Press Release: Launch of National Climate Initiative at Denver Ideas Summit

For Immediate Release:
May 6, 2019
Contact: Jonathon Dworkin (NewDEAL), 202-660-1340 x5,

Launch of National Climate Initiative at Denver Ideas Summit

Fmr Governor Ritter joins NewDEAL network of top state and local officials to forge policy solutions for climate change, the future of work, and education

Former Colorado Governor Bill Ritter and Congressman Jason Crow will speak to a gathering of rising pro-growth progressive leaders at the NewDEAL Ideas Summit in Denver, May 6, for the launch of a national climate initiative that aims to develop and implement a state and local policy agenda to address global warming. In addition, Mayor Pete Buttigieg, a long time NewDEALer, will offer a video address.

Along with other innovators from the public and private sectors, about 40 members of NewDEAL’s network of carefully-selected state and local officials below the level of Governor will attend the annual two-day Ideas Summit (May 6-7), including Colorado Senators Kerry Donovan, Brittany Pettersen, and Jeff Bridges.

The Summit addresses the biggest issues affecting the quality of life of Americans across the country, and comes as a wave of new voices, having entered state and local governments in the midterms, have the opportunity to reshape public policy. In addition to climate change, this year’s event focuses on solutions for the future of work and K-12 education policy, featuring discussions on the impact of automation and ways to ensure students and workers have pathways to good jobs in a rapidly changing economy.

The climate initiative will bring together members of NewDEAL (Developing Exception American Leaders) with other public, non-profit, and private sector thought leaders like Ritter, who directs the Center for the New Energy Economy at Colorado State University. Further details of the group’s work, which will be modeled after the NewDEAL Forum Future of Work Policy Group, will be outlined at the Summit.

Remarks by Ritter and Crow will be followed by a panel featuring Will Toor, Executive Director of the Colorado Energy Office. Toor will be joined by NewDEAL Leaders to explore opportunities and challenges found by states and cities that are working to reduce dirty carbon emissions and build more resilient communities in the face of extreme weather threats.

Climate Change Segment – Monday, May 6

12:00 p.m. Opening Session Remarks
Including climate-focused remarks by Congressman Jason Crow (CO-06)

1:00 p.m. Climate Change Working Group Launch & Panel: Why States & Cities Can – and are – Leading the Way
Remarks by Governor Bill Ritter and panel featuring: Mandela Barnes, Wisconsin Lieutenant Governor; Andria McClellan, Norfolk City Councilmember; Lauren McLean, Boise City Council President; and Will Toor, Executive Director of Colorado Energy Office

The Summit will also feature a new effort from Jason Kander, the former Missouri Secretary of State who galvanized millions of Americans during his surprisingly close 2016 U.S. Senate campaign and founded the national group Let America Vote. Kander, who served in the Army, will be joined by CNN Hero Chris Stout to present an initiative to combat veteran homelessness.

About NewDEAL

Co-chaired by U.S. Senator Mark Warner (VA) and former Delaware Governor Jack Markell, the NewDEAL is a network of 169 pro-growth progressive state and local officeholders in 45 states, and was founded to support innovative, rising leaders in developing and spreading policies that spur economic growth that is broadly-earned and sustainable. In addition to facilitating the exchange of ideas among its members along with other political, policy, and private sector leaders, NewDEAL promotes a pro-growth progressive policy agenda to address the nation’s biggest issues, including through its members work on extensive recommendations around the future of work


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