Adrian Shelley, who has served as executive director of Air Alliance Houston, has been named the new director of Public Citizen’s Texas office, Public Citizen announced today.
Shelley replaces Tom “Smitty” Smith, who is retiring after 31 years of championing consumer rights and clean energy policies. Smith’s retirement was announced in September. He has remained at the helm while the organization searched for a new director.
Shelley has run Air Alliance Houston (AAH) since April 2013. Under Shelley’s leadership, the organization made significant progress in the fight for clean air and a healthy future in Houston. AAH is a founding member of the Healthy Port Communities Coalition, of which Public Citizen is a member.
“Smitty is a hero of mine, and I am honored to continue his work in Austin,” Shelley said. “As a native Texan, I look forward to advocating on behalf of all Texans.”
Shelley replaces Smith, widely known around the state Capitol as the man in the white hat. Smith’s work has led to reforms that have improved public health and safety, protected consumers’ pocketbooks and helped curb climate change.
“Texas and America are better places thanks to Smitty’s work,” said Robert Weissman, president of Public Citizen. “Smitty’s breakthrough advocacy and initiatives in Texas pioneered achievements in clean energy, renewables and consumer protection that have spread across the nation. There’s no replacement for Smitty, but we’ve found a superstar of the next generation in Adrian, and are looking forward to seeing him innovate new pathways to progress.”
Added Smith, “Adrian is a star in the environmental movement. He has proven to be a strong leader who is smart, dedicated and very tactical. He’ll go far. I am very pleased he has been chosen to be my replacement.”
Shelley will remain in Houston with Air Alliance Houston while that organization finds a new executive director.