A Bookprint is the list of five books that leave an indelible mark on our lives, shaping who we are and who we become.
You are what you read.
Cindy Lowry is an American environmental activist who has spent more than 25 years at the front lines of battles to protect marine wildlife and the marine environment. She has founded and directed environmental organizations and campaigns across the country, from Maine to California to Alaska. Lowry was the executive director of Greenpeace in Alaska, and in 1988, she played a lead role in the rescue of gray whales trapped in the ice off the coast of Barrow, Alaska-a role featured in Universal Pictures’ upcoming film “Big Miracle,” which is scheduled for release on February 3, 2012. Ironically, this steadfast champion of oceans and marine mammals was born in Kansas and grew up surrounded by wheat fields.
Lowry had a strong connection to animals and wildlife at an early age and was encouraged and supported by a family that respected her special bond with nature. One of her earliest memories is standing beside her grandfather on his farm to stare down coyote bounty hunters who considered the animals a nuisance.
Lowry’s interest in protecting coyotes grew to include other predators such as wolves, and the battle to save these creatures took her to Alaska, where she directed Greenpeace and the Alaska Wildlife Alliance. It was during her 10 years with Greenpeace-which included the gray whale rescue that received international attention-that Lowry developed her passion for marine wildlife and their protection. While serving on the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Oiled Wildlife Working Group, she developed a policy to ensure that sea otters were included in an oil-spill cleanup contingency plan, which was later implemented during the Exxon Valdez oil-spill disaster.
Building on work she had previously done on marine ecosystems, Lowry formed Oceans Public Trust Initiative in 2003. The project was developed out of a concern over the rapid expansion of offshore renewable-energy development, as well as that of oil and gas, and was largely focused on the Cape Wind project on Nantucket Sound and its potential to devastate the local marine ecosystem. She steered the debate over offshore wind development into one that supports meaningful and effective wind-energy development without harming wildlife.
Despite lacking a law degree, Lowry has been involved in litigation surrounding environmental issues throughout her career. She has lobbied at the federal and state level, and has impacted laws and regulations that impact wildlife. She has written extensively about issues relating to environmental and wildlife protection, and has been featured or quoted in hundreds of news articles.
Throughout her life and career, Lowry has been guided by the desire to protect and defend animals. She believes that one person can make a difference and, just as important, that one person with a deep conviction for a cause can be a catalyst for others to join the cause and accomplish great things. Lowry lives in Maine among the wild creatures.