Dorsey, Michael K.

Michael K. Dorsey is a recognized expert on global energy, environment, finance and sustainability matters. In 1997, in Glasgow, Scotland, Rotary International bestowed him their highest honor: The Paul Harris Medal for Distinguished Service to Humanity.  Dorsey presently holds the Chair and Directorship of the Rob and Melani Walton Sustainability Solutions Service (WS3) — the planet’s first extension service for sustainability, based in Tempe, Arizona on the campus of Arizona State University.

A graduate of the University of Michigan, Yale and the Johns Hopkins University, Michael Dorsey is also a limited partner in the Spanish utility-scale solar concern IberSun, s.l, a JV partner in the India based panel manufacturer Pahal Solar and the inaugural board secretary of Black Owners of Solar Services. Dorsey is also a pre-IPO investor in the exchange traded fund (ETF), Change Finance (NYSEARCA: CHGX). As an active advisor to Change Finance, in spring 2022 Dr. Dorsey led his family office’s investment in the ETF’s $3M bridge round.

Dorsey is a serial organisation builder and leader in for-profit, non-profit, scholarly and governmental realms. In the for-profit arena, Dorsey is an active investor, as well as co-founder and principal of Around the Corner Capital—an energy advisory and impact finance platform. He sits on the Investment Advisory Committee of the William C Graustein Memorial Fund. From Around the Corner, he maintains active relationships and agreements in the US and beyond with various partners from Scalar International, to the California New Energy Nexus, to Silverleaf Partners, Crede Capital Partners (South Africa), Univergy (Japan/Spain), the World Bank and many other institutions and high net-worth individuals driving the global renewable revolution.

In non-profit realms, in 1997 Dorsey helped to co-create the northern California headquartered Center for Environmental Health. In 2013 Dr. Dorsey and two former student collaborators co-created the predecessor to the Sunrise Movement. Dorsey served as Sunrise’s Treasurer since its inception, until the end of 2022. In late 2018 the Sunrise Movement co-orchestrated launching the Green New Deal. Beyond this Dr. Dorsey sits on several other non-profit boards. He served 11 years on the national board of the Sierra Club—one of the largest and oldest US environmental organizations —and was reelected for a three year term in 2022. In academia, for the first decade of the 21st century, Dorsey was a professor in the environmental studies program at Dartmouth College. He has also been guest faculty at leading institutions around the world, including: Wesleyan University (USA), the University KwaZuluNatal and the University of Witwatersrand (South Africa); Kungl Tekniska Högskolan (Sweden); and Erasmus University’s Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM) Sustainability Climate Change Research Unit (The Netherlands).

Dorsey’s significant government engagement began in 1992 as a member of the U.S. State Department Delegation to the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, “The Earth Summit.” From 1994-96 Dorsey was a task force member of President William Jefferson Clinton’s Council on Sustainable Development. From April 2007 until November 2008 Dorsey was a member of Senator Barack Obama’s energy and environment Presidential campaign team. In 2010 Lisa Jackson, the US Environmental Protection Agency (US-EPA) Administrator, appointed Dr. Dorsey to the EPA’s National Advisory Committee (NAC). Jackson reappointed Dr. Dorsey in 2012 and Administrator McCarthy reappointed him again in 2014. Further, in 2014, after more than two decades of collaboration and engagement with the United Nations NGLS—a specialized unit of UNCTAD (the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development) designated Dorsey advisor on “climate, energy sustainability and SIDS (Small Island Developing States)”.

Dorsey has published dozens of scholarly and lay articles on a variety of environment, development and sustainable finance matters. In 2016 he became a contributor to the Wall Street Journal and has written for the editorial pages of the New York Times. Over decades Dr. Dorsey has also been featured or provided his opinions in hundreds of the world’s leading television, radio and print outlets from Al Jazeera, Bloomberg, South Africa’s Business Day, CGTN-America, CNN, Democracy Now!, The Los Angeles Times, Newsweek, The New York Times, the Orlando Sentinel, The Sacramento Bee, The Thom Hartmann Show, Utility Dive and many others.

Beyond boardrooms, Congressional hearings and multilateral summits Dorsey has a long legacy of exploring, researching and working to protect wild places and spaces–around the U.S. and across the planet. He has solo walked across Yosemite and Adirondack National Parks. Dorsey has climbed several peaks from Canada to Patagonia: Agassiz (13,893’), Chimborazo (20,564’), Cotopaxi (19,347’), Illiniza Sur (17,267’) and Norte (16,818’), Mount Bierstadt (14,065) and many others. In 2015 Dorsey began actively skyrunning and has since completed two Norwegian arctic circle skyraces. As a trained social forester, in 1996, Dorsey began research in the upper Amazon basin, in Ecuador. He has also worked in the subtropical and tropical forests of Costa Rica, Colombia, Peru and Brazil; as well as in temperate forests of the Pacific Northwest and New England. Beyond his publications, Dorsey’s conservation research has long been in cooperation and collaboration with leading scholars, think tanks, advocacy groups, governments, corporations, multilateral agencies as well as fence-line, marginalized and forest communities—and many more.

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