The Fall Meeting will offer daily General Sessions, each covering a different and exciting topic applicable across all fields of Earth and space science. These engaging lectures will cover a broad array of subject material, and will include this year’s Presidential Forum and Union Frontiers of Geophysics speakers. Be sure to save some time in your Fall Meeting Schedule for these must-see events!
All General Sessions take place from 12:30 P.M.-1:30 P.M.
Moscone South Building, Gateway Ballroom, Rooms 103-104
Jeffrey D. Sachs is a world-renowned professor of economics, leader in sustainable development, senior U.N. advisor, bestselling author, and syndicated columnist whose monthly newspaper columns appear in more than 80 countries.
Professor Sachs serves as the Director of The Earth Institute, Quetelet Professor of Sustainable Development, and Professor of Health Policy and Management at Columbia University. He is Special Advisor to United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on the Millennium Development Goals, having held the same position under former United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan. He is Director of the U.N. Sustainable Development Solutions Network. He is co-founder and Chief Strategist of Millennium Promise Alliance, and is director of the Millennium Villages Project.
Professor Sachs has authored three New York Times bestsellers in the past 7 years: The End of Poverty (2005), Common Wealth: Economics for a Crowded Planet (2008), and The Price of Civilization (2011). His latest book is To Move the World: JFK’s Quest for Peace.
Robin Chase is a transportation entrepreneur. She is founder and former CEO of Zipcar, the largest carsharing company in the world; Buzzcar, a service that brings together car owners and drivers in a carsharing marketplace in France; and GoLoco, an online ride-sharing community. She is also executive chairman of Veniam ‘Works, a vehicle mesh communications company based in Portugal.
Chase is on the board of the World Resources Institute, the National Advisory Council for Innovation and Entrepreneurship for the U.S. Department of Commerce, and the OECD’s International Transport Forum Advisory Board. She also served on the Intelligent Transportations Systems Program Advisory Committee for the U.S. Department of Transportation, the Massachusetts Governor’s Transportation Transition Working Group, and Boston Mayor’s Wireless Task Force.
Robin Chase lectures widely, has been frequently featured in the major media, and has received many awards in the areas of innovation, design, and environment, including recognition as one of Time’s 100 Most Influential People, Fast Company’s Fast 50 Innovators, and Business Week’s Top 10 Designers. She graduated from Wellesley College and MIT’s Sloan School of Management, and was a Harvard University Loeb Fellow.
Wendy Schmidt is the President of The Schmidt Family Foundation, where she works to advance the development of renewable energy and the wiser use of natural resources. The foundation houses its grant-making operation in The 11th Hour Project, which supports more than 150 nonprofit organizations in program areas including climate and energy, ecological agriculture, human rights, and our maritime connection. On Nantucket, The Schmidt Family Foundation operates ReMain Nantucket, a local group devoted to enhancing the economic, environmental and social life in the downtown of America’s oldest continuous community. In addition to leading the foundation, Wendy was a founding board member of Climate Central, an organization that connects scientists and journalists working together to provide accurate, non-advocacy news and analysis about our changing climate and its impacts on our cities, coastlines, agriculture, fresh water, and oceans.
In 2009, Wendy and her husband Eric Schmidt, created the Schmidt Ocean Institute (SOI), and in 2012 launched the research vessel, Falkor, as a mobile platform to advance ocean exploration, discovery, and knowledge, and catalyze sharing of information about the oceans.
In 2010, to further her commitment to ocean health issues, Wendy partnered with XPRIZE to sponsor the Wendy Schmidt Oil Cleanup XCHALLENGE, a $1.4 million competition designed to identify efficient and innovative solutions to address oil spillage from ocean platforms, tankers, and other sources. The 18-month long competition, prompted by The Deepwater Horizon disaster, resulted in a solution that yielded fourfold improvement over existing cleanup capabilities.
In 2012, Wendy again partnered with XPRIZE to design the Wendy Schmidt Ocean Health XPRIZE a prize that will respond to the global need for better information about the process of ocean acidification, one of the harbingers of climate change. The prize launched in September 2013.
Kathryn Sullivan was confirmed by the Senate as the Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and NOAA Administrator on 6 March 2014, having served as Acting NOAA Administrator since 28 February 2013. She is a distinguished scientist, renowned astronaut, and intrepid explorer. Prior to her appointment as Acting Administrator, Sullivan held the position of Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Environmental Observation and Prediction and Deputy Administrator, and also performed the duties of NOAA’s Chief Scientist, a vacant position. As Assistant Secretary, she played a central role in directing Administration and NOAA priority work in the areas of weather and water services, climate science and services, integrated mapping services, and Earth-observing capabilities. She also provided agency-wide direction with regard to satellites, space weather, water, and ocean observations and forecasts to best serve American communities and businesses. As Deputy Administrator, she oversaw the smooth operation of the agency. Sullivan is the U.S. Co-chair of the Group on Earth Observations (GEO), an intergovernmental body that is building a Global Earth Observation System of Systems (GEOSS) to provide environmental intelligence relevant to societal needs. Sullivan’s impressive expertise spans the frontiers of space and sea. An accomplished oceanographer, she was appointed NOAA’s Chief Scientist in 1993, where she oversaw a research and technology portfolio that included fisheries biology, climate change, satellite instrumentation, and marine biodiversity.
Sullivan was the inaugural Director of the Battelle Center for Mathematics and Science Education Policy in the John Glenn School of Public Affairs at Ohio State University. Prior to joining Ohio State, she served a decade as President and CEO of the Center of Science and Industry (COSI) in Columbus, Ohio, one of the nation’s leading science museums. Sullivan joined COSI after three years of service as Chief Scientist.
Sullivan was one of the first six women selected to join the NASA astronaut corps in 1978 and holds the distinction of being the first American woman to walk in space. She flew on three shuttle missions during her 15-year tenure, including the mission that deployed the Hubble Space Telescope. Sullivan has also served on the National Science Board (2004-2010) and as an oceanographer in the U.S. Navy Reserve (1988-2006). She holds a bachelor’s degree in Earth sciences from the University of California at Santa Cruz and a doctorate in geology from Dalhousie University in Canada.
Sally Jewell was sworn in as the 51st Secretary of the Interior on April 12, 2013.
In nominating Jewell, President Obama said, “She is an expert on the energy and climate issues that are going to shape our future. She is committed to building our nation-to-nation relationship with Indian Country. She knows the link between conservation and good jobs. She knows that there’s no contradiction between being good stewards of the land and our economic progress; that in fact, those two things need to go hand in hand.”
As Secretary of the Interior, Jewell leads an agency with more than 70,000 employees. Interior serves as steward for approximately 20 percent of the nation’s lands, including national parks, national wildlife refuges, and other public lands; oversees the responsible development of conventional and renewable energy supplies on public lands and waters; is the largest supplier and manager of water in the 17 Western states; and upholds trust responsibilities to the 566 federally recognized American Indian tribes and Alaska Natives.
Prior to her confirmation, Jewell served in the private sector, most recently as President and Chief Executive Officer of Recreation Equipment, Inc. (REI). Jewell joined REI as Chief Operating Officer in 2000 and was named CEO in 2005. During her tenure, REI nearly tripled in business to $2 billion and was consistently ranked one of the 100 best companies to work for by Fortune Magazine.
Before joining to REI, Jewell spent 19 years as a commercial banker, first as an energy and natural resources expert and later working with a diverse array of businesses that drive our nation’s economy. Trained as a petroleum engineer, Jewell started her career with Mobil Oil Corp. in the oil and gas fields of Oklahoma and the exploration and production office in Denver, Colo. where she was exposed to the remarkable diversity of our nation’s oil and gas resources.
Jewell has worked to ensure that public lands are accessible and relevant to all people from all backgrounds, and to build a connection between the great outdoors and a new generation of Americans.