Melissa Everett is an author, career counselor, educator, and nonprofit organization executive director working at the intersection of green jobs, sustainable economic development, and climate action. She has advised the Department of Labor, state agencies, inter-municipal alliances, county legislatures, and community colleges on the nature of green job opportunities and priorities for expanding them.
Everett is author of Making a Living While Making a Difference: Conscious Careers for an Era of Interdependence. It has sold more than 20,000 copies in three editions. Described as one of “twenty books that can change the world” by Common Ground magazine, Making a Living While Making a Difference won a Bronze award for career books in ForeWord magazine’s Best Books of 2008. Designed as both a structured workbook and a rich collection of stories, the book was described by fellow counselor Ande Diaz as “possibly the most visionary and integrated body of work in career literature today... an enormous contribution to the field.”
She maintains a career counseling practice focusing on public interest paths in business, nonprofits and government. From a base of experience working with M.B.A. candidates, environmental professionals, civil servants, nonprofit professionals, entrepreneurs, and many others at all stages of life, Everett also trains and supports career counselors through their professional societies and in special programs. She has worked with the community college systems of five counties to promote their clean energy training programs.
As Executive Director of Sustainable Hudson Valley, Everett designed and orchestrated the Ten Percent Challenge campaign, calling on communities to cut their carbon footprint 10 percent and get 10 percent of their citizens involved. She has convened seven regional climate action conferences and symposia.
Everett’s experience also includes a stint as Executive Director for Hudsonia (an environmental research and education center), serving on the board of the New York Solar Energy Industries Association, co-founding the US Green Building Council’s Hudson Valley Branch, and directing the fundraising and grant administration for Global Action Plan.
She worked for ten years as a freelance journalist and nonfiction writer in Boston. Her articles have appeared in the Boston Globe, Boston Phoenix, Wall Street Journal Online, Business Ethics, and other publications. She holds a Ph.D. in Sustainable Development from Erasmus University in Rotterdam, Netherlands.
Everett has given hundreds of presentations and workshops for campus, business and professional audiences internationally. She has keynoted national conferences and spoken to such distinguished academic audiences as Harvard Divinity School, MIT, Yale, Dartmouth, Vassar, and Radcliffe, as well as to cutting edge MBA programs including Penn State and Green Mountain College.
Her presentations highlight success stories of people who have created careers that contribute to social and environmental renewal in dozens of occupations and industries. In a dangerous world and an imperiled environment, how shall we make livings and lives that genuinely matter, that actually make a difference? She offers a detailed framework for understanding the promise and current reality of green jobs, and job-creation and survival strategies that work in a tough economy.
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