Catalyst Spring 2013


Setting an Example, Leaving a Mark

When you meet Dr. Frances Lamberts, you know you’re in the company of an environmental Renaissance woman. A retired psychologist, Frances is well known in Tennessee as a conservation leader, community educator, and trailblazer of low-carbon living. Visit her hometown of Jonesborough and you will see her impact, in the form of a butterfly garden and a public arboretum focused on native plants—two projects she spearheaded.

An active UCS member for nearly 30 years, Frances supports the organization through our Partners for the Earth monthly giving program. “I draw regularly on the scientific expertise of UCS so I like reciprocating,” she explains. During her 25-year tenure as conservation chair of the League of Women Voters, she regularly used our reports and recommendations to support the League’s work in curbing climate change, protecting natural resources, reducing nuclear risks, and expanding clean energy development. “UCS’s reliable science has been a great resource to me,” she says, informing her legislative advocacy, testimony at public hearings, and the “Eye on the Environment” column she writes for her local newspaper.

A Self-Made, Sustainable Eden

Frances has also transformed her life into a model of sustainability. More than a decade ago, she retrofitted her house to use less energy and added a solar water heating system—improvements that earned her an “Energy Efficiency Champion” award from the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy. The raised-bed organic gardens, ducks and sheep, and more than 150 native trees and shrubs on her acre of land—her paradise, as she calls it—produce most of the food she eats. Through these efforts and more, Frances has inspired many others in her community to reduce their environmental impact as well.

Photo: © Charlie Mauk/Jonesborough Herald & Tribune