top of page
Steering Committee
Senorpe Asem-Hiablie
Courtesy Assistant Research Professor, Institutes of Energy and Environment, Penn State

Senorpe Asem-Hiablie is a Courtesy Assistant Research Professor at the Institutes of Energy and Environment (IEE) and was the Drawdown Initiative Lead at The Pennsylvania State University. In this role, she operationalized all aspects of Penn State’s partnership with Project Drawdown. Senorpe was a core member of a research team at the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service (USDA-ARS) who evaluated the environmental footprints (primarily, greenhouse gases, energy, and water) of a nationally important and globally relevant food production system. Specifically, they characterized regional management practices of diverse beef production systems and performed a first-of-a-kind comprehensive national benchmarking of beef sustainability. Their results are providing the industry and its stakeholders with data-driven decision tools to help prioritize actions to reduce negative impacts on environmental footprints.

Senorpe received her doctorate in agricultural and biological engineering from Penn State where she worked to improve analytical methodologies and modeled the environmental transport of anthropogenic pollutants of concern in the U.S. and abroad. She received her master’s in marine estuarine environmental sciences from the University of Maryland Eastern Shore and her bachelor's in oceanography and fisheries science from the University of Ghana, Legon.

Maria Boccalandro
Urban Planner & Director of Sustainability and Programs for Dallas College

Dr. Maria V. Boccalandro, is a sustainable urban planner with a master's degree in urban transportation and a Ph.D. in political science. She is the Director of Sustainability and Programs for Dallas College - Cedar Valley Campus and works in the Advancement Office. She in charge of planning, developing, coordinating and administrating the sustainability awareness projects and fundraising initiatives with internal and external stakeholders. She has been leading a multi-stakeholder sustainable economic development planning process with Yale University and Cedar Valley students, that won the Cedar Valley 2017-2018 Innovation of the Year award. This important process is to improve quality of life for the community of the region and includes key local and regional organizations.
Dr. Boccalandro has thirty years of teaching associate, bachelor and postgraduate courses in community colleges and universities in the US and Latin America, being recognized with the 2019 Excellence Teaching Award for Dallas College- Cedar Valley Campus. The Ford Foundation selected her for the 2019 DFW “Mujer Legendaria” Award. She was also selected as a finalist for the 2019 Immigrant Journey Award.
For eighteen years she was an entrepreneur, co-founding and leading an international consulting firm dedicated to support clients in strategic planning, organizational development, project management, coaching and workforce training. Dr. Boccalandro loves giving back to the community, she is serving on the Board of Groundwork Dallas. In the past she has served as a board member of the Hispanic Women’s Network of Texas, Toastmasters and the Oak Cliff Chamber of Commerce.
She is the proud mother of four children. This year she celebrated her 36th wedding anniversary and is a new Grandmother. She enjoys volunteering, skiing, swimming, experiencing nature, reading and writing novels.

Christopher Boone
Dean, College of Global Futures, Arizona State University

Christopher Boone is Dean of the College of Global Futures and Professor in the School of Sustainability at Arizona State University. His research contributes to ongoing debates in sustainable urbanization, environmental justice, vulnerability, global environmental change, and innovation in higher education. At ASU, he has taught classes on sustainable urbanization, urban and environmental health, principles and methods of sustainability, environmental justice, interdisciplinary methods for socio-ecological research, urbanization, biodiversity, and innovation, and sustainable design (Innovation Space). Dr. Boone earned his Ph.D. in geography (1994) from the University of Toronto and was a post-doctoral fellow in the School of Environment at McGill University.

Dr. Marilyn A. Brown
Interim Chair, School of Public Policy at Georgia Institute of Technology

Dr. Marilyn A. Brown is Interim Chair of the School of Public Policy at the Georgia Institute of Technology where she created and co-leads the Climate and Energy Policy Lab and the Master of Sustainable Energy and Environmental Management. Her research focuses on the design and modeling of energy markets and carbon reduction policies and programs, highlighting opportunities on the customer side of the electric meter—including energy end-use efficiency, rooftop-solar systems, vehicle to grid interactions, smart thermostats, and home storage devices. Using data analytics and energy-engineering models, she examines technology and market transitions at the local, regional, and global scale. In the 1990s she conducted the first national evaluation of the DOE Weatherization Assistance Program. This year she updated her review of government programs that address energy burden and published “The persistence of high energy burdens: A bibliometric analysis of vulnerability, poverty, and exclusion in the United States.”

Prior to Georgia Tech, she worked at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, where she held various leadership positions in energy efficiency and renewable energy. From 2010-2017, Dr. Brown served two terms as a Presidential appointee to the Board of Directors of the Tennessee Valley Authority, the nation's largest public power provider. From 2014-2018 she served two terms on the U.S. Department of Energy’s Electricity Advisory Committee where she chaired the Smart Grid Subcommittee. She has written 6 books on the clean energy transition.

Jim Buizer
Professor in the School of Natural Resources and the Environment and Founding Director of the Arizona Institutes for Resilience at the University of Arizona

James (“Jim”) Buizer is Professor in the School of Natural Resources and the Environment and Founding Director of the Arizona Institutes for Resilience at the University of Arizona, where he also holds faculty positions in Arid Lands Resource Sciences, and the Graduate Interdisciplinary Program in Global Change.
He serves on the Board of Directors at the National Council for Science and the Environment, as Immediate Past Chairman of the Board of Directors of Second Nature, Inc., and on the Board of Advisors at Planet Forward.
From 2003-2011, Jim was Senior Policy Advisor to the President at Arizona State University (ASU) and Executive Director for Strategic Institutional Transformation in the Office of the President, where he led the conceptualization, design and initiation of a number of interdisciplinary academic programs, including the Global Institute of Sustainability and its School of Sustainability, launched fall 2006. He maintains an affiliation with ASU as a “Senior Sustainability Scientist.”
Prior to ASU he was Director of the Climate and Societal Interactions Office at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration where he was responsible for providing vision and leadership of its integrated, multidisciplinary research and applications grants programs positioned at the climate and societal interface. Jim received his degrees in Oceanography, Marine Resource Economics and Science Policy from the University of Washington, Seattle. He is a native Spanish speaker.

Crystal Chissell
Senior Director of Partnerships, Project Drawdown

As Senior Director of Partnerships, Crystal Chissell leads the cultivation and management of strategic partnerships and networks that foster engagement with the Drawdown framework and move the world toward climate solutions.

Crystal speaks publicly about climate solutions and serves as an expert resource for news media, interest groups and advocacy organizations.

Prior to Project Drawdown, Crystal was a practicing attorney, advising the City of Baltimore and the Maryland Environmental Service. She served as Mayor of the Town of Highland Beach, Maryland. Crystal holds a J.D. from the University of Maryland School of Law, an M.S. in Environmental Science from Johns Hopkins University, an M.B.A. from the University of San Francisco, and a B.A. in Journalism from Howard University.

Sandrine Dixson-Decléve
Policy Leader and Co-President, Club of Rome

Sandrine Dixson-Declѐve has 30+ years of European and international policy, business leadership and strategy experience with a particular focus on EU and international climate change, sustainable development, green growth, conventional and sustainable energy solutions and sustainable finance.

She is currently the Co-President of the Club of Rome and divides her time between lecturing, facilitating difficult conversations and advisory work. She holds several advisory positions for the European Commission: Chair, Expert Group on Economic and Societal Impact of Research & Innovation (ESIR); Member, Assembly on Research & Innovation (DGR&I); TEG Sustainable Finance Taxonomy, Chair, Manufacturing & Outreach (DGFISMA). She sits on several Advisory Boards for Climate KIC, the European Aluminium and the IEEP and is a Senior Associate and faculty member of the Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL) and a Senior Associate for E3G. In addition, she is an Ambassador, for the Energy Transition Commission (ETC) and a Senior Advisor to Interel and Xynteo. In 2017 Sandrine co-founded the Women Enablers Change Agent Network (WECAN).

Sandrine was recognised by GreenBiz as one of the 30 most influential women across the globe driving change in the low carbon economy and promoting green business. She has spent her career bringing together business leaders, policy makers, academia and NGO’s. Until recently, Sandrine was Chief Partnership Officer for UN Agency Sustainable Energy for All and prior to that the Director of the Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group and the EU office of the Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (2009-2016). During that period she was also appointed Executive Director of the Green Growth Platform bringing together EU Ministers and CEO’s.

Previous advisory and professional positions include: advising for HRH The Prince of Wales, Members of the European Parliament, European Commission Presidents, Commissioners and officials, Governments in Asia, Africa and the Middle East, international organizations (OPEC, ADB, OECD, UNEP, USAID, UNFCCC, IEA) and business leaders of large international, European and African companies. Sandrine was Vice Chair, European Biofuels Technology Platform 2008-2016; Board member, We Mean Business 2014-2016 and the Advisory Board of the Oil and Gas major Sasol from 2007-2010. Member of The Guardian’s Sustainable Business Advisory Board. She spoke on TEDx: The Sustainable Future series and has published numerous articles, book chapters and given presentations on green growth and competitiveness, innovation, energy solutions, climate change, sustainable development, transport, conventional and alternative fuel quality legislation as well as on trade & environment.

Sandrine tweets at @SDDecleve.

Carlos Duarte
Tarek Ahmed Juffali Research Chair in Red Sea Ecology at the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology

Professor Carlos M. Duarte is the Tarek Ahmed Juffali Research Chair in Red Sea Ecology at the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST), in Saudi Arabia. He also holds an adjunct position at the Arctic Research Center in Aarhus University, Denmark. Duarte’s research focuses on understanding the effects of global change in marine ecosystems, developing marine-based solutions to global challenges, including climate change, and develop evidence-based strategies to rebuild the abundance of marine life by 2050. He developed the concept of Blue Carbon to mitigate and adapt to climate change through the conservation and restoration of coastal marine ecosystems. He has conducted research across all continents and oceans, spanning most of the marine ecosystem types, from inland to near-shore and the deep sea and from microbes to whales. Professor Duarte led the Malaspina 2010 Expedition that sailed the world's oceans to examine the impacts of global change on ocean ecosystems and explore their biodiversity. He has published more than 850 scientific papers, and was recently ranked as the top marine biologist in the world. Professor Duarte served as President of the American Society of Limnology and Oceanography between 2007 and 2010. He has received many honors, most recently the Carlo Heip award for Excellence in Marine Biodiversity Research (2018), the Ramon Margalef Ecology Award (2019), and the BBVA Foundation Frontiers of Knowledge Award in Ecology and Conservation Biology (2020). He has been appointed to the Expert Group supporting the High Level Group that under the UN is working to propose a pathway towards a Sustainable Ocean Economy.

More information:

John Fernandez
Professor, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Director, MIT Environmental Solutions Initiative

John E. Fernández has been on the faculty of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology since 1999. He is a full Professor and Director of the Building Technology Program in the Department of Architecture. Fernández is also Director of the Urban Metabolism Group, a highly multidisciplinary research group focused on the resource intensity of cities and design and technology pathways for future urbanization. Additionally, he is co-Director of the International Design Center at MIT, a large internationally funded center for design studies across engineering and architecture. Fernández is also a practicing architect, and has organized, chaired or co-chaired 7 international conferences.

The MIT Urban Metabolism Group, founded by Fernández in 2008, has been at the forefront of establishing an understanding of the resource intensity of urbanization. Research has included material flow analysis of a number of cities in North and South America, Europe, and Asia. Previous to establishing the Urban Metabolism Group Fernández was primarily engaged in the research of materials for high-performance buildings.

Fernández has served on several National Science Foundation Review Panels, as a member of the Department of Energy Roadmap 2020 Advisory Committee, and as a member of the Board of Directors of the Building Envelope Technology and Environmental Council of the National Institute of Building Science. He is currently a Board member of New Ecology, Inc. in Boston, and a member of the Board of Advisors for the Center for Sustainable Energy of the Fraunhofer Institute, also in Boston. Fernández has participated in the launch of two startup companies in the past 5 years.

Martin Frick
Deputy of the UN Secretary-General's Special Envoy for the Food System Summit 2021

Chad Frischmann is a co-author and the lead researcher of the New York Times best-seller Drawdown: The Most Comprehensive Plan Ever Proposed to Reverse Global Warming (Penguin, 2017) and the Drawdown Review (February, 2020). In collaboration with a global team of researchers, Chad designed integrated global models to assess the world’s most effective climate solutions and determine if, when, and how the world can reach “drawdown,” the point in time when the concentration of atmospheric greenhouse gases begins to decline on a year-to-year basis. With an interdisciplinary background in public policy, human rights, sustainable development, and environmental conservation, Chad works as a systems strategist to build a new, regenerative future with cascading benefits to the environment and to human well-being. As head of research and technology since Project Drawdown’s inception, Chad is a key spokesperson and coalition-builder dedicated to sharing the message and model of Drawdown with the world. Chad holds a master’s degree in Public Policy from the University of California at Berkeley, a master’s degree in Art History from the University of Oxford, and a bachelor’s degree in International Affairs and History from George Washington University.

Chad Frischmann
Senior Director of Research and Technology, Project Drawdown

A coalition-builder and systems strategist, Chad Frischmann works to reverse global warming and build a new, regenerative future with cascading benefits to the environment and to human well-being.

Chad Frischmann is a co-author and the lead researcher of the New York Times best-seller Drawdown: The Most Comprehensive Plan Ever Proposed to Reverse Global Warming (Penguin, 2017) and the Drawdown Review (February, 2020). In collaboration with a global team of researchers, Chad designed integrated global models to assess the world’s most effective climate solutions and determine if, when, and how the world can reach “drawdown,” the point in time when the concentration of atmospheric greenhouse gases begins to decline on a year-to-year basis.

With an interdisciplinary background in public policy, human rights, sustainable development, and environmental conservation, Chad works as a systems strategist to build a new, regenerative future with cascading benefits to the environment and to human well-being. As head of research and technology since Project Drawdown’s inception, Chad is a key spokesperson and coalition-builder dedicated to sharing the message and model of Drawdown with the world.

With a multidisciplinary background in public policy, human rights, sustainable development, and environmental conservation, Chad provides a systems-based approach to research and strategic leadership. His talks on global warming solutions and regeneration have been featured at the University of Oxford, Harvard, the COP23 in Bonn, the World Business Council on Sustainable Development (WBCSD), the “1% for the Planet” Global Summit, Engineering for Change (E4C), the ISEN Climate Change Symposium, the University of California at Berkeley, the Carbon Leadership Forum (CLF), the University of Washington, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), the Dutch Sustainability Congress, the International Conference on Sustainable Development, the MAD Symposium, the Global Sustainable Technology & Innovation Conference, and TED Global’s ‘We the Future’ series, among many others.

Dennis Garrity
Chair of the Board of the Global EverGreening Alliance

Dr. Dennis Garrity is a systems agronomist and research leader whose career has focused on improving small-scale farming systems in the tropics. He has been serving as Drylands Ambassador for the UN Convention to Combat Desertification, emphasizing the role of agroforestry, evergreen agriculture and landcare for sustainable land management. From 2001 to 2011, he served as Director General of the World Agroforestry Centre. He is currently Chair of the Board of the Global EverGreening Alliance, a partnership of nearly all of the major development and conservation organizations around the world, working together to restore hundreds of millions of hectares of degraded land and enhance the livelihoods of millions of the least-favored smallholder farm families in the tropics. He also chairs Landcare International, a worldwide effort to support grassroots community-based natural resource management.

Erica Goldman
Deputy Director, NCSE

Erica Goldman is the deputy director at NCSE. In this role, she leads NCSE and its Member Institutions in building capacity to bridge science and policy to improve the scientific basis of environmental decision-making. Erica has a varied background that includes science writing, policy, and academic research. Previously, she served as the director of policy engagement for COMPASS, a nonprofit organization that helps environmental scientists effectively share their knowledge in the public discourse and decision-making. She also served in a six-month position in the White House Council on Environmental Quality on the Land & Water Ecosystems Team. She has worked as a science writer for the Maryland Sea Grant College Program; served as a Knauss marine policy fellow in the Natural Resources Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives; and worked as a news intern at Science Magazine. Erica received her doctorate in biology from the University of Washington and her bachelor’s degree from Yale University.

Dr. Genevieve Guenther
Author, Founder and Director, End Climate Silence

Dr. Genevieve Guenther is an author, the founder and director of End Climate Silence, and affiliate faculty at The New School, where she sits on the advisory board of the Tishman Environment and Design Center.

Katharine Hayhoe
Atmospheric Scientist

Katharine Hayhoe is an accomplished atmospheric scientist who studies climate change and why it matters to us here and now. She is also a remarkable communicator who has received the American Geophysical Union’s climate communication prize, the Stephen Schneider Climate Communication award, the United Nations Champion of the Earth award, and been named to a number of lists including Time Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People, Foreign Policy’s 100 Leading Thinkers, and FORTUNE magazine’s World’s Greatest Leaders. Katharine is currently the Political Science Endowed Professor in Public Policy and Public Law and co-directs the Climate Center at Texas Tech University. She has a B.Sc. in Physics from the University of Toronto and an M.S. and Ph.D. in Atmospheric Science from the University of Illinois and has been awarded honorary doctorates from Colgate University and Victoria University at the University of Toronto.

Isais Hernandez
Environmental Educator

Isaias Hernandez is the creator of Queer Brown Vegan where he makes accessible environmental education content. As a Queer, Brown, and Vegan environmentalist, he seeks to provide a safe space for other like-minded environmentalists to engage in the discourse of the current climate crisis.

Clover Hogan
Climate Activist, Researcher, and Founder

Clover Hogan is a 21-year-old climate activist, researcher on eco-anxiety, and the founder of Force of Nature - a youth-led organization empowering Gen Z to step up, rather than shut down, in the face of the climate crisis. She has worked alongside the world’s leading authorities on sustainability, consulted within the boardrooms of Fortune 500 companies, and mobilized mindsets within classrooms across the UK.

In June, Clover launched the Force of Nature podcast - a 9-part series with ordinary people doing extraordinary things to save the planet. Clover also serves as a trustee to Global Action Plan, and is on the advisory boards of the National Community Lottery's Climate Action Fund; the Teach the Future campaign; and the COP26 President-Designate Civil Society and Youth Advisory Council.

Diane Husic
Founding Dean, Researcher, Professor

Dr. Husic has a B.S. and Ph.D. in Biochemistry (from Northern Michigan University and Michigan State University, respectively). Before becoming the founding dean of the School of Natural and Health Sciences at Moravian College, she served as chair of Biological Sciences. She teaches courses in biochemistry, environmental science, conservation biology, sustainability, environmental health, climate change, and tropical ecology. Trained as a plant biochemist, her research focuses on the ecological restoration of a contaminated site (the Palmerton Superfund site) and examining heavy metal impacts on plants. She is involved with ecological monitoring along mountain landscapes in the portion of the Appalachian Mountains in Pennsylvania and in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem/Rocky Mountains. Of key interest is how forest habitats, birds, and pollinators are responding to climate change and other environmental threats. These projects, including the Eastern Pennsylvania Phenology Project, involve citizen scientists and provide an opportunity to better understand STEM learning in informal settings. She is an author on over 50 publications and has contributed to several reports – including a 200-page ecological assessment for a Superfund site and the 2011 PA Climate Change Adaptation report. She has attended the international meetings as a credentialed observer for the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) since 2009. She serves as a member of the steering committee for the international Research and Independent NGOs constituency group and on the Innovation Taskforce of the UNFCCC Technology Executive Committee. Locally, she works with nature centers and non-profits to develop informal education programming on a wide range of environmental and sustainability issues and finding unique ways to effectively communicate science to general audiences and engage the public in science and policy.

Jules Kortenhorst
Chief Executive Officer, Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI)

Jules Kortenhorst is the Chief Executive Officer of Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI). He is a recognized leader on global energy issues and climate change. His background spans business, government, entrepreneurial, and nonprofit leadership. An independent, nonprofit think tank, RMI engages with businesses, communities, and institutions to accelerate and scale replicable solutions that drive the cost-effective shift from fossil fuels to efficiency and renewables.

Prior to RMI, Kortenhorst was the founding CEO of the European Climate Foundation, the largest philanthropic organization dedicated to policy development and advocacy on climate change in Europe. Before launching ECF, he served as a member of the Dutch parliament for the Christian Democratic Party.

During the first 20 years of his career, Kortenhorst worked in the business world. He was the CEO for International Operations of ClientLogic Corporation, a global leader in outsourced customer relationship management (CRM) solutions. He worked for almost 10 years for Royal Dutch/Shell, among others as managing director of Shell Bulgaria, and he began his career as an analyst at McKinsey & Co. Kortenhorst currently serves on the Energy Transition Commission, and is the co-chair of the WEF Future Council on Energy.

Daniel M. Kammen
Professor at the University of California, Berkeley

Dr. Daniel M. Kammen is a Professor at the University of California, Berkeley, with parallel appointments in the Energy and Resources Group where he serves as Chair, the Goldman School of Public Policy where he directs the Center for Environmental Policy, and the department of Nuclear Engineering. Kammen is the founding director of the Renewable and Appropriate Energy Laboratory (RAEL;, and was director of the Transportation Sustainability Research Center from 2007 – 2015.

He was appointed by then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in April 2010 as the first energy fellow of the Environment and Climate Partnership for the Americas (ECPA) initiative. He began service as the Science Envoy for U. S. Secretary of State John Kerry in 2016, but resigned over President Trump’s policies in August, 2017. He has served the State of California and US federal government in expert and advisory capacities, including time at the US Environmental Protection Agency, US Department of Energy, the Agency for International Development (USAID) and the Office of Science and Technology Policy.

Dr. Kammen was educated in physics at Cornell (BA 1984) and Harvard (MA 1986; PhD 1988), and held postdoctoral positions at the California Institute of Technology and Harvard. He was an Assistant Professor and Chair of the Science, Technology and Environmental Policy Program at the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University before moving to the University of California, Berkeley. Dr. Kammen has served as a contributing or coordinating lead author on various reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change since 1999. The IPCC shared the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize.

In 2020 Kammen was elected to the American Academy of Arts & Sciences.

Kammen helped found over 10 companies, including Enphase that went public in 2012, Renewable Funding (Renew Financial) a Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) implementing company that went public in 2014. Kammen played a central role in developing the successful bid for the $500 million energy biosciences institute funded by BP.

During 2010-2011 Kammen served as the World Bank Group’s first Chief Technical Specialist for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency. While there Kammen worked on the Kenya-Ethiopia “green corridor” transmission project, Morocco’s green transformation, the 10-year energy strategy for the World Bank, and on investing in household energy and gender equity. He was appointed to this newly-created position in October 2010, in which he provided strategic leadership on policy, technical, and operational fronts. The aim is to enhance the operational impact of the Bank’s renewable energy and energy efficiency activities while expanding the institution’s role as an enabler of global dialogue on moving energy development to a cleaner and more sustainable pathway. Kammen’s work at the World Bank included funding electrified personal and municipal vehicles in China, and the $1.24 billion transmission project linking renewable energy assets in Kenya and Ethiopia.

He has authored or co-authored 12 books, written more than 300 peer-reviewed journal publications, and has testified more than 40 times to U.S. state and federal congressional briefings, and has provided various governments with more than 50 technical reports. For details see http;// Dr. Kammen also served for many years on the Technical Review Board of the Global Environment Facility. He is the Specialty Chief Editor for Understanding Earth and Its Resources for Frontiers for Young Minds.

Kammen is a frequent contributor and commentator in the international news media, including Newsweek, Time, The New York Times, The Guardian, and The Financial Times. Kammen has appeared on ‘60 Minutes’ (twice), NOVA, Frontline, and hosted the six-part Discovery Channel series Ecopolis. Dr. Kammen is a Permanent Fellow of the African Academy of Sciences, a fellow of the American Academy for the Advancement of Science, and the American Physical Society. In the US, has served on several National Academy of Sciences boards and panels.

Twitter: @dan_kammen | Website:

Rattan Lal
Professor of Soil Science at Ohio State University

Over his career spanning more than five decades and four continents, Dr. Lal has promoted innovative soil-saving techniques benefiting the livelihoods of more than 500 million smallholder farmers, improving the food and nutritional security of more than two billion people and saving hundreds of millions of hectares of natural tropical ecosystems.

Valerie Luzadis
Chair, NCSE Board of Directors; Professor, The State University of New York, ESF

Dr. Valerie Luzadis is Professor of Social-Ecological Systems and Ecological Economics at the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry (ESF), a public, doctoral granting institution in upstate NY. Luzadis has also served as Interim Provost and as the first Executive Vice President of ESF and held several other leadership roles in the institution.

Her teaching and research focus on systems approaches to social-ecological foundations for conservation and sustainability. Luzadis’ scholarly work also includes the study and practice of collaborative interdisciplinary science and efforts to bring science into policy. Dr. Luzadis brings system thinking to administrative and professional leadership roles to enhance effectiveness and efficiency of institutions through matrixed systems of shared effort, power, and respect for all.

Dr. Luzadis served on the Executive Committee of the Council of Environmental Deans and Directors, now the NCSE Leaders’ Alliance. She is a Past President of the United States Society for Ecological Economics, having also served as leader of the Founding Organizational Committee for the United States Society for Ecological Economics. Luzadis also served in National and State level leadership positions in the Society of American Foresters (SAF), including: Chair of the House of Society Delegates at the National level, the first woman to serve in this elected position, after having served as Chair at the New York SAF level. Luzadis was also recipient of the National Young Forester Leadership Award from the Society of American Foresters.

She brings to the academy strong practical experience having worked in Cornell Cooperative Extension and a forestry trade organization for several years. In addition, Dr. Luzadis has consulted with groups such as The Nature Conservancy and The Wildlife Conservation Society to advise and facilitate community-based conservation efforts.

Christopher Mabeza
Climate Change Researcher

Chris Mabeza is a climate change researcher. He holds a PhD from the University of Cape Town, South Africa. Chris is intrigued by smallholder farmer innovations and resultantly, he has done research on adaptation to climate change in rural Zimbabwe and South Africa. The research has culminated in several publications including a monograph entitled - Water and Soil in Holy Matrimony? A Smallholder Farmer’s Innovative Agricultural Practices for Adapting to Climate in Rural Zimbabwe.

Noura Mansouri
Research Fellow, KAPSARC

Dr. Noura Mansouri is a climate change, environment and sustainable energy enthusiast and professional. She is currently the Chair of Think 20 (T20) Climate Change and Environment Task Force (#2), Engagement Group, G20 Saudi Arabia 2020. She is also a Research Fellow at King Abdullah Petroleum Studies and Research Center (KAPSARC), maintains the status of Research Affiliate at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and an Expert at the World Energy Council (WEC). Previously, Dr. Mansouri has worked at AREVA, then then global leader in nuclear energy and fuel cycle. She earned her MBA and PhD degrees in sustainability and energy transitions from University of London. She is the author of ‘Greening the Black Gold: Saudi Arabia’s Quest for Clean Energy’. Dr. Mansouri completed a post-doctoral research fellowship at MIT, and she is a recipient of the Ibn Khaldun Fellowship from the Center for Clean Water and Clean Energy at MIT and the King Fahad University for Petroleum and Minerals (KFUPM). Dr. Mansouri was selected as a young scientist to attend the Lindau Nobel Laureate 2017 Meeting in Economic Sciences, she was also selected as a member of the Zayed Sustainability Prize Review Committee for 2018 and the Selection Committee for 2019, 2020, and 2021, and received the 2015 Women Excellence Leadership Award under the category "Rising Stars", she is also a board member at Women in Clean Energy under the Clean Energy Business Council for the Middle East and North Africa.

Marty Matlock
Executive Director of the University of Arkansas Resiliency Center and Professor of Ecological Engineering in the Biological and Agricultural Engineering Department

Dr. Marty Matlock is Executive Director of the University of Arkansas Resiliency Center and Professor of Ecological Engineering in the Biological and Agricultural Engineering Department. The UA Resiliency Center is an interdisciplinary research and outreach collaboration hosted by the Fay Jones School of Architecture and Design, with the College of Engineering and Walton College of Business. Dr. Matlock received his Ph.D. in Biosystems Engineering from Oklahoma State University, is a registered professional engineer, a Board Certified Environmental Engineer, and a Certified Ecosystem Designer. His research focus is measuring and managing complex ecosystem processes at local to global scales. Dr. Matlock is the recipient of the 2018 CAST-Borlaug Agriculture Communications Award, and serves on the USEPA Science Advisory Committee for Agriculture, previously served on the US Secretary of Agriculture’s Committee for the 21st Century, is Chairman of the Cherokee Nation Environmental Protection Commission, and serves as sustainability science advisor for 12 food and agricultural product companies.

Marina Melanidis
Founder & Partnerships Director, Youth4Nature

Marina Melanidis (she/her) is a Greek-British-Canadian settler on the unceded, unsurrendered territories of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh Nations (currently known as Vancouver, BC). She is the Founder and Partnerships Director of Youth4Nature, a youth-led, international organization empowering young people around the world to mobilize for nature and climate and hold our political leaders to account on both the climate and ecological crises. Previously, Marina has worked on conservation and climate change at home with the BC Provincial and Canadian Federal government, abroad as a research exchange fellow in India, and with the United Nations as an intern with the UN Environment Programme. She is currently pursuing an MSc, with a research focus on how the idea and practice of 'nature-based solutions' is shaping and re-shaping aspects of conservation governance Marina holds a B.Sc. in Natural Resources Conservation from the University of British Columbia. She is a Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Scholar, a Students on Ice alumnus, and has recently been named as one of Canada’s Top 30 Under 30 Sustainability Leaders and Top 25 under 25 Environmentalists. She loves 70’s rock, good vegan food, and the BC coast, and is (attempting) to learn modern Greek.

Find Marina on Twitter: @marinamelanidis

Email id:

Dr. PK Nair
Distinguished Professor at the University of Florida

PK Nair, Distinguished Professor at the University of Florida, USA, is a pioneering researcher and educator and a world leader in agroforestry.

Dr. Nair was educated in India (BSc, MSc, and PhD), England (post-doctoral), and Germany (Dr. sc. agr.). His path-breaking research on multistrory cropping in his native southern India during the 1970s led to his involvement as one of the founders of ICRAF (World Agroforestry Centre), in Kenya. At ICRAF where he worked for nearly 10 years, he played a key role in developing the discipline of agroforestry. He moved to the University of Florida (UF) as Professor of Agroforestry in 1987, where he continues to train graduate students (25 PhDs so far) and visiting scientists from around the world, and provide global leadership in agroforestry research and education. As a world leader in the subject, his services are sought the world over.

Professor Nair is the author/editor of 15 books, 40 book chapters, and nearly 200 peer-reviewed journal articles, all related to agroforestry. He was the Editor-in-Chief of Agroforestry Systems journal for 11 years until 2005. In 2004, he started the book series “Advances in Agroforestry” (Springer), of which he is the editor. He showed exemplary leadership in organizing the World Congresses in Agroforestry: the first in Orlando, Florida, 2004; and the second in Nairobi, Kenya, 2009.

PK Nair has received numerous awards and recognitions. He is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the American Societies of Agronomy, Crop Science, and Soil Science; he has received IUFRO (International Forestry Research) Scientific Award; multiple awards from the Society of American Foresters; four honorary Doctor of Science degrees (Kyoto, Japan; Kumasi, Ghana; Guelph, Canada; and Santiago de Compostela, Spain); the Hind Rattan (Jewel of India) and the Mahatm Gandhi Gold Medal Awards of India; and the Humboldt Prize of Germany.

Shloka Nath
Head of Sustainability, Tata Trusts; Head of Policy & Advocacy, Tata Trusts;
Executive Director, India Climate Collaborative

Shloka Nath currently leads the Sustainability and Policy & Advocacy portfolios at the Tata Trusts, one of India’s leading philanthropic foundations. As head of Sustainability, she is focused on the organization’s work on climate, energy and environment, implementing and funding sustainable and scalable solutions that help both people and nature thrive through India. As head of Policy and Advocacy, Shloka holds a critical responsibility in advancing the Trusts' key strategic and policy priorities for greater impact through strong relationships and external liaison with government, relevant industry organisations as well as close work with development sector leaders. She is also the Executive Director of the India Climate Collaborative, an India-led platform founded in 2018 by a group of philanthropies interested in continuing to accelerate India’s development, while also exceeding its climate goals. Prior to this, Shloka co-founded and was the Managing Partner of Sankhya Women Impact Funds, a gender lens fund with a focus on sustainability. Shloka is also an active angel investor in social enterprises and has mentored organizations across sectors. She has spent over a decade in journalism with the BBC in London, as a news anchor with New Delhi Television (NDTV) and Principal Correspondent with Forbes in Mumbai, with a special emphasis on financial inclusion, sustainability and public policy. In 2010, Shloka was nominated for India's highest awards in journalism for her reportage on microfinance in India.

In 2014, Shloka served as Campaign Manager for Meera Sanyal, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) Candidate for Mumbai (South), for India's General Elections. She was also formerly a speechwriter at the House of Lords (UK) and founded the Research and Studies Programme for Gateway House, a foreign policy think tank in Mumbai. Shloka has a Master's in Public Policy from Harvard's Kennedy School of Government and a BSc in Government from The London School of Economics and Political Science. She is also the author of the book, "Hidden India: Journey to Where the Wild Things Are" (April 2018), a compendium of photographs and writing about Indian wildlife and landscapes.

Tia Nelson
Climate Change Program Director, Outrider Foundation

Tia is internationally recognized as a tireless champion for environmental stewardship and climate change education. She spent 17 years with The Nature Conservancy in government relations, as a policy advisor for Latin America, and later as the first director of the Global Climate Change Initiative. For this work, she received the EPA’s Climate Protection Award in 2000. Tia returned home to Wisconsin to serve as Executive Secretary to the Wisconsin Board of Commissioners of Public Lands, which included a gubernatorial appointment as co-chair of Wisconsin’s Task Force on Global Warming. She directs Outrider Foundation​’s climate program.

About Outrider
Outrider Foundation​ is a nonpartisan educational nonprofit committed to making the world safer and more secure. We produce digital media designed to inspire action for a brighter future. We believe in the power of an informed, engaged public.

Twitter:​ ​@OutriderFdn​ / ​@TiaLeeNelson

James Newcomb
Managing Director at Rocky Mountain Institute

James Newcomb is Managing Director at RMI, where he directs the Strategic Analysis & Engagement Group. He also serves as senior advisor to the Institute’s India and Electricity programs. He is a writer, consultant, and scenario thinker with more than 30 years’ experience in the energy sector, including expertise in electricity, mobility, and strategy.

In India, he has led a team of experts in support of actions by the central government to achieve a rapid transformation of the country’s mobility system to a future that will provide shared, connected and electric mobility services. He helped to conceive and launch RMI’s Urban Mobility Lab, which supports leading Indian cities in piloting, integrating, and scaling innovative solutions to deliver urban mobility services.

Mr. Newcomb co-founded and led RMI’s Electricity Innovation Laboratory (eLab), which brings together leading industry actors to develop, test, and scale new solutions that enable greater adoption of renewable distributed energy resources by all customer types. He has consulted widely with leading utilities, cities, utility regulators and other organizations on the transformation of the electricity sector.

Prior to joining RMI, Mr. Newcomb managed market and policy analysis at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory’s Strategic Energy Analysis Center. He helped to lead the laboratory’s Renewable Electricity Futures Study, which examined the technical, economic, and environmental challenges and opportunities of delivering 80% of U.S. electricity supplies from renewable sources by 2050. In addition to leading the group’s ongoing research in renewable energy finance and policy analysis, he initiated new programs in behavioral economics and innovation.

Mr. Newcomb was the founding president and CEO of E SOURCE, a leading independent provider of research and consulting services to utilities and their customers on energy efficiency, distributed resources, and customer services.

Mr. Newcomb holds an M.A. in Energy and Resources from the University of California, Berkeley, Energy and a B.A. in Economics from Harvard University.

Christopher Boone
Dr Marilyn
Carlos Duarte
Matin Frick
Dennis Garrity
Katherine Hayhoe
Clove Hogan
Diane Husic
Daniel M Kammen
Christopher Mabeza
Noura Mansouri
Marina Melanidis
Shloka Nath
Karen O'Brien
Tom Richard
Roy Straver
Veerle Venderweerd
bottom of page