Before the 1960s almost everything about living openly as a lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBT) person was illegal. New York City laws against homosexual activities were particularly harsh. The Stonewall Uprising on June 28, 1969 is a milestone in the quest for LGBT civil rights and provided momentum for a movement.
Vine Creek Ranch at Death Valley National Park. Steady drought and record summer heat make Death Valley a land of extremes. Towering peaks are frosted with winter snow. Rare rainstorms bring vast fields of wildflowers. Lush oases harbor tiny fish and refuge for wildlife and humans. Despite its morbid name, a great diversity of life survives in Death Valley.
Located 2,600 miles southwest of Hawaii, the National Park of American Samoa is the most remote unit of the National Park System and the U.S. National Park south of the Equator. The Park spreads across three islands, 9,500 acres of tropical rainforest, and 4,000 acres of ocean, including coral reefs. While remote, the islands of American Samoa, true to the meaning of the word Samoa (Islands of Sacred Earth), are welcoming and offer beautiful landscapes and centuries of culture and history.
Seasoned backpacker and adventurer Yang Lu earned the grand prize in the 2015 Share the Experience photo contest with this image of a sunburst captured at sunrise in Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Utah. Yang has made the outdoors part of his daily life and finds deep connection to the land through his lens.
“My photography is not just for recreation, it is to inspire people to explore these areas." -- Yang Lu
Photo by Yang Lu (www.sharetheexperience.org).
Top Administration Officials Hold America's Great Outdoors Listening Session in L.A.
Office of the Secretary
Last edited 4/25/2016
LOS ANGELES — Today, Top Obama Administration officials held a listening session in Los Angeles under President Obama's America's Great Outdoors Initiative to hear the public's ideas for building a 21st century conservation and recreation agenda and reconnecting Americans with the outdoors.
The listening session was one of a series the Administration is conducting as part of President Obama's America's Great Outdoors initiative to promote and support innovative, community-based conservation efforts and to reconnect Americans with the great outdoors.
EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar, White House Council on Environmental Quality Chair Nancy Sutley, Agriculture Under Secretary Harris Sherman, and Army Corps of Engineers Assistant Secretary Jo-Ellen Darcy participated in the session, which was held at Occidental College. Earlier in the day, the Administration officials also held an America's Great Outdoors youth listening session at Rio de Los Angeles State Park.
"Green space in our urban areas must be part of the 21st century conservation strategy for America's Great Outdoors. Far too many of our cities have limited access to parks for children, low-income residents and communities of color," said EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson. "We are here today to learn from the people who know these parks and outdoor spaces best, so that we can recreate their success in communities all across the country."
“We share a passion and a responsibility to take care of the places we love and the communities we call home,” Secretary Salazar said. “The America's Great Outdoors Initiative embodies this commitment and that is why we are here today. Southern California's beauty and outdoor lifestyle is something we must take advantage of and protect. We want to hear your ideas and support your efforts to conserve our land, water, and wildlife. Most importantly, we want to keep the connection to the great outdoors alive for generations to come.”
“Just like many states and communities throughout America, the people of Los Angeles are intensely proud of their parks and outdoor spaces,” said Nancy Sutley, Chair of the White House Council on Environmental Quality.“This event and others like it are highlighting how communities like Los Angeles are coming together to clean up, protect and enjoy their cherished outdoor spaces, and how the Administration can support these ground-up efforts.”
“Public and private conservation and natural resource stewardship are integral to the history, culture, and prosperity of California,” said Harris Sherman, USDA Under Secretary for Natural Resources and Environment. “We look forward to hearing in greater detail about the hard work happening in the area, because support for successful regional and local conservation efforts will be key as we chart a 21st century conservation agenda.”
"The Los Angeles community's efforts on water quality improvement, flood risk management and ecosystem restoration are models for how we can integrate these efforts while providing outdoor recreation opportunities,” said Assistant Secretary Darcy. “Collective learning and sharing best practices will help us better steward our lands and waters, and serve their visitors. I look forward to learning from these events."
President Obama inaugurated the America's Great Outdoors Initiative at a White House Conference in April. The conference brought together leaders from communities across the country that are working to protect their outdoor spaces and focused on developing and supporting innovative ideas for improving conservation and recreation at the local level.
Under the initiative, the Administration is reaching out to communities across the country to hear good ideas about conservation and to learn about the efforts that ordinary Americans are making to conserve our land, water, and wildlife.
For more information on the America's Great Outdoors Initiative, please