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7th Annual Stephen H. Schneider Memorial Lecture | Nainoa Thompson | Finding Our Way

February 5, 2019 - 7:00pm to 9:00pm
CEMEX Auditorium, Stanford University


On February 5, President of the Polynesian Voyaging Society, Nainoa Thompson, gave the lecture  Finding Our Way: A Master Navigator's Worldwide Voyage of Tradition, Stewardship and Discovery as the 7th annual lecture created to honor the memory of Stephen H. Schneider, Stanford professor and renowned climate scientist. Nainoa shared knowledge gained from journeying across the seas without the use of modern technology and his efforts to preserve ancient wayfinding practices while bringing awareness to global environmental issues. Most recently, Nainoa led the Mālama Honua (Care for Our Earth) Worldwide Voyage, aimed at “bridging traditional and new technologies to live sustainably, while sharing, learning, creating global relationships, and discovering the wonders of this precious place we all call home.”  He also discussed his experience as a Pwo navigator and his efforts to better care for our shared planet. Video of the event is below.

Nainoa Thompson is the president of the Polynesian Voyaging Society and a Pwo navigator. Inspired by his kūpuna, his teachers, he has dedicated his life to exploring the deep meaning of voyaging. Nainoa is the recipient of numerous community awards, including the Unsung Hero of Compassion, awarded to him by His Holiness XIV Dalai Lama on behalf of the organization Wisdom in Action, the Native Hawaiian Education Association’s Manomano Ka ‘Ike (Depth and Breadth of Knowledge) Educator of the Year Award, the NOAA National Marine Sanctuary Foundation Lifetime Achievement Award, the BLUE Ocean Film Festival Legacy Award, the Peter Benchley Ocean Award for Excellence in Marine Exploration, the National Geographic Society’s Hubbard Medal, and the Explorers Club Medal. He currently serves as a member of the Ocean Elders and leads Hōkūleʻa’s Worldwide Voyage.

Find out more about Nainoa Thompson and PVS.

Learn more about the work of Stephen H. Schneider.

Event Sponsor: 
Students for a Sustainable Stanford, Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment
Contact Email: 
Maeve Givens: or Deirdre Francks