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The actor was presented the award at the Citi Performing Arts Center by Walden Woods Project founder, and Eagles co-founder, Don Henley, who noted Redford’s commitment to a wide range of environmental initiatives.
“We have one planet, and as far as we know, that’s the only one we’ve got,” Redford said in his acceptance speech. “We are, or should be, guardians of that planet — what are we doing?
“If we are guardians of this planet, then what are we doing to preserve it so there’s something for future generations?” Redford continued. “So I think that’s where my activism began…. I thought, ‘Do we want future generations to only know about the beauty of open spaces, of wilderness, by simply museum photos or archival films?’ No, [so] we’d better do something.”
After receiving the Walden Woods award, Redford and other guests, including Tom Brokaw and his wife, Meredith, took in a two-hour set by the Eagles in the Wang Theatre.
During the evening’s fundraising dinner, attended by more than 600 supporters, $1.6 million was raised for the Walden Woods Project, a nonprofit that aims to preserve and educate the public about the Walden Woods, in Lincoln, Mass., made famous by Henry David Thoreau.
Redford has long been one of Hollywood’s most well-known environmental activists, and has recently taken to using television and social media to speak out about climate change, conservancy and other issues.
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