America’s 1st Sustainable Mayor | Barbara Buffaloe

In this episode of the Sustainable Ambassador Podcast, we have the honor of speaking with the Mayor of Columbia, Missouri, Barbara Buffaloe.

Through our conversation, we speak about how as Mayor sustainability is embedded into her work, the importance of engaging her constituents, the challenges/opportunities that are unique to a small(er) Midwestern town, and the resources/ inspirations she gains from being part of a group of sustainability-oriented mayor.

It’s a great conversation that speaks to how local leaders are looking at sustainability strategically, and the process for making progress, and I hope that you will enjoy it.

About Mayor Buffaloe
Barbara Buffaloe is the Mayor of Columbia, MO, the fourth largest city in Missouri. She serves on the Board of Directors for the Missouri Innovation Center, and as an ex-officio member on the Board of Directors for REDI and the Columbia Chamber of Commerce.

Mayor Buffaloe is Chair of the Environment Committee of the US Conference of Mayors and was part of a delegation representing US Mayors at COP28 in December 2023. Mayor Buffaloe is part of the 7th cohort of Mayors for the Bloomberg Harvard Civic Leadership – a yearlong program providing executive education and management training to advance leadership, strengthen city halls, and deliver results for communities

Before being elected Mayor of Columbia, she served as Columbia’s first Sustainability Manager. Mayor Buffaloe coordinated the development of Columbia’s Climate Action & Adaptation Plan that lays out a vision and strategies to address risks posed by climate change and contributes to international efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. She has presented on the topics of climate action at numerous conferences, including the US Department of Energy’s Better Buildings Summit, the Midwest Climate Collective’s Climate Summit, and the Advancing Renewables in the Midwest conference.

Mayor Buffaloe also serves as advisor to the Board of Directors for the Urban Sustainability Directors Network (USDN) and is a member of the Columbia Rotary Club. Mayor Buffaloe holds a BS in Environmental Design and a MS in Environment & Behavior from the University of Missouri. She has been a LEED Accredited Professional since 2004.

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About Collective Responsibility
Based in Shanghai, Collective Responsibility is a strategic advisory firm founded by Richard Brubaker, one of Asia’s most recognized authorities on sustainability, innovation and responsible leadership.

Founded with the fundamental belief that a sustainable world can only be achieved through awareness of issues, finding tangibility in business cases, and development of cross-sector collaboration, Collective Responsibility acts as a knowledge base, catalyst, and facilitator between stakeholders.

Our mission is to:
– Create a knowledge base and catalyze discussion of issues related to the development of civil society, business sustainability and social development in Asia.
– Develop tangible interests, engagement, and action on issues of sustainability (economic, environmental and societal).
– Develop organizational capacity with the aim to help create stable and profitable enterprises.

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