Richard White

City Councilor

Richard White is Professor Emeritus of Astronomy at Smith College in Northampton, Massachusetts, where he taught for 28 years. Deepening concern for the environment during the 1990s led him to affiliate with the Environmental Science and Policy Program at Smith and to develop a public policy course on global warming that he taught three times between 1995 and 2001. He took early retirement from teaching astronomy in 2002 as a step toward a new career as a sustainability advocate. Before moving to Durango, Colorado, in 2003, he joined the Green House Network climate change speakers bureau and completed certification training with Zero Emissions Research and Initiatives (ZERI). In Durango, he was instrumental in organizing the Sustainability Alliance of Southwest Colorado, which he served as founding Chair from 2006 through 2008 and as a Board member through 2010. Besides serving on the Boards of several other non-profits, he participated in developing the La Plata County Climate and Energy Action Plan and the La Plata County draft Comprehensive Plan. He has given dozens of public presentations on sustainability, climate change, and Peak Oil. In 2007, he consulted as a zero-emissions expert in support of an architectural competition for the headquarters building of Masdar, a zero-emissions city being built in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. In 2011, he was elected to the Durango City Council.

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