Former DEP head Quigley to lead Harrisburg University environmental center

Former Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection Secretary John Quigley has been picked to lead Harrisburg University of Science and Technology's Center for Environment, Energy and Economy. - (Photo / Submitted)

Once the state’s top environmental official, John Quigley is bringing his expertise to academia.

Quigley, who previously led the state’s Department of Environmental Protection and its Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, has joined Harrisburg University of Science and Technology to develop and head its Center for Environment, Energy and Economy.

He also will lecture on sustainability.

“This is such a unique opportunity to help shape policy and help companies that want to improve their environmental performance and make money at the same time. There is a huge demand for sustainable practices,” Quigley said.

“I think the space that the center wants to be in involves helping companies solve environmental problems, and helping government with better and smarter uses of data in making environmental and energy policy decisions,” he added. “I think the next generation of environmental policy will be data driven.”

Career history

Quigley’s background includes experience in government, business, economics and media.

A former mayor of Hazleton, in Luzerne County, Quigley also founded a downtown revitalization nonprofit, taught economics at a Penn State University branch campus, worked as government relations manager with a statewide environmental nonprofit and held positions in manufacturing and government consulting, in addition to writing a newspaper column for a northeastern Pennsylvania publication.

He previously worked in a number of leadership positions at DCNR, and served as secretary of the department from 2009 to 2011 under former Gov. Ed Rendell.

Quigley went on to serve as DEP Secretary from January 2015 through May 2016 under Gov. Tom Wolf, becoming the first and thus far only person to have led DEP and DCNR.

He stepped down from DEP last year after expressing frustrations about the regulatory process.

Later in 2016, Quigley was named a senior fellow at the Kleinman Center for Energy Policy at the University of Pennsylvania.

A graduate of Bloomsburg University with a degree in economics, Quigley holds a master’s in public administration from Lehigh University. He also has completed additional graduate work in economics.

Role at HU

HU’s center aims to change practices in business and government to improve the environment and advance sustainability.

“John’s background speaks for itself. And we are excited to welcome him to HU,” university president Eric Darr said.

Quigley also will be tasked with convening a group of working faculty to serve on the center’s steering committee, which will chart strategy for the facility.

“In my travels, HU is unique. There is a focus on real-world applications in a very direct way here,” Quigley said, praising the institution for its “hunger to get in and solve problems.”

Roger DuPuis
Roger DuPuis covers Cumberland County, health care, transportation, distribution, energy and environment. Have a tip or question for him? Email him at rdupuis@cpbj.com.

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