At a virtual convening today, Climate Mayors announced new leadership to drive ambitious climate solutions at the local scale
December 14, 2022 — Today, at a virtual convening of the organization’s leadership and press, Climate Mayors announced that Madison Mayor Satya Rhodes-Conway will become the next Chair of the network of nearly 500 U.S. mayors across the country committed to climate leadership in their cities. In this role, Mayor Rhodes-Conway will help catalyze urgent action at the local scale to promote climate solutions, set an example of action for leaders at all levels of government, and support greener, safer and more resilient cities across the country. Also announced at the event were the incoming Vice-Chairs: Kate Gallego, Phoenix, AZ; and Justin Bibb, Cleveland, OH.
The 58th Mayor of Madison, Satya Rhodes-Conway was elected in 2019 as the city’s second female mayor and the first out LGBTQ person to serve as Mayor of Madison. In her time as Mayor, Rhodes-Conway has prioritized affordable housing, transportation, climate change and racial equity. She brings to the organization extensive experience in local policy, having worked with mayors across the country for over a decade and served three terms on the Madison Common Council.
Under her leadership, Madison has invested in renewable energy consistent with goals for city facilities to be powered by 100% renewable energy by 2030. In addition, the city has invested in a $160 million all-electric bus rapid transit system that will improve mobility, lower transit emissions, take thousands of cars off the streets, and encourage sustainability in both new and existing affordable housing operations to lower bills for residents. The city is also working to rapidly transition streetlights to LED lights, retrofit affordable housing for efficiency and health, and build green infrastructure for stormwater management. On earth day in 2021, Mayor Rhodes Conway announced Climate Forward – a plan to advance climate action in Madison, rapidly reduce emissions, make the city more resilient, and improve peoples’ lives.
“I’m honored to serve as Climate Mayors chair at this critical time for climate action in cities,” said Mayor Rhodes-Conway. “Cities have long been our climate leaders, and during my time as Climate Mayors chair, I am eager to work with other Mayors, the federal government, and numerous partners to help ensure that the unprecedented federal investments in climate solutions reach U.S. cities and their residents.”
Mayor Rhodes Conway succeeds Mayor Sylvester Turner, who has been a long-standing climate champion for the City of Houston. In the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey, Mayor Turner launched Resilient Houston, worked at transitioning the Energy Capital of the World to a clean energy future, and increased the resilience of communities across the city by prioritizing health, job creation, equity, and sustainability. Turner also spearheaded the Houston Climate Action Plan — a science-based, community-driven strategy to make Houston’s transportation networks, building operations, and waste systems as clean and efficient as possible. Under Mayor Turner’s leadership, the City of Houston has committed to purchasing 100% renewable energy and is the largest municipal user of renewable energy in the nation.
As incoming Vice-Chairs of the organization, Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego and Cleveland Mayor Justin Bibb will continue driving city-led climate action to create more sustainable, equitable, and healthy cities for all. Mayor Bibb has a keen focus on environmental justice and equitable access, while Mayor Gallego often takes aim at extreme heat and resilience in their respective cities. Under their leadership, Climate Mayors will continue to catalyze membership and deeply engage cities, while holding the frontline for climate action in the U.S.
“I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to work alongside Mayors Bibb and Rhodes-Conway toward our shared mission at Climate Mayors,” said Mayor Gallego. “Our leadership team will continue to put people first in the fight against climate change. Challenging ourselves and our cities to meet the unique needs of our local communities while driving progress forward in clean energy, adaptation and sustainable innovation.”
“I’m honored to serve amongst seasoned Climate Mayors Gallego and Rhodes-Conway as Vice-chair. Supporting the conditions for climate justice to thrive in Cleveland and in cities across America is a critical step toward creating an equitable tomorrow for all”, said Mayor Justin Bibb.
Read more about the leadership team here.
About Climate Mayors
Representing over 74 million Americans from 48 states, Climate Mayors is a peer-to-peer network of nearly 500 U.S. city mayors who have committed to fighting climate change. Originally founded in 2014 by 3 mayors, the network’s ranks swelled to almost 400 mayors in response to the U.S. withdrawal from the Paris Agreement in June 2017. Climate Mayors is committed to accelerating equitable climate action to help each member city achieve their climate goals, while working together city-to-city, with states, and the Biden administration to increase national climate ambition. For more information, please visit our website and follow Climate Mayors on Twitter and LinkedIn.
For media inquiries please contact CLIMATEMAYORS@FGSGLOBAL.COM