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Environmental Leadership Awards

Congratulations to the 2013-2016 ELAs Winners and Finalists!

                                         (Click here for a PDF version of the powerpoint above.)

About The ELAs

The Environmental Leadership Awards (ELAs) were created as a way to honor those individuals that have truly excelled in their efforts to contribute to environmental awareness and promote progress in our 'green' efforts. These individuals  have worked with other groups to make real, immediate improvements in the sustainability of our campus and beyond.

Nominations may be submitted from faculty, staff, and students throughout the University. A winner is selected for each of the major categories: Undergraduate Student, Graduate Student, University Faculty/Administrator, and Staff. There are also ELA awards given to UConn-Affiliated Groups (e.g., Clubs, Organizations, Centers or Institutes), Alumni, and Special Recognition/External groups andPresident Austin giving the opening remarks at the 2005 Environmantl Leadership Awards individuals who have made significant contributions in executing major projects and initiatives for the University of Connecticut.

"In departments throughout the University, from the College of Agriculture & Natural Resources to Engineering and Liberal Arts, we are developing conscientious thinkers and citizens by modeling the behavior that we teach our students to follow… It is the cumulative effect of seemingly minor events that will change the world. It is through innovative examples and teamwork that UConn can be a steward of the Earth's future."

- Former University of Connecticut President, Philip Austin

(Click here to view the President's complete opening remarks from the 2005 Awards Ceremony.)

ELA Nominee Criteria

Nominees must be affiliated with the University in one of the award categories.  Alumni and Special Recognition/External nominees need not currently be working directly with the University provided that their work reflects positively upon the University's reputation.

Nominees must have proven dedication and outstanding contributions to at least one of the principles of environmental leadership as outlined UConn’s Environmental Policy statement, which is outlined below.

The nominees activities should have taken place in during the 2010-11 and/or 2011-12 academic year(s).


Help ensure environmental compliance or improve environmental responsibility as it relates to the University's operational, research, or other activities.

Responsible Management and Growth:

  • Significantly influence or promote environmentally sustainable design and construction of UConn buildings or sustainable landscaping of UConn's grounds, or
  • Improve practices for maintaining them in order to better protect the environment, natural resources, public health and safety


Demonstrate UConn's environmental stewardship and initiative through volunteer efforts and partnerships with surrounding communities or non-profit organizations working on behalf of the environment.


Advance understanding of the environment through academic endeavors.  These include but aren't limited to:

  • Developing a new General Education course,
  • Implementing an environment-related curriculum enhancement, or
  • Conducting an innovative education, research or outreach program that either improves environmental literacy at UConn or demonstrates UConn's academic leadership in the area of environmental sustainability


  • Conserve or restore natural resources (including energy, water, etc.) or improve habitat and ecological value on UConn-owned land or areas that may be affected by UConn's activities; OR
  • Increase UConn's use of environmentally sustainable products, materials and services (including those that are renewable, recycled, recyclable, non-toxic, or energy or resource efficient).


Achieve shared environmental goals, i.e., initiate environment-related activities or organizations that involve multiple parties, disciplines or functions across the University  


Click here to view the winners and finalists of the past ELAs: 2005 | 2007 | 2009

The 2012 Environmental Leadership Awards

Click here to view the winners of the 2012 Environmental Leadership Awards.

Click here to view the 2012 ELA Presentation and the Awards Ceremony Brochure.

Environmental Leadership Awards are given biennially for significant contributions to the principles and objectives of UConn's Environmental Policy Statement. The Environmental Leadership Awards given out in Fall 2012 covered all activities from 2010 on that contributed to increased environmental stewardship in our community.

Nominations for the awards were accepted and evaluated in each of the following categories:

  • Undergraduate Student
  • Graduate Student
  • Faculty/Administrator that has contributed to the campus’ efforts to augment environmental initiatives beyond the scope of their employment
  • Staff
  • UConn-Affiliated Groups (formally recognized clubs, organizations, centers, and institutes)
  • Team (cooperative networks that may not have a formal affiliation but have worked together on a program, initiative, etc.)
  • Alumni
  • Special Recognition/External