Patrick Administration Announces New Undersecretary at Energy and Environmental Affairs

Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) Secretary Maeve Vallely Bartlett recently announced she has appointed Department of Energy Resources (DOER) Commissioner Mark Sylvia as EEA Undersecretary for Energy. Sylvia succeeds Undersecretary Barbara Kates-Garnick, who is leaving EEA for the Fletcher School at Tufts University.

“Mark Sylvia has been a leader in growing the clean energy revolution in Massachusetts, helping develop national models for clean energy and energy efficiency initiatives, and I am confident he will continue to build on the many successes we have achieved at EEA over the last seven and a half years,” said Secretary Bartlett. “I thank Undersecretary Kates-Garnick for her service and I know she will be an invaluable member of the team at the Fletcher School.”

Sylvia has been with the Patrick Administration since 2009 and has served as Green Communities Division Director as well as Commissioner. He and his team have implemented nation-leading policies, leading to the number one ranking in energy efficiency three years in a row and surpassing the Governor’s ambitious solar goal of 250 megawatts by 2017 four years early.

“I’m thrilled to be appointed Undersecretary and excited to continue promoting the Governor’s clean energy agenda, which has put the Commonwealth on the global map for energy innovation and new technology,” said Sylvia.

Under Sylvia’s leadership, DOER has launched innovative programs to support energy resiliency, electric vehicle adoption, building labeling and renewable thermal technologies. There are now 123 cities and towns that have been designated as Green Communities, representing 48 percent of the Commonwealth’s population.

Sylvia earned a bachelor’s degree in political science and a master’s degree in public administration from the American University in Washington D.C. He lives with his wife, Veronique, and children, Mitchell and Scarlett, in his hometown of Fairhaven where he is the elected Town Moderator.

Kates-Garnick served for nearly three years as Undersecretary, and previously served as both Department of Public Utilities Commissioner and Assistant Secretary of Consumer Affairs. She also founded one of the region’s competitive electric suppliers and served as a vice president at KeySpan. At the Fletcher School, Kates-Garnick will assume teaching duties and will serve as the Interim Director of the Energy, Climate and Innovation Program.