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IU names interim director of sustainability

Jessica Davis. Photo by Liz Kaye, Indiana University.  Jessica Davis. Photo by Liz Kaye, Indiana University. Jessica Davis has been named interim university director of sustainability for Indiana University, effective Aug. 1. In this role, Davis will lead offices of sustainability at IU Bloomington and IUPUI, as well as provide leadership support for sustainability activities at IU’s regional campuses.

Davis most recently served as the director of the IUPUI Office of Sustainability for the last seven years, and has been an associate faculty member in the O’Neill School of Public and Environmental Affairs at IUPUI since 2016. She also served as the assistant director of the IUPUI Center for Earth and Environmental Science and a program manager for the Marian University Institute for Green and Sustainable Science.

Under Davis’ leadership, the IUPUI Office of Sustainability has won numerous awards and improved campus and community sustainability in many ways, including:

  • Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System (AASHE STARS) Gold rating; most sustainable campus in the state of Indiana with a score of 70.57 (since 2019).
  • Bee Campus USA designation; first state university in Indiana to achieve the designation (since 2017).
  • Tree Campus Higher Education designation (since 2012).
  • THE Impact Rankings #2 in the US/#28 globally for advancing the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (2021).
  • Sustainability Innovation Award at the Midwest Regional Sustainability Summit (2022).
  • Most sustainable Men’s Final Four/March Madness (2021) and College Football Playoffs (2022).
  • City of Indianapolis, Outstanding Institution Advancing Sustainability (2018).
  • Host of Indiana’s first zero-waste athletic event and the first zero-waste Olympic event in the world (2016), earning Green Sports Alliance Environmental Innovator of the Year award (2017).

“IUPUI’s sustainability successes are a result of all units collectively moving towards a shared vision of what a sustainable campus can and should be,” Davis said. “I’m eager to build on the good sustainability work being done across IU to refine and strengthen that vision for the benefit of all campuses and the communities we serve.”

“Jessica has been an innovative leader in sustainability at IUPUI and in the Indianapolis community for many years,” said Thomas A. Morrison, IU vice president for capital planning and facilities. “I’m excited for her to bring her skills and passion to our efforts on the Bloomington campus, while also continuing her great work at IUPUI and assisting IU’s regional campuses with their goals within each of those communities.”

Davis, who holds a bachelor’s in biology from Marian University, a master’s in biology from the University of Dayton, and a master’s in public affairs from IU, has also received several individual award recognitions, including Women in Green Leadership Shero (USGBC North Central Region), Indiana Recycling Rock Star (Circular Indiana), Hoosier Resilience Hero (IU Environmental Resilience Institute) and Favorite Professor Award (IUPUI Athletics).

Beth Feickert is project specialist in the Office of the Vice President for Capital Planning and Facilities.