Environmental Affairs Secretary Announces Departure – Golledge Designated Ghana Country Director for Peace Corps

Massachusetts Secretary of Environmental Affairs Robert W. Golledge, Jr. has been designated Ghana Country Director for the Peace Corps in Ghana, West Africa. He is scheduled to enter overseas training (OST) in Washington, D.C. in late January, and upon successful completion of OST he will take up his new post in Ghana.

“I am honored to be offered the opportunity to serve with the Peace Corps again,” said Secretary Golledge. “I am also very fortunate to have had the chance to work with so many dedicated and professional people during my tenure at EOEA and MassDEP.”

Ghana has the distinction of being the first country in the world to welcome the Peace Corps in 1961. The Peace Corps currently has 175 volunteers in Ghana supporting programs in education, small enterprise development, environment and health.

Golledge was named Secretary of Environmental Affairs by Governor Mitt Romney in Aug. 2006 after serving three years as commissioner of the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP). Under Golledge’s leadership, these agencies employed a range of innovative approaches to protect public health and the Commonwealth’s natural resources from pollution and contamination.

Some examples include:

  • Mitigation for offshore LNG facility;
  • Becoming the first state in the nation to establish a drinking water standard for the chemical perchlorate in order to protect sensitive populations;
  • Setting tough standards requiring significant reductions of mercury emissions from power plants; and
  • Increasing enforcement against environmental violators – one such effort was a unique aerial enforcement initiative that detected illegal wetland destruction through the use of computer-mapping technology.

Golledge has extensive experience in environmental management in both the public and private sectors. In the early part of his career, he was a Peace Corps volunteer in Costa Rica, where he worked on aquaculture projects with local farmers. At VHB, a national consulting firm, he was director of the Environmental Science Group in Massachusetts. He also spent thirteen years in a range of senior positions within MassDEP leading up to his appointment as commissioner in 2003.

Earlier this year, Golledge received the Paul G. Keough Award for Government Service from the Environmental Business Council of New England. He has also received Public Service Awards for his environmental work from the Massachusetts Association of Conservation Commissions and the Cape Cod Cranberry Growers Association.