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Advisor, Chair

Dr. John Wear, founder and executive director emeritus of the Center for the Environment and associate professor of biology and environmental science at Catawba College, has been involved in a diverse array of environmental efforts for over a quarter of a century, including: air quality improvement, land conservation, watershed protection and sustainability. He is a fellow of the American Leadership Forum and has been named Conservationist of the Year by the Governor’s Conservation Achievement Awards Program, “Guardian of the Earth” by the Charlotte Observer, and Green Builder of the Year by the Carolina Recycling Association, the nation’s largest recycling association, for his oversight of the design of the facility that houses the Center for the Environment, one of the Southeast’s first green academic buildings.


During his tenure at Catawba, he assumed responsibility for establishing the college's Environmental Program, coordinating the faculty's creation of four different degrees. In addition, he spearheaded the Sustainable Catawba initiative. More recently, Dr. Wear and the staff at the Center for the Environment have been instrumental in the creation of the National Environmental Summit for High School Students.

Dr. Wear teaches college courses and lectures broadly on a variety of topics that focus on environmental challenges and the creation of sustainable solutions. He holds a bachelor of science degree from North Carolina State University; a master of science degree from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte; and a Ph.D. from Wake Forest University.

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