A Conversation with Patrick Holden


Last night at the Floyd EcoVillage Celebration Hall the Floyd community in all its diversity showed up. We stood as a small subset of the  world-community addressing, through Patrick Holden’s long advocacy, the issues of creation-care, of food justice and change towards true wholeness and well-being–from the soil, up.

It was a great pleasure to spend a few hours with Woody and Patrick coming back from the Charlotte airport yesterday afternoon. I have a long list of notes from the conversation that will keep me busy for some while. I will share thoughts perhaps on some of those threads in future posts.

There should also be a Floyd Press column coming from Colleen Redman next week, and a video is in production that will allow those of you who were not among the 200 souls present last night to benefit from the back-and-forth dialogue between the speakers, the audience and the world.

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Fred First holds masters degrees in Vertebrate Zoology and physical therapy, and has been a biology teacher and physical therapist by profession. He moved to southwest Virginia in 1975 and to Floyd County in 1997. He maintains a daily photo-blog, broadcasts essays on the Roanoke NPR station, and contributes regular columns for the Floyd Press and Roanoke's Star Sentinel. His two non-fiction books, Slow Road Home and his recent What We Hold in Our Hands, celebrate the riches that we possess in our families and communities, our natural bounty, social capital and Appalachian cultures old and new. He has served on the Jacksonville Center Board of Directors and is newly active in the Sustain Floyd organization. He lives in northeastern Floyd County on the headwaters of the Roanoke River.

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