|Chris is a retired astronomer specializing in the quantification and modeling of the effects of outdoor artificial lighting on the night sky, and lighting codes and their effect on controlling sky glow. He is recognized as one of the foremost authorities on light pollution and dark sky lighting. Chris was a principal author of the innovative 1989 Flagstaff and Coconino County (AZ) outdoor lighting codes, as well as the IDA Outdoor Lighting Code Handbook and Pattern Code. He is a founding member of the Flagstaff Dark Skies Coalition. He has assisted over two dozen communities with the development of outdoor lighting codes, at least six of which are now recognized by the International Dark-Sky Association as International Dark-Sky Communities (Flagstaff Arizona, Sedona Arizona, Camp Verde Arizona, Village of Oak Creek Arizona, Cottonwood Arizona, Homer Glen Illinois)
For over 30 years he has been seeking to preserve the highest quality dark skies through education and research. His efforts focus not only on research to improve our understanding of how light pollution is produced and how it may be limited, but to raise awareness of the value of star-filled skies to everyone.
|Don Davis fell in love with the night sky while growing up in upstate South Carolina in the 1950s. His interest in science and astronomy pointed to a career in planetary science with a minor in night sky preservation activities. He migrated to Tucson, AZ to pursue graduate studies in physics, followed by a 5-year stint with the Apollo program in Houston where he led the team that developed the computer program used in Mission Control to calculate trajectories that would bring the astronauts safely back to Earth. After Apollo, he returned to Tucson where he was a co-founder, Research Scientist and Director of the Planetary Science Institute. He also became active in dark sky preservation activities through the International Dark-Sky Association where he was on Board of Directors for many years. He was also a member of the Tucson/Pima County Outdoor Lighting Code Committee and chaired this group over several years. He co-founded, along with C. Luginbuhl and P. Boley, Dark Sky Partners, LLC (DSP), which provides quantitative assessments of the impact of proposed developments on the night skies of dark sky critical sites. DSP has provided evaluations to clients in locations ranging from the U.S. to Australia to South Africa.|
|Drew Carhart is a life-long enthusiast regarding everything to do with natural history; he co-founded a Chicago area amateur astronomy club (1973), which he still helps run today. He is retired from a career in horticulture, and volunteers extensively at the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago, in diverse areas including the curation of the insect collection, assisting in research in meteorites, and doing field work in paleontology.
Drew’s love of the night and stargazing brought him to witness the disappearance of the natural night in northern Illinois over the decades. He co-founded the Illinois Coalition for Responsible Outdoor Lighting (2009) as a result, and has subsequently helped communities, businesses, and organizations in addressing outdoor lighting issues. His roots in biology and natural science have led him to a special interest in the subject of how man-made light is disrupting ecosystems around the globe – a conservation issue that he feels is extremely underappreciated, and critically important.
|Robert G. Breunig is President Emeritus of the Museum of Northern Arizona and the museum’s former Director and CEO, a position he held from 2003-2014. A native of Indianapolis, Indiana, Dr. Breunig holds a BA degree from Indiana University and a Ph. D. from the University of Kansas, both in Anthropology. In the early 1970's he served as an anthropology professor at Northern Arizona University and from 1975 to 1982 as an Educator and Curator at the Museum of Northern Arizona (MNA). In 1982 he became the Deputy Director and Chief Curator of the Heard Museum of Anthropology, Phoenix, Arizona. He also served as Adjunct Professor of Anthropology at Arizona State University from 1986 to 1994. In 1985 he became the Executive Director of the Desert Botanical Garden in Phoenix, Arizona and served as director of the garden until 1994 when he accepted a position as Executive Director of the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History, in Santa Barbara, California. In 1997 he became the executive director of the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center in Austin, Texas. Throughout his museum career Dr. Breunig has been active in many professional organizations and has served on many boards. In 1991 President George Bush appointed Dr. Breunig to the fifteen-member National Museum Services Board, the governing board of the Institute of Museum and Library Services. In 1994 President Bill Clinton re-appointed him to this board, on which he served until November 2002. More recently Dr. Breunig served six years as a Commissioner of the Arizona Commission on the Arts. In December 2013 he was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree from Northern Arizona University. In May 2015, Dr. Breunig accepted the National Medal for Museum Service on behalf of the Museum of Northern Arizona from Michele Obama at a White House ceremony.
On joining the board of the Flagstaff Dark Skies Coalition Dr. Breunig said: “One of the great joys in my life is being able to look up and see the heavens. It puts so much in perspective for me. I grieve that what humankind all shared together for millennia is slipping away from most of humanity today. I want to do whatever I can to help preserve the dark sky for the people of Flagstaff and northern Arizona so that we may show what humanity can preserve and recover.”
|Dr. Danielle Adams is a cultural astronomer whose research focuses on the development and heritage of indigenous Arabian astronomy, as evidenced in pre-Islamic poetry, Arabic historical literature and modern-day star names. Her research presents for the first time Arabian astronomical traditions within their own cultural contexts, and she uses the inspiration of pristine desert skies to advocate for the modern-day preservation of dark skies. She is active in informal astronomy education, speaking to various groups both virtually and in-person about Arabian cultural astronomy and the heritage of the many Arabic star names that astronomers still use today.
Dr. Adams earned her MA in Cultural Anthropology from the University of Arkansas in 2000 and thereafter studied Arabic literature at the American University of Beirut and Princeton University. She earned her PhD in 2018 from the School of Middle Eastern and North African Studies at the University of Arizona, with a minor in Cultural Anthropology from the School of Anthropology. While at the University of Arizona, she earned a NASA Space Grant Graduate Fellowship, through which she disseminated some of her cultural astronomy research to the general public via her website at onesky.arizona.edu.
In 2019, Dr. Adams joined the staff of Lowell Observatory, where she serves as Chief Marketing and Revenue Officer, leading the teams responsible for marketing, communications, and visitor experience. Dr. Adams is a member of the Historical Astronomy Division of the American Astronomical Society (AAS), and she also serves as a member of two working groups of the International Astronomical Union (IAU): the Working Group on Star Names (WGSN), where she lends her expertise on Arabian and Islamic astronomical traditions and nomenclature, and the Working Group on Archaeoastronomy and Astronomy in Culture (WGAAC), where she serves on the committee for culturally sensitive sites.
|William “Billy” C. Cordasco is president and general manager of Babbitt Ranches, a family business and pioneering land company established in 1886 that raises livestock, manages natural resources, promotes science and participates in the global community in order to join, share and be at its best. Guided by a forged ethic, Cordasco, a fourth generation Babbitt, directs agricultural operations, renewable energy projects, landscape-scale conservation, dark sky protection, scientific discovery, an Outdoor Recreation Ethic Attitude, succession planning and sustainability across 750,000 acres in Northern Arizona.
As president of the Landsward Foundation, Cordasco oversees land stewardship efforts with an emphasis on understanding, monitoring and promoting sensitive species on Babbitt Ranches such as the golden eagle, Gunnison’s prairie dog, black-footed ferret and pronghorn antelope. Research projects range from climate change, ecological restoration and cultural site stabilization to space exploration. Collaborating organizations, agencies and institutions include the USDA Forest Service, National Park Service, Natural Resource Conservation Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Arizona Game and Fish Department, Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff Dark Skies Coalition, U.S. Geological Survey, Los Alamos National Laboratory and NASA.
Cordasco is a research associate of southwestern rangeland ecology and sustainability for the Museum of Northern Arizona, has chaired the Hopi Tribe Wildlife and Ecosystems Management Program and the Arizona State Parks Board of Directors. He also has served as a board member for several organizations including the W.A. Franke College of Business at NAU, Raymond Education Foundation and Orme School Board of Trustees.
Cordasco has been inducted into the Arizona Outdoor Hall of Fame by Wildlife for Tomorrow, named Cattleman of the Year by the Arizona Cattle Grower’s Association, and Wildlife Habitat Steward of the Year by the Arizona Game and Fish Department. His many recognitions include the International Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies’ Conservation Stewardship Award and the Morris K. Udall Arizona Land Stewardship Award. Under his leadership, Babbitt Ranches has received the Cattleman of the Year Award from the American Hereford Association and has been inducted into the Arizona Farming and Ranching Hall of Fame.
Cordasco holds a business degree from NAU and promotes Cowboy Essence – the desire to be at our best