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MIT Martin Family Society of Fellows for Sustainability

Greetings to all our past Martin Fellows

A very happy summer from the MIT Environmental Solutions Initiative to all our Martin Fellowship alumni!

It's hard to believe, but the Martin Society will turn 15 years old this coming year. It was founded at a time when the very concept of sustainability as a discipline was young. In 1997, when Lee and Geraldine Martin first endowed this fellowship, "recycling" was a niche idea practiced by less than 30% of the country, the UN was forming its first development goals with little reference to sustainability, and no mass movement was paying much attention to the carbon dioxide that had just crept above 360 ppm of our atmosphere.

The Martin family's foresight in creating this fellowship has been richly rewarded. Over 400 of you now work in businesses, universities, foundations, and governments around the world—and time and again, you have gone on to make sustainability and social and environmental progress core to the work you do. Many of you we still have the pleasure of knowing years after graduation. Elsa Olivetti (an '04 Martin Fellow), Desiree Plata ('07), and Jason Jay ('08) are right here at MIT teaching and running their own labs—and no surprise, they are among the faculty we at ESI have worked most closely with over the years. Parrish Bergquist ('17) recently appeared on our TILclimate podcast to tell us about her area of expertise, public opinion on climate and environmental issues. Leah Stokes ('13) joined us last summer to moderate a fireside chad between U.S. Senators Dan Sullivan (R-AK) and Alex Padilla (D-CA, then the California Secretary of State). And just last month, we learned that both Jess Varner ('18) and Luísa Reis-Castro ('19) were among the 5 awardees of this year's prestigious USC Society of Fellows in the Humanities.

Other alumni we would like to know better. We are always delighted to hear from past Martin Fellows—drop us a line anytime.

Meet the newest class of Martin Fellows for Sustainability!

Now it is our great pleasure to introduce the 2021-2022 class of Martin Fellows, and invite you to meet them. This year, our fellows are: They include modelers expanding our understanding of ecosystems and the public health impacts of energy technologies; engineers working to bio-recycle plastics, store energy for the grid as heat, and train robots to monitor the health of waterways; social scientists engaging with communities who provide the raw materials for pharmaceuticals or whose very way of life is being eroded by rising seas; and more. You can learn more about all our new fellows in the links above, or in this video:

Join us this July

In the coming weeks, we will hold two virtual lunch sessions to get to know the newest members of the Martin Society. You are enthusiastically invited to attend. On Wednesday, July 7 and July 21, from 12 pm to 2 pm, the 2021 Martin Fellows will give short presentations on their research, and answer questions from the extended Martin Fellowship community.

You can use these Zoom links to join, or contact Aaron Krol for calendar invites: From the entire Environmental Solutions Initiative, we hope to see you at these events, and would love to hear from you.
Copyright © 2021 MIT Environmental Solutions Initiative, All rights reserved.

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