Rutgers Energy Institute Leadership Announcement

Dear Colleagues,

Over the past decade, the Rutgers Energy Institute has flourished as a faculty-led, student-centric organization under the leadership of Professor Paul Falkowski, the Bennett L. Smith Chair in Business and Natural Resources, Distinguished Professor of Departments of Earth and Planetary Sciences and Marine and Coastal Sciences, and Board of Governors Professor.

A member of the National Academy of Sciences, and recent recipient of the prestigious Tyler Prize for Environmental Sciences, Dr. Falkowski founded the REI in 2006. His vision and leadership have been central to the growth of the REI as it stays engaged in four principal areas of activity:

  • education of undergraduate and graduate students;
  • pioneering research;
  • outreach to the community to share information and engage the public; and
  • policy advice to government, business, and civic leaders who require current knowledge about energy use, alternatives, and innovations to guide decision-making and public planning.

Beginning August 2018, Dr. Falkowski will transition from his role as the REI Director and focus his efforts toward developing a new multi-organizational institute outside of Rutgers, while continuing to stay actively engaged with Rutgers and the REI as a prominent researcher, educator, and mentor.

We thank Dr. Falkowski for his institutional leadership, his unwavering commitment to the cause of understanding and solving our energy and climate challenges and his educational advocacy for the stewardship of the planet among the students and the public.

The REI Steering Committee* is pleased to appoint Dr. Frank A. Felder as the Director of the Rutgers Energy Institute (REI) effective August 1, 2018. As current Director of the Center for Energy, Economic and Environmental Policy (CEEEP) at the Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy, Dr. Felder conducts research and teaching focused on power systems and electricity markets including reliability and resiliency, market design, energy efficiency evaluation, renewable and distributed resources, and climate change.

He has been awarded several federal research grants from the U.S. National Science Foundation and Department of Energy and New Jersey State grants from the Board of Public Utilities, the Department of Environmental Protection, the Department of Labor, and the Economic Development Authority, and from many industry organizations. Dr. Felder is a former nuclear engineer for the U.S. Navy. He obtained his PhD. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Technology, Management and Policy.

The REI faculty represent a diverse array of disciplines and conduct ground-breaking and innovative research in catalysis, photovoltaics for energy storage, bioenergy, carbon-negative technologies, and robust energy economic policy systems. As an institutional investment in a priority area, the REI will continue to galvanize faculty working within the institute framework to mobilize resources from large multi investigator grants, philanthropy and other sources.

We envision the REI to continue to be an ever more fertile ground for faculty, students and industry to collaboratively foster new research and education in clean energy technologies and policies and address the grand challenges of the 21st century, both for the State of New Jersey, and the nation and the planet as a whole.

* The REI Steering Committee consists of the Deans of the School of Arts and Sciences, the School of Environmental and Biological Sciences, the Rutgers Business School, and the School of Engineering, and the Vice Chancellor for Research and Innovation, Rutgers-New Brunswick.