EcoRI reports that Providence Mayor Angel Taveras has hired the longtime director of Clean Water Action, Sheila Dormody, to be the city’s first Sustainability Director. This hire is another impressive progressive hire by Taveras since taking office in January including: former blog godfather and SEIU/JwJ organizer Matt Jerzyk, trial attorney and Obama finance co-chair Jeff Padwa and AS220ist David Ortiz.
“I am thrilled that Sheila is joining our team and bringing with her a wealth of experience. I look forward to working with Sheila to make Providence one of the greenest cities in the nation,” said Mayor Taveras.
“Providence is well-positioned to be a great, green city,” said Dormody. “Providence has an abundance of committed leaders willing to help make the city the best it can be. I am looking forward to bringing people together to lower energy costs, reduce the city’s carbon footprint and identify environmentally conscious, cost-saving opportunities. I can’t wait to get started.”
Dormody has been involved in advocacy, grassroots organizing, and training activists for the environmental community since 1989. She is the outgoing New England co-director of Clean Water Action, an organization in which she has worked for since 2000.
She has served as the chair of the Providence Environmental Sustainability Task Force and co-chaired Mayor Taveras’ Environmental Transition Committee. Dormody won a U.S. EPA Merit Award in 2008 for her work to prevent mercury pollution.
Dormody has also led key collaborations to promote policies to that strengthen the economy, protect the environment and promote public health including the Coalition for Transportation Choices and the Coalition for Water Security.
She lives in Providence with her husband.
The Sustainability Director position is funded by a federal Energy Efficiency Conservation Block Grant (EEGBC).
As the city’s Sustainability Director, Dormody will oversee efforts to the reduce the city’s energy expenditures, manage Providence’s “Greenprint” initiative to align the city’s workforce with the green economy, develop a comprehensive sustainability action plan, implement a citywide composting program and increase recycling in the city.
The position was championed by City Council Majority Leader Seth Yurdin and established by the City Council in 2008, but has never been filled.
“I am pleased to see the Sustainability position finally being filled – especially by someone with a resume and background like Sheila Dormody,” said Councilman Yurdin. “This position will save the city money by implementing common sense, cost-saving measures that other cities have done. In addition, this position will move the city’s economy forward by creating green jobs and identifying renewable energy initiatives.”
Dormody’s colleagues at Clean Water Action are enthusiastic for the city’s leadership on environmental issues.
“We look forward to collaborating with the City of Providence on this exciting next chapter of revitalization, innovation and sustainability,” said Cindy Luppi, New England co-director of Clean Water Action. “We have every confidence that Providence will lead the nation in tapping into 21st century green potential.”