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Cornell audience will hear EPA Administrator Regan speak on environmental justice

Official portrait of EPA Administrator Michael Regan
January 31, 2022

by Sarah Louise Schupp

Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Michael S. Regan will speak at the Cornell Jeb E. Brooks School Institute for Public Affairs Spring Colloquium series on February 10.

His talk, “Environmental Justice: A Governmental Perspective,” will begin at 5pm; registration is required. In the Zoom presentation, Regan will give an overview of the EPA’s role in promoting equity and environmental justice in the agency’s practices, policies, and programs.

Hosted by the Brooks School’s Institute for Public Affairs, the lecture is part of the Institute’s colloquium, a series designed to connect master of public administration (MPA) students with public affairs practitioners at the cutting edge of the field. The EPA Administrator’s talk aligns with the commitment by the Brooks School to advance knowledge in areas that include global sustainability and security as well as race, racism and policy.

“Administrator Regan’s distinguished career in environmental policy has exemplified the values we hope to cultivate in our community—efficiency, effectiveness, and, above all, equity,” said Thomas O’Toole, Executive Director of the Institute. “And, at a time when hard truths are being raised around equity worldwide, it is vitally important that our students understand the strategic planning and collaborative management skills required to promote environmental justice.”

The lecture and a question-answer session will be moderated by Ariel Ortiz-Bobea, associate professor of applied economics and policy in the Cornell Jeb E. Brooks School of Public Policy and the Charles H. Dyson School of Applied Economics and Management.

More about Administrator Regan:

Michael S. Regan was sworn in as the 16th Administrator of the United States Environmental Protection Agency on March 11, 2021, becoming the first Black man and second person of color to lead the U.S. EPA.

Regan is a native of Goldsboro, North Carolina, where he developed a passion for the environment while hunting and fishing with his father and grandfather, and while exploring the vast lands, waters, and inner coastal plain of North Carolina.

Prior to his nomination as EPA Administrator, Regan served as the Secretary of the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) where he spearheaded the development and implementation of North Carolina’s seminal plan to address climate change and transition the state to a clean energy economy.

Previously, Regan served as Associate Vice President of U.S. Climate and Energy, and as Southeast Regional Director of the Environmental Defense Fund. He began his career with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, eventually becoming a national program manager responsible for designing strategic solutions with industry and corporate stakeholders to reduce air pollution, improve energy efficiency and address climate change.

Regan is a graduate of the North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University – making him the first EPA Administrator to have graduated from a Historically Black College and University. He earned a master’s degree in Public Administration from The George Washington University.

Read the story on the Cornell Chronicle website.