Frances Beinecke, Senior Fellow, Natural Resources Defense Council

Frances Beinecke is the former president of Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), a leading nonprofit environmental group that works to preserve clean air and water, protect people’s health, preserve wild landscapes, and foster vibrant and sustainable communities. Using legal and scientific expertise, NRDC creates and enforces the laws that protect our environment.

Under Ms. Beinecke’s leadership, NRDC focused on finding solutions to some of the biggest environmental challenges of our time, including establishing a clean energy future that curbs climate change, reviving the world's oceans, defending endangered wildlife and wild places, protecting our health by preventing pollution, fostering sustainable communities, and ensuring safe and sufficient water.

Prior to becoming the president in 2006, Ms. Beinecke served as the organization’s executive director for eight years.
In 2010, Ms. Beinecke was appointed by President Obama to the National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling. She is a member the Secretary of Energy’s Advisory Board (SEAB); she serves on the Advisory Board of the MIT Energy Initiative, National Academies of Science and the board of World Resources Institute (WRI).

Ms. Beinecke received a bachelor’s degree from Yale College and a master’s degree from the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. She has co-chaired the Leadership Council of Yale School of Forestry, is a member of the Yale School of Management’s Advisory Board and is a former member of the Yale Corporation.

Ms. Beinecke has received the Yale Medal from Yale University and numerous distinguished and honors. She was awarded an honorary degree from Lehman College, Doctor of Humane Letters, as well as an honorary degree from Vermont Law School, Doctor of Laws.