Rhode Island Environmental
Education Association

Abby Burrows

Meet RIEEA board member Abby Burrows! Abby is the Founder and Principal Consultant of Empirical Nature. She came to know about RIEEA through connections with the current board President, Jen West, and got involved by supporting smaller projects at the organization. In 2020 she was invited to become board member and eagerly accepted. Abby shared she was excited for the opportunity to, “get more involved with the incredible team and community that keeps RIEEA going and growing.” Read on to learn a bit more about Abby!

What’s your favorite outdoor place in Rhode Island, and why?

Anywhere along the shore where I am close enough to feel the fresh salty air – it is invigorating!

How did you get involved with the environmental field?

I spent a lot of free time in college doing outdoor activities with friends who were studying various environmental fields, which I am sure indirectly influenced my decision to go into environmental education after graduation. I had intended on going into education, but I chose to pursue outdoor education instead of formal education, and loved it. I’ve stuck with it in some way ever since, even if my career has taken me in a different direction.

What’s your favorite environmental fact to share?

The “environment” is all around us. It’s not another place you go to.

What has been your favorite memory of working with RIEEA? 

The small group discussion at the 2022 RIEEA Annual Summit has been the most memorable experience so far. It was a beautiful thing to be seated at a table of strangers, from all different backgrounds, and to have everyone open up to each other’s points of view and share and learn from each other in response to what we all took away from the speakers we just heard on the difficult subject of environmental justice. It was educational, respectful, and heartwarming and I appreciate that RIEEA created this kind of space and opportunity in our community.

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