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November 3, 2008

Deputy Secretary for the Environment Speaks to UAlbany Students

NYS Deputy Secretary for the Environment Judith Enck

New York State Deputy Secretary for the Environment Judith Enck will be the guest speaker at the Joan E. Schulz Endowment lecture hosted by Women's Studies on Nov. 6. (Photo, courtesy Executive Chamber)  

From the ancient peaks of the Adirondacks to the impressive cascade of Niagara Falls, New York has many natural wonders for people to explore. But protecting the state’s environment from harmful pollutants is no easy task. For NYS Deputy Secretary for the Environment Judith Enck, it’s a daily challenge. Enck will speak at the Joan E. Schulz Endowment lecture hosted by the Women’s Studies Department on Thursday, Nov. 6.

"Environmental protection is one of the most vitally important issues of this century. Strong environmental laws ensure we have clean air, clean water, unspoiled natural areas, safe food, and a clean energy future that will create scores of new jobs. A clean environment and sustainable economic development go hand in hand. Leadership on these issues often emerges from savvy citizens working outside of government and, more often than not, those civic leaders are women. Whether it is global warming or PCBs in the Hudson River, we have ample opportunity to improve our environmental legacy.  The sooner the better," said Enck.

The endowment fund honors Professor Joan Schulz, feminist educator and founder of the Women’s Studies Department, by providing on-going support for lectures by renowned feminists and by organizing new classes involving local feminist activists.

Since 2000, the endowment has funded four lectures by distinguished feminists.  Each speaker has explored the strategies and principles that inform her activism and make it effective. According to Professor Gwen Moore, chair of the Women’s Studies Department, “We are honored to have Judith Enck, who exemplifies the principle of activism in the interest of all citizens, as the Joan E. Schulz Endowment speaker this year.”

Enck works for the administration of Gov. David A. Paterson, where she is responsible for the policies and operations of the state’s environmental protection agencies. Before working at the Governor’s Office, she gained experience as a policy adviser in the NYS Attorney General’s Office, and also as a senior environmental associate with the New York Public Interest Research Group (NYPIRG). Along with the many influential positions she has held in government, Enck has worked with the New York State Legislature to pass a number of the state’s most far reaching environmental laws, including laws addressing acid rain, toxics, pesticides, recycling, energy conservation, and environmental funding.

Enck’s lecture “Working for Environmental Protection as if the Future Mattered” will be held Thursday, Nov. 6, at 7 p.m. at the Rockefeller Institute, 411 State St., Albany, N.Y.  The event is free and open to the public.

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