Thomas O. Murtha

Preventable Surprises

Senior Adviser, USA



Thomas (Tom) Murtha is an active practitioner of corporate stewardship as well as sustainable investing and works and resides in both New York City and Norfolk, CT. At Preventable Surprises, a non-profit focusing on risk management issues requiring attention, his work focuses on corporate engagement through shareholder resolutions to address the systemic risk of climate change by encouraging companies to publish (and implement) transition plans for net zero GHG emissions. After retiring from the Nature Conservancy (TNC), Tom continues work initiated at TNC on energy, mining, and infrastructure issues and addressing the cumulative impacts of energy and resource development.  Post TNC, Tom advises pensions and endowments on sustainable investing issues related to resource extraction and renewable energy. As an adjunct professor at Columbia University’s Earth Institute Center for Environmental Sustainability (EICES), Tom’s recent course offerings include “Scenarios for a Sustainable World” and “Principles, Tools and Approaches for a More Resilient World.” Earlier in his 30+- year career in finance, Tom worked as an analyst and investment banker in Tokyo, Hong Kong, and New York for the investment bank Jardine Fleming, a joint venture between Hong Kong trading company Jardine Matheson and UK investment bank Robert Fleming. At T. Rowe Price Associates in Baltimore, Maryland, USA, Tom was a portfolio manager for the International Stock Fund and the Global Technology Fund. Tom is a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) and earned an MPA degree in Environmental Science and Policy from Columbia University and, MA and BS degrees, in economics and mathematics, respectively, from Ohio University.  Publications include op-eds in Institutional Investor, Pensions and investments,, and the Huffington Post.  Tom and his spouse Elizabeth Knowles actively support the Norfolk Land Trust and Great Mountain Forest in Connecticut’s northwest corner. Avocations Tom is passionate about include fly-fishing for trout on healthy streams, hiking, mycology, ethnomusicology, and enjoying off-Broadway theatre and contemporary visual arts.

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