My thanks to the Hollywood Foreign Press Association for giving me the Golden Globe for Best Actor in a Television Comedy last Sunday. I was unable to attend the ceremony due to a previous and longstanding commitment to co-host the Waterkeeper Alliance dinner, along with Robert Kennedy Jr. and Marcia Gay Harden, at the Banff Springs Hotel in Alberta, Canada.
The event this year took on a special significance as we took a moment during the benefit to honor the memory of Stella Keane, one of the dinner's principal organizers, who was killed in an avalanche in March of 2009. Stella was one of the most gracious people I have ever had the chance to work with in the world of not-for-profit fundraising. Also, she was, without doubt, a big reason why the roster of American and Canadian actors, musicians and sports stars returned to the Canadian Rockies, again and again, and virtually formed a little family to help Bobby Kennedy raise money.
Bobby, himself, however, is the main draw. To hear Bobby Kennedy speak about issues that are important to him is to hear one of the most saliently powerful political minds in this country at work. No one, anywhere I have traveled in pursuit of understanding issues as significant environmental protection, is as effective as Bobby. His breadth of knowledge, passion and poise never cease to inform and inspire his audiences. I've seen Bobby give the keynote speech at the Banff event many times and I am always moved and motivated by his great mind and heart. I'm sorry I missed the Globes, but I'm glad I did not miss RFK Jr., a man who deserves an important place in the political life of this country not because of his family's name, but because he embodies the very best of what that name stands for.
Bobby Kennedy Jr. will debate the CEO of Massey coal, Don Blankenship, about the destructive effects of coal production and consumption, on Thursday, January 21st (tomorrow) at 6:15 pm, eastern, from the University of Charleston, West Virginia. The program will be carried online at www.wowktv.com, as well as by other local media. You can visit www.ucwv.edu for more information.
The coal industry in general, and Blankenship in particular, are responsible for some of the most egregious environmental devastation of the last one hundred years. To listen to Kennedy debate these issues, such as mountaintop removal, is something you won't want to miss.
Thursday, January 21st, 6:15 pm. One of the great environmental heroes of our time takes on one of the greatest environmental villains. You may not have made it to Banff, but don't miss Bobby versus Blankenship.