Editor’s Note: NESSE Executive Director Jennie writes to thank former Secretary and Director of Sustainable Science Groups, Laura Hoch, for her tremendous work over the past three years.
There are very few times in your life when you meet someone with an energy, spark and passion that touches everyone around them. Laura Hoch is one of those people – and it has been an absolute privilege and joy to work with her to develop NESSE over the past few years. After three years helping to shape NESSE from the initial idea, Laura is now moving on to exciting new opportunities. However she will always remain in NESSE’s heart, not just from the groups and ideas she has nurtured, but also in providing input to our Advisory Group.
Laura has been wonderful to work with, simply because her instant response to new ideas is ‘yes’! She is fascinated in what she can learn from everyone around her and instantly shares her joy and passion for the things she loves. Laura shaped our groups work, helping to share inspiration between sustainable science initiatives around the world, from the Green Chemistry Initiative which she co-founded several years ago at the University of Toronto, to the new groups she supported through her fantastic short course. In that time she has not only been an integral part of NESSE, but has also gained her doctorate, started a new job and moved town!
On a more personal note, she is great fun! We finalised NESSE’s launch event in Washington DC over coffee after we’d both just flown in, an hour before the event!! We’ve run around together madly organising events at the International Symposium on Green Chemistry and celebrated together with delicious crepes, French cider and cycling at sunset. We held our first NESSE Board retreat over-looking the sea in Rhode Island followed by wild camping and swimming in the forests of Vermont.
And this is what is great about networks. You don’t just find people to work or share ideas with, you make friendships that will last a lifetime. You learn and take the best from the people you meet, and together you can create something amazing. If NESSE is a network of leaders who are even half as amazing as Laura, I know that it will have a huge and positive impact on the world. So thank you Laura for all your time and effort you have put into NESSE, for believing in it from the very beginning and for your positivity, energy and smile. We’ll miss you, but we’ll definitely see you around!