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Heidi VanGenderen - Director of Public Engagement

Appointed to her post by the President, Heidi VanGenderen is the Director of Public Engagement at the U.S. Department of Energy.  As such, Ms. VanGenderen oversees efforts to effectively build the narrative supporting a clean energy economy, convey the Administration’s considerable energy accomplishments and plans going forward; reinforce the “all of the above” strategy and strategic message framework; and help create the space for a robust clean energy policy discussion and agenda going forward through coordinated engagement. 

Prior to her current post, she served as Director of National and Regional Outreach for the American Council on Renewable Energy (ACORE) where she was part of the policy team.  Prior to ACORE, she served as a Senior Energy Advisor for the Worldwatch Institute.
A Colorado native, Heidi previously served as Colorado’s first gubernatorial climate advisor where she oversaw creation of the state’s first Climate Action Plan.

She was a core team member in passage of Amendment 37, Colorado’s citizen initiated renewable energy standard.  Heidi helped direct the work of the Wirth Chair in Environmental and Community Development Policy at the Graduate School of Public Affairs of the University of Colorado for eight years where she focused prominently on energy and climate change.  She also served as Deputy Director of the Presidential Climate Action Project.

She has worked on energy and climate issues in the non-profit, public, academic and private sectors as an organizer, writer, researcher, and public speaker for the majority of her professional career. She completed a Chevening Fellowship on Finance and Investment in a Low-Carbon Economy in Edinburgh and London in 2009 and is a graduate of Carleton College.