Hugging a Record-Breaking Poplar
Tree in the Great Smoky Mountains
Photo by Rob Messick
ACTIVISM As Dirt-Worshipping Tree Hugger
Before it got to know her better, the county where she lives elected Chris to a three-year term on the local Soil and Water Conservation Board. Her slogan then was “Applehood and Mother Pie!” She lost the next election on the campaign slogan, “The system sucks. Let’s change it!”
Over the past couple of decades Chris has embarrassed a number of environmental organizations by participating in them in some capacity, including theVirginia Chapter of the Sierra Club, where she served as the Biodiversity Wildlife Issues Chair from 1991 to 2003; the Virginia Wilderness Committee, whose newsletter she edited in the 1980s, but they didn’t learn their lesson and as of 2013, she is doing it again; and the Valley Conservation Council, where she served a term on the Board in the early 1990s (gluttons for punishment, the VCC recently made Chris an Honorary Lifetime Board Member).
Chris, center front, was elected president of the Virginia Wilderness Committee in June, 2015.
Photo by Rita Gentile.