A Letter from the Publisher About the 2016 Presidential Election

November 9, 2016

Dear Bay Nature Community,

As Michael Brune of the Sierra Club said in his post-election message earlier today, “This doesn’t feel real.” But it is. For those of us who care about nature, who care about the environment, who care about the planet, who care about the future, there is no way to sugarcoat the results of this election.

Bay Nature is not a partisan organization and we do not take sides in elections. But we do have core values that guide our mission, our outlook, and our work. And those values tell us that we do not make America great by cutting down more of its forests, or opening up its public lands to fossil fuel extraction, or gutting protections for its endangered species, or allowing armed groups to take over its wildlife refuges, or undoing rules that protect its streams and rivers, or withdrawing from climate change agreements.

We are “great” to the extent that we respect the people around us and the place where we live. We are “great” when we come together in community to restore a creek or create a park or save an endangered species. Or simply revel in the natural beauty of this place.

We in the Bay Area are fortunate to live in a place that is not only beautiful but also populated by people who are open-minded, curious, and creative, and who care deeply about the local environment and the planet. Bay Nature’s mission is to promote connection to the natural world of the Bay Area and to nurture connections between people who share that goal. And that seems more important now than ever. In this challenging time, we will hold on to our values, hold on to each other, and hold on to the Earth that gives us life and meaning. And we will continue to tell the stories of local nature—and the people who care for it—as an antidote to the fear and divisiveness that has gripped much of our nation. Going silent, giving up, is not an option.

Thanks to all of you for your support and for the many ways you help build a community of love and care for nature and for each other.

Publisher David Loeb's signature
David Loeb
for the staff of Bay Nature

About the Author

From 2001-2017, David Loeb served as editor and then publisher of Bay Nature magazine, and executive director of the nonprofit Bay Nature Institute. A Bay Area resident since 1973, David moved here after graduating from college in Boston. The decision was largely based on a week spent visiting friends in San Francisco the previous January, which had included a memorable day at Point Reyes National Seashore. In the late 1990s, after many years working for the Guatemala News and Information Bureau in Oakland, David had the opportunity to spend more time hiking and exploring the parks and open spaces of the Bay Area. Increasingly curious about what he was seeing, he began reading natural history books, attending naturalist-led hikes and natural history courses and lectures, and volunteering for several local conservation organizations.

This was rewarding, but he began to feel that the rich natural diversity of the Bay Area deserved a special venue and a dedicated voice for the whole region, to supplement the many publications devoted to one particular place or issue. That’s when the germ of Bay Nature magazine began to take shape. In February 1997, David contacted Malcolm Margolin, publisher of Heyday Books and News from Native California, with the idea of a magazine focused on nature in the Bay Area, and was delighted with Malcolm’s enthusiastic response. Over the course of many discussions with Malcolm, publishing professionals, potential funders, and local conservation and advocacy groups, the magazine gradually took shape and was launched in January 2001. It is still going strong, with a wider base of support than ever.

Now retired, David contributes to his Bay Nature column "Field Reports."

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