CalEPA 2019 -
Our mission is to restore, protect and enhance the environment, to ensure public health, environmental quality and economic vitality. We fulfill our mission by developing, implementing and enforcing environmental laws that regulate air, water and soil quality, pesticide use and waste recycling and reduction. Our departments are at the forefront of environmental science, using the most recent research to shape the state’s environmental laws.
Podship Earth 2018 -
Host award winning weekly environmental podcast on our changing relationship with nature. We leverage unbiased data and interviews with experts, artists, and lay people, to help listeners understand the state of our planet. We give listeners reasons to care about the planet. On the Podcast, we have hiked to the Summit of Mt. Shasta, talked with Lord Rees the Astronomer Royal, and visited the Havasupai tribe to understand the sacredness of the land.
Advising Impact 2016 - 2018
Founded Advising Impact (AI) to help CEOs and Boards of clean tech companies excel in strategic planning, market development and policy. Initial focus has been on energy storage, commercial water recycling, and reuse in food service sector.
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Pacific Southwest 2009 - 2016
Appointed by President Barack Obama to serve as primary Federal environmental official for California, Arizona, Hawaii, Nevada, the Pacific Islands, and 148 tribal nations - covering 50 million residents. Established enforcement division and settled multi-billion dollar pollution cases. Made landmark decisions to protect California coastal waters and to clean up legacy toxic sites. Initiated successful technology partnership to accelerate clean vehicle adoption in cities with nation’s worst air quality. Held states accountable for ensuring Federal funds were effectively spent to solve community drinking water needs. Oversaw and managed $3 billion in funds, including $600 million in annual grants to innovative environmental programs. Met with135 tribes on their reservations. Collaborated with staff of 900 scientists, lawyers, accountants, inspectors and policy experts to achieve collective outcomes.
San Francisco Department of Environment 2001 - 2009 Appointed by Mayor Willie Brown Jr. and Mayor Gavin Newsom to serve as primary environmental decision-maker for City and County of San Francisco. Increased recycling from 46% to 78% through innovative programs and partnerships. Led energy efficiency initiative that served 6,000 small businesses with combined annual savings of $24 million. Helped make San Francisco “the most sustainable city in the nation” by developing municipal Environment Code that includes mandatory recycling and composting, plastic bag and styrofoam bans and twenty percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.
San Francisco Recreation and Parks Department 2008 - 2009
Worked with 1,100 staff and $200+ million budget to oversee 242 world-class parks and recreational centers including facilities such as Golden Gate Park (3rd most visited urban park in the US). Responsible for implementing a $185 million Parks Bond. Managed $11.5 million in budget cuts, launched $100 million recycled water program, and introduced recycling to the parks.
Treasure Island Redevelopment Authority 2004 - 2009
Appointed to governing board overseeing the $5.3 billion redevelopment of Treasure Island. Developed term-sheet to transform Treasure Island into the most sustainable urban community in North America.
United Nations World Environment Day, 2005 2003 - 2005
Successfully led first U.N. World Environment Day hosted in the United States. Overall organizational responsibilities included developing theme of Green Cities: Where the Future Lives, raising $4 million in private funds, coordinating 300 community events, drafting Urban Environmental Accords, and convening mayors from world’s largest 70 cities.
DIRECTOR Habitat Protection
International Fund for Animal Welfare 1995 - 2001
Protected more than 8 million acres of wildlife habitat worldwide in China, India, Europe, Africa, and the Americas. Led 5-year global campaign to stop Mitsubishi from building salt factory in Baja’s Laguna San Ignacio - described by Cox News as: “The most significant environmental victory of our generation”. Served as General Counsel.
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, Earth Summit Watch
Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) 1993 - 1995
Successfully coordinated and led coalition of 150 grassroots organizations world-wide to follow-up on national commitments to 1992 Rio Earth Summit. Served as Director for major campaigns to phase-out global use of leaded gasoline, promote coral reef protection, develop timber certification and ban shipments of hazardous waste; and pursued countries to sign climate change treaty. Led lobbying efforts at U.N. Commission on Sustainable Development.
Edited annual report on international environmental case law from jurisdictions world-wide.
CHAIR, Federal Regional Council
Led interagency group of forty federal agencies to focus on drought response, climate change, and financial accountability of federal funds, (2014-16).
FOUNDER, Green Cities California
Convened environment directors from California’s 10 largest cities to develop a common legislative platform, share best practices and implement joint campaigns. Hired full-time director and raised individual and foundation grants to support organization, (2004-10).
FOUNDER, Business Council on Climate Change (BC3)
In partnership with the United Nations Global Compact and Bay Area Council, created an organization to unite local businesses around the challenge of climate change. Membership of over 90 Bay Area large and small companies, including Google, Cisco, Webcor, PG&E and Arup. Hired a full-time director through membership fees. to develop nation’s first online solar map, (2005-10).
LL.M University of California, Berkeley, School of Law (Boalt Hall) Advanced law degree specializing in Environment & Human Rights – High Honors
LL.B University of London, SOAS Law degree specializing in International & Environmental Law (Equivalent to J.D.)
A Levels Cambridge College of Arts and Technology Government, Sociology, and Art
Legal Member of New York Bar, since 1996
Thru-hiked the Pacific Crest Trail from Mexico to Canada, between May and October, 2016