“As someone who has been fortunate enough to live, work, and travel in many unique and wonderful places, I can confidently say that sharing a delicious meal truly does bring people together. There is something special about trying a new dish or joining with others for a home-cooked meal that transcends language or cultural barriers, and often leads to unexpected insights and long-lasting friendships. However, for many people around the world, the simple act of cooking a meal can require long hours spent collecting firewood or other fuel sources, along with prolonged periods of cooking indoors over an open flame, inhaling smoke and particulate matter that is harmful to human health. Both these tasks disproportionately fall on the shoulders of women and children, and the smoke from these cooking fires pollutes the air we breathe and contributes to climate change. I am delighted to have the opportunity to work for Solar Cookers International to help promote the use of solar cooking in appropriate circumstances, expanding the positive impact on health and the environment that can be realized when solar energy is used to cook the meals that bring us together.” - Keith Wingeard, SCI Strategic Partnerships Manager
Keith Wingeard joined SCI in 2022 energized by the opportunity to help promote the positive benefits to households, communities, and the environment when utilizing solar energy for cooking food and pasteurizing water. With previous experience implementing clean drinking water projects in Southeast Asia using low-cost ceramic water filters, Keith has seen first-hand the tremendous impact that can be realized when a simple solution gets into the hands and homes of the right people at the right time. Although the United Nations’ 17 Sustainable Development Goals clearly indicate there remains much to be done to improve human well-being, address climate change, and ensure we have a sustainable future for our planet, Keith passionately believes it will take a variety of ideas and solutions to respond to these challenges, and remains committed to doing his part to help strengthen SCI’s partnerships with like-minded organizations to achieve these goals.
In addition to his experience working on clean drinking water projects, Keith previously served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Thailand, working in the education sector with local counterparts on English language lesson plans, curriculum development, and teacher training workshops. The cross-cultural communication skills he cultivated in Thailand have been invaluable to his ability to work in collaboration with diverse partner organizations. Keith also previously attended the Josef Korbel School of International Studies at the University of Denver, earning a master’s degree in International Development with a concentration in Sustainable Development. Keith attended the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada, where he earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in International Relations.
In addition to growing his solar cooking skills, Keith enjoys visiting new places, getting outside for hikes, baking treats to share with friends, seeing live music, and supporting his hometown Chicago sports teams.
Languages: Thai, Lao, Spanish