About Us

About Deborah Stone, Cook County Chief Sustainability Officer:

Deborah Stone is a graduate of the Harris School at the University of Chicago, where she earned a master’s degree in public policy. She came to Cook County after working at the Illinois Department of Natural Resources on open space preservation, recreation, and water supply. Stone is also a former executive director of the nonprofit Metropolitan Planning Council and has worked on sustainable urban development. Her focus has included infrastructure investment and financing, and capital budgeting for the State of Illinois. An almost lifelong resident of Cook County, Deborah is passionately excited about using her experience to help realize Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle’s vision of Cook County as a world-class model of sustainability.


A Message from the Chief Sustainability Officer:


Cook County faces many sustainability challenges.

  • Houses, businesses, vehicles, and other emissions generators in Cook County are, collectively, the largest source of Greenhouse Gases in the metro region.
  • There were four days in 2011 when air quality in the county was bad enough to be harmful to children, the elderly, and people with sensitive health conditions.
  • Residents and businesses in County generate over 8 pounds of garbage per person per day.
  • There is only one remaining open landfill in Cook County, and it has only about seven years of capacity left.

But we have already made strides.

  • County government has reduced its combined electricity and natural gas usage in government buildings by 18% since 2003.
  • Last year Cook County collected over 36 tons of used electronics and unwanted or expired medications, keeping them out of landfills and preventing them from polluting land and water.
  • The Department of Environmental Control makes about 8,000 inspections of businesses, demolition and asbestos removal sites in suburban Cook every year, to check for compliance with air quality regulations.
  • Cook County has undertaken programs to retrofit 107 County-owned diesel vehicles to reduce their tailpipe emissions by up to 90%.

And working together with our local government, business and nonprofit partners, our goal is to make Cook County a world-class model of sustainability.

Thank you,

Deborah Stone,

Chief Sustainability Officer, Cook County Government