It's official: Carl Pope announced Friday that he is stepping down from his position as chairman of the Sierra Club to devote most of his time to working with environmental organizations, corporations and organized labor in the "green economy."
Pope, 66, who served the club for 17 years as executive director, announced his career change in an email to club members on Friday:
"Dear Sierra Club Colleagues,
After 38 years with the Sierra Club, I am opening my dance card to new partners. In December, I shall stand down as Chairman to undertake a new initiative. My hope is to pull together a broad front of environmental groups, labor unions, clean-economy innovators, mainline manufacturers, civil rights organizations, and state and local officials to insist that candidates for public office in 2012 address the role of innovation, clean technology, and manufacturing in rebuilding the American economy and restoring the American middle class.
I will continue to serve as a consultant to the Sierra Club and to fund-raise on the Club's behalf through 2012, but this shift in my professional focus marks the close of my career as a full-time Club employee with broad-spectrum responsibility. Each of my previous Club roles, including my tenure as Chairman, has been a privilege and an opportunity, largely because of the incredible staff and volunteer colleagues with whom I have had the good fortune to work. I look forward to continuing many of those relationships -- and to building new ones as my role outside the Club develops.
There are simply too many of you to thank and too much to be grateful for. So, for now, let's just keep fighting the good fight.
-- Louis Sahagun
Photo: Sierra Club Chairman Carl Pope, who has announced he is stepping down. Credit: David Butow/For The Times