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The Office of Environmental Stewardship and Sustainability (OESS) is a department in the Division of Access and Enrollment Management at James Madison University.  The mission of the OESS is to facilitate sustainability by advocating for environmental stewardship priorities, coordinating reporting and recognition of the sustainability-related efforts of the JMU community, and encouraging engagement of all members of the JMU community in sustainability education and environmental stewardship.

The responsibility for sustainability (including environmental stewardship) is not housed in one university unit, but is shared across all divisions. JMU’s achievements can be attributed to the efforts of staff, faculty and students in many areas, commonly in collaboration. Visit for more information about sustainability at JMU.


The Office of Environmental Stewardship and Sustainability

  • coordinates tracking and reporting related to environmental stewardship and sustainability.
  • measures environmental stewardship and sustainability progress.
  • represents JMU’s environmental stewardship and sustainability efforts externally. 
  • facilitates strategic planning related to environmental stewardship.
  • promotes the campus environmental stewardship learning outcomes.
  • promotes environmental stewardship and sustainability education and engagement.
  • obtains resources and builds internal and external partnerships that enhance environmental stewardship capacity. 
  • assists with project funding searches and applications related to environmental stewardship and sustainability.
  • facilitates access to campus information and resources related to environmental stewardship.
  • coordinates the East Campus Hillside and Sphere Theater.
  • coordinates the Institute for Stewardship of the Natural World (ISNW), the university stakeholder committees.
  • provides support for conference presentations by students and for undergraduate summer research experiences related to environmental stewardship.


  • Christie-Joy B. Hartman, Ph.D., Executive Director e-mail, profile
  • Melissa Altman, Grant Writer e-mail
  • Christy Bradburn, Program and Planning Analyst e-mail
  • Kim Hall, Graduate Assistant e-mail


The OESS organizes four stakeholder committees, which are collectively called the Institute for Stewardship of the Natural World (ISNW) Committees. Faculty, staff, students and local government staff representatives serve on the committees. The committees make policy and practice recommendations, conduct projects related to their expertise, and serve as peer educators.

The Awareness and Programming Committee increases awareness of issues of sustainability and environmental stewardship through planning, marketing and supporting programs that share information which challenges all members of the JMU community to think critically about their role in achieving the long-term stewardship of the Earth.

The Campus Accessibility Committee supports the transportation demand coordination efforts on campus by assisting with analyzing progress and identifying transportation opportunities.

The Conservation Committee models and champions best practices for environmental stewardship and pilot tests potential environmental stewardship initiatives.

The Education and Scholarship Committee promotes and celebrates teaching and learning across disciplines and general education, as well as scholarly and creative activities that engage faculty, staff, students and other members of the community in improving our environment.

The OESS is advised by an Executive Council, and council members chair the ISNW committees. Council members include:

  • Virginia Cook, Director of Real Property and Space Management
  • Maggie Evans, Executive Assistant to the President
  • Marsha Mays-Bernard, Associate Vice-President, Multicultural Awareness & Student Health
  • Jim McConnel, Ph.D., Dean of Students
  • Mack Moore, Risk Management Coordinator
  • Towana Moore, Associate Vice President of Business Services
  • Craig Short, Director of Facilities Management
  • Jeffrey Tang, Ph.D., Associate Dean, College of Integrated Science and Engineering