University Sustainability

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Appalachian Energy Summit Keynote Address with Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Inspiring and provocative Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., world-recognized environmentalist and energy policy expert, held the audience captive as keynote speaker last week for the fourth annual Appalachian Energy Summit, an unparalleled gathering of bold and progressive energy thought-leaders and innovators.

Kennedy shared his vision, expertise and ardent opinions about energy innovation. Post-keynote Q&A and a passionate and spirited exchange with Amory Lovins, Chief Scientist of Rocky Mountain Institute rounded out the first night of the three day gathering.

About Kennedy

Kennedy's reputation as a resolute defender of the environment stems from a litany of successful legal actions. Kennedy was named one of Time magazine's "Heroes for the Planet" for his success in helping Riverkeeper lead the fight to restore the Hudson River. The group's achievement helped spawn more than 160 Waterkeeper organizations across the globe.

He serves as president of Waterkeeper Alliance, senior attorney for the Natural Resources Defense Council, chief prosecuting attorney for the Hudson Riverkeeper. He is a partner on the CleanTech investment team of Silicon Valley's VantagePoint Capital Ventures, and is the environmental advisor to Napo Pharmaceuticals and co-host of radio show Ring of Fire. He is also a professor of environmental law at Pace University School of Law and serves as co-director of the school's Environmental Litigation Clinic. Earlier in his career, Kennedy served as assistant district attorney in New York City.

Kennedy was also featured in the acclaimed environmental documentary The Last Mountain, the Sundance 2011 official selection. The film examines the struggle to save Coal River Mountain in Coal River Valley, West Virginia — the last mountain in the area untouched by the mining practice of mountain top removal.