Westchester Magazine: Top 8 Leaders in Westchester

Three of Westchester Magazine’s top 8 leaders in Westchester County are from Pace. “The Riverkeeper” John Cronin, “The Eco-advocate” Nick Robinson and “The Cyber-Security ‘Type’ ” Logan Romm were all featured with interviews and photos among the top 8 in a recent article in the magazine.

Three of Westchester Magazine’s top 8 leaders in Westchester County are from Pace. “The Riverkeeper” John Cronin, “The Eco-advocate” Nick Robinson and “The Cyber-Security ‘Type’ ” Logan Romm were all featured with interviews and photos among the top 8 in a recent article in the magazine.

From Westchester Magazine about the 8 leaders:

… “Westchesterites are looking at our biggest issues and, hopefully, will alter the way we live for the better. They’re impacting Westchester, New York, the USA, and the whole world. These are the 2013 Game Changers.”

About John Cronin, Senior Fellow for Environmental Affairs, Pace Academy for Applied Environmental Studies:

“You can go on your iPhone, and you can know temperature, humidity, and wind speed in Johannesburg, South Africa, in real time,” says John Cronin, senior fellow for Environmental Affairs at the Pace Academy for Applied Environmental Studies in Pleasantville. “But there’s nobody who can tell you—in real time—what’s in your glass of drinking water.”

The fact is disconcerting, but Cronin, 62, aims to change it. He’s organized dropping  sensors in the Hudson and its tributaries to monitor water quality and conditions. But Cronin wants to go further. In addition to changing how we keep our river clean—a project he’s been working on for 40 years—he wants to change the partnerships we enlist to help solve environmental problems.

In October 1973, Cronin was working painting houses when he met Pete Seeger at an event for Seeger’s environmental advocacy and educational vessel, the Hudson River Sloop Clearwater. The two men embarked on a volunteer project: As Seeger sang sea shanties and yodeled, the folk icon brought Cronin into the environmental world. Seeger would insist that, “‘if we all work together, we can clean up the Hudson River.’ I thought that idea was ludicrous,” says Cronin. “The River was huge, horribly polluted.” Nonetheless, inspired by Seeger, Cronin began a career in environmental issues, eventually taking stints advising Republican Congressman Hamilton Fish, Jr., and Democratic New York State Assemblyman Maurice Hinchey.

“I was hooked,” he says. “I went from thinking Pete was out of his mind to thinking that, if you were determined enough, you could make an enormous difference.” Becoming the inaugural Hudson Riverkeeper in 1983, Cronin acted as the clean-water advocate for the River and its tributaries, which provide 9 million New Yorkers with drinking water.

Thanks to Cronin’s media savvy and some real luck—while filming a segment for NBC news, he came upon an Exxon oil tanker discharging pollutants just 1,500 feet from drinking water—and the program took off. Soon, there was a Soundkeeper for Long Island, then a Baykeeper in San Francisco. Today, there are more than 200 similar programs all over the world. During his time as Riverkeeper, Cronin took on all kinds of polluters: New York City, for instance, was dumping 1.5 billion gallons of sewage into the River every day. But many of those on the opposite side of litigation were corporations.

In the past decade, however, Cronin began to formulate different ideas about problem-solving on the environment. He felt that we were “mostly operating under twentieth-century models when twenty-first-century problems need all the talent, all the skills we can muster—no mater where they come from.” Enforcement was still a primary goal, he thought, but the expertise, technology, and capital available in the private sector were nothing to eschew, either. In 2004, he founded the Beacon Institute for Rivers and Estuaries, which is today part of Clarkson University, with just this collaborative goal in mind.

One alliance, with Armonk-based IBM, has proved crucial in Cronin’s water-monitoring efforts. John Kelly, a senior vice president and director of Yorktown’s IBM Research (who oversees some 3,000 scientists in laboratories around the world), agrees that Cronin’s ideas are the future. “I think he embodies a visionary who can identify what’s really important through all the clutter. Other people were dreaming, but he knew what to do. His ideas are contagious, and he has the wherewithal to get it done.”

About Nick Robinson, University Professor and Gilbert & Sarah Kerlin Distinguished Professor of Environmental Law, Pace University:

“No, the fights for conservation and against climate change aren’t totally new. So, even if Pace University Law Professor Nicholas Robinson is at the center of both of those struggles, why do we think he also has the next big idea? It’s not just because he was around and affecting policy at the highest levels back when it was a new idea, although he was. Nor is it because his predictions about flooding recently have proven sadly accurate, although they have. It’s because, with all this experience, he knows exactly what we’re going to have to do about it all.

Robinson, of Sleepy Hollow, grew up mostly in Palo Alto, California, where he enjoyed outdoor activities like camping in the Sierras, but the East Coast-style air and water pollution he saw when he started college at Brown University in the early 1960s made him begin taking the study of environmental policy seriously. By 1972, just two years after Robinson graduated from Columbia Law School, New York had adopted his draft of the landmark Tidal Wetlands Act, and “the UN was waking up to the concerns of the environment,” says Robinson, 67. “I was asked by the Sierra Club to attend the United Nations Conference on the Human Environment in Stockholm.”

In the late 1970s, Robinson helped found one of the first environmental law programs in the country at Pace Law School. He was an advisor to Governor Mario Cuomo, general counsel and deputy commissioner of the State Department of Environmental Conservation, and a treaty delegate to the Soviet Union under five presidents. As if all of that weren’t enough, he’s even made his mark on the County’s cultural life, orchestrating the donation of the old Philipse Manor train station to the Hudson Valley Writers’ Center for its headquarters in the late 1980s before such plans for renovation and re-use were common.

But it’s his international work that set the stage for him to establish some of the most important coming trends in the environmental movement. He has helped instruct environmental groups on what legal systems they’ll encounter in writing international treaties, harmonized treaties on endangered species that migrate across borders, and helped establish trans-boundary cooperation for contested areas like the Arctic Circle. “But locally, the same issues play out,” he says. Dealing with climate change means finding money for repairs, reinforcing or altering infrastructure, managing native flora to mitigate flooding, drafting environmental impact statements, and taking other measures that Robinson has long been a part of.

“I’ve been working with the faculty at our Pleasantville campus to organize the Pocantico River Watershed Conservancy,” he said, 12 days before Superstorm Sandy made landfall in New Jersey. “How should it be inter-managed to protect the downstream communities from flooding? It’s not a question of if; it’s only a question of when. We need to get ready for the ‘retreat from the coasts,’ moving infrastructure inland. If you have a road or a pipeline or a buffer right along a coastal area and you don’t help adapt where the river water can go, then you’re going to end up having storms cause a lot of property damage. We cannot save the Hudson River unless we better save the tributaries of the Hudson. We need to take the experiences we have around the world and begin actually solving our local problems. And then we have to share that with similarly situated people all over the world.”

About Seidenberg School student Logan Romm, keystroke biometrics researcher:

“If you’ve logged onto an online retailer’s website months after you last shopped there and found that you were still signed in or if you’ve ever noticed that your email was still logged in after returning from a vacation, then you can well imagine how easy it would be for a cyber bad guy to access your information. But if 27-year-old Logan Romm’s project takes off, those bad guys are going to have to work much harder.

The White Plains resident, who grew up in Rye Brook, has a full-time job as a marketing manager at Verizon, but it was his studies in Internet Technology at Pace University, where he earned his master’s in 2012, that are helping to close these security holes. Along with four other teammates (and dozens of graduate students who have put in time since the project started seven years ago), Romm is studying keystroke biometrics—in other words, identifying people by how they type—and developing its potential for security applications. There is, after all, a surprisingly large amount of data in keystrokes—how quickly people type certain letter combinations, how they scroll, if they prefer the number pad or the numbers above the letters—and, like a fingerprint or an iris, individuals’ typing characteristics are unique to them.

The applications of figuring out how to recognize those unique features are nearly limitless. Authenticating students taking tests online comes to mind. Corporations with proprietary research on their servers and governments with classified documents to protect are always looking for the next step in security. And, as Romm points out, this may be it. After all, passwords can be stolen or guessed, and a single entry often keeps users logged in to sensitive information for hours or even days after they leave the console. But monitoring keystrokes allows ongoing authentication of users, “so, even if an intruder gains access initially, if they are not behaving the way the actual user does then that access could be detected and the unauthorized user’s session could be terminated,” he says. The project’s director, Professor Charles Tappert, has been in touch with the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency at the US Department of Defense, although nothing has been finalized.

Romm and his teammates began their work last year, but they were responsible for the meat of the seven-year-old project: collecting typing samples and analyzing them, including the first samples of people working on browsers.

“It’s getting harder and harder to create a secure a password,” Romm says, “but this definitely makes a lot of sense for the next level.”

Read the full article here.

SpryLiving: “A New You for the New Year”

It’s January. Time to ring in the New Year. And you have, without a doubt, made a ton of resolutions that for once you vow to finally keep. Know that you have the power to thrive, succeed, and become the individual you desire in 2012—without ever having to totally give up Moon Pies. Pace’s Richard Shadick and John Cronin offer advice in Spry Living’s January issue, reaching 9.5 million readers, on how to make your New Year Better Than Before.

“Yes, we all want to lose weight, eat more vegetables, get fit, drink water instead of white wine, hold fewer grudges, manage our stress, sleep better and help the planet go greener,” writes Jane Wilkens Michael in the January issue of Spry Living

But alas for many of us, our best goals and intentions are forgotten faster than old acquaintenances.  Here are tips that Michael garnered from Pace faculty members John Cronin and Richard Shadick on how to make our resolutions live on after January 1:

Emotional Health

Be realistic—and specific. “Instead of telling yourself, I am going to lose weight and be healthy next year, it is better to say, I will lose five pounds by February 15 by walking for 20 minutes three days a week and no longer drinking soda,” says Dr. Richard Shadick, director of the Counseling Center and adjunct associate professor of psychology at Pace University. The more specific, measurable, and attainable a goal is, the more likely it can be reached.

Giving back

It’s easy being green. “This New Year, resolve to help the planet,” says John Cronin, senior fellow for Environmental Affairs at Pace Academy for Applied Environmental Studies. “There are two questions I am asked most often: ‘Can one person really make a difference?’ and ‘How?’ The answer to the first is easy: Yes! It is the story of human history — but those who never try to make a difference never do.” Cronin poses a creative challenge: “Look to your own life to find that something special you can make happen. For example, one mechanic adds a dollar to the bill of each of his car repair customers as a donation to the Riverkeeper organization. Over the past 20 years he has directed thousands of dollars to the group, and his customers are delighted. Help your child’s school find environmental experts to speak to classes. Here’s a simple one: Share a fascinating fact, and your friends will spread the information too —how much of the water on our planet is available for drinking? (Answer: Less than 1%). I promise they will be amazed, educated and eager to tell someone else. The point is that in addition to the how-to’s of proper individual behavior, which after 42 Earth Days should be common knowledge by now, there are creative acts you can perform, invent and organize that will change the world right in your own backyard if you are bold enough to try.  Jump right in. The planet is waiting.”

New York Post: Clean sweep

In an article in the New York Post that boasts that New York has had the greatest environmental turn-around in American history over the past 40 years, Pace Senior Fellow John Cronin’s contributions are touted as a major factor.

Pace Senior Fellow John Cronin opens and closes a feature article in the New York Post about environmental progress in New York State in the past 40 years.

From the New York Post:

“They called their effort the Pipe Watch, because that was essentially what they did: troll the Hudson River, document the vile junk oozing into the river from factory and sewage pipes, and either sue or embarrass the polluter into cleaning it up.

John Cronin was one of them, a young volunteer who had grown up in Yonkers, on the shores of the Hudson. Even though it was the river where his father had learned to swim and his grandfather had been a commercial fisherman, Cronin had been taught to avoid it. And not without reason. For hundreds of years — starting not long after Henry Hudson explored it, convinced by its majesty that he had found the long-sought passage to Asia — humanity had been using it as one big sewer, flushing anything we no longer desired into its currents.

By 1973, when Cronin first started working on the river, the contamination had left a seemingly indelible smear. Wax from a candle company coated the rocks in Newburgh. Adhesive from a tape manufacturer congealed on the beaches in Beacon. Paint from an automotive factory stained the water in Tarrytown. Junkyards and abandoned cars lined the shores and shallows.

On some days, the smell was so bad it made his eyes water.

The thought that someone might kayak on it or wade into it — as happens regularly these days — was a far-off dream.

“It’s hard for people today to understand how troubled and filthy the river was in the early 1970s,” said Cronin, who was hired a few years later by what was then known as the Hudson River Fishermen’s Association to be the first full-time river keeper on the Hudson, a job he held until 2000.

“You would be hard-pressed to find a waterway on the planet that has undergone more of a dramatic transformation than the Hudson River has over the last 40 years.”

What has happened is an important piece of a larger narrative that — while it often gets lost in the daily squabbles that pit developer against environmentalist, Republican against Democrat, special interest against general interest — is worth noting as we flip the calendar from 2011 to 2012.

Viewed from the long lens of decades, the New York area as a whole is in the midst of one of the more remarkable environmental success stories in American history.

Its air is more breathable than it has been during any time that records have been kept — and, at least anecdotally, is better than it has been since the Industrial Revolution began.

Its waterways, here in the year when we mark the 40th anniversary of the Clean Water Act, are cleaner than they have been in generations.  …

Like many cities, New York has a combined sewer system, meaning street runoff and sanitary sewer lines all drain to the same place. On dry days, the city’s 14 sewage treatment plants have enough capacity to handle the flows. But about 50 days a year, it rains too hard for the treatment plants to keep up. The overflow goes into the river.

A few years back, the city estimated that fixing the problem with conventional infrastructure — holding tanks, larger pipes and increased treatment capacity — would cost close to $60 billion. The Bloomberg administration has instead rolled out a plan for a $1.5 billion green infrastructure program that, by promoting everything from green roofs to porous pavement, aims to reduce runoff to the point where the system can handle all but the most significant rain events without overflow.

If that can happen, it would put the Hudson one step closer to the most audacious goal Cronin, its longtime river keeper, has for it: to become the first well-populated river in the United States to have zero pollution discharge.

“The Hudson should be a river where any kid can go down to the shore and catch a fish for the family dinner table,” said Cronin, who now serves a dual role as a fellow at Clarkson University’s Beacon Institute and at Pace University. “That’s a dream with a lot of pieces, because it requires knowing the fish are there, knowing the fish are fit to eat and having access to the river. But given how far we’ve come in the last 30 years, there’s no reason at all we can’t make that happen in the next 30.”
Read the full article here:

Clean sweep – NYPOST.com.

NEWS ADVISORY: Collaborative Regional Research on Environment and Economic Concerns to be Explored by Educators at Albany Meeting Nov. 11-12

With the uncertainty of New York State’s environmental, educational and economic future on the minds of law-makers in Albany and residents throughout the state, , educators from the Hudson River watershed region will meet this weekend to explore opportunities to work together on research.

Hudson River watershed region’s future to be explored at 8th annual meeting of the Environmental Consortium of Hudson Valley Colleges & Universities

PLEASANTVILLE, NY, November 11, 2011 – With the uncertainty of New York State’s environmental, educational and economic future on the minds of law-makers in Albany and residents throughout the state, , educators from the Hudson River watershed region will meet this weekend to explore opportunities to work together on research.

The 8th annual meeting of the Environmental Consortium of Colleges & Universities takes place this weekend, November 11 – 12, at The College of Saint Rose in Albany, NY. The theme is “Collaboration Throughout the Hudson River Watershed.”  It will bring together faculty, administrators, students, government and community representatives, and non-profit leaders to identify research priorities for the region.

Saturday morning’s speaker is Congressman Paul Tonko. Through his “Mighty Rivers” initiative, he has become the voice of the upper Hudson and Mohawk, and an aggressive fighter in Washington for a sustainable future. He will speak about his vision for the role of the greater watershed in New York’s environmental, educational and economic future.

“Collaboration is a word we hear over and again,” said John Cronin, Senior Fellow for Environmental Affairs at the Pace University’s Academy for Applied Environmental Studies, which played a leading role in starting the consortium. “But inter-school collaboration is increasingly our future in higher education, and, I believe, where our environmental future has its best chance. What a great opportunity this event provides to explore these ideas further.”

Other speakers at the conference include Anthony Collins, President of Clarkson University, who will deliver a keynote address on “Collaboration for Innovation: Harnessing the Power and Potential of Colleges and Universities.”  There will be special presentation by David Rothenberg, “The Music in Nature,” on Friday evening.  Through listening, learning, and playing along, Rothenberg will show how exploring the musicality of birds, whales, and insects is one more way to make the environment seem meaningful to students and teachers alike.

The “Collaboration” conference also features concurrent workshop sessions on a wide range of topics and concludes with a multidisciplinary poster session.

The conference is open to the public. The rate for individuals affiliated with the 57  member institutions in the Environmental Consortium is $25 for students ($35 for non-members), and $125 for members ($150 for non-members).  Single day rates are also available. The fee includes admission to the conference, meals, and the poster session. Accommodations are not included.

Full details and registration information are at www.environmentalconsortium.org. Online registration is open. Media admission is by press pass.

WHAT: Collaboration Throughout the Hudson River Watershed, the 8th Annual Meeting of the Environmental Consortium of Hudson Valley Colleges & Universities
WHEN: Friday, November 11 (4:30 – 8:30pm) through Saturday, November 12 (8:00am – 5:00pm)

WHERE: The College of Saint Rose, 432 Western Avenue, Albany, New York 12203, 1-800-637-8556,


WHO: Presenters below.

Speaker Lineup 


  • Establishing a New Regional Environmental Journal
  • Raising All Boats: Leveraging the Consortium to Maximize Institutional Gain
  • Collaboration Between Higher Education and Cornell Cooperative Extension
  • Field Programs and Stations: Where and How to Extend the Classroom
  • Understanding the Hudson with Technology
  • Pre-Service Teacher Training and PreK-12 Collaboration with Higher Education
  • Collaboration Between Higher Education and Non-Profits
  • Growing Capacity for the Regional Foodshed: Training, Research, & Policy
  • Inter-Institutional Collaboration in Education and Research
  • New and Innovative Educational Programs
  • Student and Student-Faculty Research Opportunities
  • Engaging the Community and Local Government


Environmental Consortium of Hudson Valley Colleges & Universities

The Environmental Consortium of Hudson Valley Colleges & Universities was established in 2004 to advance understanding of the cultural, social, political, economic, and natural factors affecting the Hudson River Watershed and currently has 57 member institutions. The Consortium’s mission is to harness higher education’s intellectual and physical resources to advance regional, ecosystem-based environmental research, teaching, and learning through interdisciplinary, collaborative programs and information sharing.

Spearheaded and hosted by Pace University, the Consortium is headquartered within the Pace Academy for Applied Environmental Studies in Pleasantville, New York. Among the Academy’s goals is applying the University’s strengths to local and global environmental problems. As a testament to its commitment to interdisciplinary pedagogy, scholarship, and service, the Academy provides essential administrative support for the Consortium’s programs.


The Pace Academy for Applied Environmental Studies

The Academy is the first of several centers for excellence envisioned by Pace University’s President, Stephen Friedman, to promote high-level collaborative and interdisciplinary programming in key thematic, academic areas throughout the University. The Academy is a freestanding institute that renews and deepens the University’s long-standing commitment to environmental research, scholarship, and service.

Pace Academy for Applied Environmental Studies is dedicated to enhancing a mutually beneficial relationship between nature and society by harnessing the unique knowledge, talents and skills intrinsic to university life.  www.pace.edu/academy

Media contact:

Cara Cea, 914-906-9680, ccea@pace.edu

MidHudsonNews.com: “Cronin awarded Jefferson Gold Medal”

John Cronin has been a part of the Hudson River environmental movement since 1973 when he started with the Clearwater organization. He reflects how Clearwater founder Pete Seeger recruited him as a volunteer.

John Cronin is a senior fellow at Pace University and executive director of the Beacon Institute for Rivers and Estuaries.

He can also add another title to his resume, a recipient of the Jefferson Award, named for Thomas Jefferson and founded by former first lady Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis as a “Noble Prize for public service.”

Cronin was described by the Jefferson Awards Board of Selectors as “Hero for the Planet [and] equal parts detective, scientist and public advocate.” The board said his efforts “have inspired a legacy of programs across the globe, fighting pollution on six continents.”

The MidHudsonNews reports Pace University President Stephen Friedman nominated Cronin for the award, for which Cronin said he was both humbled and honored.

Poughkeepsie Journal: “Hudson River steward receives Jefferson Award”

Steward of the Hudson River and water quality, John Cronin, received a 2011 Jefferson Award for his decades of public service.

John Cronin, a resident of Cold Spring, is known for his 17 years at environmental group Riverkeeper, and is the director and CEO of Beacon Institute for Rivers and Estuaries. He is also a Pace University senior fellow.

At the Beacon Institute, Cronin directs a program that monitors rivers and estuaries using a network of sensors and robotics.

He lectures on the environment, co-authored “The Riverkeepers” with Robert F. Kennedy Jr., and wrote and co-produced the film “The Last Rivermen.”

Cronin told the Poughkeepsie Journal that he credited folksinger Pete Seeger and Pace University as his sources of inspiration.

The Journal News: “Ex-Riverkeeper John Cronin receives Jefferson Award”

Former Riverkeeper John Cronin joined a select group this week that included U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and actress Marlo Thomas.

They all received what has been dubbed the “Nobel Prize” for public service — the Jefferson Award.

John Cronin, 60, has worked on environmental issues facing the Hudson River for nearly four decades and was one of 18 people honored with  The Jefferson Award in a ceremony in Washington, DC, Tuesday night.

“It was quite a surprise,” Cronin said Friday to The Journal News. “Some of the awards are known ahead of time, others are kept under wraps. I was just going there to represent Pace University. I still haven’t figured out who knew and who didn’t.”

“The big theme of the two days was that everyday people can change the world,” Cronin said. “It reminded me what a special place the Hudson River Valley is, that we started an environmental movement before there was an Earth Day, when environmentalism wasn’t very popular at all.”

Representing Pace, Cronin was given a Champion award, presented to two “exceptional individuals whose volunteer work reflects the deep and abiding commitment of their employers to making a different in the communities where their employees live and work.”

The award cited his work as an environmental advocate for nearly four decades, serving “on the front lines of water-quality issues as a legislative aide, riverkeeper, and as the co-founder of the Pace Environmental Litigation Clinic, a nationally acclaimed training program for law students and educators.”

Cronin is director and CEO of Beacon Institute for Rivers and Estuaries, and a Senior Fellow for Environmental Affairs, Pace Academy for Applied Environmental Studies at Pace University.

NEWS RELEASE: Hudson River Advocate John Cronin Awarded Jefferson Gold Medal


“Nobel Prize for Public Service” Created by Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis

PLEASANTVILLE, NY, June 24, 2011 — Renowned environmentalist and Pace University senior fellow John Cronin was presented with the prestigious Jefferson Award in a ceremony in Washington, DC, Tuesday night. Cronin was honored for a career spanning four decades “on the front line of water quality issues.”  The Jefferson Award, now in its 39th year, is named for Thomas Jefferson and was founded by former first lady Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis as a “Nobel Prize for public service.” Two other recipients of the Jefferson Award this year were Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and actress Marlo Thomas.

In its presentation, the Jefferson Awards Board of Selectors said Cronin “has dedicated his career to water and environmental affairs. Described as ‘Hero for the Planet’ and ‘equal parts detective, scientist and public advocate’, his efforts have inspired a legacy of programs across the globe, fighting pollution on six continents.”

In remarks at the ceremony, Cronin credited folksinger Pete Seeger and Pace University as his sources of inspiration. “When Pete took me under his wing in 1973, he said, ‘If we all work together we can change the Hudson River; we can even change the world.’ At the time I thought it impossible but his words proved to be the truest I have ever heard. Pace University lives by that credo and has given me the opportunity to reach thousands.  We all stand on the shoulders of giants. I have been privileged to stand on theirs.”

Remarking on Pace University’s nomination of Cronin, President Stephen J. Friedman said, “Higher education has a duty to public service, social good and environmental protection. As our senior fellow for environmental affairs at the Pace Academy for Applied Environmental Studies, John Cronin is  an exemplar of our university-wide commitment to that mission. John has served the Pace community since 1985 when he co-founded the Pace Environmental Litigation Clinic, but his lifelong service on behalf of water issues locally and globally has benefitted us all for almost four decades.”

Cronin’s work has reached into every corner of environmentalism.  A Time magazine “Hero for the Planet,” he began as a pollution hunter for the “People’s Pipewatch” at the Clearwater organization in 1973 where evidence he collected caused the first successful federal prosecution in New York State under the new Clean Water Act. He served as environmental advisor to Congressman Hamilton Fish, Jr. and Assemblyman Maurice Hinchey, and as the pollution-fighting Hudson Riverkeeper for 17 years, where his work inspired the creation of nearly 200 “Keeper” programs around the world.  He authored the Hudson River Estuary Management Act, considered a model for ecosystem management, wrote “The Riverkepers” with Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., made an award-winning film about commercial fishermen, and co-founded the Environmental Consortium of Hudson Valley Colleges and Universities, the Pace Environmental Litigation Clinic, and Beacon Institute for Rivers and Estuaries, where he has served as director and CEO for five years.

Congressman Maurice Hinchey said of Cronin’s Jefferson Award, “I’ve had the pleasure of working with John Cronin to protect and restore the Hudson River for three decades and am delighted that his many years of hard work and dedicated efforts have been recognized through this award. The Hudson Valley has played a leading role in the development of the modern environmental movement, and John Cronin has made important contributions to that legacy.”

About the Pace Academy for Applied Environmental Studies

The Pace Academy for Applied Environmental Studies, the first Pace University Center for Excellence is a University-wide initiative that draws upon representatives from each School and College, senior administration, University Relations and other strategic expertise within the institution.  Pace University is uniquely positioned to approach environmental issues in a truly interdisciplinary fashion. The Pace Academy engages expertise across the departments within the University’s Schools and College, to advance the understanding of the mutually enhancing relationship between nature and society. Through its programs, Pace Academy foster s curricular, scholarly, policy, and experiential, practice-based opportunities for our students, faculty, and broader community.

About Pace University:

For 105 years, Pace University has educated thinking professionals by providing high quality education for the professions on a firm base of liberal learning amid the advantages of the New York metropolitan area. A private university, Pace has campuses in New York City and Westchester County, New York, enrolling nearly 13,000 students in bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral programs in its Lubin School of Business, Dyson College of Arts and Sciences, College of Health Professions, School of Education, School of Law, and Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems. www.pace.edu


Cara Cea 914-906-9680, ccea@pace.edu

The Associated Press: “Jefferson Prizes For Public Service Awarded To 18” – including Pace’s John Cronin, an internationally renowned environmentalist

Recipients of the 2011 Jefferson Awards – dubbed a “Nobel Prize” for public service – include John Cronin (pictured), Senior Fellow for Environmental Affairs, Pace Academy for Applied Environmental Studies, Pace University.

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, actress Marlo Thomas, Chicago sports team owner Jerry M. Reinsdorf and environmental advocate John Cronin (Pace Academy’s Senior Fellow in Environmental Affairs) are among the people and institutions honored with a national prize for public service on Tuesday evening, June 21 in Washington, DC reports The Associated Press.

The Jefferson Awards, now in their 39th year, were co-founded by former first lady Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis and are named for founding father Thomas Jefferson.

Pace Senior Environmental Fellow John Cronin Honored in New Book on His Work

For 35 years John Cronin has been at the heart of saving the Hudson River ecosystem, a role model for environmental efforts around the nation. But he has not been alone. In this new collection of essays, a range of writers — among them scientists, activists, scholars and clergymen — describe Cronin’s life and work, offering a unique glimpse into his extraordinary contribution to protecting our water resources.


Chris Cory, Pace Public Information, 212-346-1117, 917-608-8164, ccory@pace.edu

Michelle Land, Pace Academy for Applied Environmental Studies, 914-422-4076, mland@law.pace.edu


Review copies and photos available on request

Life and work of John Cronin, “Hero for the Planet” and Pace University Senior Fellow in Environmental Affairs, celebrated in new anthology

Contributions by Pete Seeger, Robert F. Kennedy Jr., Maurice Hinchey and others

A River’s Pleasure: Essays in Honor of John Cronin Edited by Michelle D. Land and Susan Fox Rogers Pace University Press; Publication date December 7, 2009 ISBN: 0-944473-96-2, Pages: 185, Price $40.00 Professional educator discount of $32 if ordered from the publisher

NEW YORK, NY, December 4, 2009 – For 35 years John Cronin has been at the heart of saving the Hudson River ecosystem, a role model for environmental efforts around the nation. But he has not been alone. In this new collection of essays, a range of writers — among them scientists, activists, scholars and clergymen — describe Cronin’s life and work, offering a unique glimpse into his extraordinary contribution to protecting our water resources.

“A River’s Pleasure” (Pace University Press, $40.00), an intimate and thought-provoking book, offers readers an episodic narrative of a pioneering and influential part of the modern environmental movement, including a look forward into its future.

“A River’s Pleasure” contains 21 pieces of writing that range from an exclusive interview with Pete Seeger to an in-depth profile by The New Yorker writer Alec Wilkinson and an insightful essay from Nicholas Robinson, a globally recognized architect of international environmental law and a Pace law professor. The contributors also include John Horgan, a former senior writer at Scientific American, Anthony DePalma, formerly of The New York Times, an IBM executive, a photo-essayist, an archeologist trying to keep looters away from eight-acre Magdalen Island, and a shad fishing riverman who recalls a cleaner river.

The volume was produced by Pace’s new, interdisciplinary Academy for Applied Environmental Studies, where Cronin is Senior Fellow in Environmental Affairs. He is also Director and CEO of the Beacon Institute for Rivers and Estuaries.

Geoffrey L. Brackett, Pace’s Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs, describes Cronin in the book’s foreword as “the perfect combination of arrogance, brilliance, charm and ingenuity” for environmental crusading. Cronin is the politically shrewd visionary who first came to national attention during the years between 1983 and 2000 when he was the Hudson Riverkeeper. Robert F. Kennedy Jr., who became the group’s attorney, recalls how he and Cronin “donned waders and spent weeks walking riverbanks, climbing fences, crawling up pipes and taking samples, and we sat all night on lawn chairs waiting for midnight dumpers….”

But one title does not suffice to characterize John Cronin’s work; as the essays in this collection testify, he has astonishing range and depth. Editor Michelle Land, a Pace professor of environmental policy who is Director of the Pace Academy, writes in her introduction of how the book reveals his “restlessness, continual reinvention” and his role as a “never-ending source of big ideas.”

Cronin’s current focus is environmental problem solving by fostering cooperation at the intersection of policy and innovation – as described by Pace University President Stephen J. Friedman, “the evolution of John’s focus on the Hudson River has incorporated the whole evolution of environmental regulation.”

Emergent ideas described in the book include real-time environmental monitoring analyzed by computer, other intensified uses of science and engineering, increased collaboration with newly green-minded businesses, and a proposed environmental amendment to the US Constitution.

Susan Fox Rogers, co-editor of the book and Visiting Associate Professor of Writing at Bard College writes of Cronin: “In some ways, what he is remains without easy definition. He occupies a unique territory that mixes activist, teacher, and environmentalist…. Like a kid full of hope, the future, not the past is where John lives.”

The book is available at Amazon.com or through Pace University Press.

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A River’s Pleasure: Essays in Honor of John Cronin Edited by Michelle D. Land and Susan Fox Rogers Imprint: Pace University Press. ISBN: 0-944473-96-2. Publication date December 1, 2009. Pages: 185. Price $40 ($32 professional educator discount if ordered from the publisher).