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Ken Dunn One of the city’s earliest recycling advocates, Dunn founded the Resource Center, which has long run the kind of effective programs the city hasn’t. He’s also a leader in the more comprehensive field of sustainable development.
Rebecca Stanfield An environmental attorney and the state director of the research and advocacy group Environment Illinois, Stanfield is a regional leader on clean air, clean power, and green public policy. Her organization is the one that marshals battalions of young people to hit the streets to collect signatures for its lobbying efforts, putting you on the spot with: “Do you have a minute to help the environment?”
Brian Urbaszewski Urbaszewski is another expert on everything that’s airborne but shouldn’t be. As director of environmental health programs for the American Lung Association of Metropolitan Chicago, he’s helped spearhead the campaign to get coal-burning power plants in Illinois to clean up.
Betsy Vandercook President of the Chicago Recycling Coalition, Vandercook is Chicago’s leading spokesperson for a coherent, effective recycling policy. After fighting for the cause for nearly a quarter century, the coalition has amassed a trove of educational resources for anyone interested in recycling anything from carpet to tennis shoes.
Sadhu Johnston Johnston was an environmental activist in Cleveland until Daley recruited him for his administration. Now he’s commissioner of the city’s Department of Environment and a big reason the mayor has such a great reputation for supporting green construction.
Mike Quigley Cook county commissioner Quigley has been known to give interviews while waving around a thick branch of buckthorn, an invasive species that’s threatening to choke off other plants in the Cook County Forest Preserves. An advocate for conservation, recycling, and eco-friendly construction, he’s arguably the greenest elected official in Chicago.