Forum 21 Institute

http://forum-21.org/

Website

Tairiku Okada
President

Born in Tokyo, Japan, Tairiku Okada graduated from Kokugakuin University with a major in Shinto archeology. In addition to serving as the president of the Forum 21 Institute, Mr. Okada is chairman of the board of the Hikaru Museum, which organizes exhibits of archaeology, natural history, and the arts to promote understanding of the underlying unity of the earth’s diverse civilizations. He is also president of the Yoko Civilization Research Institute, in which international experts in numerous fields of expertise come together to address pressing problems of today. Additionally, one of his key projects is to inspire youth to community service worldwide, such as encouraging young people to plant thousands of trees in Africa’s “Great Green Wall” project.

Mr. Okada worked to co-sponsored the UN Millennium World Peace Summit of Religious and Spiritual Leaders in 2000, and in 2006 gave an address at the United Nations, advocating transcending all barriers of race, nationality, religion, and ideology to gather together all of our wisdom to overcome today’s crises. During his visit to the UN, he met with senior staff about the significance of promoting the development of human consciousness to foster a society based on peaceful values.

Tairiku Okada is an acclaimed calligrapher under his pen name, Tairiku Teshima, offering his art as an avenue for promoting intercultural exchange. He has won numerous international awards, including the Paris Picasso Museum Award for his calligraphy Sui and the Consul of the People’s Republic of China Award for the calligraphy Sato. Recent exhibitions of his calligraphy were held in London and at UNESCO headquarters in France.

In June 2008, Mr. Okada met with the president of Peru and donated one of his calligraphy works, Hikari. They have agreed on mutual cooperation in the fields of culture and education. Mr. Okada was made Citizen of Honor of Lima, Peru, and Citizen of Honor of São Paulo, Brazil.

Mr. Okada serves as the director of the Federation of New Religious Organizations of Japan through which has been working to promote international cooperation, contribute to a world of peace and non-conflict, and increase the welfare of humankind.

Ken Kitatani
Executive Director

Ken Kitatani currently serves as the Executive Director of Forum 21 Institute. Since 2008 he has been the USA representative of Women In Need International, an NGO that promotes gender equality and sustainability (www.win-int.org). He also serves on the board of What Shape is Green? a program of  environmental peace sculptures, and is an advisor to the Happiness Initiative (www.happycounts.org), an organization working toward a new economic paradigm incorporating social justice, sustainability, interdependence, and inclusivity, based on the country of Bhutan’s work to measure citizens’ happiness instead of merely gross domestic product.

Ken graduated from Columbia University with a B.A. in East Asian Studies. In the 1980s, Ken studied Vipassana meditation extensively in Myanmar (Burma) under the guidance of U Tagaya and U Janaka. He also is a certified instructor of Yoga, having received certification from Larry Payne Ph.D. (Yoga for Dummies, Yoga Rx). 

Jim MacLellan
Deputy Director

Jim MacLellan serves as the Deputy Director of Forum 21 Institute. He also is the Director of Trade Development of the Port of Los Angeles. As Adjunct Professor, he teaches an annual course on international shipping and transportation at the Monterey Institute Graduate School of International Studies.

A member of several local and international organizations, he currently serves as President of the California Pacific Chapter of the United States – Mexico Chamber of Commerce, as Vice – Chairman of the Southern California Regional District Export Council (U.S. Department of Commerce) and as Chairman of the LA Regional Export Council (MEI). He is a Member of the Board of the Foreign Trade Association and California Manufacturing and Technology Consulting (NIST) and is also a Member of the Board of Advisors for the USC Marshall Center for Global Supply Chain Management. He is a member of the World Trade Week Committee of the Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce.

Rick Clugston, Ph.D

Rick Clugston, Ph.D. also is directing an interfaith outreach initiative on worship and sustainability for the Anskar Foundation for Historic Preservation and is the Co-Director of the Association of University Leaders for a Sustainable Future (ULSF).

From 2009 to 2012, Rick directed the Earth Charter Scholarship Project at the Center for Environmental and Sustainability Education (CESE) at Florida Gulf Coast University. He developed Earth Charter based resources for higher education and represented CESE in the preparations for, negotiations at, and follow-up to the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (also called Rio+20).). He coordinated the drafting of the People’s Sustainability Treaty on Ethical and Spiritual Values for Sustainable Development as one of fourteen People’s Sustainability Treaties presented as alternative outcomes for Rio+20.

From 1989 to 2009, Rick served as Executive Director of the Center for Respect of Life and Environment (CRLE) and as Vice President of the Humane Society of the United States, in Washington, DC, where he assisted religious and academic institutions in transforming their teaching and practices to be more compassionate, humane, and sustainable.

At CRLE, Dr. Clugston directed the Earth Charter USA office He served on the Earth Charter International Steering Committee and Council from 2000-2012.  He now serves on the board of Earth Charter Associates. He has participated in UN deliberations on sustainable development from 1989 to date, attending the Earth Summit, the World Summit on Sustainable Development., Rio+20 and many meetings of the Commission on Sustainable Development and the Decade of Education for Sustainable Development.

He Co-Directed Theological Education to Meet the Environmental Challenge (1992-1999) and helped found the Forum on Religion and Ecology and the Green Seminaries Initiative. He led many ecospirituality retreats, e.g., in Assisi, Italy; the Ecuadorian Amazon; Whidbey Island, Washington; and Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.

Rick was Publisher and Editor of Earth Ethics: Evolving Values for an Earth Community, the Deputy Editor of The International Journal of Sustainability in Higher Education (MCB University Publications) and served on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Education for Sustainable Development (Sage Publications).

Prior to coming to Washington, Rick worked for the University of Minnesota for 11 years, first as a faculty member in the College of Human Ecology, and later as a strategic planner in Academic Affairs, Continuing Education and the Office of the President. He received his doctorate in Higher Education from the University of Minnesota and his masters in Human Development from the University of Chicago . As an undergraduate psychology and biochemistry major, he received the Mayo Foundation Scholarship for Medicine and Medicine Related Fields. His doctoral thesis was selected as dissertation of the year by the American Association of University Administrators.

Selected publications:

  • Clugston, R. (ed) “Peoples Sustainability Treaty on Ethics and Spiritual Values for Sustainable Development”, Peoples Sustainability Treaties, May 2012, available at http://sustainabilitytreaties.org/draft-treaties/ethical-and-spiritual-values/
  • Clugston, R., R. Lubbers, B. Mackey, S. Rockefeller, A. Roerrink, and M. Vilela, “Earth Charter International Recommendations for the Zero Draft of the UNCSD “Rio+20 Outcome Document.” UNCSD Website, Compilation Document, November 1, 2011, available at http//www.uncsd2012org/rio+20/index.php?
  • Clugston, R and S. Holt (eds.). “Faith Values and Education for Sustainable Development.” Education for Sustainable Development in Action: Education for Sustainable Development Policy Dialogue n°2. UNESCO, Paris, September 2011
  • Clugston,R. “Ethical Framework for a Sustainable World: Earth Charter + 10 Conference and Follow-Up,” in (Eds.) Journal of Education for Sustainable Development, Sage, Vol. 5, September 2011.
  • Clugston,R. “Earth Charter Education for Sustainable Ways of Living,” in R. Clugston and M.Vilela (Eds.) Journal of Education for Sustainable Development, Sage, Vol. 4, September 2010.
  • Clugston, R., and W. Calder, “Industrial Agriculture and Humane Sustainable Food Systems,” in R. Clugston (Ed.) Earth Ethics: Evolving Values for an Earth Community, Vol.12, No.1, Spring 2006.
  • Clugston, R., “The UN Decade of Education for Sustainable Development,” SGI Quarterly, Soka Gakkai International, October 20 04
  • Calder, W. and R. Clugston, “Lighting Many Fires: South Carolina’s Sustainable Universities Initiative,” in Higher Education and the Challenge of Sustainability: Problematics, Promise, and Practice, Peter Blaze Corcoran and Arjen E.J. Wals, Eds., Kluwer Academic Publishers: Dordrecht, 2004.
  • Calder, W. and R. Clugston, “International Efforts to Promote Higher Education for Sustainable Development,” in Planning for Higher Education, Journal of the Society for College and University Planning, Spring 2003.
  • Clugston, R., and W. Calder. “Critical Dimensions of Sustainability in Higher Education,” in W. Leal Filho (Ed.), Sustainability and University Life, New York, NY: Peter Lang Scientific Publishers, 1999.
  • Clugston, R. “Transforming Higher Education to Care for Creation,” in R. Peterson and D. Conroy (Eds.), Earth at Risk: Advancing the Environmental Dialogue Between Science and Religion, Prometheus Press, 1999.
  • Clugston, R., and J. Hoyt. “Environment, Development and Moral Values,” in C. J. Hamelink (Ed.), Ethics and Development: On Making Moral Choices in Development Co- operation, Kampen, Holland: Uitgeverij Kok, 1997.
  • Clugston, R. “The Praxis of Institutional Greening,” in D.T. Hessel (Ed.), Theology for Earth Community: A Field Guide, Maryknoll, NY: Orbis Books, 1996.
  • Clugston, R. “Higher Education’s Ecological Mission,” in Education for the Earth: The College Guide for Careers in the Environment, 2nd Ed., Princeton, NJ: Peterson’s Guides, Inc., 1995.

Senior Advisors

Don Hanlon Johnson

Don Hanlon Johnson is currently serving as Professor of Somatics at the School of Professional Psychology and Health, California Institute of Integral Studies. He also is the Director of the Somatics Research and Education Program at Esalen Institute’s Center for Research and Transformation. His specialty is the field of Somatics, which he helped to create.

Don’s various activities are focused on social transformation through the lens of healing practices, the nature of the human body, and the structures of human communication. He has long been active in bringing together people from a wide variety of theoretical and practical viewpoints, and ethnic backgrounds with the aim of initiating greater cooperation in addressing critical problems facing us at this period in history.

In his capacity as Director of the Somatics Research and Education Program at Esalen Institute’s Center for Research and Transformation, he coordinates public and private seminars, and research projects in the field of Somatics. He brings to Esalen leaders in the fields related to the body—therapists, anthropologists, biologi­cal scientists, artists, psychologists—to develop their work in a collaborative way.

In June 2013, he is launching a new initiative whose goal is bringing together a community of Somatic practitioners, ecoactivists and writers, wilderness experts, and artists to examine ways of nurturing an earth-based consciousness.

Ivy Ang

Ivy Ang has over 30 years of extensive experience in international business and organizational development. Her professional background includes VP Human Resources roles in the fields of high technology, biotechnology, strategic design consulting and finance. She worked internationally for global industry leaders such as Genentech, AIG, Madge Networks and Landor Associates. She also has extensive experience consulting with non-profit organizations such as Bhutan, The Gross Nation Happiness Project, The Mind Body Awareness Project, 84,000.co, TBRC, and the Khyentse Foundation.

Ivy is founder and President of Visionlinc, a company dedicated to linking vision, people and strategies. She is a strategic planner and executive coach to CEOs and their teams in creating innovative culture and optimizing people practices to achieve organizational mission.

In her work with executives, Ivy focuses on increasing executive capacity and confidence through inquiry, self-discovery and experiential practices. She has a deep belief in people’s innate potential and possibility of transformative behavior to generate extraordinary results. Her coaching emphasis is in linking the executive leadership impact to the business vision and results. Her areas of coaching include strategic vision and planning, leadership and management with emphasis on high performing teams and integrating joy and meaning in our work life.

We convene individuals from diverse arenas to create a forum for dialogue and study on such topics as sustainability in business and the economy; education and youth; the environment, food, and resources; and health care. Through interdisciplinary conferences and round-table discussion, Forum 21 aims to harness human knowledge, understanding, and activity to create integrated solutions to the challenges facing the world today. In this way, we contribute to the evolving paradigm in which people live and work by a new ethic and framework, using science, technology, and other aspects of human knowledge responsibly and sustainably, while respecting humanity in all its diversity.

Orientation and Purposes

Experts in every field of scholarly and professional endeavor today are aware that our 21st century civilization faces a state of unprecedented crisis brought about in part by unchecked scientific and technological advances. The social and political forces that shaped the preceding centuries also provided a context for individual and collective choices that have directed society nearly to the brink of collapse. Disparities and limitations constrain almost every area of human activity. Yet thoughtful people in every field express optimism for the future of humankind.

Forum 21 shares this optimism. We view humanity’s crisis as both a challenge and an opportunity. Our purpose is to seize the opportunity by fostering interdisciplinary dialogue and study among individuals representing diverse professions and specialties that can contribute to a brighter future.

Forum 21 aims to accomplish this goal in four major ways:

  1. A major lesson learned in the 20thcentury is that segmentation of knowledge into discrete areas of inquiry limits the potential of any field to describe and respond to the complexities of the natural world. A civilization of true prosperity for all citizens can only be achieved through integrated research of many fields—science, medicine, education, politics, economics, agriculture, religion, and so on. Toward this end, Forum 21 plans interdisciplinary conferences on cross-cutting themes related to problems facing the world today, such as food safety and agriculture. These conferences will not follow the traditional format of presenting information to untrained audiences, but, rather, Forum 21 intends to implement another model in which experts are chosen from disparate fields to discuss issues identified by the Forum 21 planning committee and develop alternatives and solutions for presentation to the public through Forum 21 publications. Such discussions will be conducted in front of an audience of interested observers.
  2. Forum 21 plans and organizes round-table discussions in themed fields of inquiry or endeavor, such as business, health care, education, and youth.
  3. A major goal of Forum 21 is to develop networks of like-minded individuals to share ideas and develop potential collaborations for new programs. Thus far, we have linked several individuals and organizations in the green and sustainable industries.
  4. Forum 21 will continue striving to discover and address issues such as these in order to accomplish our ultimate goal of fostering solutions to the problems facing 21stcentury society. Moreover, Forum 21 aims to carry out cross-cutting studies in order to integrate the solutions emerging in individual fields into comprehensive, integrated approaches to establishing a sustainable, peaceful society for all humankind.

Science and Spirituality

As humanity moves through the 21st century, it is no longer a surprise when both scientists and theologians speak not only of the compatibility of science and spirituality but also of their increasing awareness of the convergence of these two approaches in the study of universal laws. Today’s scientific discoveries are increasingly informed by and reveal unseen realities. Both science and spirituality have at their foundation a sense of wonder and awe at the intricate arrangements of the natural world, and each incorporates at the same time both ultra-modern and ultra-ancient/traditional technologies, values, and discoveries. When deemed appropriate, Forum 21 will organize events to create a bridge for each approach to benefit from the other’s insights in finding answers to humanity’s most profound and perplexing questions about life and in developing pathways to establishing a more fruitful future for all.

Activities

One of the primary activities of Forum 21 is to plan and hold International Conferences, symposia, research meetings, seminars, and other events.

Publications

The presentations and discussions of Forum 21 events will be published and available to the public both through a print-on-demand publishing system and e-books. A regular e-newsletter is planned for the Forum 21 website.

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