Patricia Siemen | The Rights of Nature

Just as the ideals of human rights are protected by legal systems, the rights of the rest of creation must be protected by Earth Jurisprudence. Hear Pat Siemen’s appeal to our innate sense of justice in her proposal of basic rights for all Earth’s systems and creatures.

Pat is a Dominican Sister from Adrian, Michigan and a civil attorney licensed in the States of Florida and Michigan. Her passion is for the long-term ecological health and well-being of current and future members of the Earth community — and how this gets expressed in law and governance structures. She strives to bring forth transformational changes in law, society, and consciousness that integrate the interdependent role of humanity with inherent reverence for all beings. 

Since 2006, Pat has served as the Director of the Center for Earth Jurisprudence (CEJ), an initiative of the Barry University School of Law, The Center draws upon science, ethics, philosophy, culture, humanities and law to protect the inherent rights of the natural world to thrive and be healthy. CEJ envisions transformative change which recognizes the need for legal and economic systems that protect peoples' and ecosystems' rights to be healthy.

Siemen has a B.A. from Siena Heights University, Adrian, Michigan, a Master's degree in Public Affairs from the University of Texas in Austin, and a Master's degree in Culture and Spirituality from Holy Names University in Oakland. Her Juris Doctorate is from Northeastern University.