Daniel C. Taylor
Teaching at Gandhi's Ashram Author: Tshering Lhamsok
2022

Daniel C. Taylor

Conservationist

preserving habitats, forging partnerships, bridging cultures

meet daniel

Daniel C. Taylor takes an idea that baffles others to reality. His exploration includes first ascents, pioneering two rivers, designing extraordinary buildings, generating electricity and growing the results of his explorations. He has explored design in order to create 100 million acres of national parks where people protect nature. Taylor designed an accredited university to learn sustainable and inclusive living that helped to emerge holistic lives around the world. His public recognition includes being knighted by King of Nepal, an honorary professor of quantitative ecology at the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Order of Golden Arc from the Netherlands, and both masters and doctoral degrees from Harvard University.

preserving habitats, forging partnerships, bridging cultures
Nominated by: Johan Reinhard MED'86
Class of 2022 Location USA
Daniel with his homemade twin-engine plane in the Tetons
Daniel with his homemade twin-engine plane in the Tetons Author: Derek Craighead

At age 11, I met the Yeti on the front page of India’s leading newspaper. It was emphatically a real animal — a footprint was there in 1956. I stepped out the back door of our home at 6,000 feet in the Himalaya and began exploring the 3,000-mile mountain breadth from Afghanistan to Yunnan, China. After Yeti’s identity was proven as Black Bear (Ursus thibetanus), I confronted a choice. To make money from lectures about this or to protect the habitat where the Yeti identity had been unmasked. I chose to find a new design for national parks through partnerships not through policing. I chose allowing rich and poor to advance, not by conservation stopping development.

“Exploration across my seven decades has lead to opening of the mind, and then the soul.”

- Daniel C. Taylor
Daniel doing fieldwork at Everest's jungle base
Daniel doing fieldwork at Everest's jungle base Author: Jesse Oak Taylor

The first park was Nepal’s Valleys, a park the size of Rhode Island. Then came an adjacent park in China’s Tibet, three times the size of Yellowstone National Park. Seven parks now protect diverse ecology. The parks include everything from Everest’s arctic heights to subtropical jungles, wet forests to sparkling deserts. One valley was the original home of Shangri’ La. Beginning as an exploration connected in culture, the values are rooted in compassion to discover how nature shall endure.

Exploration across my seven decades has lead to opening of the mind, and then the soul. The discoveries were stunning. Imagine stopping the Chinese army from clear cutting across a region, equal in size to Washington State, with 350 trucks leaving a day. Or stopping the felling of trees with Everest, Lhotse, and Makalu visible through tree tops. Where tree bases are six feet in diameter with a dozen species of rhododendron and poppies on these unknown slopes of Everest, visible from above.

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