Madison County announces new sustainability and green schools coordinators

EDWARDSVILLE – The Madison County Planning & Development Department has announced the promotion of Kim Petzing to sustainability coordinator and the hiring of Eve Drueke as the new Green Schools coordinator.

Petzing joined the county as the Green Schools coordinator in January 2014 and was promoted to the sustainability coordinator in May 2016. Drueke will be joining the county today, Wednesday, Aug. 10.

Petzing will oversee the county’s sustainability initiatives, including the environmental grants program, recycling programs and outreach and education initiatives for the Planning and Development Department.

The sustainability program began nearly 25 years ago, serving as a starting point for residential recycling initiatives throughout Madison County. Since then, Planning & Development staff have incorporated energy efficiency, air and water quality, and other environmental initiatives into the program. Petzing will continue work on a sustainability plan that will guide the county’s sustainability initiatives for years to come.

Petzing brings nearly eight years of direct sustainability experience as well as more than 20 years of environmental education work. She has a bachelor of science with honors in biology from Indiana University and a master’s in science in zoology from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale.

In her most recent positions as the county’s Green Schools coordinator and, prior to that, manager of sustainability education programs at the Missouri Botanical Garden, Petzing supervised planning and development of a variety of sustainable programs and initiatives for all ages. In the spring of 2016 she was awarded the HeartLands Conservancy’s Green Leaf Achievement Award in the Youth/Education category for her work with more than 80 schools in the Madison County Green Schools Program, which impacted more than 20,000 students during the 2015-16 school year.

Among other regional organizations, Petzing is currently an adjunct instructor at Webster University, a board member for the Illinois County Solid Waste Management Association, chairwoman of the Air Quality Committee for the Madison County Partnership for Community Health, an active member in the US Green Building Council’s Missouri Gateway Chapter, and a representative on the OneSTL Leadership Network.

Drueke will administer the Madison County Green Schools Program, acting as a point of contact and providing sustainability-related leadership, training, and opportunities for teachers, students, school administrators and faculty in private, public, and parochial K-12 schools in Madison County. She will also assist in implementing the county’s sustainability plan and further developing best management practices for schools.

Drueke has more than seven years of teaching experience in both the Edwardsville and Pattonville, Mo., school districts. Additionally, she brings extensive experience writing, designing, publishing and marketing K-6th grade-level curriculum materials with an emphasis in science and environmental education. Most recently, she was director of programming and the acting executive director for the Watershed Nature Center in Edwardsville.

In these roles she managed the environmental education program for K-12 schools within the Metro East area, assisted with natural areas management and recruited, managed and trained volunteers. Drueke holds a BFA in graphic design from Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville and an MS in education from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

— From the Illinois Business Journal

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