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Fritsch, Al 1933- (Albert J. Fritsch)

Fritsch, Al 1933- (Albert J. Fritsch)

PERSONAL:

Born September 30, 1933, in Maysville, KY; son of Albert Anthony and Mary Fritsch. Education: Xavier University, B.S., 1955, M.S., 1956; attended West Baden College, 1959-61; Fordham University, Ph.D., 1964; Loyola University, Bellarmine School of Theology, S.T.L., 1968. Hobbies and other interests: Gardening, writing, research.

ADDRESSES:

Office—St. Elizabeth of Hungary Church, 316 5th St., Ravenna, KY 40472-1312.

CAREER:

Writer, environmental activist, chemist, and Jesuit priest. Entered Society of Jesus (S.J.; Jesuits), 1956, ordained Roman Catholic priest, 1967. University of Texas, Austin, research fellow, 1969-70; Center for Study of Responsive Law, Washington, DC, science consultant, 1970-71; Center for Science in the Public Interest, cofounder and codirector, 1971-77; Appalachia—Science in the Public Interest (a science and technology organization), founder and director, 1977-2002; Good Shepherd Catholic Church, Frankfort, KY, sacramental minister, 2003-04; St. Elizabeth Church, Ravenna, KY, parish priest, 2004—. National Cathedral, Washington, DC, scholar-in-residence, 1986; Gamaliel Chair, Milwaukee, WI, 1991; Santa Clara University, CA, Bannon Chair, 1996; Marquette University, WI, Wade Chair, 1998. Earth Healing (an environmental organization), director. President of Technical Information Project, 1974—, Appalachian Coalition, 1978—, and Sun-Rep, 1980—; president of board of directors of Solar Lobby, 1980—. Director or advisor for organizations such as the Research Policy Institute, Center for the Study of Commercialism, Environmental Resource Assessment Service, and Kentuckians for Nursing Home Reform.

MEMBER:

American Chemical Society, American Association for the Advancement of Science, Sigma Xi, Phi Lambda.

AWARDS, HONORS:

Scholar at University of Miami, Coral Gables, FL, 1976.

WRITINGS:

A Theology of the Earth, CLB Publishers (Washington, DC), 1972.

Gasoline, Center for Science in the Public Interest, (Washington, DC), 1972.

(With John W. Egan) Big Oil: A Citizen's Factbook on the Major Oil Companies, Center for Science in the Public Interest (Washington, DC), 1973.

(With Barbara Hogan and Susan Guhl) How Aerosol Sprays Can Affect Your Safety and Health, Center for Science in the Public Interest (Washington, DC), 1973.

(With Barry I. Castleman) Asbestos and You, Center for Science in the Public Interest (Washington, DC), 1973, 3rd edition, 1975.

The Contrasumers: A Citizen's Guide to Resource Conservation, Praeger (New York, NY), 1974.

(With Barry I. Castleman) Lifestyle Index, Center for Science in the Public Interest (Washington, DC), 1974.

(With Ralph Gitomer) Major Oil: What Citizens Should Know About the Eight Major Oil Companies, Center for Science in the Public Interest (Washington, DC), 1974.

(Editor) Angus Henry McDonald, Shale Oil: An Environmental Critique, Center for Science in the Public Interest (Washington, DC), 1974.

(With Linda W. Dujack and Douglas A. Jimerman) Energy and Food: Energy Used in Production, Processing, Delivery, and Marketing of Selected Food Items, Center for Science in the Public Interest (Washington, DC), 1975, revised edition (with Anne Pierotti and Andrew G. Keeler), 1977.

(Editor) Andrew G. Keeler, A Citizen's Oil Factbook: What Every Citizen Should Know About the Eighteen Largest Oil Companies, Center for Science in the Public Interest (Washington, DC), 1975.

(Editor) Solar Energy: One Way to Citizen Control, Center for Science in the Public Interest (Washington, DC), 1976.

(Editor, with Alan Okagaki) 99 Ways to a Simple Lifestyle, illustrated by A.S. Csaky, Indiana University Press (Bloomington, IN), 1977.

(With Dennis Darcey, Gerald McMohan, and Elaine Burns) Strip Mine Blasting, Appalachia—Science in the Public Interest (Mt. Vernon, KY), 1977.

(With Jerome Nardt) Harlan County Flood Report, Appalachia—Science in the Public Interest (Mt. Vernon, KY), 1978.

(Editor, with Dennis Darcey and Barbara Hogan) The Household Pollutants Guide, Anchor Press (Garden City, NY), 1978.

(With Mark Morgan) Citizen's Blasting Handbook, Appalachia—Science in the Public Interest (Mt. Vernon, KY), 1978.

(With John Clemens and Francis Kazemek) Citizen's Coal Haul Handbook, Appalachia—Science in the Public Interest (Mt. Vernon, KY), 1978.

Toxic Substances and Trade Secrecy, Technical Information Project, 1978.

(With Elaine Burns, Thomas Conry, and David Fry) Environmental Ethics, Doubleday, 1979.

(With Robert Schemel) Citizen's Resource Handbook, Appalachia—Science in the Public Interest (Mt. Vernon, KY), 1979.

Toxic Substances: Decisions and Values, four volumes, Technical Information Project, 1979-80

(With the Science Action Coalition) Environmental Ethics: Choices for Concerned Citizens, Anchor Press (Garden City, NY), 1980.

Appalachia: A Meditation, photographs by Warren E. Brunner, Loyola University Press (Chicago, IL), 1986.

Renew the Face of the Earth, Loyola University Press (Chicago, IL), 1987.

(With Angela Iadavaia-Cox) Eco-Church: An Action Manual, Resource Publications (San Jose, CA), 1992.

Down to Earth Spirituality, Sheed & Ward (Kansas City, MO), 1992.

(With Kristin Johannsen) Ecotourism in Appalachia: Marketing the Mountains, The University Press of Kentucky (Lexington, KY), 2004.

(With Arthur H. Pucell and Mary Byrd Davis) Critical Hour: Three Mile Island, the Nuclear Legacy, and National Security, Yggdrasil Institute (Georgetown, KY), 2004.

(With Paul Gallimore) Healing Appalachia: Sustainable Living through Appropriate Technology, University Press of Kentucky (Lexington, KY), 2007.

Contributor to books, including Embracing the Earth, Orbis, 1994; Ecological Prospects, SUNY Press, 1994; Christianity & the Environmental Ethos, ITEST, 1996; The Greening of Faith, University Press of New England, 1996; and Religion in Ecology: Scientists Speak, Franciscan Press, 1998.

Contributor to Earth Healing Web site, and to periodicals, including Daily Reflections, 2005; Gray Matter in the Green: Special Issues in Earth Healing, 2005; and Eco-Spirituality through the Seasons, 2006.

Author of CD-ROM, Ethnic Atlas of the United States, Earth Healing (Frankfort, KY), 2005.

SIDELIGHTS:

Al Fritsch is a multifaceted writer, scientist, environmental activist, and ecological educator. A Jesuit priest with a keen interest in conservationism, Fritsch describes himself on the Inner Explorations Web site as "Kentucky-born, farm-raised, Catholic-nurtured, chemistry and liberal arts-educated, Jesuit priestly-called, public interest-involved, ecologically-concerned, and generally praying to continue with a balance of holy anger and compassionate mercy." He notes that his interest in conservationism developed early, as a youngster on a Kentucky farm. He has been involved in public interest issues for nearly three decades. He is a founder and longtime director of Appalachia—Science in the Public Interest, an organization that "seeks to make science and technology responsive to the needs of low-income people in Central Appalachia. The focus of attention is on environmental and appropriate technology issues," Fritsch stated on the Inner Explorations Web site.

In Healing Appalachia: Sustainable Living through Appropriate Technology, written with Paul Gallimore, Fritsch and his coauthor call upon their many years of experience with environmental issues to offer suggestions for the use of appropriate technology to create a harmonious, sustainable living throughout the unique ecosystems and geographical regions of Appalachia. The authors define appropriate technology as the use of the most basic and least intrusive technology available to achieve the desired results, whether that involves power generation, food production, forest management, transportation, waste disposal, or wildlife protection. They offer detailed information on what kinds of technology are practical and actually work in the region. Their concern extends not only to the environmental conditions of the Appalachians, but also to the diverse human communities that live there, and how human and nature can successfully coexist. Their technological assessments include consideration of practicality, affordability, ease of use, and ecological impact. Fritsch and Gallimore also provide in-depth details on construction and maintenance of the various technological projects they evaluate.

Fritsch is also the author, with Kristin Johannsen, of Ecotourism in Appalachia: Marketing the Mountains. In this book, the authors consider the nature and future of tourism in Appalachia, a rugged area that relies on tourism for much of its economic foundation. Fritsch and Johannsen look at the dilemmas inherent in tourism and how it damages the very natural resources that attract people in the first place. They endorse ecotourism, which seeks to protect the environment while also allowing public use and enjoyment of the resources. The book is "well written, lucid, critical, and informative," commented David Zurick in Southeastern Geographer. It is also "engaging and enjoyable to read, and provocative in the sense that the authors seek to both inform readers and provoke critical reflection and action among travelers and agents of tourism development," Zurick remarked.

BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:

PERIODICALS

Choice, September, 2004, Y.F. Leung, review of Ecotourism in Appalachia: Marketing the Mountains, p. 146.

National Catholic Reporter, April 10, 1992, William C. Graham, review of Down to Earth Spirituality, p. 14.

Southeastern Geographer, November, 2004, David Zurick, review of Ecotourism in Appalachia, p. 287.

ONLINE

Earth Healing Web site,http://www.earthhealing.info/ (February 19, 2008), biography of Al Fritsch.

Inner Explorations,http://www.innerexplorations.com/ (February 19, 2008), interview with Al Fritsch.

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