Earth Day creator Gaylord Nelson comes to vivid life in this addition to the Badger Biographies series for young readers. Accessibly written and richly illustrated with historic images, Gaylord Nelson: Champion for Our Earth includes a glossary of terms, sidebars on World War II, DDT, and several facets of the environmental movement, plus activities and discussion questions.
Born in Clear Lake, Wisconsin, in 1916, Gaylord grew up as immersed in his parents' political work and community service as he was in playing practical jokes and exploring the natural world surrounding his home town. Along the way he encountered experiences that would shape him in fundamental ways: as a man who stood up for what he believed in the face of opposition and yet who also understood how to treat his opponents with respect. Both traits would serve him well as he rose from law student to state senator to Wisconsin governor and finally to three terms as a United States Senator.
Nelson fought to treat all races equally and to condemn McCarthy-era paranoia, but his greatest contribution was to sound the alarm about another battle: the fight to save the natural world and the earth itself. It was his idea to use teach-ins to let people know that the environment needed their help. Thanks to him, more natural resources were conserved and new laws demanded clean air and water. Now, every year on April 22, people all over the world plant trees and pick up litter to celebrate Earth Day. The Earth and its inhabitants aren't safe yet, but Gaylord Nelson demonstrated that even one person can help to save the world.
About the Author
Sheila Terman Cohen’s first book in the Badger Biographies series, Mai Ya’s Long Journey, received first place for juvenile nonfiction from the Midwest Independent Publishers Association and Council for Wisconsin Writers, and was selected by former Wisconsin First Lady, Jessica Doyle, for the Read On Wisconsin program.
Table of Contents
1 A Man Who Stood Up for His Beliefs 1
2 The Seeds of Good Ideas 5
3 The Seeds Take Root 27
4 Beginning a New Life 33
5 Governor Gaylord Nelson 40
6 Moving on to Washington 50
7 Earth Day and Beyond 70
8 Carrying on Gaylord Nelson's Work 82
Author's Note 85
In His Own Words 88
Gaylord's Time Line 89
Reading Group Guide and Activities 100
To Learn More about Earth Day and Gaylord Nelson 103