Tom L. Richard, Ph.D.

Director, Institutes of Energy and the Environment, and Professor of Agricultural and Biological Engineering, Penn State University

Tom Richard, Ph.D., is a professor of agricultural and biological engineering and the director of Penn State’s Institutes for Energy and the Environment where he coordinates a network of almost 500 faculty engaged in innovative interdisciplinary research and education on fossil and renewable energy, energy efficiency, water, climate, ecosystems, and environmental health. His research and teaching focus on applications of fundamental engineering science to microbial and agricultural systems, developing market-based strategies for a more sustainable agriculture, and the emerging bio-based economy. 

Richard is co-chair of the GCSE Energy Education Community of Practice, is an advisor for Penn State’s GCSE EnvironMentors Chapter, and is collaborating with GCSE and Project Drawdown on climate action education. He currently serves on the Agricultural Science Committee of the EPA’s Science Advisory Board and is the deputy technical director for the DOE’s National Risk Assessment Partnership for geologic carbon sequestration. Richard is a fellow of ASABE and a fellow and past president of the Institute of Biological Engineering. He has a bachelor's degree from the University of California at Berkeley, and master's and doctoral degrees from Cornell University.