John W. Firor, former director of the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colorado, and a former board member of WRI, died November 5 in Pullman, Washington after a long battle with Alzheimer’s.
“John was a great spirit, a brilliant scientist, and a powerful force in the creation of the World Resources Institute,” said WRI President Jonathan Lash.
Firor was a founding board member of the Institute in 1982 and served until 1999. He was able to serve on WRI’s board for so long because it was prior to the introduction of term limits.
James Gustave Speth, WRI founder and former president, as well as the current dean of the Yale University School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, added, “John was recruited as a founding member of WRI’s board of directors in the early days of the organization and may have been the longest serving member during his tenure from 1982-1999.
“He served as our consulting scientist and sage, guiding our policies on controversial issues with a sound scientific basis and wise eye to the world,” Speth said. “We benefited greatly from the extraordinary attentiveness he gave to our WRI board deliberations – and also from his sparkling good humor!”
Firor was an internationally recognized expert on public policy issues relating to the atmospheric sciences, including climate change and sustainable development. He authored the 1990 book, The Changing Atmosphere, which addresses global ecology and the interlinking of the issues of acid rain, ozone depletion, and global warming.
Photo of John W. Fidor courtesy of the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research
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