For Immediate Release: January 23, 2009
Contact: David Willett, 202-675-6698
Carl Pope to Step Down as Executive Director of Sierra Club
Will Move to Role of Chairman Once Successor is Hired
San Francisco, CA: Sierra Club Executive Director Carl Pope announced today that he is planning to step down from his position, effective once a new Executive Director is hired. The Sierra Club Board of Directors has begun the process of forming a search committee and will formally launch the search for Pope’s successor in the coming weeks. Pope will continue to serve as Executive Director until the position is filled and then transition to Chairman of the Sierra Club, focused on climate change.
"After 16 years I have decided to step down from my position as Executive Director of the Sierra Club," said Pope. "While I look forward to continuing to serve the Club in a new capacity, I am ready to turn the leadership of the organization over to someone new."
Already the longest serving Executive Director in Sierra Club history, Mr. Pope has been the head of the organization since 1992 and has been with the Club for over 30 years. Under his leadership the Club has grown in both size and influence, increasing its membership and volunteer activists, adding chapters and evolving into an unrivaled environmental political operation.
"Carl steered the Sierra Club through the toughest years in the history of environmental protection," said Allison Chin, President of the Sierra Club. "Because of Carl’s leadership the Club is a stronger organization and we are looking forward to building on the foundation he put in place."
"Over these years I have made many wonderful friends, and experienced both joyful victories and tragic setbacks in our struggle for a sustainable future," said Pope. "I look forward to many more such victories as I continue this work. My decision comes at a very exciting time for the Sierra Club and the environmental movement. The election of President Barack Obama, and the increase in the number of environmental champions in the Congress, means that after eight years of bitter defense, it is time for America to resume its tradition of environmental leadership."
"I do want to express my tremendous thanks and appreciation for the hundreds of Sierra Club staff and volunteer leaders who have helped me so generously and supported me so wonderfully over the years," Pope noted.