Annette Lees has been an outdoor and natural world enthusiast from childhood. With a Masters of Science degree in ecology and landscape conservation, she has had a career in conservation in New Zealand and the tropical Pacific and has worked and travelled in South America and Africa. Annette is now a strategy consultant for her business Alternative Endings. Her work supports communities, iwi and hapū, landowners, social enterprises and government find solutions to conservation and environment challenges. Annette is the author of three books that explore our connection to nature: The Deep Sky Waits on the Outskirts of Town (Reed 1996); Swim: A year of swimming outdoors in New Zealand (2018) (longlisted for the 2019 Royal Society Prize of the Ockham Book Awards); and After Dark: Walking into the nights of Aotearoa (2021). She lives in the Waitakere River valley with her family.