Alice Madden, Gov. Bill Ritter's deputy chief of staff and climate change adviser, is joining the School of Public Affairs at the University of Colorado Denver.
"We're delighted to welcome Alice to serve as the Wirth Chair in Sustainable and Community Development," said Paul Teske, dean of the UC Denver School of Public Affairs. "Ms. Madden's considerable expertise in energy and environmental policy, and her service to Gov. Ritter in those areas, as well as her Colorado legislative experience, will make her a great asset to our public affairs students, faculty and researchers."
The Wirth Chair provides a forum for research, dialogue and education on policies that balance economic, environmental and social welfare priorities. It is named for its founder, Timothy E. Wirth, president of the United Nations Foundation and Better World Fund, and U.S. Senator from Colorado from 1987 to 1993.
Madden, who represented House District 10 in the Colorado Legislature from 2000 to 2008, was House Majority Leader from 2005 to 2008. She also was senior fellow at the Center for American Progress, a Washington, D.C.-based think tank, from 2008 through 2009, where she analyzed climate change and related environmental topics. She'll take her new post on Jan. 17.
"Alice Madden is a terrific appointment for the Wirth Chair," Wirth said. "As majority leader in the Colorado House of Representatives and deputy chief of staff for Gov. Bill Ritter, Alice has been at the forefront of Colorado's efforts to create a new, clean energy economy. Her background, expertise and track record of leadership make her a great choice for the university, for our state and for the important issues of sustainability that are engaging young people across Colorado."
The Wirth Chair is a two-year appointment. Madden will teach in the master's in public administration program, work with community leaders and policymakers on sustainability issues, organize conferences and events, seek external funding, and assist with research and evaluation programs, sometimes in conjunction with the School's Buechner Institute for Governance and the university's Center for Sustainable Infrastructure Systems.
"I am incredibly honored to be named the Wirth Chair and cannot wait to dive in," Madden said. "It will be a privilege to continue the good work of the Chair on these important issues."