Utah Valley University (UVU) lost a great friend and supporter, Dr. Jane Pratt, Monday, August 12. Jane brought an enthusiasm as well as a wealth of experience and professionalism in her interactions with students at UVU. Jane was passionate regarding mountain issues, specifically sustainable mountain development, and was a great advocate of educating students and others about the many issues facing mountain communities today.
Jane has supported and was personally involved in many actions and projects that UVU initiated in promoting the United Nations-related sustainable mountain development (SMD) agenda since 2006, when UVU joined the Mountain Partnership. She was among the organizers and contributors of the Women of the Mountains conferences, as a grass-roots initiative in the North America to promote gender and SMD-agendas, which regularly have been hosted by Utah Valley University jointly with the International University of Kyrgyzstan since 2007.
At the same time Dr. Pratt was especially passionate about UVU and Utah students’ involvement in SMD-advocacy.
Several UVU students were able to work with her when UVU was invited to contribute to the Rio+20 North American Report. Jane was thoughtful and passionate on this project and served as a great mentor and motivator for all the students involved.
UVU Student and Vice President of the Utah International Mountain Forum, Jordan Giles, said the following regarding his relationship with Jane:
“Jane was the type of mentor that every college student hopes to find. She was kind and possessed a wealth of knowledge that she was happy to share. Even though we lived on opposite sides of the country, Jane was always willing to help me in any way that she could whether with research projects or sharing professional contacts. I am going to miss her warm and friendly personality and mentorship. I am very grateful for the opportunity I had to work with Jane, she was very motivating to me and I hope to one day to follow in her footsteps. Her family is in my thoughts and prayers as they go through this difficult time.”
Because of weakening health conditions during last couple of years, Jane participated in many interactive online guest lectures and would regularly interact with UVU students via email. When UVU offered its first Sustainable Mountain Development class, Jane was an enthusiastic supporter and offered many insights from her wealth of experience regarding these issues.
Jane also was thrilled to write warm greetings letter to the people and community in Utah when Utah International Mountain Forum (UIMF) celebrated at UVU for the third time dedicated by the United Nations “International Mountain Day” on December 06, 2012.
Those of us here at UVU who have had the opportunity to work closely with her on a variety of projects will miss Jane’s enthusiasm and passion. She served as a great example of advocacy for mountain issues and will continue to be in our hearts and minds here at UVU as we continue along the path of advocacy regarding mountain issues.
We are grateful for our association with Jane,
-Members of the Utah International Mountain Forum, a coalition of student clubs at Utah Valley University
Dr. Jane Pratt served in a different capacities at the international organizations, including lately as a Trustee at the Mountain Institute, VA and was one of the most respected scholars and advocates for the mountain cause in the United States and internationally.