New sustainability director is ready to reach out
By CG News Editor Kelly Doran
Annie Laurie Cadmus, new sustainability director at Ohio University, wants to make outreach her focus. Cadmus began her job on July 22.
Cadmus is currently continuing the work on the newly adapted Sustainability Plan and will be helping with creating the Climate Action Plan. Her main goal, however, is outreach. Cadmus is determined to reach everyone. To do this, she is working on adapting the office’s communication’s style to relate to each individual. “Sustainability really does impact everyone,” Cadmus said.
Cadmus said that volunteers are vital in her plans for outreach. She also is determined to not let the location of the Office of Sustainability, which is on Factory Street hinder the outreach. She instead sees an opportunity to go to people, through classroom presentations or just on campus.
Cadmus encourages students to stop by anytime. There is always a graduate student in the office from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. Monday through Friday “That’s really important to us, that students recognize that this is their space,” Cadmus said.
Cadmus said that there is always a lot of energy in the office. She has an “open door policy,” thus there are always students walking in and out of her office all day.
Cadmus said that the Office of Sustainability has a lot of volunteer opportunities, which they shape to fit the interests of the volunteer. Also, the office focuses on professional development with all their volunteers. “If you’re in the office, we want to make sure that you’re walking away with something tangible that you can put on a resume and feel like you’re actually getting a valuable experience,” Cadmus said.
After volunteers work there for one quarter, Cadmus does an assessment and if the volunteer wants to apply for hourly employment, they will get accepted based on budget and performance. Cadmus is also willing to work with students to create an internship based on requirements set by OU and their major.
This Friday, the office will be hosting a mini Farmer’s Market on campus from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on lot 82, which is between Wolfe Street Apartments and Clippinger Laboratories. The market will be just like the Farmer’s Market on State Street, just smaller.
This Saturday is Moving Planet Day. There will be bike rides all morning leaving from College Gate in honor of this world wide event. Two rides, one 20 to 30 miles long and the other 50 to 60 miles long,leave at 10 a.m. A shorter ride hosted by OU Outdoor Pursuits leaves at 1 p.m. All are will end at Tail-Great Park where there will be a festival with local vendors. The first one hundred participants receive a free t-shirt at the event that lasts from 2 to 4 p.m. The event is family friendly and in addition to having local foods, there will be a bounce house.
If people do not want to go on the bike ride, the office is also having an Ecohouse Open House from 12 to 1:30 p.m., at which time the participants will walk to Tail Great Park.
On Sunday, there will be an Ecohouse Community Garden Workday from 1 to 4 p.m. to help the residents from Ecohouse to take care of their garden, now a community garden. Thus far, about 15 people have signed up.
Last weekend the office provided a shuttle to the Paw Paw Fest, which 123 students utilized, according to Cadmus. The office also set up a booth at the event.
Cadmus said that she had already heard of OU’s reputation in sustainability before she applied. “I think coming into that brought a lot of security, knowing that your entering a program that had a strong reputation, had strong previous leaders, that makes a big difference.”
“The campus already has so much energy about sustainability that I didn’t feel like I was coming in fighting. I was coming in with a really exciting program,” Cadmus said. She also loves the Athens community. Cadmus said she already feels like she fits in.
“What people had told me about in my phone interviews about the community really stood out to me and that maintained my interest, how very friendly and unique this community is,” Cadmus said.
The most recent job Cadmus had was at Waubonsee Community College in Illinois. She was responsible for sustainability programming at all four of the campuses, a very similar job to the sustainability director position at OU.
Before that, Cadmus worked in Chicago for Alliance for Climate Education, a non-profit organization, and before that she worked at Green Mountain College in Vermont.