Executive Director , Presidential Climate Action Project
William Becker is the Executive Director of the Presidential Climate Action Project, a 10-year-old initiative that works with U.S. thought leaders to develop recommendations on clean energy and climate action for the President of the United States. He holds a number of leadership positions related to clean energy, climate change and sustainable development. He is a Senior Associate at Natural Capitalism Solutions, an advisor to the Environment and Energy Study Group in Washington D.C.; and a member of Mikhail Gorbachev’s international Climate Change Task Force based in Geneva.
As a Clean Energy Policy Expert, William Becker produced a white paper on transportation policies around the world. He also conducted a number of interviews with sustainable development experts as part of a series of podcasts, which he helped develop.
Prior to these assignments, Bill served for 15 years as a senior official at the U.S. Department of Energy, specializing in building partnerships to accelerate the market penetration of renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies. He has also specialized throughout his career in helping communities understand and practice sustainability, including disaster-affected communities planning their recovery. He has led or participated on expert teams deployed to New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina in 2005 and Thailand after the 2004 tsunami, and to Beijing to help “green” the Olympic Village at the 2008 Olympic Games.
His interest in sustainable development began in the 1970s when he proposed and helped implement a pioneering project in which a rural Wisconsin village relocated out of a floodplain and rebuilt on higher ground as the nation's first solar village. Today, that project is recognized as an early example of climate change mitigation and adaptation, as well as the “granddaddy” of sustainable community development in the United States.
Bill is a former journalist who began his career as a decorated 20-year-old Army war correspondent in South Vietnam. He is a frequent guest blogger on Huffington Post. His most recent book—The 100 Day Action Plan to Save the Planet—was published by St. Martin’s Griffin in New York.