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Department of Communications/
News Bureau
22 Davis Hall, 10 Lippitt Road, Kingston, RI 0288
Phone: 401-874-2116 Fax: 401-874-7872

Internationally renowned designer and leader in
sustainable development to speak at URI

KINGSTON, R.I. -- Sept. 24, 2001 -- Architect and designer William McDonough has helped launch a revolution in product and building design by incorporating environmental sensitivities into the design of everything from sneakers to office buildings. This "Hero of the Planet," as Time magazine called him in 1999, will speak at the University of Rhode Island about "The Next Industrial Revolution" as part of URI’s fall honors colloquium, "A Just and Sustainable Future: Overcoming Barriers to Action."

McDonough will speak on Tuesday, Oct. 2 at 7 p.m. in Paff Auditorium in the Shepard Building on URI’s Providence campus. The event is free and open to the public.
McDonough is the founding principal of William McDonough + Partners, Architects and Planners, an internationally recognized design firm practicing ecologically, socially, and economically intelligent architecture and planning in the United States and abroad. The firm has been a leader in the sustainable development movement since 1977, recently completing award-winning projects for The Gap, Nike, and Oberlin College. The firm won the Business Week/Architectural Record "Good Design is Good Business" award for large commercial projects in 1997 and 1998.

He is also cofounder and principal, with German chemist Michael Braungart, of McDonough Braungart Design Chemistry, a product and systems development firm assisting prominent client companies in implementing a scientifically based sustainable design protocol. Current projects include development of apparel and footwear products with Nike, personal care products with Unilever, furniture with Herman Miller, fabrics with Steelcase, and transportation-related products with Ford Motor Company.

McDonough’s work goes beyond using physical materials and structures to make the world a better place now. He also teaches others how to live in a sustainable manner for the future. He is both a professor of architecture and a professor of business administration at the University of Virginia. He is also the A. D. White Professor-at-Large at Cornell University. McDonough is chairman of Second Nature, a Boston–based nonprofit organization promoting the teaching of sustainability in higher education. He also serves as U.S. chairman and member of the Board of Councilors of the China-U.S. Center for Sustainable Development, recently formed by the two countries to share the best strategies for sustainability.

McDonough’s leadership in sustainable development is recognized widely, both in the United States and internationally. He was honored in 1996 with the Presidential Award for Sustainable Development, the nation’s highest environmental honor, presented by President Clinton in a White House ceremony. He has written and lectured extensively on his design philosophy and practice. He was commissioned in 1991 to write The Hannover Principles: Design for Sustainability as guidelines for the city of Hannover’s EXPO 2000.

For more information about the many other events of the URI Honors Colloquium, visit, or call the Honors Program at 874-2303. The major sponsors of the colloquium are The Providence Journal and the Rhode Island Committee for the Humanities.

For Information: Todd McLeish, 401-874-2116, Jennifer Smith, 401-874-2116

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