An internationally recognized artist and environmental advocate, Nancy Judd creates eco-fashion sculptures made from trash to engage people in conversations about how we live on Earth. She will speak during two free presentations at J.N. “Ding’ Darling National Wildlife Refuge on Sanibel Island on Friday, March 13, at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m., part of the  2020 “Ding” Darling Friday Lecture series.

In conjunction with “Ding” Darling’s Project Refuge: A Couture Fashion Show Using Trash, Judd will travel to Sanibel Island to share stories and photos of her unusual and inspired career path, which took her from barely graduating from high school because of severe dyslexia to a front-page article in the Wall Street Journal about her mission to make garbage glamorous.

Using her deep love of nature and her creative talents, Judd reaches millions of people around the world, making her art a tool for environmental education. She exhibits her work in high-traffic public locations such as airports and museums and creates many of her sculptures, as a teaching artist, in interactive public settings. One of her pieces, the “Obamanos Coat,” a man’s coat made from President Obama’s campaign fliers, resides in the Smithsonian Museum’s permanent collection.

HighTower/Thomas & Swartz Wealth Management and Sanibel Carts co-sponsor the free 12-lecture series with support from the “Ding” Darling Wildlife Society-Friends of the Refuge (DDWS). The free lectures take place every Friday at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m.

Seating is limited and available on a first-come basis. Staff will begin handing out free-admission wristbands to those in line for the lectures at 9 a.m. for the morning lecture and 11:30 for the afternoon lecture. Wristband wearers can save seats with personal items and then can explore the Visitor & Education Center or Indigo Trail before the lecture starts. Saved seats must be filled 15 minutes before lecture. DDWS will be filming Judd’s lectures and broadcasting them on Facebook Live at

As usual, Wildlife Drive closes on Friday, but visitors are welcome to enjoy the Visitor & Education Center, Indigo Trail, Bailey Tract, and recreational opportunities at Tarpon Bay Explorers, the refuge’s official recreation concession located at its Tarpon Bay Recreation Area.

Note: Opinions expressed in guest lectures do not necessarily reflect the views of refuge and DDWS management, staff, and board of directors.

The season’s remaining schedule is listed below. Book signings follow all starred (*) lectures. For more information, call 239-472-1100 ext. 241 or log on to

March 13 – Upcycle Designer Nancy Judd,

*March 20 – Author Eliot Kleinberg, Black Cloud: The Great Hurricane of 1928

*March 27 – Author Jack Davis, “All About Eagles and Other Florida Eco-Topics”

*April 3 – Jeri Magg, Remarkable Women of Sanibel & Captiva


*starred lecture indicates book signing to follow



As a non-profit 501(c)3 organization, DDWS works to support J.N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge’s mission of conservation, wildlife and habitat protection, research, and public education through charitable donations and Refuge Nature Shop profits.

To support DDWS and the refuge with a tax-deductible gift, visit or contact Birgie Miller at  239-472-1100 ext. 4, or [email protected].