Last updateFri, 12 Oct 2018 11am

Climate change expert preps for annual lecture

Donald Aitken is a recognized scientist and educator who wants people to be informed about climate change, a subject that’s long been a keen interest of his. 

pg9As a lakeside resident for the past 11 years, his yearly Open Circle PowerPoint lecture draws large crowds, and it’s easy to see why.

In order to stay on top of what’s happening with climate change and global warming, Aitken continues to attend conferences, read technical papers and articles, and follow the monthly global and ocean temperature readings.

Aitken spent nine years working as a research physicist at Stanford University, where he received his Ph.D. Also an environmental activist and speaker, he co-founded the international organization, Friends of the Earth, along with environmentalist David Brower.

Says Aitken, “Because of my growing national visibility in environmental matters, San Jose State University invited me to create one of the first six environmental studies departments in the United States. I gave up my tenured professorship at Stanford to become a full time professor at San Jose State.”

At San Jose State, where he taught for 21 years, he was chairman of his own Environmental Studies Department, and was named “Professor of the Year.”

In 1991, the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) invited Aitken to become a member of their staff. For 11 years, he worked full-time for this 100,000-member science advocacy membership organization, located in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He took on the role of Senior Staff Scientist for Renewable Energy Policies and Economics.

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