William F. Martin is an energy economist who has served as Executive Secretary of the National Security Council, Special Assistant to President Ronald Reagan and Deputy Secretary of the US Department of Energy under President Reagan. He is also chairman of the Department of Energy’s Nuclear Energy Advisory Committee and chairman of the Council on Foreign Relation’s Energy Security Group for the past ten years. In 2006, he was elected chairman of the Council of the University for Peace of the United Nations.
Martin was educated at the University of Pennsylvania Wharton School (BS, 1972) and Massachusetts Institute of Technology (SM, 1974). His master’s thesis was the basis of an article he published in the Harvard Business Review (“Our Society in 1985: Business may not like it, March 1975”). Following graduation from MIT, he joined the MIT Energy Laboratory as Program Officer for the Workshop on Alternative Energy Strategies. During his four years on the professional research staff of MIT, he co-authored three books, Growth and Its Implications for the Future, (Roundtable Press, 1973), Energy Supply to the Year 2000 (MIT Press, 1977) and Professional Materials for Environmental Management Education (MIT Press, 1975).
Following MIT, Martin was responsible for energy statistics for developing countries at the International Energy Agency (OECD, Paris) and was part of a UN expert group that developed the methodology for reporting United Nations energy statistics. In 1977, he was promoted to special assistant to the Executive Director of IEA, Ulf Lantzke, and served in this capacity for three years during the time of the second oil shock.
Following his four years in Paris, Martin joined the Department of State as Special Assistant to the Under Secretary of State. In 1981, he was transferred to the National Security Council as Director of International Economic Affairs. From l983 to l985, he was appointed Special Assistant to President Ronald Reagan, responsible for the coordination of the President’s international and head of state meetings. Martin also served as the Executive Secretary of the National Security Council before being confirmed by the United States Senate as United States Deputy Secretary of Energy.
Martin joined the Board of the World Resources Institute in 1998 and served as WRI’s Chairman of the Development Committee. In 1997, he was a co-author of a Trilateral Commission study, Maintaining Energy Security in a Global Context. In 1992, he served as the Executive Director of the Republican Platform Committee and co-authored the Committee’s volume, The Shared Vision, Uniting our family, our country, our world (Republican National Committee, 1992).
In 2004, Martin was appointed by the Secretary General of the United Nations to the Council of the University for Peace. He was elected Chairman of the Council of the University for Peace at its October, 2006 meeting. In 1998, Martin co-founded the Robinson-Martin Security Scholars Program at the Prague Security Studies Program that aims to educate Czech students in national security. He is also co-founder of the Club of Prague, a group of internationally prominent scientists, businessmen and scholars devoted to the finding technological solutions and new ways of thinking to meet energy challenges in a sustainable manner. The Club was formed under the auspices of former President Vaclav Havel, Prague Mayor Pavel Bem and Foreign Minister Alexander Vondra.