For Immediate Release: Wed., Oct. 7
Contact: Joe Reed | Director of Marketing and Communications
412-622-6915, ext. 3801 | jreed@phipps.conservatory.org


Phipps Conservatory Presents Virtual One Health One Planet Symposium
One Health and the Air We Breathe Invites Guests to Engage Virtually with Experts from Across the Country on Air Quality
Virtual One Health One Planet

Pittsburgh, PAPhipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens is pleased to announce its annual One Health One Planet Symposium will be held virtually this year. On Oct. 19 – 23 from noon – 2 p.m. daily, guests are invited to participate in thoughtful discussions on air quality.

Pittsburgh’s air quality ranks in the dirtiest 8 percent of U.S. cities, contributing to higher rates of heart and lung disease and other serious health issues. At “One Health and the Air We Breathe,” attendees will join experts from across the country to discuss this critical issue and explore ways to address it.
Speakers include:

Keynote Speaker: Heather McTeer Toney

Heather McTeer Toney serves as the National Field Director for Moms Clean Air Force, an organization of over 1 million moms and dads committed to fighting air pollution and protections against climate change. Prior to coming to Moms, Heather served as the first African-American, first female and youngest mayor of Greenville, MS. In 2014, she was appointed by President Barack Obama to serve as Regional Administrator for Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Southeast Region. She has appeared on news outlets such as CNN, MSNBC, Fox News, and Democracy Now!; and has written for and been featured in numerous papers including The New York Times and The Washington Post. McTeer Toney was featured in the May 2005 issue of Essence Magazine as one of the 50 Most Remarkable Women in the World. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Spelman College in Atlanta and a law degree from the Tulane University School of Law. She loves triathlons and bacon, and at any time can be found chasing her toddler or riding in old classic cars with her husband and daughter.

The four sessions of the symposium will seek to explore the following topics related to air quality:
Climate Change and Air Quality – Second Keynote

  • Neil Donahue, Ph.D. – Thomas Lord Professor; Director of Steinbrenner Institute for Environmental Education and Research, Carnegie Mellon University

Session 1: Outdoor Air Quality and Health

  • Myron Arnowitt – State Director for Pennsylvania, Clean Water Action

  • Sally Wenzel, M.D. – Professor of Medicine; Chair, Department of Occupational and Environmental Health, University of Pittsburgh
  • Matt Mehalik, Ph.D. – Executive Director, Breathe Project

Session 2: Environmental Racism

  • Jamil Bey, Ph.D. – President and CEO, UrbanKind Institute

  • Camila Rivera-Tinsley – Director of Education, Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy
  • Gretchen Goldman, Ph.D. – Research Director at the Center for Science and Democracy, Union of Concerned Scientists

Session 3: Indoor Air Quality and Health

  • Nsedu Witherspoon, MPH – Executive Director, Children's Environmental Health Network

  • Linda Wigington – ROCIS Team Leader, ROCIS Pittsburgh
  • Meghan Scanlon, WELL AP – Wellness and Sustainability Specialist, Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens
  • Debra J. Romberger, M.D. – Henry J. Lehnhoff Professor and Chair, Department of Internal Medicine, University of Nebraska Medical Center

Session 4: Fracking, the Cracker Plant and Policy

  • John Stolz, Ph.D.– Director of the Center for Environmental Research and Education, Environmental Microbiology Professor, Duquesne University

  • Jim Fabisiak, Ph.D. – Associate Professor, Department of Environmental and Occupational Health; Director of the Center of Healthy Environments and Communities, University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health
  • Ned Ketyer, M.D., F.A.A.P. – Retired Pediatric Physician, Pediatric Alliance; member, American Academy of Pediatrics Council on Environmental Health; board member Physicians for Social Responsibility

Lightning Talks 
This year's symposium will also feature five-minute lightning talks by local Pittsburgh leaders in air quality improvement, including:

CREATE Lab — The Community Robotics, Education and Technology Empowerment Lab
GASP— Group Against Smog and Pollution
Grounded Strategies
PennFuture — Citizens for Pennsylvania's Future
Students from Carnegie Mellon University's Masters of Urban Design course
Women for a Healthy Environment

Tickets are available for purchase online now at phipps.conservatory.org/OneHealth. General registration for tickets for the symposium and reception are $49. Students with a valid student ID can register as a discounted rate at $25. Visit phipps.conservatory.org/OneHealth for speaker bios, abstracts and more information.



About Phipps: Founded in 1893, Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens in Pittsburgh, PA is a globally recognized green leader with a mission to inspire and educate all with the beauty and importance of plants; to advance sustainability and promote human and environmental well-being through action and research; and to celebrate its historic glasshouse. Encompassing 15 acres including a historic 14-room glasshouse, 23 distinct indoor and outdoor gardens and industry-leading sustainable architecture and operations, Phipps attracts more than half a million visitors annually from around the world. Learn more at phipps.conservatory.org.


Watch TEDx: What We Can Learn From an Old Glasshouse: A look at the evolving way we connect people to nature at Phipps, demonstrate how human and environmental health are inextricably connected, and show that to age gracefully, we must continually reinvent ourselves to evolve with the rest of the world.