John W. Passacantando
John W. Passacantando married Suzanne Moyers in 1986. At the time of his marriage he was "in corporate sales at Polyconomics Inc., a political and economic consulting concern in Morristown, N.J.. His father is a sales executive for the Massachusetts Life Insurance Company in Paramus and Whippany and a member of the Million Dollar Roundtable for outstanding salesmen. His mother, Marie F. Passacantando, is a real-estate agent with Schlott Realty in Morristown." 
"After several years making environmental grants at the Florence and John Schumann Foundation, Passacantando in 1992 co-founded Ozone Action, which organized some of the first scientists, mayors, coastal residents, students, business leaders and presidential candidates to speak out against climate change. He began a major research effort to track corporate money spent on front groups created to confuse the public about climate change, work that continues today at Greenpeace’s www.exxonsecrets.org. When Passacantando assumed the helm of Greenpeace in 2000, he merged Ozone Action with Greenpeace USA, one of the largest offices of a global organization active in more than 40 countries." 
"Passacantando – a conservative turned environmentalist – has been fighting for over two decades to protect our planet and save it from the “carbon-based” peril we find ourselves in today." 
- Former Executive Director, Greenpeace USA
- International Advisory Board, Pew Global Attitudes Project
"He sold computer systems, then was hired by Jude Wanniski's Polyconomics Inc. to sell economic research to Wall Street. "In fact, very conservative research, supply-side research," he recalled. "It was pro-development, without any regard for sustainability."
"Meanwhile he got a master's degree in economics at New York University. But his world view was starting to change.
"He was reading John Muir and Rachel Carson, the farmer-philosopher Wendell Berry and the eco-spiritualist Thomas Berry. And he became involved "as a minor player" in a local development dispute in Morristown, N.J.
"Then Bill Moyers, the head of the Florence and John Schumann Foundation in Montclair, N.J., who is the father of Mr. Passacantando's first wife, took him aboard with the assignment of encouraging "a grass-roots renewal of democracy."
"(His current wife works on environmental policy in the Clinton administration.)
"The work brought him into contact with environmental advocates, people like Michael Clark, who was building a coalition to protect the Yellowstone ecosystem, and Jeff DeBonis, who was organizing green-leaning professionals in the Forest Service.
""I saw that there was, after all, a movement of activists all over the country; it just did not get through the veil," he says. "There was a wonderful buzz in our democracy, which I had not been seeing, which I did not see in college. This is my generation's great battle, and I wanted to be in the trenches."
Resources and articles
Related Sourcewatch articles
- John W. Passacantando Plans to Wed Suzanne Moyers, Teacher, in August, NYT, accessed October 20, 2009.
- John Passacantando steps down as Greenpeace USA executive director, Greenpeace USA, accessed October 20, 2009.
- Buying Air-Conditioners: An Environmental Guide, NYT, accessed October 20, 2009.
- John W. Passacantando, apbspeakers, accessed October 20, 2009.
- Greenpeace USA & Ozone Action Attempt A Merger, The New York Times Company , accessed October 20, 2009.