Ms. Dianne Dillon-Ridgley is 2013 Commencement Speaker

Green Mountain College’s commencement speaker for 2013 is Ms. Dianne Dillon-Ridgley, a national and international leader in environmental sustainability, corporate responsibility and social justice. She will address GMC graduates at the College’s 176th commencement ceremony on Saturday, May 11 at 10 a.m. Dillon-Ridgley will also receive an honorary doctor of laws degree from GMC.

Ms. Dillon-Ridgley represents the World Young Women's Christian Association at U.N. headquarters in New York, and has served on numerous U.S. delegations to U.N. global meetings and other international conferences. She was appointed to the U.S. delegation for the 1992 Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, to the 1997 United Nations General Assembly Special Session (also known as the “Earth Summit+5”) in New York City, and to the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD) in Johannesburg, South Africa, making her the only person to serve on all three American delegations. She is founding chair-emeritus of Plains Justice, an environmental law center for the Great Plains states. She is chair of the board of trustees for the Center for International Environmental Law and is a board member of the Women’s Network for a Sustainable Future. From 1994-1997 she was president of Zero Population Growth (ZPG), the nation's largest grassroots organization concerned with rapid population growth and the environment. She was also acting executive director of the Women's Environment and Development Organization (WEDO) during 1998 and 1999.

From 1999 through its tenure Ms. Dillon-Ridgley was a member of the Oxford University Commission on Sustainable Consumption, and was the first American appointed to the Global Water Partnership in Stockholm. Former President Clinton appointed her to the President’s Council on Sustainable Development, a group that advised the president on responsible business practices.

In the business sector, Ms. Dillon-Ridgley has served as a director for Interface, Inc., since 1997. Interface is an Atlanta-based global manufacturer of environmentally-responsible modular carpet for the commercial, institutional, and residential markets. In the energy sector, she was a director at Green Mountain Energy, a leading retailer of renewably produced electricity in the United States. She also served Green Mountain Energy as chair of the company’s environmental integrity committee.

A sought-after spokesperson, Ms. Dillon-Ridgley has appeared on ABC World News Tonight with Peter Jennings, NBC Nightly News with Tom Brokaw, the Today Show, PBS and numerous local news programs in the U.S. She has also been a featured guest on numerous television and radio programs in Japan, the United Kingdom, Greece, Brazil, Senegal, South Africa and Sweden among other countries.

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