Kathleen Merrigan

Executive Director, Sustainability Institute, George Washington University

Kathleen Merrigan is Executive Director of the Sustainability Institute of George Washington University. She was named one of Time Magazine’s “Most Influential People in the World” in 2010. Previously she served as US Department of Agriculture deputy secretary under President Obama. Before joining the USDA, Dr. Merrigan served for nearly a decade as a faculty member and director of the Agriculture, Food and Environment Program at Tufts University. She has also held positions as a senior analyst for the Henry A. Wallace Institute for Alternative Agriculture and a staff member for the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition & Forestry, where she wrote the law establishing national standards for organic food. Ms. Merrigan earned a PhD from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, a Master of Public Affairs from the University of Texas at Austin, and a B.A. from Williams College.