Aside from the below staff members, more than 160 volunteer experts around the world create our grantmaking strategies and recommend grants to local groups in their regions.

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Board of Directors

Nnimmo Bassey, Chair of the Board

Health of Mother Earth Foundation/Oilwatch International

Nnimmo is a Nigerian environmental and human rights activist. He served as executive director of the Environmental Rights Action, Nigeria’s foremost environmental rights advocacy group, and chaired Friends of the Earth International, the world’s largest federation of grassroots organizations fighting for environmental and social justice. Nnimmo is a member of the international steering committee of Oilwatch International and also coordinates the network. He is the founder/director of the ecological think tank, Health of Mother Earth Foundation. He is also a practicing architect in Nigeria, as well as a published writer and poet. Nnimmo is a longtime advisor to Global Greengrants' West Africa Advisory Board and served on the strategic planning committee. He has been a Voting Member since January 2011.

Jake Beinecke, Secretary

Jake is a New York City-based attorney and strategic consultant with experience in sustainable food & agriculture, environmental conservation, social enterprise and philanthropy. He has worked as a Program Analyst with the Open Space Institute and on the legal team at the Acumen Fund. He was also, once, a professional cook. Jake serves on the Boards of the Prospect Hill Foundation and Page73, and is a former Executive Director of the Law and Social Entrepreneurship Association. A lifelong New Yorker, Jake graduated from Trinity School, Columbia University, and New York University's School of Law. Jake has been an Independent Voting Member since January 2011.

Maxine A. Burkett

University of Hawaii

Maxine is a Professor of Law at theUniversity of Hawai‘i and Global Fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. She attended Williams College and Exeter College, Oxford University, and received her law degree from Boalt Hall School of Law at the University of California, Berkeley. An expert in the law and policy of climate change, she has presented her research on diverse areas of climate law throughout the United States and in West Africa, Asia, Europe, and the Caribbean. Maxine also served as the inaugural Director of the Center for Island Climate Adaptation and Policy, where she led projects to address climate change law, policy, and planning for island communities. She is the youngest scholar to have held the Wayne Morse Chair of Law and Politics at the University of Oregon. Maxine has been an Independent Voting Member since January 2010.

Stefan Gelcich

Pontifica Universidad Catolica de Chile

Stefan is a marine biologist with an interest in the social dimensions of marine conservation and management. His dissertation was on the experience of co-management in Chilean coastal fisheries. Stefan conducts field research on artisanal fishermen, local government, and scientific research for marine management. He has broad experience working directly with fishing and indigenous communities in environmental education, management of fisheries by local fishermen, repopulating invertebrate species, and the creation of protected woodlands. He received a 2014 Pew fellowship in marine conservation for a project to examine the social and ecological incentives that enable territorial fishing within no-take zones along the Chilean coast. Stefan has been an Independent Voting Member since November 2013.

Kimberly Hult

Hutchinson, Black, and Cook

Kim is a civil rights litigation attorney—usually in Title IX cases involving sexual harassment and sexual assaults—and she has spoken and written on the rights of students subjected to sexual harassment and sexual violence. Having previously practiced law in Washington, D.C., and Philadelphia, Kim has been listed for several years as one of "The Best Lawyers in America." She received her B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania and her law degree from Cornell University. In 2010, Kim took a sabbatical from her practice and moved with her family to Morocco. Kim has been an Independent Voting Member since 2013.

Shannon Lawder

Charles Stewart Mott Foundation

Shannon is Program Director of the Civil Society program at the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation. She oversees Mott’s Civil Society program. Since joining the foundation in 1995, Shannon has served as a program officer, focusing on Russia and Ukraine, and as the Regional Director for the foundation’s work in Central and Eastern Europe/Russia. Prior to joining the foundation, Shannon was the International Program Director at the Olga Havel Foundation in Prague, where she coordinated international assistance programs to help people with disabilities and chronic illnesses in the Czech Republic and Slovakia. Shannon has been an Independent Voting Member since November 2013.

Kumi Naidoo

Kumi became involved in South Africa's liberation struggle at the age of 15. Police harassment by the apartheid government eventually forced him to go underground, but he returned to South Africa after Nelson Mandela’s release from prison. Formerly the CEO of Johannesburg-based CIVICUS and International Executive Director of Greenpeace, Kumi continues to speak truth to power across the range of social, economic, and environmental justice campaigns. He is the founding chair of the Global Call to Action Against Poverty, has served on the boards of the Association for Women’s Rights in Development, the Partnership for Transparency Fund, the Global Reporting Initiative, and Earthrights International. Kumi has been and Independent Voting Member since 2015.

Terry Odendahl, Ph.D.

President and CEO, Ex Officio Board Member

Terry has worked for more than 40 years to bridge the gap between our natural and human worlds. Prior to joining Global Greengrants in 2009, she helmed the National Network of Grantmakers for over a decade, and later the New Mexico Association of Grantmakers. Terry also worked to protect public lands in the western United States as a program officer at the Wyss Foundation. An anthropologist by training, she has held faculty positions at Georgetown University, the University of California - San Diego, and Yale University. Terry’s background in anthropology and philanthropy complements her expertise in gender studies. She is the co-author of four books about philanthropy and is the co-founder of the Institute for Women’s Policy Research in Washington, DC, and the Institute for Collaborative Change in New Mexico.

Katherine Pease

Cornerstone Capital Investment Advisors

Katherine Pease is Director of Impact Investing at Cornerstone Capital Investment Advisors. She has worked with foundations, investors and nonprofit organizations for more than 20 years, most recently as the principal of KP Advisors, a Colorado-based firm that worked with foundations, nonprofits and investors. Previously Katherine served as the executive director of the Gill Foundation and as Senior Vice President for Philanthropic Investments and Policy at Gary Community Investments/Piton Foundation. She has also been a member of Cornerstone’s Global Advisory Council. Katherine regularly speaks about the intersection of impact investing and social equity and has written about the subject extensively. She earned her Bachelor of Arts from The Colorado College and her Masters in Public Administration from The University of Colorado, where she is also a Lecturer in the School of Public Affairs. Katherine Pease has been an Independent Voting Member since July 2013.

Stephen Pittam

Stephen Pittam retired as the Trust Secretary of the Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust in 2012. He joined the trust in 1986 and was appointed its secretary in 2001. He was responsible for the trust's program on democracy, human rights, and corporate accountability. Earlier, he had worked on racial justice and migration programs, and on peacebuilding work in Northern Ireland. Stephen is a board member of the British Institute of Human Rights. He is also a member of the Advisory Committee for the Centre for Applied Human Rights at York University and a Trustee of the York Gypsy & Travellers Trust. He is a member of the Working Group on Philanthropy for Social Justice and Peace, and spent 10 years in local government in London and in community development. Stephen Pittam has been an Independent Voting Member since January 2012.

Regan Pritzker, Vice Chair of the Board

The Libra Foundation

Regan Pritzker is an elementary school teacher and mother of three teens. As chair of the investment committee of her family’s foundation, the Libra Foundation, Regan works to accelerate alignment of the invested assets with their mission to support transformative social justice. She also serves on the boards of Global Greengrants Fund and The Urban School of San Francisco. She holds a master’s degree in Developmental Education from the UC, Berkeley, and a bachelor’s degree in Art History from Stanford University. She has been an Independent Voting Member since July 2013.

Staff

Anne-Marie Antoinette Assembe

Central Africa Regional Administrator

Anne-Marie serves as an independent consultant, after over 10 years with both the private sector and NGOs. She joined the Centre for Environment and Development as a program officer then headed the administration and finance department. Anne Marie is a co-founder of the Support Centre for Sustainable Rural Development. She has a M.A. in Trade and Distribution from the Catholic University of Central Africa.

Janet Awimbo

East Africa Regional Coordinator

Janet has over twenty years of experience as a researcher, trainer, and organizational development consultant with public and private development organizations. She has worked with the Kenya Forestry Research Institute, World Agroforestry Centre, The Impact Alliance, and the Pact Kenya. She has a M.A. in Ecology from the University of Canterbury, New Zealand.

Nathalie Borba

Andes Regional Administrator

Nathalie has always been interested in socio-environmental rights, climate justice, and the protection of cultural values. She lives in Uruguay, where she has experience working with socio-environmental activities in the nonprofit field. She is a journalist and at the present she studies Linguistics at School of Humanities of Universidad de la República. Her passions are everything related to human communication and the different relationships that people establish with the nature.

Ibis Colindres

Central America Regional Coordinator

Ibis has worked with rural communities for nearly two decades, focusing on participatory sustainable development. She is dedicated to helping poor, marginalized families participate in the management of local resources and improve livelihoods through environmentally-sound economic development. She has helped communities within Honduran protected areas develop non-timber forest products, community forestry management plans, and systems for protecting fragile watersheds. Ibis is based in Tegucigalpa, Honduras.

Abdulai Darimani

West Africa Regional Coordinator

Abdulai Darimani is an environment and social scientist. Abdulai has over two decades of experience working on environment and social issues with particular focus on environment, community rights and sustainable development. He holds a PhD in environmental science and MPhil in sociology from University of Ghana, a certificate in Professional Development: Environment Education from the University of Bath, as well as Bachelor of Art and Diploma in Education from the University of Cape Coast.

Jenna Daucunas

Development Database Associate

Jenna works on our fundraising team and manages the donor database. Before coming to Global Greengrants in 2015, Jenna spent several years teaching English in Spain. She holds a B.A. in International Development from the University of Oregon.

Allison R. Davis

Deputy Director of Programs

Allison comes to Global Greengrants after eight years at Oxfam America working on research and evaluation. Before Oxfam, Allison worked in both Senegal and Arizona as an anthropologist. Allison holds a M.A. in Anthropology from the University of Arizona and a B.A. from Colorado College.

Olenka Dubchak

Executive Assistant

Born in Ukraine, Olenka became passionate about environmental preservation and human rights after seeing the devastating effects of Chernobyl and degradation of the land from the heavy use of agricultural chemicals. Olenka co-founded a social enterprise, MayanTerra, and worked in Guatemala with rural farmers to test soil and raise awareness of agro-ecological alternatives to chemical pesticides and fertilizers. Olenka has an M.B.A. in Global Social Sustainable Enterprise from Colorado State University.

Alex Grossman

Digital Marketing Specialist

Alex comes to Global Greengrants with a background in indigenous rights, women’s rights, and environmental policy. She previously developed communications content and strategy for The Center of Effective Global Action at U.C. Berkeley and The Climate Reality Project. Alex has a M.A. in Latin American Studies from Boston University and a B.A. in International Relations and Anthropology from the University of Colorado at Boulder.

Matthew Hawi

East Africa Regional Administrator

Matthew is a Kenyan citizen, born and bred in the capital city, Nairobi. Matthew was one of the founders of the Kenyan-Australian initiative Bridging Borders, which works on development projects in Ndhiwa, one of Kenya’s poorest regions. He holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree in Finance, and has been working on research projects for various organizations in Kenya since graduation.

Moses Kambou

West Africa Regional Administrator

Moses Kambou is the Executive Director of Organization of Capacity Building for Community Development. Moses also teaches at the University of Ouagadougou in the faculty of Languages, Arts and Communications. He has a PhD from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Tom Kellenberger

Major Gifts Officer

Tom is a born relationship builder with over 20 years of international experience in sales and marketing of consumer products for companies such as Celestial Seasonings, Cholula Hot Sauce, Ghirardelli Chocolates, and Klean Kanteen. He has an in-depth knowledge of partnership development and management, having worked extensively throughout Latin America, Europe, and AustralAsia. Fluent in Spanish and conversational in Portuguese, Tom holds a B.S. in International Marketing from the University of Colorado and a degree in Spanish Linguistics from the Universidad de Sevilla, Spain.

Sahana Khanal

Accountant

With over 10 years of accounting experience in both for-profit and nonprofit organizations, Sahana keeps our books in order and funds flowing to the grassroots. Prior to joining the Global Greengrants Fund staff, she provided accounting training to more than 100 non-governmental organizations in Nepal, where she was born and raised. Sahana has an M.A. in Business Administration from Tribhuban University.

Peter Kostishack

Director of Programs

Prior to coming to Global Greengrants Fund in 2008, Peter coordinated a coalition of indigenous and non-governmental organizations protecting the Amazon Basin, advised funders on how to partner with indigenous peoples’ organizations, helped communities in Peru monitor natural gas development on their lands, and mapped the alpine plant communities on Mt. Katahdin in Maine. Peter has an MESc in Social Ecology and Community Development from Yale University and a B.A. in Biology from Harvard University.

Kristall Laursen

Deputy Director of Development

At Global Greengrants Fund, Kristall works directly with individual donors, connecting their passions and resources to grassroots activists worldwide. Kristall previously worked at the world-renowned John G. Shedd Aquarium in Chicago. Kristall received her M.A. in Museum Studies from Western Illinois University and her B.A. in Communications from Wartburg College.

Mary Ann Manahan

International Financial Institutions Coordinator

Mary Ann Manahan s a Senior Program Officer with Focus on the Global South, an activist think tank and advocacy organization with offices in Bangkok, Manila, New Delhi, and Phnom Penh. Based in the Philippines, she conducts critical research, campaigns, and grassroots capacity building on issues of the commons, socio-economic, gender, and environmental justice issues, and alternatives. Mary Ann has a background in sociology and women and development studies from the University of the Philippines, Diliman. She recently earned her advanced M.A. on Globalization and Development at the Institute of Development Policy at the University of Antwerp.

Liziwe McDaid

South Africa Regional Coordinator

Liziwe McDaid is the Coordinator for the Southern African Faith Communities Environment Institute. Liziwe has worked tirelessly to promote good governance, particularly in the energy sector. Liziwe holds a BSc from the University of Cape Town, a post graduate diploma in higher education, and an MSc in Climate Change and Development from the African Climate Development Institute at the University of Cape Town.

Alexa Mehos

Grants Associate

Alexa’s first passion is traveling and learning new languages, and she has studied and worked in Italy, Ghana, Uganda, Myanmar, Morocco, Palau and Peru. Alexa is especially interested in sustainable food, environmental justice and indigenous issues. Alexa is graduate of Lewis and Clark College, where she obtained a B.A. in International Relations and Political Economy.

Michelle Mendieta

Program Assistant

Before coming to Global Greengrants Fund, Michelle worked as a sustainability consultant, helping clients reduce their carbon footprint. Previously, Michelle worked at Colorado Alliance for Environmental Education and Environment for the Americas, where she focused on educating the public about migratory birds in North and South America and engaging Latino communities in conservation. Michelle has a B.S. in Environmental Studies from the University of Vermont.

Greg Miller

Director of Special Projects

At Global Greengrants, Greg coordinates our strategic planning and the donor advised fund program. He previously spent three years in Mongolia as a Peace Corps Volunteer, where he taught English and assisted with community-led projects. Greg has a M.A. in International and Intercultural Communication from the University of Denver and a B.A’s in History and Music from the University of Colorado.

Ursula Miniszewski

Program and Development Officer

Ursula Miniszewski is the Program and Development Officer, Gender and the Environment at Global Greengrants Fund, contributing author of Climate Justice and Women's Rights: A Guide to Supporting Grassroots Women's Actions, and co-coordinator of the Summit on Women and Climate. She has experience working on human rights issues in Africa, Latin America, and Europe, and has worked in internationally focused nonprofits based in the United States that advocate for girls’ and women’s rights in development. She is also an instructor in the Master of Development Practice program at Regis University. Ursula holds a M.A. in International Studies and a B.A. in History.

Katy Neusteter

Interim VP of External Relations

Katy Neusteter is a communications strategist with more than 15 years of journalism, marketing, and nonprofit experience. A former contributing editor at Wired and Outside, her writing has appeared in Wired, Outside, Sunset, the Denver Post, and National Geographic Adventure. In 2015, she co-edited Global Greengrants’ publication “Climate Justice & Women’s Rights: A Guide to Supporting Grassroots Women’s Action,” and spearheaded the launch with an outreach campaign that won the Council on Foundations’ 2016 Wilmer Shields Rich Award for Excellence in Communications. She holds a B.S. from Northwestern University.

Samuel Nnah Ndobe

Central Africa Regional Coordinator

Samuel Nnah Ndobe is an independent consultant and a part time instructor in some professional training centers, including CRESA Forêt Bois, of the University of Dschang. His work focuses on forestry, livelihoods, indigenous peoples (primarily “Pygmies”), non-timber forest products, climate change and facilitating stakeholder engagement and participatory processes related to natural resource management. Samuel received his university training in Agriculture and holds an Ingénieur Agronome diploma, specializing in Rural Economics and Sociology, from the University of Dschang, Cameroon.

Anthony Noble

Vice President and CFO

Tony joined Global Greengrants Fund after a long career in banking, where he developed expertise in financial and managerial accounting, accounting operations, budgeting, strategic planning, forecasting, and financial and regulatory reporting. He brings this experience to Global Greengrants Fund where he is responsible for accounting, finance, human resources, information technology, and grants management. Tony holds an M.S. in Business Management, Strategic Innovation and Change Management from Colorado State University and a B.S. in Business Administration/Finance from University of Northern Colorado.

Teresa Odendahl, Ph.D.

President and CEO

Terry has worked for more than 40 years to bridge the gap between our natural and human worlds. Prior to joining Global Greengrants in 2009, she helmed the National Network of Grantmakers for over a decade, and later the New Mexico Association of Grantmakers. Terry also worked to protect public lands in the western United States as a program officer at the Wyss Foundation. An anthropologist by training, she has held faculty positions at Georgetown University, the University of California - San Diego, and Yale University. Terry’s background in anthropology and philanthropy complements her expertise in gender studies. She is the co-author of four books about philanthropy and is the co-founder of the Institute for Women’s Policy Research in Washington, DC, and the Institute for Collaborative Change in New Mexico.

Cesar Padilla

Andes Regional Coordinator

For more than 25 years, Cesar has been working on behalf of Latin American communities affected by environmental degradation. He has served as both liaison and advisor for international development agencies, and co-founded his own environmental organization, Observatorio Latinoamericano de Conflictos Ambientales. In 2006, Cesar relocated from Chile to Bolivia to provide leadership for Observatorio de Conflictos Mineros de America Latina, and moved to Ecuador in 2009 to continue coordinating communities working on mining issues.

Robert Riker

Grants Manager

Robert’s passion for human rights, social justice, and environmental conservation drew him to Global Greengrants Fund in 2015. Robert previously worked with Handicap International U.S. and a local economic development organization in Takoma Park, Maryland. Robert holds B.A.s in History and Government and Politics from the University of Maryland, College Park, where he also minored in Latin American Studies.

Francesco Sangiorgi

IT Specialist

Francesco was born in Varese, Italy and raised in the foothills of the Alps. Francesco earned his B.A. in Philosophy, with an emphasis on Political Philosophy, from Bologna University. He worked as a database manager for a small internet media company for five years before joining Global Greengrants Fund in 2012.

Juan Carlos Soriano

Next Generation Climate Board Coordinator

Juan is a strong advocate for youth empowerment and believes in the power of advocacy, campaigning, and organizing to tackle the climate crisis and foster a just world. Born and raised in Peru, he attended the United World College in Canada and later majored in Human Ecology at College of the Atlantic. After living in 5 countries and 4 continents, he is back living in Peru where he is the happiest. In his spare time, Juan loves to climb mountains along the Andes range, play soccer, and go from point A to B on his folding bike.

Julia Woods

Development Assistant

Julia’s passion for environmental sustainability, human rights, and mission-driven organizations led her to Global Greengrants Fund in October 2016. Prior to joining the Greengrants team, Julia worked for a renewable energy cooperative and an education-focused nonprofit in Los Angeles. She holds a B.A. in Political Science from Loyola Marymount University.

UK Staff

Eva Rehse

Executive Director of Global Greengrants Fund / UK

With a background in human rights, civil society development, and social action, Eva brings over a decade of experience in project management and resource mobilisation. Previously, Eva worked for Amnesty International as an International Projects Advisor, and for CIVICUS World Assemblies. Eva also worked with the Scottish Biodiversity Forum where she was part of creating Scotland’s first biodiversity strategy. Eva has a M.A. from Bonn University in Political Science and Sociology. She is a member of the European Steering Group of the EDGE Funders Alliance and the Alliance Magazine Editorial Advisory Board, and an alumni of the Oak Foundation and Resource Alliance’s Future Leaders Programme.

Mathew van Lierop

Finance Director and Company Secretary

Mathew spent the first 30 years of his life in South Africa. Now based in London, Mathew has spent his working career in finance and operational roles and has a keen interest in engaging with grassroots organisations in a constructive and sustainable way. He holds a Msc. in Conservation Biology and an M.A. in Applied Ethics.

Henriette Krarup

Partnership Development Associate

Henriette Krarup is the Partnership Development Associate at Global Greengrants Fund UK. Prior to joining Global Greengrants, she worked with the Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Trust. Henriette completed her graduate studies at Goldsmiths College, London and is currently pursuing an MSc in International Development.