Fischer Names Louisville’s First Director of Sustainability

by Erica Peterson on January 11, 2012

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer has announced his pick to lead the city’s new Office of Sustainability.

Maria Koetter has about 20 years of experience in the environmental and regulatory industries. Most recently, she was the founder and principal of bGreen2, a sustainability consulting firm in Louisville.

Koetter will be the office’s only employee, and she’ll work with various city agencies to implement more environmentally sustainable practices. She says she plans to start by familiarizing herself with the city’s activities and establishing a baseline.

“I’m just really excited and I really feel that embedding sustainability into the long-term planning of the city, launching near-term initiatives in conjunction with long-term planning for sustainability is really going to be transformative for the city,” she said.

Koetter is the city’s first sustainability director. The new position was criticized by some as being too broad when Fischer created it last summer. The Office of Sustainability has one employee—Koetter—and she will be expected to work with various city agencies.

Koetter says she’s not concerned about the workload.

“Part of having a large job description is good, I think, because it does allow you to kind of feel your way,” she said. “Not knowing going in is sometimes a good thing because it kind of allows you to evolve in the direction that’s most appropriate.”

Koetter’s salary will be $78,000. Her first day is next Wednesday.

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