2017 Sustainability Fellows


Micah Baclig

Supporting Neighborhood Sustainability Engagement
City of Providence, RI

Micah Baclig worked with the city of Providence to support neighborhood sustainability efforts. His main task was to create a community guide for the Office of Sustainability based on feedback and interviews from both city and community stakeholders. This fellowship fit into the Office’s larger goal of weaving racial equity into its sustainability work. Micah also interfaced with the Healthy Communities office and Planning and Development on initiatives that helped make Providence neighborhoods more healthy and vibrant. Micah completed his fellowship while working towards his M.A. in Sustainable Design from Cornell University. The experience impressed in Micah the many challenges inherent in working in municipal government but also how important the work is in building more equitable and sustainable communities.

 


Marissa Bell

Supporting Climate Action with Data and Analysis
City of Northampton, MA

Marissa completed her fellowship while pursuing a Masters in Greenhouse Gas Management and Accounting at Colorado State University. She worked with the City of Northampton to develop the first community-wide greenhouse gas inventory. As a member of the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy (previously called the Compact of Mayors), the city gained access to software programs to track their annual emissions. Marissa worked extensively with the ICLEI Global Protocol for Communities (GPC) and the C40 excel-based tool: City Inventory Reporting and Information System (CIRIS) over the summer. The results help to project future emissions and track the progress of emission reduction through new project implementations within their Climate Action Plan. This fellowship challenged Marissa to explore new avenues to collect data, and opened her perspectives to several sectors within the environmental field. From this, she gained exposure to some new avenues of interest to pursue in community outreach programs for sustainability. Before the fellowship, she worked at Denver International Airport as a Sustainability Intern and completed a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Health.

 


Derek Bolivar

Network Baseline Assessment and Community Sustainability Profiles
New England Municipal Sustainability Network

Derek worked with the New England Municipal Sustainability Network (NEMSN) developing both Community and Sustainability Profiles that serve as a baseline assessment for best practices within the network. Derek began his fellowship in the fall semester of his senior year at University of New Hampshire where he studied Environmental Resources and Economics, and completed his research following his graduation. Derek worked with City Sustainability Coordinators and Planners to develop profiles that would identify community characteristics, successful sustainability practices, and barriers that are commonly faced when implementing sustainable initiatives within communities.  This research was an important first step in furthering connections between network members and informing research between UNHSI and NEMSN.  Derek gained valuable experience working with a diverse group of communities and developed an understanding for the extensive work that is associated with implementing new policies and programs within local communities. He enjoyed collaborating with other fellows working with NEMSN as well as learning the different aspects of other projects. Derek looks forward to using the skills and experiences he has gained from this fellowship to help in future work within sustainability.

 


Marina Bowie

Updating and Expanding New England Climate Assessments
UNH Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans, and Space

Marina completed her fellowship during her final summer as a dual major in Economics and Sustainability (minor in Business Administration) at the University of New Hampshire.  Her project involved creating code in R statistical software, which analyzes meteorological data and downscaled global climate model simulations, as well as documents past and potential future climate change.  Marina’s work is the base of a continuing project, which will culminate in an updated UNHSI report.  Her work is fundamental in the construction of the SI report, meant to inform key stakeholders of the impacts of past and potential future New England climate change.  Although Marina does not see coding playing a significant role in her future career, she is excited to have learned a new and useful skill.  Her experience working with an inspired and dedicated group at SI has solidified her aspirations in the sustainability field.

 


Taylor Briglio

Community Carbon Footprint Analysis and Communication
Town of Amherst, MA

Taylor Briglio completed his fellowship while pursuing a Masters in Environmental Science and Management from the Bren School at UC Santa Barbara. Taylor worked for the Town of Amherst, Massachusetts to develop greenhouse gas emission inventories for FY 2011 and FY 2016. FY 2011 was selected as a baseline year for the town to track progress in subsequent inventories.  The inventories inform the town’s Climate Action Plan and catalyze other sustainability initiatives within Amherst.   Even though the project was only focused on GHG emissions, Taylor worked with Amherst’s Sustainability Coordinator and was exposed to other sustainability projects occurring in the town.  This fellowship renewed Taylor’s passion for working in sustainability and finding ways to reduce energy usage, waste, and emissions.   Before this fellowship, Taylor worked as an environmental compliance consultant and completed a B.S. Degree in Environmental Science with a minor in Atmospheric and Oceanic Science at UCLA.

 


Whitman Constantineau

Developing a Campus Green Office Program
UNH Sustainability Institute

As the Sustainability Rich Media Fellow, Whitman Constantineau worked with the University of New Hampshire’s Sustainability Institute to create a staff and faculty sustainability professional development program. This had previously been a difficult undertaking at the university; however, through collaborative efforts with many UNH departments and offices, Whitman developed a Green Office Program for all university employees. The program seeks to provide achievable metrics by which employees can contribute to growing the sustainable learning community at the university. Creating a university-wide program is no small task, and gave Whitman the opportunity to find the value in cooperation with various constituents around the university. Whitman completed his fellowship during his final summer as an undergraduate student at UNH, pursuing a degree in Environmental Conservation and Sustainability with a specialization in Sustainable Natural Resources and Environmental Management and Policy. Following his fellowship, he continued his work with the Sustainability Institute, helping to develop a greater culture of sustainability at the university and beyond.

 


Lauren de la Parra

Community Carbon Footprint Analysis and Communication
City of Somerville, MA

As the Community Carbon Footprint Analysis and Communications Fellow for the Office of Sustainability and Environment, Lauren contributed to the City of Somerville’s climate change planning process through monitoring of greenhouse gas emissions and progress toward the City’s ambitious goal of carbon neutrality by 2050. Greenhouse gas inventories are complex and multifaceted, and the experience of assembling all the pieces with the help of many different people and resources has broadened Lauren’s perspective immensely, reiterating the importance of public data stewardship for accountable environmental monitoring. While data analysis was a major component of her project, Lauren discovered that the communications aspect of her role was even more rewarding. This insight prompted her to commit to a new role as Editor-in-Chief of Paperbark Magazine, a nascent environmental humanities publication out of the University of Massachusetts.  Lauren completed her fellowship while pursuing a Masters in Sustainability Science and Regional Planning at UMass.

 


Noah Goldstein

Mitigating Vulnerabilities in an Inland Community's Stormwater Infrastructure
Town of Amherst, MA

Noah Goldstein worked with the Department of Public Works in Amherst, MA on mitigating vulnerabilities to the town’s stormwater infrastructure. Noah completed his fellowship during the final summer of his Bachelor’s program in Environmental Engineering at the University of New Hampshire.  Noah’s project involved updating and remapping the Amherst storm drainage system to enable any potential contaminants to be traced back to their discharge points and eliminated at the source, thus bringing the town into compliance with EPA stormwater regulations, and protecting the surface and groundwater of the region.  Noah hopes to build upon this experience by working on solutions to other wastewater, stormwater, and drinking water issues, hazardous waste and pollution problems, and greener energy alternatives.  Noah learned a great deal during his fellowship, most notably through the incredible people he met, whose stories and conversations will remain with him. He’s grateful to have been part of a cohort of amazingly intelligent big-hearted fellows, and looks forward to watching them continue to bring positive change to the world.

 


Adam Hasz

A Renewable Thermal Roadmap for Residential Buildings
City of Cambridge, MA

Adam Hasz worked with the City of Cambridge to create a roadmap for renewable thermal technologies in residential buildings. Adam completed his fellowship while pursuing a Masters in City Planning at the Department of Urban Studies and Planning at MIT, focusing on policies that promote renewable energy while building community wealth. In his summer project, Adam focused on what renewable technologies can be used to replace fossil fuel heating and cooling within Cambridge. This is important because Cambridge has committed to achieve net zero emissions from buildings by 2040, but 56% of its current building energy usage comes from fossil fuel heating systems. Adam’s work will provide Cambridge with an overall catalogue of residential building types and pathways to implement renewable thermal replacement systems. It will also provide the basis of an application to the new HeatSmart Mass program, a solarize-style program for municipalities to encourage mass adoption of heat pumps. From this summer fellowship, Adam learned that small progressive cities can catalyze larger-scale change at the regional and state levels. In the future, Adam hopes to help scale the important net zero work happening in Cambridge though work that advances new state and federal energy policies.

 


Jacky Kinson

Analyzing Energy Storage Strategies at UNH
UNH Energy & Utilities

Jacky Kinson, a native of Franklin, Massachusetts, completed her fellowship while finishing her undergraduate degree in chemical engineering (B.S.) with a concentration in energy at the University of New Hampshire. She worked with the UNH Energy Office on the UNH Energy Strategies project. She conducted a feasibility analysis of energy storage technologies on the Durham campus to reduce energy costs, increase campus resiliency, and decrease Scope 2 emissions. Energy storage can ensure students have a comfortable living, learning, and research environment and provide renewable energy opportunities for the future. Jacky hopes to bring the enthusiasm, passion, and tenacity she experienced at the UNH Sustainability Institute to her future work with energy storage projects.

 


Brittany Kwolek

Supporting Climate Action with Data and Analysis
Town of Dedham, MA

Brittany is a Virginia native and recent graduate of the University of Virginia where she received a degree in Global Environments & Sustainability. Through the UNHSI 2017 Sustainability Fellowship she contributed to the climate action planning process for the town of Dedham, Massachusetts by updating the municipal energy inventory and creating the platform for a future Climate Action Plan for the town. Through pushing for participation in the Compact of Mayors, a global coalition of mayors and city officials for collective climate action, Brittany set the stage for future progress in emissions reductions. This work gave her a deeper understanding of the complexities of working both at the municipal government level and with large and complex data sets. But the challenge only reaffirmed her dedication to pursuing a more sustainable future. Brittany learned a great deal from the other fellows in her cohort and looks forward to further collaboration with them as they branch off into their respective fields.

 


Brendan Landry

Establishing a Community Supported Fishery at NH Farmers Markets
NH Community Seafood

Brendan Landry completed his fellowship after graduating from the University of New Hampshire with a health management and policy degree.  It was here that he discovered his keen interest in food policy and food systems.  In his fellowship, he worked with New Hampshire Community Seafood to develop a presence in farmers markets across New Hampshire, while also expanding their community supported fishery.  This work addressed a few critical problems such as the disconnection of communities with their local seafood, lack of support for the seacoast fishing industry, and misinformation regarding the sustainability of the ocean and marine economy.    This experience showed Brendan the importance of local communities in supporting marine economies, as well as the challenges associated with driving change through grass-roots efforts.  This fellowship has opened up his eyes to his true passion for the fisheries, where he hopes to continue his work for years to come.

 


Sam Lewandowski

Addressing the Mental Health Impacts of Climate Change in NH
SolaVida.org

Samantha Lewandowski worked with mentor Dan Quinlan, founder of SolaVida, on a project examining the mental health impacts of climate change. She completed her fellowship while wrapping up her MS in Community Development & Applied Economics at the University of Vermont. The goal of her project was to summarize existing research on the mental health impacts of climate change and figure out how to effectively communicate this content to key audiences. Samantha realized that in order to effectively communicate, she would need to embrace the art and power of storytelling. She learned that telling the right story is an integral component of gaining trust, fostering connection, and ultimately, promoting awareness and motivating action. She also saw that connecting with a variety of community members and experts greatly enhanced her ability to create the right story for her audiences. Overall, this work reaffirmed her commitment to grounding activism in community and also gave her additional ideas on how to do this.

 


Matt L'Hereaux

Planning for Campus and Community Climate Resilience
UNH Sustainability Institute

Matt graduated in the spring of 2017 from the University of New Hampshire with a dual B.A. degree in Environmental & Resource Economics and Sustainability along with a minor in Green Real Estate. As a Campus and Community Climate Resilience Fellow, he worked on meeting the resilience requirements for Second Nature’s Climate Commitment. Resilience planning is important, as it allows the University to prepare for the inevitable impacts of climate change. Matt’s work is a resource to the broader higher education community for climate resilience planning. Matt learned to appreciate the power and momentum generated from working as part of a fast pace and dynamic team. He hopes to use this experience to continue working in higher education on a range of sustainability related projects. Matt found the experience of working with the other fellows to be extremely valuable and is excited to keep these connections strong in the future.

 


Gabrielle Lichtenstein

Josephine A. Lamprey Fellow
Integrated Solutions Case Studies: Community Choice Energy Aggregation

New England Municipal Sustainability Network

Gabrielle spent the summer of 2017 working with Climate Solutions New England (CSNE) to evaluate integrated solutions to climate change, helping inform decisions made by members of the New England Municipal Sustainability Network. She was the lead author of a report on green Community Choice Aggregation in Massachusetts, and also conducted research on the expansion of cold climate air source heat pumps in New England. These topics confronted two fundamental goals for our energy future: renewable sources and reduced consumption. Gabrielle plans to pursue these goals in her career, applying the analytical skills she developed in this position to advance progressive energy policy at the municipal or state level. Prior to the fellowship, Gabrielle received her Bachelor's degree from Syracuse University, where she studied international relations, public relations, and policy.

 


Laurel Maley

Planning for Campus and Community Climate Resilience
UNH Sustainability Institute

Laurel worked at the University of New Hampshire Sustainability Institute as a Campus and Community Climate Resilience fellow after receiving a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Ithaca College in 2017. The purpose of her project was to develop a framework for a campus and community climate resilience plan, and then complete the first steps of this framework. This work was in response to a commitment UNH signed in 2007 to be a leader in climate change and sustainability, and contributed to an ongoing effort around resilience planning at UNH. Laurel hopes the framework she developed will serve as a model for other colleges and universities. By working on this project, Laurel strengthened her systems thinking abilities and learned the value of fostering relationships with stakeholders when working towards climate-related goals. She hopes to combine her psychology background and the skills she learned during her fellowship to encourage sustainable practices in the future.

 


Jackson Massey

Roadmap for Collective Impact on Climate Change for New England Communities
New England Municipal Sustainability Network

Jackson Massey holds a B.A. in Environmental Studies from the University of Vermont and completed his fellowship while pursuing an M.S. in Climate Science and Solutions from Northern Arizona University.  As the New England Municipal Sustainability Network (NEMSN) Roadmap Fellow, Jackson developed a new mission and framework to maximize the benefits of the new UNSHI/NEMSN partnership. By researching existing sustainability frameworks and interviewing NEMSN members, Jackson developed a series of recommendations to guide members towards Compact of Mayors compliance.  The outcome provides NEMSN members with a clear path and support structure to aid in the implementation of local sustainability initiatives. Furthermore, the Roadmap allows NEMSN to quantify their collective contributions toward sustainability. Jackson’s fellowship experience piqued his interest in a career in municipal sustainability work.

 


Philipp

Developing a "Handprinting" Pilot Program
NewEarth B

Philipp completed his fellowship while pursuing a Masters in Sustainability at the Harvard Extension School in Cambridge, MA. He holds a Master’s degree in Economics and has spent the last twelve years working in management consulting and technology research.  During the UNH fellowship, Philipp worked with Handprinter.org, a startup that promotes pro-environmental behavior through the power of interpersonal relationships. He supported the advance of the web platform and the underlying impact modeling. He was responsible for developing outreach material for clients and investors and for onboarding one of the Handprinter clients. This fellowship confirmed Philipp’s interest in understanding behavior change as a key success factor in the path towards a more sustainable society!

 


Leah Powley

Planning to Achieve a Zero Waste Campus
UNH Sustainability Institute

Leah served as the Zero-Waste Planning Fellow at the UNH Sustainability Institute. In this position, Leah researched past and present zero-waste initiatives at both UNH and other institutions in an attempt to develop a comprehensive action plan to direct UNH’s waste-reduction strategies. Though lacking an explicit zero-waste goal, UNH generally hopes to reduce its waste “footprint” and thus its impact on climate change, resource use, and pollution.  Leah holds a BA in environmental policy from Colby College, and completed her fellowship while pursuing a master's degree in agriculture, food, and the environment from Tufts University. Her experience at UNH provided her with valuable insight into the challenges of working in institutional settings, and has also reinforced her desire to pursue this type of meaningful sustainability work in the food and agriculture industries.

 


Indy Reid-Shaw

Josephine A. Lamprey Fellow
Integrated Solutions Case Studies: Low-Carbon Heating and Cooling

New England Municipal Sustainability Network

Indy completed her fellowship just after graduating from Swarthmore College, where she created a special major in Environmental Anthropology and minored in Biology.  Indy was an Integrated Climate Solutions Fellow through a partnership between Climate Solutions New England, CSNE, and the New England Municipal Sustainability Network, NEMSN. The purpose of the project was to increase the impact of the NEMS Network to help its municipalities achieve the deep decarbonization necessary for the world's future. She interviewed relevant stakeholders to learn more about the potential for Community Choice Aggregation and Air Source Heat Pump outreach campaigns, as examples of innovative climate mitigation strategies in New England. Through her experience meeting with hard working and inspiring community leaders, Indy grew more interested in local government policy.

 


Deirdre Schiff

Mapping Climate-Driven Sea-level and Groundwater Rise in the NH Seacoast
UNH Center for Infrastructure Resilience to Climate

As the Groundwater Impacts Fellow, Deirdre explored climate-driven sea-level and groundwater rise using GIS inundation modeling. Her study of New Hampshire’s Seacoast region involved addressing the effects of sea-level and groundwater rise on coastal estuaries and wetlands, focusing on vegetation, fisheries, and ecosystem services. Her work with the UNH Center for Infrastructure Resilience to Climate will allow her to apply an expanded knowledge of GIS and hydrological systems to agricultural applications in her future research. She completed her fellowship while pursuing a Master’s of Science degree in Agriculture, Food, Environment at Tufts University’s Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy, with a focus in regional agricultural systems and agricultural economics.

 


Renee Smith

Thomas W. Haas Fellow
Market and Resource Development for NH Farm and Food Businesses

NH Food Alliance 

Renee Smith worked with the New Hampshire Food Alliance (NHFA) as a fellow for the Market Development Action Team while completing her Master’s in Food and  Agricultural Law and Policy at Vermont Law School. Renee is interested in local food policy, food justice, and community engagement. Her project work consisted of identifying service providers along the spectrum of a food business and identifying where gaps may exist, and how those gaps may be filled. She also researched sustainable funding mechanisms for technical and financial assistance opportunities to offer as tools to help businesses. The research Renee conducted contributes to the larger goals of NHFA to assist farmers and food entrepreneurs in the state to build viable, successful businesses by providing tools and resources to support their growth. This work provided a new perspective for Renee to consider the importance of economic opportunities and support for farmers that can impact a greater food and agriculture system. She plans to continue to explore different aspects of food systems and use her knowledge to support all stakeholders that make a system sustainable and viable.

 


Evie Song

A New Approach to Promotion of Residential Energy Efficiency Programs
City of Northampton, MA

Evie Song holds a B.E. in Landscape Architecture, and completed her fellowship while pursuing a Masters in Engineering Management at Dartmouth College. She applied her experience in green buildings and data management to her work at the Energy Office of Northampton as an energy analysis fellow. While Evie was a fellow, The City of Northampton was working on market outreach to increase the number of homes that supplement or replace less-efficient heating systems with air source heat pumps (ASHP). Evie helped them to explore whether using public data to micro-target homeowners and provide them with improved support might increase the rate of success and the depth of energy improvements. The purpose of this data-intensive project was to move Northampton toward more sustainable use of energy and significantly reduce the community's greenhouse gas emissions. With the increased social responsibilities, this experience opens up a new field for Evie to contribute to the community with her professional skills.