Two real life Indiana Joneses took the stage at CI’s 11th Annual Los Angeles Dinner. Adventure photographer Art Wolfe shared stories of his travels and CI President Russ Mittermeier discussed CI’s work worldwide.
Art’s remarks were accompanied by a presentation of his photographs. Reflections of the stunning images from his far-flung travels shimmered on the white lacquer floor as he stirred attendees’ imaginations with tales of the Earth’s remaining wild places. CI is proud sponsor of Art’s TV series Travels to the Edge on PBS, and having him in person was truly a moving experience.
Just as moving were CI President Russ Mittermeier’s remarks. Russ shared examples of CI’s achievements, ranging from Madagascar’s expanding protected areas to our pioneeirng work with the Kayapo Indians of Brazil. More importantly, Russ reminded the crowd that climate change threatened to unravel those achievements, and that the urgency of our planet’s environmental crises has never been greater.
CI Board Members Skip Brittenham and Mark Feldman and Chairman’s Council member Barbara Bauer also stepped up to the podium to explain to the Los Angeles community what makes CI’s work unique and why now is a critical time to support CI.
A highlight of the evening was a special appearance by Mr. Leatherback, a very special CI ambassador from the marine realm. While Russ Mittermeier took questions from the audience, Mr. Leatherback worked the room, charming guests and striking amusing poses.
Violin, cello, and piano music by students from the Mirman School for Academically Gifted Children accompanied the event. The event, which raised over half a million dollars for CI’s work, sets the stage for a major dinner scheduled for February 28.
Special thanks to our generous sponsors:
Heather Thomas Brittenham and Skip Brittenham
Eric S. Dobkin
Marcie and Mark Feldman
Laurie and Bill Benenson
The Diller-von Furstenberg Family Foundation
George Meyer and Maria Semple
Ziffren, Brittenham, Branca, Fischer, Gilbert-Lurie, Stiffelman, Cook, Johnson, Lande & Wolfe LLP