Meet the 2011-2012 cohort
Clint grew up in Phoenix, Arizona and attended Arizona
State University, where he earned a BS in Landscape Architecture.Read more about Clint
The theory of Urban Planning and Sustainable Development
propelled him to excel. After graduation, he worked designing Master Planned
Communities for 12 years.
Concerned with urban sprawl and wasteful resource management
practices, he pursued a more green approach, earning an accreditation in
Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design through the US Green Building
Institute. Due to market problems in the housing industry throughout the country,
and especially in Phoenix, he had to explore other interests.
This led to a year in Alaska with his wife on a journey of
both professional and personal ventures. Exploring the backwoods of Alaska and
reflecting on possible career paths led him to conclude that graduate school
was the best available option.
The Climate Science and Solutions program at Northern
Arizona University provided him with two amazing opportunities: the chance to
break into an emerging field of flourishing possibilities, and the chance to
move back to Flagstaff. He is excited about the move to the warmer climate of
Arizona and into a career heating up with global implications.
Colleen graduated with a BS degree in Environmental
Sciences with an emphasis in Management from Northern Arizona University in
2008.Read more about Colleen
Colleen is originally from Shonto, a small rural community
on the Navajo Nation, where many families have lived and are still living
without electricity and running water. Yet the water and mineral resources have
been extracted to provide electricity for cities off the reservation and this
has sparked her interest in climate change issues on tribal lands.
As an undergrad, Colleen worked on a research project
looking at water, soil, and plant contamination from uranium mining on the western
part of the Navajo Nation. Colleen comes into this program with hopes of
understanding the language and science of climate change and taking this
knowledge back to indigenous communities to help them find with ways to adapt
to climate change.
Chanda grew up primarily in Florida and Ohio and
earned her BS in Civil Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in New
York while serving in the US Air Force.Read more about Chanda
After graduating with honors in 2001, she began her
construction management career with Turner Construction Company in Washington,
DC, where she worked on large projects at the Pentagon, Walter Reed Hospital,
the US Patent and Trademark Offices, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, and the
Richmond Convention Center.
She later joined Balfour Beatty Construction, where she
became a LEED Green Associate and served as Quality Control Manager on military
base expansion projects in Virginia.
Chanda's experience in the sustainable construction of
energy-efficient buildings motivated her to join the program. Eventually, she
hopes to implement her knowledge of renewable energy systems and sustainable
technology to promote energy independence and reduce environmental impacts in
Avi has a M.S.
in environmental sciences and policy from Northern Arizona University.Read more about Avi
Avi was born and raised in North Israel on the
Mediterranean. Avi came to the United States in 2001, and graduated summa cum
laude with a double major in conservation biology and conservation social science
from the University of Idaho.
Following graduation, he worked for Defenders of Wildlife in
designing and developing an online national website which compiles
on-the-ground conservation actions. In 2007, he started the master’s program in
environmental sciences and policy here at Northern Arizona University.
In 2008, Avi was honored by receiving the prestigious Doris
Duke Fellowship and worked with the Colorado Plateau Cooperative Ecosystems
Studies Unit to assess the state of fluvial restoration in the San Juan River
Since graduation, Avi has been working for Northern
Arizona University to develop and coordinate an electricity savings project on
campus. Avi also supervised a team of students who visited buildings every
night and turned off lights and electronic devices. Recently, he has become
very interested in international climate change mitigation policy and
Jason moved to Flagstaff from Youngstown, Ohio, where
he attended Youngstown State University and received a BS in Environmental
Studies with a minor in Geology.Read more about Jason
During his undergraduate studies, Jason assisted with
extensive research on a small, secluded island in the Bahamas called San
Salvador. The research included:
- the studies of shoreline change due to natural
erosion, tropical storms, and hurricanes
- evidence of sea level change through geologic
- natural protection barriers and their relation
to shoreline conditions
During his studies at YSU, he was also hired as an intern
for Global Green USA to collect data and draft a carbon emissions report for
the city of Youngstown's first greenhouse gas inventory.
He then worked for the City of Youngstown writing
neighborhood revitalization plans which incorporated urban agricultural, pocket
parks, and recreational areas with an emphasis on sustainability to reclaim and
reuse vacant properties. His interests
are environmental planning, greenhouse gas inventories, and the effects of
climate change on coastal areas.
Chris joins the Climate Science and Solutions program
via Crested Butte, Colorado, where he directed the Climate and Clean Energy
program for High Country Citizens’ Alliance, a highly effective environmental
NGO.Read more about Christopher
Chris’ work at the High Country Citizens’ Alliance involved:
- working with regional utilities to plan for
future capacity needs with cleaner energy alternatives and DSM
- participating in the development of regional
greenhouse gas reduction action plans
- developing principles for renewable energy
sitting on public lands
- educating the community on climate and energy
issues accompanied by practical and affordable solutions
Chris earned a BA in Environmental Studies with a minor in
Political Science at Western State College of Colorado in 2003, after which he
interned with Friends of the Earth in Washington, DC. There, he worked on
topics of international environmental policy. Since interning, Chris has worked
as a river ranger, raft guide, and safety kayaker in the outdoor industry and
with several environmental NGOs.
Chris was born and raised in Washington, DC, but has lived
out west since 1997, mostly in Crested Butte and Salida, Colorado. He believes
that his DC upbringing, combined with over a decade of living in rural western
communities, provides an effective and well-rounded perspective through which
to work on climate and energy issues.
Kaitlin received her undergraduate degree in
mechanical engineering from Fairfield University in Connecticut.Read more about Kaitlin
With that background and a special interest in energy
conversion systems, Kaitlin has found a passion for renewable energy and energy
efficiency. Her internship with the Nature Conservancy of Connecticut, led her
to the Climate Science and Solutions program at Northern Arizona University.
Professionally, Kaitlin is interested in the connection
between policy-making and technology, specifically related to renewable energy.
Outside of the classroom, Kaitlin enjoys reading, running, and listening to and
finding new music.
Alex graduated from Northern Arizona University with a
Bachelor of Science in psychology and a minor in spanish in the fall of 2010.Read more about Alex
A two-time brain cancer survivor, Alex set out in the psychology
field with the intent of counseling kids and young adults with cancer and those
facing life-threatening illnesses.
Alex’s plans changed in 2009, while working as a lead student researcher
in a project investigating the sustainability behaviors of students living in
the residence halls on campus.
Growing up with an environmental engineer mother and having
spent much of his youth outdoors, climate change has weighed on his mind for as
long as he can remember. The project
rekindled his passion for the issue and he has been on a mission to solve it
With a strong background in public speaking and years of
work as an advocate for the cancer community, coupled with his understanding of
human behavior, Alex intends to use the knowledge he gains through his degree
in the Climate Science and Solutions program to help shape national policy to
solve the problems we face from climate change.
His main interest area is solutions to our climate and energy problems
through waste-to-energy plants using biodigestion.
Adrian grew up in Coalmine, Arizona, located in a
remote area of the Navajo Reservation.Learn more about Adrian
She graduated from Northern Arizona University in 2010, with
a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Studies. During her undergraduate
education and through participation in internships, Adrian developed an
interest in renewable energy and water conservation. She is particularly
interested in issues relating to the challenges in “urban” settings on the
Her goal is to study innovative and energy-efficient
planning, design, and development. Ultimately, Adrian would like to help reduce
or eliminate dependence on fossil fuels, such as coal, in reservation
communities, and to help mitigate the effects of climate change through
alternative, renewable, energy sources.
Adrian will work to link the knowledge and resources of modern science
to the traditional values of her Dine people.
Sarah received her BS in Environmental Science from
the University of Texas at El Paso.Read more about Sarah
While there, Sarah worked on projects that assessed aquatic
ecosystem degradation. Water quality
issues on the border made her realize the need for effected bi-national
policies to maintain and prevent further degradation of our shared natural
She is interested in community education and
interdisciplinary approaches to promote sustainability and conservation on both
sides of the border. Communication is an
important component in combating global climate change. Sarah is excited to
learn about community-based approaches to sustainability and methods to empower
communities to take on challenges like climate change.
Stephanie Jackson, a Navajo woman born and raised in Arizona, received her Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science from Northern Arizona University in 2008. Read more about Stephanie
Working in a soil ecology lab as a lab and field assistant during her undergraduate career and the proceeding 2 years upon graduating, heightened her interest in climate change. Being a native woman from the Navajo Reservation located in Arizona, also home to a number of tribal reservations that are being affected by climate change brought awareness to this field of study. In a sense, these tribal reservations do not have the resources or technology to educate and prepare communities that are still in the process of being economically developed and affected by a “change” that is out of their hands. She is particularly interested in youth/community outreach and education in the field of adaptation and mitigation to climate change in the Southwest. In 2007, she became a river guide on the San Juan and Colorado River. She continues to works as a guide with Grand Canyon Youth, where she hopes in creating interdisciplinary lessons in education, experiential learning, and outdoor adventures to inspire youth to invest in their future by becoming environmental stewards.
Katharyn received her degree in earth science –geology from
Portland State University.Read more about Katharyn
Katharyn grew up in the Pacific
Northwest where she was involved in environmental science and education from an
early age. Katharyn studied botany and plant pathology at Oregon State
University before moving to Portland State University to complete a degree in
earth science-geology, with a minor in chemistry. She also worked as a naturalist
and field guide for 5 years developing, implementing and teaching earth-systems
science curriculum. Katharyn's focus in the Climate Science and Solutions
program is on climate change adaptation and mitigation strategies, specifically
forest restoration, forest carbon, and REDD+ strategies. She hopes to
develop and implement adaptation and restoration projects to protect forest
resources and avoid large-scale carbon dioxide emissions due to disturbances
such as wildfire.