The Climate Leadership Network (formerly the American College and University Presidents' Climate Commitment)

During Hobart and William Smith's 2007 Convocation, President Mark D. Gearan announced four core strategies for the Colleges in the near future—Inclusive Excellence, strengthening the Office of Community Engagement and Service Learning, the Geneva Partnership, and Sustainability. In that same month, President Gearan signed the American College and University Presidents' Climate Commitment, committing the Colleges to climate neutrality by 2025.

The Carbon Commitment

This Climate Leadership Network provides a framework and support for more than 600 of America's colleges and universities to go carbon neutral. The signatories of the Carbon Commitment pledge to fulfill a three-step constitution which includes expediently initiating a comprehensive plan for climate neutrality, taking tangible action to reduce greenhouse gases, and publicizing the action plan, inventory and progress. The Commitment recognizes the unique responsibility that institutions of higher education have as role models for their communities and in training the people who will develop the social, economic and technological solutions to reverse climate change.

Climate Task Force Members

The President’s Climate Task Force was created in December 2007 to oversee the planning and implementation of the Carbon Commitment with the goal of delivering Hobart and William Smith Colleges to climate neutrality.

Patrick A. McGuire L.H.D.’12, Interim President
Tom Drennen (Co-Chair), Professor of Economics and Environmental Studies
Carolee White (Co-Chair), Vice President of Finance
Michael Amadori, Sustainability Manager
Chris Button, Associate Director for Planning and Construction
Lisa Cleckner, Director of Finger Lakes Institute
Tara Curtin, Professor of Geoscience
Robert Flowers, Vice President for Student Affairs
Louis Guard '07, Chief of Staff and Counsel
Noah Lucas '13, Sustainability Coordinator
Dave Mccandless, General Manager of Dining Services
Mark Ocwieja, Assistant Director of Buildings and Grounds
Howard Simmons, Director of Buildings and Grounds
Cathy Williams, Vice President for Communications

Student members vary each year and are generally representatives from the Campus Greens club.

Solar Farm

This is one of two solar farms constructed for Hobart and William Smith Colleges. Each farm is approximately 10 acres and contains over 7500 panels! Together they generate 50% of the electricity consumed by the Colleges and help us reach our goal of carbon neutrality by 2025!

HWS Opens 2nd Solar Farm Site

Solar Farm Opens



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If you have any questions or comments about sustainability initiatives at HWS please feel free to contact us at or (315) 781-3676.


In 2015, HWS ranked No. 53 of 153 schools who reported to Sierra's "Cool Schools" list, earning the highest possible rating in the categories for co-curricular sustainability programs and initiatives, as well as innovation in sustainability.


Preparing Students to Lead Lives of Consequence.