Spaanstra elected chairman of Mines Board of Trustees

GOLDEN, Colo., Feb. 10, 2011 – The Colorado School of Mines Board of Trustees recently elected trustee James Spaanstra to serve as chairman of the board through Dec. 31, 2012.
Spaanstra, who initially was appointed to the board of trustees in 2008, is a partner in the law firm of Faegre & Benson LLP. He has been in private practice for more than 30 years, developing one of the largest and most diverse environmental practices in the Rocky Mountain region.
Spaanstra has worked his entire career on major projects for the extractive industries developed in large part by Mines graduates -- from the Exxon Colony Oil Shale project in the early 1980s to the recently approved Energy Fuels Piñon Ridge uranium mill. Early in his career, he served as a staff attorney for the Council on Environmental Quality in the Executive Office of the President of the United States where he helped develop national environmental policy. Since that time, he has actively participated in the drafting and development of environmental laws and regulations at the local, state and federal levels.
Spaanstra also currently serves as treasurer of the Great Outdoors Colorado Board of Directors and is a recent past chair of the Colorado Commission on Judicial Discipline and the Jefferson County Planning Commission. He is a founding director of the Colorado Hazardous Waste Management Society.
He received his economics and political science from Grand Valley State University and his joint degree in Law and Public Policy from the University of Michigan Law School and the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy.
The board also elected trustee Admiral Richard Truly as vice chairman. Truly is a former astronaut who piloted the space shuttle Columbia and was commander of the space shuttle Discovery. He later served as administrator of NASA and director of NREL. Trustee Vicki Cowart, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains was elected as secretary of the board and Mines Senior Vice President for Finance and Administration Kirsten Volpi was elected treasurer.
Karen Gilbert, Director of Public Relations / 303-273-3541 /

David Tauchen, Public Relations Specialist / 303-273-3088 / 


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