Energizing Kentucky News
FRANKFORT, Ky. (April 17, 2008) - Recognizing the increasingly important role of energy in Kentucky, four colleges and universities have joined forces in an innovative partnership between the public and private institutions to stimulate the efforts of government, business and education leaders in creating a far-reaching and collaborative statewide energy policy. This comprehensive effort is entitled "Energizing Kentucky."
In the rotunda of Kentucky's capitol in Frankfort, the four presidents today announced the "Energizing Kentucky" series of three conferences. In a joint vision statement for the series, they said,
- "We believe higher education has an important role to play in the work ahead: framing issues, seeking solutions, providing basic and applied research, and educating the next generation."
- "We know that this work requires a partnership across the Commonwealth that includes business and public policy leaders, as well as those involved in education."
- "We four presidents, representing both public and private institutions, propose a public policy discussion focused on energy for the Commonwealth of Kentucky that we call Energizing Kentucky."
- "The conferences in the series will address a number of related challenges in education, business and economic development, and the environment."
Berea College President Larry Shinn states, "Energy policy in the Commonwealth and the United States is currently uncoordinated and too often the result of 'quick-fix' reactions to external circumstances like the price or availability of oil. We four presidents agree that history rewards those who anticipate significant challenges and address them thoughtfully. Therefore, we invite the Commonwealth's business, political, and educational communities to a series of conferences where all perspectives on energy production, use, and conservation are welcomed, and where these dynamic political, economical, and environmental considerations can focus our human capacity to thrive."
Centre College President John A. Roush states, "The public and private institutions in most states are strangers who live in different universes. I'm really pleased that our four Kentucky institutions have found it so easy to work together for the long-term good of the Commonwealth. It will likewise take collaboration and cooperation among the business, public policy leaders, and educators of our State to develop a powerful and effective energy policy that will serve all Kentuckians."
University of Louisville President James Ramsey states, "Our institutions are working together to promote straight talk about energy, an issue that will continue to grow in importance to the commonwealth and the nation. By bringing together great minds from many different vantage points, we can initiate conversations and eventually develop concrete solutions and policies that will improve our citizens' quality of life for many years to come."
"Energy is one of the top public policy issues facing the nation today," states UK President Lee T. Todd Jr. "Fortunately for Kentuckians, the Commonwealth and the University of Kentucky's experience as one of the nation's energy leaders place the state in a unique position to lead a national energy discussion. I hope this Energizing Kentucky series will help the state to develop a long-term, sustainable energy strategy that will create new jobs for Kentuckians and increase the state's competitiveness in math and science fields."