Clay Henderson and Forces of Nature Featured at BookMania! 2023

Posted on March 6, 2023

Familiar names like Marjory Stoneman Douglas and Theodore Roosevelt are joined by lesser-known conservationists, environmentalists, anglers, birdwatchers, artists, writers, philanthropists, politicians, and Florida residents who have fought to preserve Florida’s distinct character in Clay Henderson’s new book Forces of Nature: A History of Florida Land Conservation.


With ties to local environmental icons like Nat Reed and with a message that will resonate with Martin County residents, Henderson will be a guest author at this year’s BookMania! celebration.


Henderson’s book is an exciting and hopeful tale of the many small victories over generations that helped Florida create several units of the national park system, nearly thirty national wildlife refuges, and one of the best state park systems in the county.


“Florida became a leader in land preservation because of the individuals and organizations who fought battle after battle for state-funded conservation,” Henderson said. “We need to recognize their efforts and commit ourselves to the same passionate defense of Florida’s natural wonders.”


Henderson knows the details of the struggles not only from his research but also from his own experience. He has had a long career as an environmental lawyer, activist, educator, and writer. He sponsored most of the environmental provisions in Florida's Constitution including the creation of the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and co-authored the Florida Water and Land Legacy Initiative, the largest conservation funding program the nation’s history.


He was also a leader in the development of Florida’s signature land acquisition programs including Preservation 2000, Florida Forever, and Florida Communities Trust, and negotiated the acquisition of over 300,000 acres of conservation lands. A senior counsel at Holland & Knight for nearly two decades, he also served as president of the Florida Audubon Society and Florida Trust for Historic Preservation, and Executive Director if the Institute for water and Environmental Resilience at Stetson University.


BookMania!, sponsored by the Martin County Library System and Library Foundation, is the most prestigious literary event on the Treasure Coast. Since 1995, the event has hosted more than 450 emerging and best-selling authors, attracting participants from across the country. Henderson’s Forces of Nature is part of the first panel, Florida Nonfiction, 9 a.m. on April 1 at Jensen Beach High School. For a complete schedule, visit the BookMania! website


For more information on how to purchase Clay Henderson’s Forces of Nature or to request an appearance visit

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