UWM Guiding Values
…Stewardship of resources that promote sustainability, prosperity, and equity for all in the local and global communities…
The Office of Sustainability at UW-Milwaukee, founded in 2008, assesses, supports, and drives sustainability initiatives across campus operations, student life, and throughout academic affairs. By building cross campus and community collaborations, integrating sustainability into campus planning initiatives, assessing impacts over the long term, and working from our own sense of place and purpose, UW-Milwaukee manages its resources wisely and makes sustainability relevant to its teaching and research mission.
Past initiatives include Energy Matters, a campus wide energy efficiency program with Facility Services, supporting stormwater green infrastructure with the School of Architecture, initiating and growing campus gardens with many across the UWM community, bike planning with the assistance of Campus Planning and Community Design Solutions, and multiple outreach programs with the Share the Earth series.
UW-Milwaukee is a member of the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education, and has recently completed the Sustainability, Tracking, Assessment and Rating System (STARS). UWM recieved a STARS Silver Rating in 2013. See UWM's Sustainability Report here.
Kate M. Nelson, Chief Sustainability Officer
In 2008 the Office of Sustainability at UW-Milwaukee was established as one of the first in the UW System, and has been under Kate’s direction since. She is responsible for planning & managing a variety of sustainability initiatives, including, but not limited to; energy conservation strategies, stormwater management, expansive recycling programs, sustainable purchasing, alternative transportation options, urban gardening as well as engaging the campus students, faculty, and staff through multiple sustainability outreach and educational programs.Previously, Kate was a GIS specialist and project assistant for The Conservation Fund, and worked to preserve and restore critical land areas for MMSD’s Greenseams program that addressed flood management.Her previous research in the sustainable development of Costa Rica and Romania, has influenced and aligned her strategies for environmental policy and planning here at home in Wisconsin. Kate holds a BA in Conservation and Environmental Science from UW-Milwaukee as well as a previous BA in Theatre and Writing from Cardinal Stritch University, and is currently studying Sustainable Development at the Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies at UW Madison.
John Gardner, Program & Policy Analyst
Laura Stevens, Gardener
Laura graduated in May 2013 with a degree in anthropology and German from UWM.She began working in the office September 2012, but has been involved with the campus sustainability movement since she started at UWM in 2009.
Her interest in sustainable food systems led her to the local food movement in Milwaukee.When not digging in the dirt, you can find her attending Milwaukee Food Council meetings, enjoying a potluck with local foodie friends, volunteering at the Milwaukee County Winter Farmers’ Market, or sipping a cup of Rishi Tea.Laura will complete her training with Victory Garden Initiative’s Food Leader Certification Program in December 2013, which teaches leadership and community organizing skills around our current food system.For her project, Laura will be working in UWM’s newest gem, a 20ftx48ft hoop house located near the Sandburg Gardens.The main goal of the hoop house is to build soil to be used in the Sandburg, Restaurant Operations, and Physics gardens.
Brad Jamison, Garden & Compost Assistant
New to Milwaukee, Brad recently relocated from Atlanta where he graduated from Georgia State University with a degree in Sociology, focusing on urban environments. Currently, Brad is pursuing a master's degree inSustainable Peacebuilding in which he focuses on urban agriculture and water policy. He is also completing a Scandinavian Studies certificate to become fluent in Swedish, as he hopes to work for organizations in Sweden in the future. In the summer of 2014, Brad will spend four weeks in Stockholm, Sweden as part of UWM's study abroad, as well as laying the groundwork for future educational opportunities in the Scandinavian capital. As part of the Office of Sustainability team, Brad oversees the food scrap pick up from campus housing to the UWM hoop house, as well as Sandburg garden care, and just about anything to do with composting on campus. When not at work or school, Brad can be found cooking plant-based dishes in his kitchen while episodes of King of the Hill play on loop in the background. Keeping true to his love of travel, he can also be found reading Lonely Planet's Scandinavian online forum and travel guides, overusing Google Earth, and searching for plane tickets he cannot readily afford.
Irissa Danelski, Student Project Assistant
Irissa started in the Office of Sustainability in Summer 2014 as the Student Project Assistant. She is working on a student-driven sustainability group within University Housing called Eco Reps, as well as assisting with events and projects. Her love for sustainability started at Conserve School, an environmentally conscious boarding school she attended for one year, and continues today. She is incredibly excited to learn about all of UWM’s sustainability initiatives and be a part of teaching others about UWM and sustainability. She speaks three languages: English, French, and Chinese. She is not quite sure of the specific scenario where speaking English, French, and Chinese will be required within moments of each other, but she looks forward to that day. Irissa plans to travel extensively in the future and hopes to work for an organization devoted to building stable peace in traditionally unstable areas. Irissa plans to graduate in Spring 2016 with a Global Studies – Global Security degree and a Chinese degree from UW-Milwaukee.