Leveraging Volunteer Committees to Achieve Green Goals
How Town Sustainability Committees Form, Function, and Interact with Town Governments
This session was held virtually on Wednesday June 8th 2022, at Noon
In this moderated session, panelists from Sustainable Westborough and the Town of Westborough, as well as the Princeton Environmental Action Committee and the Town of Princeton, will discuss how municipal governments can engage with residents and the broader community on issues of energy efficiency. In particular, the discussion will include perspectives on building an effective resident volunteer committee and strategies for leveraging such committees to accomplish energy efficiency (and related) goals. Panelists will discuss the successes and challenges they have experienced in recent years. Panelists will answer questions from the audience.
Massachusetts Clean Energy Center
Reese Sweeney-Taylor is the Net Zero Grid Program Manager at the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center, working to electrify and decarbonize the Commonwealth's electric grid at least cost while improving resiliency. Prior or Mass CEC, Rees received his Masters in Public Policy from the Harvard Kennedy School. While in school, he received a Rappaport Public Policy Fellowship to work on Massachusetts Decarbonation Roadmap and helped to develop policy solutions for clean energy and resiliency at Converge Strategies, Form Energy and The Engine.
Chair of Sustainable Westborough
Since 2017, Pete has led Sustainable Westborough which was originally established by the Select Board to drive the process for attaining Green Community status. Sustainable Westborough then worked with the Select Board to expand its scope to include sustainability issues community-wide with a primary focus on reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. In fall 2019, Westborough Town Meeting approved a Sustainable Westborough proposal to develop a Climate Action Plan (CAP) which was completed and approved in May 2021. Sustainable Westborough is the primary committee driving the implementation of the CAP which will be done with coordination and collaboration with Town staff.
Pete and his wife have lived in Westborough for over 40 years raising 3 children and are now enjoying 6 grandchildren. Pete retired from a career in High Tech in 2016, and when his environmental work permits, enjoys playing golf and ballroom dancing with his wife.
Princeton Environmental Action Committee
Corey Burnham-Howard is the current Chair of the Town of Princeton Environmental Action Committee (EAC). Established by Annual Town Meeting vote, the EAC is a Selectboard-appointed seven member committee created to advise and set goals and recommendations for the Town with regard to energy and environmental considerations. Corey has B.A. in Biology with an Environmental Science concentration and a J.D. with studies focused in environmental law. Her professional resume includes employment at MassDEP, in private law practice, and as a freelance legal writer and editor. A 19-year resident of Princeton, Corey’s municipal volunteer work has included serving as Princeton PTA president; co-founding and co-leading the Princeton PTA Green Team; co-founding and co-managing Thomas Prince School’s award-winning organic garden program; serving on Thomas Prince School’s Arts Festival Committee, Outdoor Spaces Committee, PTA Enrichment Committee, and School Improvement and Modernization Council; serving currently on Princeton’s Solar Farm Working Group and as an alternate member on Princeton’s Planning Board; and co-founding and serving previously as Vice Chair and currently as Chair of Princeton’s EAC.