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Bennett leaving Institute

Brent Gardner-Smith

Former Aspen Mayor John Bennett is stepping down from his post as vice president-Aspen of the Aspen Institute.

“I am proud of the work we’ve been able to accomplish in a relatively short time,” said Bennett, who started work at the Institute in July 1999 after serving for eight years as Aspen’s mayor. His last day is Jan. 31, 2001.

Amy Margerum, who was Aspen city manager for almost the same eight years as Bennett’s time in office, also joined the Institute as a vice president after leaving the public sector. She was recently promoted to executive vice president for administration and finance for the entire Institute, which has a major facility near Washington, D.C., as well as a number of other campuses around the world.

Bennett’s main responsibility was to reconnect the Institute with the Aspen community and build up programs for local residents.

“John was probably the only person who could help us so profoundly in two arenas critical to the operation of a vibrant Aspen Institute,” said Elmer W. Johnson, the president and CEO of the Institute. “The first was open communications between our organization and the Roaring Fork Valley community. The second was the creative support of our Society of Fellows and its program. He surpassed our expectations on both counts.”

Bennett also worked extensively on the Institute’s 50th Anniversary event, which focused on the issues of globalism. He helped smooth things out between the formal Institute event and The People’s Summit on Globalism, which held protests outside the Institute grounds.

“This assignment has been one in which I felt I could make a unique contribution, and I leave here knowing that I have taken some important initiatives that others will build on,” Bennett said in a release. “I truly believe in the beautiful and noble dream on which the Aspen Institute was founded.”

Bennett is on vacation in Mexico and could not be reached for comment on his future plans.


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