Steve Kaagan, AWTT Ally, On Why He Returned his Degree to Williams College

Williamstown, Massachusetts

Steve Kaagan, who worked with AWTT to make the current traveling exhibit in North Carolina possible, today returned his honorary degree to the president of Williams College, Adam Falk, in protest of the college's investments in fossil fuels. His action supports the student organization, the Williams Endowment Initiative, which is calling for Williams to divest itself of all investments in fossil fuels. A portion of Steve's statement is posted below. To read it in its entirety and and read letters of support from Wendell Berry and the Williams College students, click here

Steve Kaagan's statement:

On Friday, October 23rd I walked into the Office of the President of Williams College and returned the honorary doctorate of humane letters I had been awarded 30 years ago for leadership provided the Vermont Schools.  The position of the President and Trustees on climate change, issued last month, showed such striking lack of leadership that there seemed no palatable alternative.

Williams College holds a special place in my heart and I am grateful for all it provided me. It is with a heavy heart, therefore, that I return a treasured token of my membership in the Williams Community.  By financing companies that systematically undermine credible science and democratic decision-making, by shirking expected leadership responsibilities in the face of clear dangers to the planet and its inhabitants, and by teaching that modest, inward-looking measures are sufficient, the President and Trustees have violated their stewardship responsibilities, and betrayed my trust.

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