Jessica Catto Dialogues

Jessica Catto Dialogues

Founded in memory of Jessica Hobby Catto, ACES' Jessica Catto Dialogues (JCD) lecture series brings environmental luminaries to Aspen to inspire positive change.

Each year, over 1,000 Aspen residents and visitors come together to engage in an open dialogue about our most pressing environmental concerns. With past presenters including Carl Safina, Joel Salatin, Bill McKibben, Terry Tempest Williams and others, this series highlights the work of leaders in environmental and climate science, regenerative agriculture, economics, and ecosystem health, specifically focusing on those who are involved in promoting civic action and social justice. 

The series is funded by the Catto Shaw Foundation in Jessica's memory and is curated in partnership with Jessica's daughter and son-in-law, Isa and Daniel Shaw. Jessica was a staunch environmental and social rights advocate, courageous in her resolve to be an effective voice for change. She served on the Boards of Conservation International, the National Parks Conservation Association, World Resources Institute, the Conservation Fund, the Environmental Defense Fund, and ACES. As a longstanding member at The Aspen Institute, she also established the Catto Fellowship for a Sustainable Future.

Past speakers:

If available, link to video listed below speaker name. 

Rev. Lennox Yearwood Jr.
President & CEO, Hip Hop Caucus
Watch presentation

Gina McCarthy
Former EPA Administrator, Professor, Harvard University

Philipp Hildebrand
Vice Chairman, BlackRock
Watch presentation

Marcus Eriksen
Co-Founder & Research Director, 5 Gyres Institute

Michael Curtin
CEO, DC Central Kitchen

Jason Mark
Environmental Journalist

Thomas Lovejoy
Professor, George Mason University
Watch presentation

Joel Salatin
Owner & Farmer, Polyface Farm
Watch presentation

Carl Safina
Ecologist, Conservationist, Author

Naomi Oreskes
Author & Professor, UCSB

Rick Bass
Author & Wilderness Advocate

Craig McNamara
President & Owner, Sierra Orchards

M. Sanjayan
Lead Scientist, The Nature Conservancy
Watch presentation

Julia Kumari Drapkin

Melinda Kramer
Founder, Women's Earth Alliance

Randy Udall
Former Director, CORE
Watch presentation

Amory Lovins
Chief Scientist, Rocky Mountain Institute

Tony Malkin
Owner, Empire State Building

Maggie Fox
CEO, Alliance for Climate Protection

Terry Tempest Williams
Author & Environmental Advocate

Florian Schulz

Bill McKibben
Author & Founder of
Watch presentation