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Office Elevated to Strengthen UNH's Commitment to Sustainability

July 25, 2007

Founding Director Named Chief Sustainability Officer

President Mark Huddleston announced today the elevation of the University Office of Sustainability (UOS) to strengthen its across-campus mission and reflect its leadership role in continuing the university’s national visibility in sustainability.

Along with its move to the Office of the Provost and Executive Vice President, the office’s founding director, Tom Kelly, will assume the role of Chief Sustainability Officer (CSO) for the university.

“Sustainability is now recognized as one of UNH’s core identities and strengths with faculty, staff, and students from many disciplines working together in new and innovative ways to advance a common goal,” said Huddleston. “The role of the chief sustainability officer is to help ensure that we are considering every strategic opportunity to unite the spirit of discovery with the challenge of sustainability across our land, sea and space grant mission.”

The longest-standing endowed sustainability program at an institution of higher education in the country, the newly named University Office of Sustainability’s mission is to unite the UNH community in advancing the university as a nationally recognized sustainable learning community that integrates sustainability across its curriculum, operations, research and engagement through four broad initiatives in biodiversity and ecosystems; climate and energy; food, agriculture, and nutrition; and culture and sustainability.

“Sustainability at UNH began with the grassroots leadership of faculty, students, and staff, which lead to the establishment of the Office of Sustainability as an endowed, university-wide program in 1997,” noted Tom Kelly. “UNH has always recognized higher education’s unique role in promoting sustainability: as large educational and research communities, universities exert significant ecological, economic, and cultural force in their immediate region and extended surroundings and into future generations. And we will continue to build on our past decade of collaborative work in order to transform the unprecedented challenges we face today into opportunities.”

From reductions in emissions of greenhouse gases to research in organic dairy farming, composting to courses on climate and public health, UNH is at the forefront of fostering health, integrity, and sustainability. Discover more about the UOS at sustainableunh.unh.edu.

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