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Henri Grissino-Mayer will present “The Gatlinburg Fires–What Mother Nature Is Telling Us” at the Science Forum from noon to 1 p.m. Friday, February 10.

Grissino-Mayer’s talk will be held in Thompson-Boling Arena Café, Rooms C-D. The 40-minute presentation will be followed by a question-and-answer discussion.

The Science Forum is free and open to the public. Attendees may bring their own lunch or purchase lunch at the café.

Grissino-Mayer, UT professor of geography, will address the many questions that surround the wildfire that devastated Gatlinburg, Tennessee, this past November—whether the wildfire could be prevented and if it will be a harbinger of the risk of future wildfires in the southeastern United States.

The professor will speak about the unusual and not-so-unusual condition that led to the catastrophe as well as discussing ways that the communities of Tennessee and the Southeast can mitigate the risk of future wildfires.

The Science Forum began in 1933 and is sponsored by UT’s Quest research magazine. The forum was designed to provide the public, students and other researchers a chance to learn about scientific research void of jargon.


Mark Littmann (865-974-8756,

Amy Blakely (865-974-5034,