Stephen Dotson will be the first Sustainability Coordinator for the Town of Brattleboro. Town Manager Peter Elwell announced the appointment at the Brattleboro Selectboard meeting on Tuesday evening. Dotson’s first day in his new position will be February 3.
During more than a decade of providing services to a wide variety of sustainability and social action projects and programs (sometimes as an employee and often as a consultant or contractor), Dotson has most often served in communications roles but also has led or materially assisted in analytical and management work that has been essential to the success of those efforts.
In recent years here in the Brattleboro area, Dotson has served as Director of Communications and Marketing for the Northeast Sustainable Energy Association, as Corporate Sustainability Operations Associate for OneReport, Inc., and as Associate Director of the Rich Earth Institute. He has served as a commissioner on the Windham Regional Commission, as a member of the Southeastern Vermont Economic Development Strategies (SeVEDS) board, and on the leadership team for the Ecovation Hub.
He has assisted other local organizations including Brattleboro Savings and Loan, Retreat Farm, Friends of the West River Trail, the Resilient Design Institute, and Strolling of the Heifers’ Slow Living Summit.
Before coming to this area, Dotson earned a dual BA in Philosophy and Sociology at Guilford College in Greensboro, North Carolina, and held leadership positions serving Quaker youth in the mid-Atlantic states, performing communications and videojournalism work with Waging.Nonviolence.org, on the US Strong Campaign related to recovery from Superstorm Sandy in New Jersey, and at the Envision Peace Museum in Philadelphia.
He also was Co-Director, Co-Producer, and Digital Outreach Director for “99%: The Occupy Wall Street Collaborative Film” that premiered at the 2013 Sundance Festival.
“We are impressed by the breadth of Stephen’s experience, by the sharpness of his analytical work, and by the quiet intensity with which he engages in community
building,” said Planning Services Director Sue Fillion, who will be Dotson’s direct supervisor. “We are excited to be bringing him onto our team.”
Dotson views the work he will do as Brattleboro’s Sustainability Coordinator to be an “opportunity to serve the community and operate at the intersection of systems like energy, waste, water, food/agriculture, transportation, housing, and more.” He is looking forward to supporting the sustainability efforts of other Town employees and to engaging with the public on both short-term actions and long-term strategies.
“I believe this region has a wealth of local resources that could be further leveraged with the right weaving of partnerships and coordination,” said Dotson. “There is already so much strong work to build upon, and a desire to see real change happen in the community, I’m incredibly honored to be chosen and excited to see what we can all achieve together through this role.”
Dotson was selected from over 75 applicants for the newly created position. “This was the strongest applicant pool we’ve had for any open position during my years with the Town,” Elwell said. “Many applicants had very strong education, experience, and other qualifications.” Elwell and Fillion made their final decision to hire Dotson after what Elwell described as “very thorough consideration of two outstanding finalists.”
Those finalists emerged from a process in which Elwell, Fillion, Selectboard members Elizabeth McLoughlin and Dave Schoales, Human Resources Director Sally Nix, Public Works Director Steve Barrett, Energy Committee Chair Oscar Heller, and Windham & Windsor Housing Trust Executive Director Elizabeth Bridgewater reviewed all the applications, conducted telephone interviews with 16 applicants, and conducted face-to-face interviews with 6 semi-finalists.
TOWN OF BRATTLEBORO
Town Manager’s Office
230 Main Street Brattleboro, VT 05301
(802) 254-4541 FAX (802) 257-2322