Meet The Staff
Rich is the Director of the Office of Environmental Policy for the University of Connecticut. He is responsible for developing policies and guidelines for protecting natural resources, reducing the University's ecological footprint, and ensuring accountability for "green" building and low-impact development in UConn's ongoing capital improvement program. He coordinates environmental sustainability initiatives on issues ranging from climate change to recycling and water conservation, and works with faculty, staff and students to enhance UConn's environmental literacy and awareness through academic programs and educational outreach activities.
Rich also established and supervises the University’s Environmental Compliance Office to oversee UConn's compliance with environmental regulations, with emphasis on air pollution control, waste water and stormwater permitting, and site remediation issues, as well as construction-related permits and environmental impact evaluations. His office works closely with operational staff on UConn's water supply system planning, as well as energy efficiency projects and development of renewable resources, and natural resource conservation issues associated with University-owned open space and farmland. Rich oversaw the OEP’s development of UConn’s Environmental Management System, including creation of Storrs and regional campus Environmental Compliance Team meetings, which ensure regular communication about compliance issues for facilities and operational managers.
Under Rich’s guidance, UConn has become a national campus sustainability leader. He established and chairs UConn’s Environmental Policy Advisory Council, which consists of 25-30 members appointed by the President and Provost, and he serves as staff to the Board of Trustee’s Building, Grounds & Environment Committee. Among his other appointments, Rich is a member of the President’s Committee on Corporate and Social Responsibility and represents UConn on the Town of Mansfield’s Sustainability Committee. He is on the Steering Committee of the Northeast Campus Sustainability Consortium and a former member of the Executive Committee of the Campus Consortium for Environmental Excellence (2003-2013).
Prior to becoming UConn’s first senior environmental manager in 2002, Rich had previously worked as a practicing environmental and land use attorney, an environmental and energy lobbyist for a statewide association, an adjunct professor of environmental law, and a corporate environmental manager at a Fortune 500 energy company. He has served on numerous legislative and regulatory advisory committees, including five years as a member of the Connecticut Council on Environmental Quality. He is a long-time member and current chair of the Simsbury Inland Wetlands & Conservation Commission.
He received his B.A. from Penn State University and J.D. from Stetson University College of Law.
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Cherie is the Administrative Coordinator for the Office of Environmental Policy (OEP). She focuses on administratively supporting the Director, managing daily office operations, recordkeeping and budgeting, serving as the OEP Compliance webmaster, event planning and scheduling, as well as in office supervision of 5-7 student interns. She supports both the Compliance and Sustainability offices, as well as her fellow employees with her considerable knowledge of University systems, policies and procedures.
Cherie joined the University in August 1998 as the Office Manager for Central Stores. Coming to UConn from Manchester Memorial Hospital (ECHN) with a ten year background as a Buyer in Purchasing and with extensive previous inventory experience, this position was the perfect transitional fit. In June 2001. Cherie accepted a new position with the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering (CEE) as their Administrative Coordinator. She was responsible for management of the daily operations of the main office, including supervision of staff and students. As well as being the assistant to the Department Head she also provided support services for over twenty faculty members, sixty-plus graduate students and the undergraduate students in the CEE program. In August 2004 Cherie accepted a shared position as an Administrative Specialist II with the Architectural & Engineering Services (AES) and the Office of Environmental Policy. In this half time role within each department, she provided various administrative, personnel, and fiscal support services to both Directors. In July 2006 Cherie accepted a full time position as the Administrative Coordinator for the Office of Environmental Policy where she currently enjoys diverse and challenging opportunities afforded by the OEP and the Univsersity of Connecticut for continued personal and professional growth.
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Sarah is the Sustainability Coordinator for the Office of Environmental Policy (OEP), and is a second year Ph.D. student in the Department of Political Science. Her previous and current research focuses primarily on member state challenges to implementing European Union environmental and economic policy. Sarah has also worked as a graduate assistant for Dr. Oksan Bayulgen and Dr. Richard Parnas’ Sustainable Energy in the 21st Century course for the past two years.
Prior to coming to UConn, Sarah worked as Intern to the Vice President for Administration at her alma mater, Guilford College. There, she assisted in the planning process of a LEED certified renovation to the student union, and worked closely with the College’s Office of Sustainability and its team conducting ASHRAE Level II Energy Audits.
Sarah received her B.A. in Political Science, International Studies Europe, and German from Guilford College in 2009 and her M.A. in International Relations and European Studies from Central European University in 2011.
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Eric is the Assistant Sustainability Coordinator for the Office of Environmental Policy and is a first year Master's Degree student in the Department of Environmental Engineering. His previous research focuses primarily on photolysis in aquatic systems and and photocatlytic reactions. Eric is also working as a research assistant for Dr. Alex Agrios in C2E2 looking into solar cell development .
Eric attended UConn as an undergraduate student where he received his Bachelor's Degree in Environmental Engineering. While at UConn, he worked for the Office of Environmental Policy as an intern in addition to his course work.
Before coming to OEP, Eric worked for a environmental consulting firm completing permitting, sampling, and inspections for clients in the Connecticut area.
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