When Maeve Vallely Bartlett, Class of 1980, was pursuing an English major at Wheaton College, she never thought her path would bring her to a state government office. But here she is on Beacon Hill in Boston—serving as Massachusetts Secretary of Energy and Environmental Affairs.
She was appointed to the post by Governor Deval Patrick in June 2014 after serving as undersecretary for the previous year. Massachusetts is the first state in the nation to combine energy and environmental agencies under one cabinet secretary with the shared mission of bringing clean energy technology to market, curbing greenhouse gas emissions and cutting energy costs.
In her new role, Bartlett oversees policies and programs to secure energy and protect natural resources in the state.
“What we do is incredibly important to me, and it is absolutely necessary for the next generation,” she says. “I’m proud to be a part of what we’ve done here.”
The road to cabinet secretary has been a winding one that has included stints as a writer, which she always envisioned herself being (she still keeps a copy of Strunk and White’s The Elements of Style in her office); law school at Suffolk University; and more than 20 years of experience in the environmental field working in state and federal government. She has served as environment undersecretary, assistant secretary for transportation planning, assistant general manager for environmental compliance at the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority, and general counsel for Energy and Environmental Affairs. She has also served as senior enforcement counsel at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
Secretary Bartlett now juggles a range of issues as she leads the departments of Agricultural Resources, Conservation and Recreation, Environmental Protection, Energy Resources, Fish and Game, and Public Utilities. [Read more...]