photo of sea otter with sea urchin

Geology Lecture: Relationships Between Elakha (Sea Otter) and a Sense of Place on Oregon’s South Coast – A conference honoring the life and legacy of Chief Don Ivy

Anne Matthews News

Chief Don Ivy

Coos Bay, OR – Coos Bay, OR – Southwestern Oregon Community College’s popular Geology Lecture Series continues for the 2021-22 academic year with a series of talks covering “Relationships Between Elakha (Sea Otter) and a Sense of Place on Oregon’s South Coast” a conference honoring the life and legacy of Chief Don Ivy. Join us on Saturday, April 16, 2022 from 1:00 to 4:00 pm. At the time of this news release we expect to be live in the Hales Center for the Performing Arts on the Coos Bay campus and also streaming via Livestream at the college website (https://livestream.com/swocc/geology2021-22).

This conference brings together a number of experts including Bob Bailey (President of the Elakha Alliance) delivering “Elakha Alliance: Bringing Sea Otters Home”; Dr. Roberta “Bobbi” Hall (Oregon State University, Emeritus) discussing “With the Coquille Indian Tribe — and the Sea Otters”; Dr. William “Bill” Robbins (Oregon State University, Emeritus), author of Hard Times in Paradise: Coos Bay, Oregon with “The Floodtide of EuroAmericans and the Disruption of Elakha”; and Dr. Loren Davis (Oregon State University) talking about “The Importance of the Devils Kitchen Archaeological Site”.

The talks will be followed by a panel discussion/question and answer session with our speakers. Our conference is dedicated to the life and legacy of Chief Don Ivy. When Chief Ivy was recognized as the Southwestern Oregon Community College’s Distinguished Alumnus in the Spring of 2021, several individuals associated with the Elakha Alliance were in the virtual audience. The idea of hosting an event on the south coast involving Elakha and sense of place conceived. Following Don’s passing in July 2021 we began to plan a conference dedicated to many of the tenets that Chief Ivy lived by, among them recognizing the cultural identity of Native Peoples of the region, supporting education, improving community, and fostering a greater awareness for land stewardship. It’s our intent that those attending will go forward with a better “sense of place”. It is also our hope, that like Don, we will all go out and “think deeply, make an impact, share our knowledge and go on to encourage others to do the same.”

In addition to our speakers, representatives of The Coquille Tribe, Elakha Alliance, South Slough National Estuarine Research Reserve, and The University of Oregon’s Charleston Marine Life Center will be present in the Hales Center lobby before and after the lecture.

All lectures in the series are free. The final speaker in the series this year will be Dr. Ron Metzger (Southwestern Professor of Earth Sciences) on Saturday, May 21 at 7:00 pm with “The Final Lecture? Oribatid Mites, Conodonts and Musings from Nearly Four Decades in the College Classroom”. Lecture Series Sponsors include DB Western, Southwestern Foundation, The Mill Resort and Casino, and the American Geophysical Union.

For additional information or to submit questions prior to the talk contact Ron Metzger at [email protected] or 541-888-7216.

Photo credit: Morgan Rector