Bob Russell Resilience Reading Project

About Bob

Traverse City and the surrounding areas owe much to Bob Russell’s civic engagement and leadership over more than 30 years—including one of the cleanest sewage disposal plants on the Great Lakes, preserving of the Barns and surrounding property for the public’s use and management, and prevention of a shopping mall where today’s Sara Hardy Farmer’s Market enjoys such huge success.

Much of Bob’s recent work has focused on creating the discussions needed to push resilience planning to the forefront here in the Traverse City region.

Resilience, as applied to human communities, comes to us from an understanding of the fundamentals of the resilience we see in natural sytems all around us. Resilience thinking starts with a deep recognition that man-made communities are intimately connected to the eco-system, to Nature. Nature provides for us in the form of eco-system services: clean air, water, healthy soil and other resources of many kinds. Healthy eco-system services are the source of all wealth and sustainability for human communities. Yet, resilience is really about adaptability, not sustainability. We must plant the seeds of resilient strength in our communities, ready to adapt to a future of change that we cannot forecast but which promises to be far different from the past.

To learn more about resilience, here are three videos from Investigating Community Resilience, a project of the Neahtawanta Research and Education Center, featuring Bob Russell in an interview with his friend and colleague Dave Barrons.

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3