It is with great regret that we have learned of the passing of former APO International Advisory Board Member Lucia Grenna.

Paying tribute to Lucia Grenna, APO Group’s Founder and CEO, Nicolas Pompigne-Mognard said, “It is with great sadness that we learned of Lucia’s passing. As one of the first people to join the International Advisory Board of APO in 2008, Lucia made an enormous contribution to the organisation’s development. She was, at the time, Head of the Unit of Communications for Development at the World Bank. On behalf of APO Group, we extend our sympathies to her family at this time.”

Lucia was the task manager for the First World Congress on Communication for Development (WCCD) which took place in Rome, Italy, on October 25-27, 2006. The main goal of the WCCD was to position and promote the field of Communication for Development in the overall agenda of development and international cooperation.

The member list for the International Advisory Board of APO was released on 28 April 2008:

With her extensive experience in development communication, Lucia realized that communication for climate action would be key to advancing the climate movement, promoting the solutions necessary and motivating the political leadership needed to build a low-carbon, resilient and sustainable future. She made it her mission to build a social movement for climate action by raising awareness of the impact of climate change and promoting the solutions for addressing it. She worked with partners across the globe to reach the greatest audience possible, especially young people.

In 2009 she convinced the World Bank and the Italian Ministry of Environment that climate communication was critical and well worth supporting and established the Communication for Climate Change Multi-Donor Trust Fund of the World Bank Group. In 2011 the flagship global partnership program Connect4Climate was born. It quickly took hold, gathering half a million Facebook followers and forging ties with leaders in popular culture – including music, film and fashion icons – to reach the generations of the future while at the same time helping scientists, politicians, and administrators raise awareness and prompt action.

Lucia was a unique and influential presence who could mix with anyone, anywhere, gain their attention and advance proposals for seemingly impossible, but magnificent and celebratory initiatives. Who but Lucia could have brought together an unusual group of partners to orchestrate the projection of massive climate-related images on the front of the Vatican, reminding a worldwide audience of our responsibility to protecting the Planet? We remember her for “making the impossible possible.”​

For Lucia and the Connect4Climate program, the operative word has been to ‘connect’. This sentiment was Lucia through and through. She was passionate about finding ways for people and organizations to interact together and did her utmost to create and grow lasting connections. Connect4Climate now interacts with hundreds of partners, reaches millions online and engages with global audiences through competitions, events, and education to support the movement for climate action and to end poverty.

Lucia’s ideas would never stay on paper but would lead to tangible outcomes that engaged partners and energized audiences worldwide. She was a leader driven to find the most impactful communications, and in doing so inspired and advocated for a sustainable development pathway.

As Lucia would always say, “let’s get busy and make this happen!”

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