NOVA’s Annual Green Festival to Feature Keynote from Chad Pregracke, 2013 CNN Hero of the Year

Northern Virginia Community College will host its 10th annual Green Festival on Wednesday, October 28, with a full roster of events from 10:15 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. This year’s theme is ‘Waste and its Impact on Habitats.’ Historically, the festival has attracted hundreds of attendees concerned about the environment and sustainability.

The keynote will be delivered by 2013 CNN Hero of the Year, Chad Pregracke. President and founder of Living Lands & Water, Pregracke has made working on America’s rivers his life’s work. Pegracke focuses his work on dangerous river conditions and the extreme need for safety, and he has built the only "industrial strength" not-for-profit river cleanup operation in the world. His hard work, leadership, positivity and can-do-attitude has not only rallied 100,000 volunteers but has been a key factor in keeping a strong team together. With five barges, three towboats, a crane, an excavator, six workboats and coordination of up to 25 work vessels, Chad and his crew have maintained an impeccable safety record while removing 11 million pounds of garbage from our Nation's great rivers.

Registration for both Part 1 and Part 2 of the Festival can be found here. The schedule for the day of events follows:

Part 1

10:15 a.m.
Chad Pregracke Presents 'Cleaning America’s Rivers'


11:30 a.m.    
Everything Counts / Waste Prevention / Habitat Loss

This session will be an opportunity to have a facilitated discussion and question & answer period with Chad and to discuss among event attendees about waste prevention steps and/or how to mitigate habitat loss.

Part 2

1:00 p.m.           
Bats and Wind Energy Development Presenter: Richard Reynolds, wildlife biologist, VDGIF
Mr. Richard Reynolds, wildlife biologist with the Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources (DWR), will present on bats of Virginia.  The discussion will focus on the many challenges bats face, including growing concerns of food scarcity due to the decline in insect populations.

2:00 p.m.
Raptor Lecture on Live Birds
Presenter: Liz Dennison president of “Secret Garden Birds and Bees”
Liz Dennison, president of the “Secret Garden Birds and Bees” will offer a virtual Wildlife Educational Program lecture on raptors, with live birds, including hawks and owls. Dennison has been working with birds of prey for some 15 years as an educator, rehabilitator, and falconer. She founded Secret Garden Birds and Bees in 2016 to share her love of these amazing birds and to spread the word about the essential role they play in a healthy ecosystem. She began working with the Raptor Conservancy of Virginia in 2006 and continues that work with the Owl Moon Raptor Center. 

The Secret Garden Birds and Bees is an all-volunteer organization working with wildlife rehabilitators, falconers, naturalists, biologists, and beekeepers to share the love of nature and wildlife. 

Program Contact:

Rob Johnson, NOVA’s Director of Sustainability:
Cheryl Robinette, Program Specialist:

Northern Virginia Community College is the largest institution of higher education in the Commonwealth of Virginia and one of America's largest community colleges. NOVA enrolls more than 75,000 students at its six campuses in Alexandria, Annandale, Loudoun, Manassas, Springfield and Woodbridge, and through NOVA Online. For more information about NOVA and its programs or services, call 703-323-3000 or visit the College's Web site,