Mission and History

Mission and History

Our Mission

The mission of the iCREST Foundation is to enrich the ecosystem of environmental education providers by convening leaders of these organizations to collaborate, explore partnerships, share resources, and support each other’s work thereby enhancing their capacity to reach and impact youth. As the global environmental crisis becomes more prevalent, disruptive, and painful to societies, the urgency to create a generation of engaged, environmentally aware, and concerned and active community members has never been so crucial.

iCREST-Mission And History1-2

We envision a world where youth are given the skills to understand and participate positively in the future they’re inheriting as a constructive alternative to eco-anxiety.

History

The iCREST concept was first conceived in 2014 by Drs. Bishop and Heller and then launched in 2016 as the education initiative of the International Centre for Earth Simulation (ICES) Foundation, whose founding principle is the symbiosis of science, society, and nature for the betterment of all life on Earth.

Established in 2010, the ICES Foundation set out its goal to integrate the vast pools of knowledge contained within today’s multitude of scientific and socio-economic specializations and to develop next generation ‘holistic’ modeling, simulation, and visualizations, aided by AI methods, that accurately depict the medium- and long-term future direction of planet Earth. This is a project for the common good that provides enhanced decision support and improved scientific underpinnings to our current and future policy-makers especially with respect to the global and local effects of climate change, extreme weather, wildfire, environmental degradation, biodiversity loss, resource depletion, fresh water availability, food security, public health and safety, earthquake, tsunami, landslide, volcanic, industrial accident, geo-engineering, asteroid threats and other natural hazards, with the aim of developing early warning and disaster reduction and mitigation strategies.

The ICES Foundation provided guidance and start-up funding to establish the iCREST Foundation as an independent 501c3 U.S.-based Membership organization which was registered in the state of Delaware on September 26, 2022.

Since its inception in 2014, the initiative which grew into the iCREST Foundation has worked to convene a broad knowledge network of U.S. education, thought, and program leaders already focused on U.S. middle and high school environmental literacy programs to enhance existing resources and programs empowering youth with skills they need for coping with the future they will inherit. Today, the iCREST Foundation is actively implementing its strategic plan to conduct a Forum of environmental education leaders and develop a Resilience and Sustainability Framework to help kids build socially and environmentally resilient communities that safeguard Earth’s increasingly challenged life support system.
iCREST-Mission And History1-2
School students continuously and spontaneously spawn new ideas, new values and new cultures. iCREST will assist to funnel this wonderful resource into a collaborative effort with local communities, bringing about a future society that is resilient, sustainable and in harmony with our precious environment. A society that they themselves will inherit.”
Dr. Bob Bishop
President and Founder, International Centre for Earth Simulation
The inaugural iCREST initiative Education Advisory Board meeting meeting at the Harvard Graduate School of Education in September 2017.
From left to right – Dr. Bob Bishop (President and Founder of ICES), Dr. Tony Murphy (Director of the GLOBE Program), Dr. John Richards (Principal, Consulting Services for Education and Adjunct Professor, Harvard Grad School of Education), Dr. Lori R. Maxfield (Scholar in Residence, Carlow University), Dr. Dixon Butler (Founder of YLACES), Dr. Amanda Baker (science writer and outreach advocate), Dr. Elyse Eidman-Aadahl (Executive Director of the National Writing Project), Charlene Gaynor (Principal, Gaynor Growth Consultants and formerly CEO of the Association of Educational Publishers), Dr. Nelson B. Heller (Chairman and President of the iCREST Foundation), Dr. Hans-Peter Plag (Professor, Ocean, Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, and Director, Mitigation and Adaptation Research Institute, Old Dominion University), and Jayde Lovell (host of ScIQ, a popular science channel on the TYT Network).

The iCREST initiative Education Advisory Board summit at the University of California at Berkeley, Faculty Club in February 2019.

iCREST-team3
From left to right – Dr. Tony Murphy (Director of the GLOBE Program), Dr. Hans-Peter Plag (Professor, Ocean, Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, and Director, Mitigation and Adaptation Research Institute, Old Dominion University), Dr. Elyse Eidman-Aadahl (Executive Director of the National Writing Project), Dr. Dixon M. Butler (Founder of YLACES), Dr. Nelson B. Heller (Chairman and President of the iCREST Foundation, Dan Damelin (Senior Scientist at the Concord Consortium), Dr. Bob Bishop (President and Founder of ICES).
A downloadable summary of the iCREST Foundation story can be found here.