable tourism, will deliver the prestigious Metcalf Endowment Lecture at the 70th annual SUNY Cortland Recreation Conference, a virtual conference set to take place Thursday, Nov. 5, and Friday, Nov. 6.
Bricker, a professor and director of parks, recreation and tourism in the University of Utah’s College of Health, will discuss “Advancing Sustainability through Equity, Diversity and Inclusion” at 12:30 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 6.
“The sustainable development goals outlined by the international community are an urgent call for action by all countries — developed and developing — in a global partnership,” Bricker said of her keynote lecture.
“(All countries) recognize that ending poverty and other deprivations must go hand-in-hand with strategies that improve health and education, reduce inequality and spur economic growth — all while tackling climate change and working to preserve our oceans and forests,” she said.
Bricker’s presentation will walk through examples from nature tourism and recreation that are effecting positive change towards those stated goals and the health of planet Earth.
This year both the keynote address and all conference programming are free and open to the public. In order to keep everyone safe, organizers are moving the conference to an entirely online platform on Cisco Webex.
Registration is open to the general public. For additional information and to register for the conference, visit cortland.edu/recconf or call 607-753-4939 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Sessions will be available following the conference for individuals unable to attend synchronously. For a $10 fee, Continuing Education Units (CEUs) will be available for qualifying sessions.
“Sustainability: the Role We Play” is the theme of the two-day event, the nation’s oldest continuous collegiate-sponsored recreation education conference.
“Now more than ever, it is our responsibility to create a culture of sustainable practice and environmental stewardship,” said conference coordinator and marketing chair Jarrett Dulemba, a junior outdoor recreation major from Woodbridge, N.J. “Join us as we come together in a virtual setting, reducing our ecological footprint while promoting positive action and helping create a viable future for all.”
The conference will feature numerous presentations in the field of recreation, parks and leisure studies. Check the conference website for updates on the sessions and schedule. Due to the remote, online nature of the event, this year there will be no professional networking social or raffle of local goods and services.
The Recreation Conference annually hosts 300 to 400 students and professionals in the fields of recreation, parks, and leisure studies from all over New York state, the greater New England area and beyond.
Presented by the university’s Recreation, Parks and Leisure Studies Department and students in Lecturer Esther VanGorder’s Special Events Planning class, the conference receives additional support for the Metcalf Keynote Address from the Metcalf Endowment Fund. Sponsors also include the Recreation Association of SUNY Cortland, Campus Artist and Lecture Series and Alumni Engagement.
“We are looking forward to providing flexible and accessible opportunities for professional development for recreational professionals everywhere,” Dulemba said.
Besides Dulemba, the conference’s student planners also include: William Bellingham ’17 of Ontario, N.Y., programming director; Steve Zelows of Whitesboro, N.Y., technology director; Hannah Furey of Orchard Park, N.Y., special programs director; Maxavier Steimel of Hillsborough, N.J., accessibility director; Natalie Gray of Rochester, N.Y., CEU director; Marli Hammond of Cortland, N.Y., website director; and Sarah White of Whitney Point, N.Y., registration/office director.
Alumni have always played an important role in the conference. Presenters this year will include: John Silsby ’69, M ’70, Maj. James Longi '89, USMC, Andrea Velazquez ’93, Beth Bentz ’02, Daniel Schiavo ’07, M '12, Amanda Hudson '08, Robyn Perez DePan ’13, Mary Pearson ’14, and Andrea Canale ’17.
Bricker has research and teaching interests in ecotourism, sense of place, community development, natural resource management, value of nature-based experiences and the impacts of tourism. She specialized in sustainable tourism and protected area management at the Pennsylvania State University, where she earned her Ph.D.
The vice chair of the Global Sustainable Tourism Council since 2014, she also served with the Multi-Stakeholder Advisory Committee of the United Nations World Tourism Organization 10YFP for sustainable development and the Tourism and Protected Area Specialist Group of the IUCN.
Bricker is the author and editor of books on sustainability, many of which highlight case studies in tourism meeting environmental and societal issues. She co-authored the 2013 text, Sustainable Tourism and the Millennium Development Goals: Effecting Positive Change. Bricker developed educational texts focused on adventure education, including Adventure Programing and Travel for the 21st Century; and graduate education in De-Mystifying Theories in Tourism Research; and most recently co-edited This Land is Your Land: Toward a Better Understanding of Nature’s Resiliency — Building and Restorative Power for Armed Forces Personnel, Veterans and Their Families (Sagamore Publishing, LLC).
With partners in OARS, one of the most respected outfitting companies in the world, Bricker and her husband developed an ecotourism operation called Rivers Fiji.