PULLMAN, Wash. — A recent $200,000 gift by Crown Pacific Partners, L.P., of Portland, Ore., to the Sustainable Development Program at Washington State University has launched the development of a distinguished Chair and establishment of an international institute related to the two-year-old interdisciplinary program.
Crown Pacific and its President and CEO Peter W. Stott were honored by the WSU College of Business and Economics Monday at a reception co-hosted by The World Forestry Center in Portland. The college is the academic home of the Sustainable Development Program, and sustainable development becomes its newest “minor” academic course of study in fall.
“Crown Pacific’s vision and commitment to this innovative and vital Northwest program will move it to the next level,” says A. Gale Sullenberger, dean of WSU CBE. “An endowed chair can be filled by a person who will build the program academically and seek partnerships with business throughout the state, region and nation. The chair will also be the cornerstone upon which to build an international Sustainable Development Institute.”
“We are pleased to be able to make this donation to help endow a chair in the Sustainable Development Studies program at Washington State University,” said Peter Stott. “Providing educational opportunities to students from throughout the Northwest and the nation in this field will be extremely important in the years ahead. Tomorrow’s leaders must be prepared to resolve complex issues with a variety of information.”
Crown Pacific recently was a featured “leader, innovator and success story in Washington State” in “Finding the Balance: Economic Prosperity & Environmental Progress, Volume II,” published by the Washington State Department of Community, Trade and Economic Development. In that publication, Governor Gary Locke refers to Crown Pacific as being among the large corporations and smaller businesses “within our state who are leaders in trying to balance their economic and environmental activities.”
The WSU Sustainable Development program was begun in 1996 with a grant from the Trillium Corporation of Bellingham according to the vision of WSU alumnus David Syre, Trillium CEO. According to Syre, Trillium “holds a strong sense of responsibility to the communities in which it does business and the belief that it is possible for business to work for both profit and ecology.” Trillium Senior Vice President Jean Gorton, also a WSU alumna, has been on loan to WSU as an adjunct faculty member charged with building the Sustainable Development Program.
Sullenberger, Syre and Gorton were joined by John Blackwell, president of the World Forestry Center, and several guests from the forestry industry, education, Northwest corporations and WSU alumni at the gift celebration.