Board of Directors

Kelly Coleman (Chair), Brattleboro

Elizabeth Courtney, Montpelier

Richard Czaplinski, Warren Village

John Echeverria, Strafford

Chad Farrell, South Burlington

Maggie Galka, South Royalton

Don Hooper, Brookfield

Scott Johnstone, Grand Isle

Will Lintilhac, Shelburne

Ira Marvin, Hyde Park

Kesha Ram, Burlington

Amy Seidl, Huntington

Darren Springer, Burlington

 

 

 

 


Kelly ColemanKelly Coleman, Brattleboro
Kelly is the Program Director at Community Involved in Sustaining Agriculture (CISA) a nonprofit based in western MA, where she oversees the organizations grants and manages programs in the areas of building markets, farm to consumer, infrastructure, and public issues and education. She received a master’s degree from Yale’s School of Forestry and Environmental Studies and spent several years promoting sustainable agriculture and supporting environmental causes in California before moving back to her native Northeast. Kelly lives in Brattleboro with her husband and daughter.

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Elizabeth Courtney, Montpelier
Elizabeth is an environmental consultant, a landscape architect and co-Elizabeth Courtneyauthor of Greening Vermont, The Search for a Sustainable State. She serves at the pleasure of the Governor on his Council of Environmental and Energy Advisors. For the better part of a decade, from the mid 1980s to the mid 1990s she served on and then chaired Act 250’s Environmental Board. In 1994 Elizabeth was denied reappointment to Chair the Environmental Board by a highly partisan and polarized Vermont Senate, seeking to rid the Environmental Board of its “environmentalists”. Coincidentally, at the same time, she was awarded a coveted Loeb Fellowship in Advanced Environmental Studies at Harvard University. Her landscape architectural practice took her to Prague, Bellagio, Davis California and the H. Ross Perot’s extensive land holdings in Texas. She was VNRC’s Executive Director from 1997 to 2011 and from 2011 to 2012 directed the VNRC Legacy Project. Now, she helps several non-profits to fulfill their missions, writes a monthly column on the environment, reflects on — in an emerging memoir — her 45 years of work to protect the beauty and functionality of Vermont’s environment. When the spirit moves her, she paints watercolors of skies and pears, of ponds and apples and some of her favorite places in Vermont.

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Richard Czaplinski, Warren Village
Richard CzaplinskiBefore coming to Vermont in 1972 to take a position with the Agency of Natural Resources preparing river basin plans for Vermont as required by the Clean Water Act. He attended the University of Wisconsin (BS, Engineering, 1964; MS, Water Resources Management and MS, Urban and Regional Planning, 1972). After 15 years working for the Agency of Natural Resources in the Water Quality Division managing River Basin Planning, Flood Plain Management, Lakes and Ponds, and Non-Point Source Programs, he left and became an Environmental Protection Consultant taking work in the areas of groundwater protection, flood plain management, erosion control, river basin planning, on-site waste water management, sustainable living, and energy conservation. Richard continues to give tours of his homestead (built in 1978) to demonstrate “built-in” energy conservation and sustainable living. He also continues to offer free consulting for root cellaring and composting. He now lives in Warren Village with his wife Kinny Perot and plans to do more writing about energy conservation and sustainable living.

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John Echeverria, Strafford
Professor John Echeverria joined the Vermont Law School faculty in John Echeverria2009. He previously served for 12 years as executive director of the Georgetown Environmental Law & Policy Institute at Georgetown University Law Center. Prior to that, he was general counsel of the National Audubon Society, general counsel and conservation director of American Rivers, Inc., and an associate in the Washington, D.C., office of Hughes, Hubbard & Reed. Immediately after graduating with joint degrees from Yale Law School and the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, John served for one year as law clerk to the Honorable Gerhard Gesell of the U.S. District Court in the District of Columbia. John has written extensively on the takings issue and other aspects of environmental and natural resource law. He has frequently represented governments, environmental organizations, planning groups, and others in regulatory takings cases and other environmental litigation at all levels of the federal and state court systems. In 2007, John received the Jefferson Fordham Advocacy Award to recognize outstanding excellence within the area of state and local government law over a lifetime of achievement.

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Chad Farrell, South Burlington
chadfarrellChad is the Founder and President of Encore Renewable Energy, a leading integrated clean energy company focusing on community-scale solar PV systems and 21st century solutions for underutilized property. Chad is a developer, project manager and environmental engineer with over 20 years of professional experience and maintains expertise in the development of renewable energy facilities and the redevelopment of contaminated properties. He holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Mechanical Engineering from Bucknell University and earned a Master of Science in Environmental Engineering from the University of Vermont. Chad lives with his wife, Jessica Sankey, and their two young children, Maeve and Walter, in South Burlington.

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Maggie Galka, South Royalton
Maggie GalkaMaggie lives in South Royalton where she attends Vermont Law School and is active in student government. Maggie also served as an organizer of the Environmental Justice Summit.

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Don Hooper, Brookfield
DonHooperAfter teaching three years in Botswana as a Peace Corps volunteer, Don hired instructors for the Community College of Vermont.  He became VNRC’s Membership Director in 1979 and was Acting Executive Director in ’83 and ’84, just prior to representing Randolph, Brookfield, and Braintree in the Vermont Legislature for 8 years. Don served as Secretary of State for Vermont before working as New England Regional Representative for the National Wildlife Federation.  In his NWF conservation job he served as an ex officio member of the VNRC board. The Hoopers live on a hill farm in Brookfield where their three sons Miles, Sam and Jay learned to hay, chainsaw, and play horseshoes. Recently “retired,” Don subscribes to Chief Seattle’s admonition that “we haven’t inherited this land from our parents so much as borrowed it from our children.”

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Scott Johnstone, Burlington
ScottJohnstoneScott is the President and Founder of the Johnstone Group, and a leader in advancing public good through environmentally-focused organizations. He has had leadership roles in a wide variety of organizations, including Secretary of Vermont Agency of Natural Resources, Project Director at Stone Environmental, Executive Director of Chittenden County Metropolitan Planning Organization, and as CEO of Vermont Energy Investment Corporation for nine years. Through his work, Scott has developed innovative approaches to addressing many of Vermont’s pressing environmental issues. Scott is a professional engineer, with an engineering degree from University of Maine, and has served as Board of Director for several organizations throughout the state including Northeast Energy Efficiency Partnerships, Greater Burlington YMCA, Echo Lake Aquarium and Science Center, and Local Motion – to name just a few. Scott lives in Burlington, Vermont.

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Will Lintilhac, Shelburne
WillLintilhacWill graduated from the University of Vermont in 2010 where he focused on community development, ecological design, and food systems. He has worked as a field technician at the University’s maple research station, the Proctor Maple Research Facility in Underhill, Vermont. He also worked with the Vermont Youth Conservation Corps from 2012 to 2014 at their Richmond, Vermont farm where he helped manage crop production and programs for disadvantaged youth. At VYCC, Will also developed management skills, helping to plan and host large events for the community, and gaining skills in direct marketing, developing wholesale accounts and fundraising. He also facilitated numerous structured dialogues centered on issues of landscape change and civic engagement. During the 2015 season, Will worked on Red Fire Farm in Granby, Massachusetts as an Assistant Manager where he gained skills in large-scale vegetable production. Currently, Will is working on Book and Plow Farm associated with Amherst College in Amherst, Massachusetts where he manages all post-harvest handling and daily works with students and volunteers.

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Ira Marvin, Hyde ParkIra Marvin
Ira is the farm and facility manager at Butternut Mountain Farm, a family business focused on maple syrup production, processing, and distribution. Working on the land and in the woods, Ira has grown the company’s home farm operation to 16,500 taps. He is a graduate of the University of Vermont College of Agriculture and Life Science. Ira lives in Hyde Park with his wife Katie and their three children.

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Kesha Ram, Burlington
kesharamKesha grew up in Santa Monica, California and her adolescent activism in Los Angeles was divided between environmental protection and social justice until she met Van Jones, then Executive Director of the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights, and she began to see the intersectionality of the two movements. She attended the University of Vermont and there began exploring environmental injustice faced by Vermont communities, which translated beyond her thesis work into a successful run for the state legislature at the age of 22. She served in the Vermont House of Representatives for eight years championing civil rights, tribal recognition, community-based land use planning, and protections for victims of domestic and sexual violence.

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Amy Seidl, HuntingtonAmy Seidl
Dr. Amy Seidl is the Interim Associate Director in Environmental Studies at the University of Vermont. Her courses include Introduction to Environmental Studies; Sustainability Science; Teaching About the Environment; Environmental Literature of the Anthropocene; and Adaptation to Climate Change. She is a member of the General Education Committee on Writing and Information Literacy as well as the Socially Responsible Investment Advisory Committee as UVM. In addition, Amy is a UVM fellow in Service-Learning and Sustainability and oversees the capstone internship program in Environmental Studies.

Amy is the author of two books on climate change, Early Spring: Waking to a Warming World (2009) and Finding Higher Ground: Adaptation in the Age of Warming (2011), both from Beacon Press. In 2010 Amy received a “Best of the Best” award for Early Spring from the Association of Academic and University Presses. She received a PhD in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from the University of Vermont and a Masters degree in Entomology from Colorado State University. She holds a B.A. Science and Poetry from Hampshire College.

She lives in Huntington, Vermont with her husband and two daughters in an off-grid, solar-powered home.

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Darren Springer, Burlington
darrenspringerDarren is Chief Operating Officer and Manager for Strategy and Innovation at Burlington Electric Department (BED). In that role, he leads the Center for Innovation which includes policy and planning, finance, IT, risk management, and energy services. He currently is also a Climate Change and Renewable Energy Policy Fellow at the University of Vermont, Center for Research on Vermont. Prior to joining BED, Darren served as Chief of Staff for Governor Peter Shumlin. Before working the Governor’s Office, Darren had been appointed Deputy Commissioner at Vermont’s Public Service Department, and was the administration lead on the 2014 net metering legislation and 2015 renewable energy standard legislation. Previously, Darren worked for four yeras in the Washington, D.C. Office of U.S. Senator Bernard Sanders as Senior Policy Advisor for Energy & Environment, and later as Chief Counsel. He has also worked for the National Governors Association as Program Director for Energy and Transportation. Darren has a B.A. from Florida Atlantic University and earned a J.D. and Master of Studies in Environmental Law from Vermont Law School. While at Vermont Law School, he was Managing Editor of the Vermont Law Review, and clerked for U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy on the Senate Judiciary Committee. He is a member of the Vermont Bar, Virginia Bar, and Florida Bar.

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