Professor Jeffrey I. Steinfeld came to MIT as an undergraduate in the 1950’s, and received his S.B. in 1962. He went on to achieve his PhD from Harvard in 1965, and, following a National Science Foundation Research Fellowship at the University of Sheffield, Professor Steinfeld joined the faculty at his undergraduate alma mater in July of 1966, where he remained an active and influential member of the Department until his retirement in 2007. Over the course of his independent career, Professor Steinfeld’s research interests evolved from focusing on obtaining kinetic data for physical and chemical systems using time-resolved spectroscopy, to ultimately studying gigaseconds (i.e., years), and large, interconnected systems: specifically, the Earth System, in which we all live and which is, in fact, the basis of all the social, technological and economic systems on which humanity depends. Today, Professor Steinfeld’s principal activities focus on Education for Sustainable Development, both within MIT and externally through collaborations such as the Youth Encounter for Sustainability intensive short courses and Massachusetts Interfaith Power & Light.