Richard Louv

Author and Co-founder of Children & Nature Network (2017 Summit)

Richard Louv is a journalist and author of nine books about the connections between family, nature and community, including:

  • LAST CHILD IN THE WOODS: Saving Our Children From Nature-Deficit Disorder (Algonquin, 2005), translated into 17 languages and published in over 20 countries, has stimulated an international movement to connect children and the natural world. He coined the term Nature-Deficit Disorder® which has become the defining phrase of this important issue.
  • THE NATURE PRINCIPLE: Reconnecting with Life in a Virtual Age (Algonquin, 2011), offers a new vision of the future, in which our lives are as immersed in nature as they are in technology. This future, available to all of us right now, offers better psychological, physical and spiritual health for people of every age.
  • VITAMIN N: The Essential Guide to a Nature-Rich Life (Algonquin, 2016), includes 500 actions to enrich the health and happiness of your family and community. It serves as companion handbook to the two prior books.

Louv is co-founder and chairman emeritus of the Children & Nature Network, an organization helping build the movement to connect today’s children and future generations to the natural world.

In 2008, he was awarded the Audubon Medal, presented by the National Audubon Society. Prior recipients have included Rachel Carson, E. O. Wilson, and President Jimmy Carter. Louv is also the recipient of the Cox Award for 2007, Clemson University’s highest honor, for “sustained achievement in public service” and has been a Clemson visiting professor. Among other awards, Louv is the recipient of the 2008 San Diego Zoological Society Conservation Medal, the 2008 George B. Rabb Conservation Medal from the Chicago Zoological Society, and the 2009 International Making Cities Livable Jane Jacobs Award. He also serves as Honorary Co-chairman, with artist Robert Bateman, of Canada’s National Children and Nature Alliance.

Louv has written for The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Times of London, and other major publications. He has appeared on many national TV shows, including CBS This Morning, NBC’s Today Show, and Nightly News, CBS Evening News, ABC’s Good Morning America, and NPR’s Morning Edition, Fresh Air, Talk of the Nation and Diane Rehm show. Between 1984 and 2007 he was a columnist for The San Diego Union-Tribune and has been a columnist and member of the editorial advisory board for Parents magazine.

Louv served as an advisor both to the Ford Foundation’s Leadership for a Changing World award program and to the National Scientific Council on the Developing Child. He is on the board of directors of ecoAmerica; on the editorial board of Ecopsychology, and a member of the Citistates Group. He has appeared before the Domestic Policy Council in the White House as well as giving keynote addresses at major governmental and professional conferences around the world, including the American Academy of Pediatrics National Conference, the Congress of the New Urbanism, the first White House Summit on Environmental Education, the International Healthy Parks Conference in Melbourne, Australia, and the annual SEE Foundation Conference in China.

He is currently working on his tenth book about the evolving relationship between humans and other animals. Married to Kathy Frederick Louv, he is the father of two young men, Jason and Matthew. He would rather hike than write.