Russell Eroll Train is an American environmentalist. He was very influential in making environmental issues a nationally recognized problem.
Train was born in Jamestown, Rhode Island, in 1920. He attended Princeton University, and after serving
in the army during World War Two, Columbia Law School, from which he received a law degree.
Train went to work in the government, as council to the Congressional Joint Committee on Revenue and Taxation. Soon after, he became clerk of the House Ways and Means Committee and subsequently, a judge on the U.S. Tax Court.
However, Train soon developed an interest in the environment. He founded and served as head of the African Wildlife Leadership Foundation in 1961. He
subsequently became president of the Conservation Foundation.
In 1968, Train was appointed to the National Water Commission by President Lyndon Johnson, and in 1969 President Nixon appointed him as under secretary of the interior to balance appointments that other environmentalists strongly opposed. Train's appointment was highly approved of. In this position, Train dealt efficiently with controversial issues including the Trans-Alaska pipeline. He urged Congress to create
the Council on Environmental Quality, and was soon made chairman by President Nixon. This council identified major environmental problems and urged for strong federal policy to help with their solutions.
Train was made administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency in 1973. In this position, he openly disagreed with the Nixon administration for attempting to prevent enforcement of environmental laws. He also became involved in the energy debate of the time, in which
Train pushed for government involvement in conserving such resources and at the same time reducing water pollution.
In 1977, Train retired from his position at EPA and returned to the Conservation Foundation.