R. Scott Wallinger, retired senior vice president at MeadWestvaco Corporation and a champion of sustainable development; Richard Benedick, former United States ambassador and a principal architect of a major treaty protecting the atmosphere; and Robert Ward, an internationally renowned composer, will receive honorary degrees on behalf of NC State from Interim Chancellor Robert Barnhardt.
A 1960 graduate of NC State, Wallinger has worked tirelessly to promote sustainable forestry. He is a founding director of the National Commission on Science for Sustainable Forestry, and co-leader of The Forests Dialogue, an international group representing industry, nongovernmental organizations and forest owners that uses dialogue to break impasses on critical forest issues.
Early in his professional career, Wallinger pioneered a program that provided thousands of private forest landowners in the Southeast with the advice they needed to make informed decisions about their land. Building on that program, he led the forest industry in the effort to establish the Sustainable Forestry Initiative, which commits every member company to implement sustainability practices on their own lands.