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Rick Foley

Photo of  Rick  Foley
Sustainable Product Design and Architecture
TDS Center 203 • M/S 1901

Dr. Richard Foley has served on the faculty at Keene State College in New Hampshire for 34 years working in the interdisciplinary fields of sustainability, media literacy, and science, technology and policy. Originally hired to teach power and energy courses in an Industrial Arts program, he developed the first courses in energy conservation and renewable energy. Having volunteered to pick up graphic arts courses for a ailing colleague, he worked with faculty in Journalism and Art to create a graphic design major; he designed the program, wrote the formal proposal and served as the director for the launch of what quickly morphed into an extremely successful major.

For 10 years he developed and directed the Summer Institutes at the College that evolved into two-week residential summer camps for teachers featuring 20 courses with more than 300 participants and instructors. He wrote more than 30 grants for more than $1 million to provide the bulk of operating expenses and coordinated the participation of the Antioch graduate school’s Education by Design faculty, as well as leaders from technology, science and vocational education from across New England.

His research on three sabbaticals that took him to India and Europe to broaden his perspective on sustainability, social democracy and cultural constructs positioned him to develop the four courses that he currently teaches in support of the College’s newly-established Integrated Studies Program — Thinking and Writing: Inventing Our Own Way, Technology and Civilization, Media Literacy: Seeing and Selling, and Peak Oil and Sustainable Solutions.

Most recently, Dr. Foley lead a group of colleagues in manufacturing and Management, along with a proactive Advisory Council to develop the hugely successful, innovative Sustainable Product Design and Innovation (SPDI) major and its regional affiliate, the Regional Center for Advanced Manufacturing. As the SPDI Coordinator, he coordinated a strong adjunct faculty team and chaired the search that resulted in hiring of the program’s first new tenure-track faculty, Dr. Lisa Hix.

As a long-time resident of Brattleboro, VT, he has been active in numerous grassroots groups promoting local media (as co-founder of two award-winning outlets, The Commons: Windham County’s Independent Source for News and Vermont Commons: Voices of Independence), climate protection (Board of Directors for Southern Vermonters for a Fair Economy and Environmental Protection), and renewable energy (co-founder of the Buy the Dams campaign and Brattleboro Thermal Utility and consultant to organizations working to shut down Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant).

As a thoughtful, well-informed citizen, he has contributed directly to local and Vermont peace and justice organizations, the Vermont Independence movement, and the 9/11 Truth movement.