• Standby Tickets Available for the Leon Panetta 2015 Lecture Series

    First Event to Feature Carol Browner, Steven Chu, Joe Manchin and  T. Boone Pickens in a Discussion on Energy

    Secretary Leon E. Panetta to Moderate

    The eighteenth annual Leon Panetta Lecture Series, The Test of Leadership in 2015: Critical Issues That Can Unite or Divide America, begins Monday evening, March 23, at the Monterey Conference Center Steinbeck Forum at 7:00 p.m. Standby tickets are available and can be purchased by calling the Panetta Institute at 831-582-4200.  Secretary Leon Panetta will moderate this discussion.

    The first forum will focus on Energy.  Speaking with Secretary Panetta on the topic will be Carol Browner, former director of the White House Office of Energy and Climate Change Policy; Steven Chu, former Secretary of Energy; Joe Manchin, U.S. Senator (WV); and T. Boone Pickens, chairman of BP Capital Management.

    “Energy is essential to sustaining our growing economy, but at what cost and with what technologies?  Will America be energy independent?  What is the impact of fracking?  Should we build the Keystone pipeline? What about the use of nuclear and coal energy?  What is the mix of energy sources that will meet future energy needs?  What has been the impact of energy on climate change?  I’ll pose these questions and more to experts from the scientific community, the oil and gas industry, environmental regulation and Capitol Hill.”

    Carol Browner has been at the forefront of the nation’s environmental and energy polices for more than a quarter of a century.  From 1991 through 1993, Dr. Browner served as Florida’s Secretary of Environmental Regulation where she launched the largest ecological restoration project ever attempted in the United States to purify and re-establish the natural flow of water to the Everglades.  Dr. Browner went on to spend eight years as administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency in the Clinton administration.  In that post, she adopted the most stringent air pollution standards in the nation’s history; set a fine particle clean air standard; and spearheaded the reauthorization of the Safe Drinking Water Act and the Food Quality Protection Act.  In 2009, Dr. Browner returned to government service working for President Barack Obama as director of the White House Office of Energy and Climate Change Policy.  In that capacity, she oversaw the coordination of environmental, energy, climate, transport, and related policy across the federal government.  During her tenure, the White House secured the largest investment ever in clean energy and established the national car policy that included both new automobile fuel efficiency standards and the first-ever greenhouse gas reductions.  Dr. Browner earned a B.A. and J.D. from the University of Florida in Gainesville.

    Steven Chu, a distinguished physicist, innovative professor and the first Nobel Prize laureate to serve as Secretary of Energy, brings a scientific approach to addressing the nation’s energy future.  In 1997, Secretary Chu was co-recipient of the Nobel Prize in physics for his contributions to the laser cooling and trapping of atoms.  Prior to his cabinet appointment, Secretary Chu worked at AT&T Bell Laboratories and Stanford University.  From 2004 to 2009, he was the director of the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and professor of physics and molecular and cell biology at the University of California, Berkeley.  From 2009 until 2013, Secretary Chu served as secretary of energy during the Obama administration.  As the longest serving energy secretary, he was charged with helping implement President Barack Obama’s agenda to invest in clean energy, reduce dependence on foreign oil, address the global climate crisis and create new jobs.  A pioneer in science and energy policy, Secretary Chu is committed to mitigating climate change through development of new technologies and business models that will accelerate the transition to sustainable energy.  Secretary Chu earned an A.B. in mathematics, a B.S. in physics from the University of Rochester and a Ph.D. in physics from the University of California, Berkeley.

    Joe Manchin, born and raised in the small coal mining town of Farmington, West Virginia, advocates a bipartisan approach toward national energy independence.  Senator Manchin was a member of the West Virginia House of Delegates from 1982 until 1986, when he was elected to the state Senate.  He served in the Senate for ten years and was elected Secretary of State in 2000.  He began his tenure as West Virginia’s thirty-fourth governor in January 2005 and was re-elected in 2008.  Among his achievements as governor, Senator Manchin approved millions of dollars in tax relief, reformed the state’s workers’ compensation system, and dramatically decreased the state’s debt.  Elected to the U.S. Senate in a special election in 2010, Senator Manchin was reelected for a second term in 2012.  Among other important committee posts, he serves on the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources.  Senator Manchin is strongly committed to developing a national energy plan that utilizes all resources and ends our nation’s dependence on Middle East  oil. He believes that a balanced, common sense approach that considers environmental concerns and the demands of the economy can and must be developed.  Senator Manchin received a B.A. from West Virginia University.

    T. Boone Pickens, a legendary oilman and philanthropist, has become one the nation’s most notable energy experts.  Mr. Pickens began his career at Phillips Petroleum before striking out on his own in 1956.  He started what would eventually become Mesa Petroleum with just $2,500 and nurtured it into one of the largest independent natural gas and oil companies in the United States.  After four decades, he left the company and established BP Capital Management, one of the nation’s most successful energy-oriented investment funds.  Among Mr. Pickens’ many accolades, TIME magazine recognized him as one of its “100 most influential people,” Financial World named him “CEO of the Decade” in 1989 and Oil and Gas Investor identified him as one of the “100 Most Influential People of the Petroleum Century.” In 2008, Mr. Pickens launched a self-funded, $100 million, grass-roots campaign aimed at reducing America’s dependence on imported oil.  Cited by President Barack Obama for his leadership in developing The Pickens Plan for America’s Energy Future, this plan advocates harnessing domestic alternatives and developing even greater new technologies.  He is a champion for the prudent stewardship of American lands.  Mr. Pickens has a B.S. in geology from Oklahoma State University.

    Viewers throughout central and northern California can view a live television broadcast on Comcast Cable and Comcast Hometown Network. Residents north through the San Francisco Bay Area and east through portions of Sacramento can also watch on PBS-affiliated KQED digital cable stations. The California Channel also provides a statewide broadcast of the program. In addition to the live television broadcast, members of the public can watch live web-streaming at www.panettainstitute.org/lecture_series/lecture_webcast.htm.  The lectures also air live on public radio.  A video archive of past lectures can be viewed on the Panetta Institute website, www.panettainstitute.org.

    For more information or for standby tickets please call the Panetta Institute for Public Policy at 831-582-4200.

    posted to Cedar Street Times on March 15, 2015

    Topics: Front PG News

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