Moderator and Panelists
Joining the panel in the second hour
Anne Thompson, Moderator
Chief Environmental Affairs Correspondent
Anne Thompson was named NBC News’ chief environmental affairs correspondent in April 2007. She reports on such issues as alternative fuels, global warming, land usage, and new technologies for all NBC News broadcasts including NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams, Today, on MSNBC, and online at msnbc.com.
Thompson was previously the chief financial correspondent for NBC News. In that role, she reported on the economic impact of Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath, the increased cost of health care and its impact on the economy, alternative fuel vehicles, identity theft, and the politics of the credit card industry.
In 2006, Thompson received the prestigious Gerald Loeb Award, and she was part of the Nightly News team that won the Alfred I. duPont-Columbia Journalism Award and an Emmy for coverage of Hurricane Katrina. In 2004, she was awarded the Gerald Loeb Award for distinguished business and financial journalism for her series of reports on the jobless economic recovery.
Thompson graduated from the University of Notre Dame with a Bachelor of Arts in American Studies.
Watch reports from Anne Thompson
- Shining a Light on New Energy
- Riding a wave to energy independence?
- Declaring a ‘sustainability’ major
Founder, Sustainable South Bronx
President, Majora Carter Group, LLC
Majora Carter was born and raised in the South Bronx. She continues to live there, but her career has taken her around the world in pursuit of resources and ideas to improve the quality of life in environmentally challenged communities. She founded Sustainable South Bronx in 2001 after writing a $1.25M Federal Transportation grant to design the South Bronx Greenway: 11 miles of bike and pedestrian paths connecting the rivers and neighborhoods to each other and to the rest of the city. That project secured over $20 million in funds to begin construction in 2008.
She has been instrumental in creating riverfront parks, building green roofs, and working to remove poorly planned highways in favor of positive economic development. She successfully implemented the Bronx Environmental Stewardship Training (BEST) program—a pioneering green-collar job training and placement system—to seed the community with a skilled workforce that has both a personal and economic stake in their urban environment.
These accomplishments grow from her notion that self-image is influenced by surroundings—so those surroundings should be beautiful! Her vision, drive, and tenacity earned her a MacArthur “Genius” Grant. She began 2007 as one of Newsweek’s “25 To Watch,” and ended the year as one of Essence magazine’s “25 most Influential African Americans.” The New York Post has named her one of the “50 Most Influential Women in NYC” for the past two years, and the BBC World Service named her “NYC’s Most Influential Environmentalist.” She is a board member of the Wilderness Society and is currently recording a special National Public Radio series called “The Promised Land” for 2008 release.
Carter on Sustainability
Chairman and CEO
General Electric Company
Jeffrey R. Immelt is the ninth chairman of General Electric Co., a post he has held since September 7, 2001.
He has held several global leadership positions since coming to GE in 1982, including roles in GE’s plastics, appliance, and medical businesses. In 1989 he became an officer of GE and joined the GE Capital Board in 1997. In 2000, Immelt was appointed president and chief executive officer.
Immelt has been named one of the “World’s Best CEOs” three times by_ Barron’s_, and since he began serving as chief executive officer, GE has been named “America’s Most Admired Company” in a poll conducted by _Fortune _magazine and one of “The World’s Most Respected Companies” in polls by Barron’s and the Financial Times. He is also a member of The Business Council and he is on the board of the New York Federal Reserve Bank.
Immelt earned a Bachelor of Arts in Applied Mathematics from Dartmouth College in 1978 and an M.B.A. from Harvard University in 1982. He received an honorary doctorate in engineering from the University of Notre Dame in 2007.
Cecil and Ida Green Distinguished Professor of Physics
Director, Laboratory for Energy and the Environment
Director, MIT Energy Initiative
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Ernest J. Moniz is a professor of physics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He served as undersecretary of the Department of Energy from October 1997 until January 2001. Moniz also served from 1995 to 1997 as associate director for science in the Office of Science and Technology Policy in the Executive Office of the President, where his responsibilities spanned the physical, life, and social and behavioral sciences, science education, and university-government partnerships.
At MIT, Moniz has served as head of the Department of Physics and as director of the Bates Linear Accelerator Center. His principal research contributions have been in theoretical nuclear physics, particularly in advancing nuclear reaction theory at high energy.
Moniz received a Bachelor of Science in Physics from Boston College, a doctorate in theoretical physics from Stanford University, and honorary doctorates from the University of Athens and the University of Erlangen-Nurenburg. He is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Humboldt Foundation, and the American Physical Society, and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. Moniz received the 1998 Seymour Cray HPCC Industry Recognition Award for vision and leadership in advancing scientific simulation.
Moniz and Energy Endeavors
- Dr. Moniz on “Oil, Security, Environment, Technology, The Segway Alternative”
- A Surge for Energy Research at MIT
Bill Ritter Jr.
Governor of Colorado
Bill Ritter Jr. was elected as Colorado’s 41st governor in 2006, and he has quickly established the state as a national and international leader on energy issues as he builds a 21st-century New Energy Economy for Colorado’s future. By maximizing Colorado’s abundant supplies of traditional and renewable energy resources, Ritter is crafting a responsible statewide energy plan, diversifying Colorado’s energy portfolio, creating new economic and job opportunities, and addressing environmental challenges such as climate change.
Ritter has doubled Colorado’s renewable energy standard, requiring that 20 percent of the state’s electricity come from renewable sources by 2020, and issued the state’s very first Climate Action Plan. He is attracting new alternative-energy companies, jobs, investments, and research to Colorado. Denmark-based Vestas Blades opened its first North American manufacturing plant in Colorado earlier this year, and ConocoPhillips soon will be opening its global alternative-fuels R&D center in Colorado.
Ritter often points to Colorado’s intellectual resources as one of the state’s greatest assets even as he touts the state’s vast natural gas, wind, and solar resources. He has forged stronger relationships with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory and helped create a unique Colorado Renewable Energy “Collaboratory” that links NREL with three of the state’s leading universities.
Other advancements under Ritter’s leadership include the naming of Boulder as America’s first Smart Grid City by Xcel Energy; quadrupling the state’s wind capacity and adding enough wind energy to the electric grid in 2007 to power 250,000 homes; and opening numerous new solar farms around the state.
Ritter and the New Energy Economy
Joining the Panel in the Second Hour
Sister Anne Veronica Horner Hoe, C.S.C.
Sisters of the Holy Cross
As principal and coordinator of environmental projects in a K – 12 school with 3,000 students, Sister Anne has had many years of experience developing alternative sustainability energy projects with teams of educators, applying academic learning to real social problems. She has also established and maintained contacts with NGOs in the city and state of São Paulo, Brazil, as well as with groups working in the poorest areas of the country.
Some of these projects include development and installation of low cost solar energy units; building cisterns to provide water rather than transporting it in trucks; recycling and reusing waste products; reforesting and planting trees to offset the ongoing destruction in the Amazons; training poor communities to build compost units; and testing and registering the deteriorating water quality in rivers that cross slum areas.
In addition to her partnerships with NGOs, Sister Anne collaborates with the state university, city government officials, public schools, and a bank in her work.
Frank P. Incropera
The H. Clifford and Evelyn A. Brosey Chair in Engineering
University of Notre Dame
Frank P. Incropera was the Matthew H. McCloskey Dean of the College of Engineering from 1998 to 2006. He received his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and his master’s and doctoral degrees, also in mechanical engineering, from Stanford University. In 1966, he joined the faculty of Purdue University, where he went on to serve as head of the School of Mechanical Engineering until coming to Notre Dame.
Incropera’s research is largely in the field of heat and mass transfer with applications to materials processing, electronic cooling, and energy conversion. He has directed numerous sponsored programs and is the author or co-author of 13 books and more than 200 archival journal articles. In 2001, the Institute of Scientific Information named him one of the 100 most frequently cited engineering researchers in the world. His current research deals with emerging energy technologies and the role of public policy.
In 1996, Incropera was elected to the National Academy of Engineering, the highest honor that can be bestowed on an engineer. He has also been honored by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, receiving its Senior Scientist Award in 1988. In that same year, as a Fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), he received the Heat Transfer Memorial Award for 20 years of research accomplishments. He has received ASME’s Melville Medal for best original paper and its Worcester Reed Warner Medal for his contributions to the fundamental literature of heat transfer, including his textbooks on the subject. At Purdue, he received four major teaching awards in addition to the 1982 American Society of Engineering Education (ASEE) Ralph Coats Roe Award for teaching excellence and the 1983 ASEE George Westinghouse Award for teaching and research achievement.
Senior, University of Notre Dame
Lourdes Long is a senior anthropology major from Woodside, California. She is the president and a founding member of GreeND, the energy and environmental issues student group; was appointed to the University’s Energy and Environmental Issues Committee; and also serves on the Notre Dame Energy Center’s Student Advisory Board.
She has spearheaded several sustainability initiatives, including the football game-day recycling program that will be deployed campus-wide this fall. In the spring of 2008, Lourdes received the Hipp-Beeler Award from the Office of Student Affairs in recognition of her leadership and contribution to the University. She looks forward to joining the Office of Sustainability this fall, where she will support education and outreach efforts.
Lourdes returns to Notre Dame after an exciting summer working for the Corporate Eco Forum in Silicon Valley and also as a Vito Stagliano Scholar at the National Commission on Energy Policy in Washington, D.C.