Sacramento Sustainability Forum 2.0

SSF 2.0 is a public engagement & education platform empowering the community to create a more sustainable society.

2014 June: Shared Vision

Shared Vision // 18 June, 2014 // 6-9pm // MidTown

 This months focus was to create a Shared Vision for a sustainable Sacramento. Check out the Shared Vision event page for more information.


   Steve Cohn   , City of Sacramento Councilman District 3

Steve Cohn, City of Sacramento Councilman District 3

   Mike McKeever ,   SACOG Chief Executive Officer                              

Mike McKeeverSACOG Chief Executive Officer                              

   Lloyd Levine   , Greenwise Joint Ventures interim    

Lloyd Levine, Greenwise Joint Ventures interim    

   Nicolas Come   , Nicolas Garden Visionary

Nicolas Come, Nicolas Garden Visionary

   Yvette Rincon   , City of Sacramento Sustainability Program

Yvette Rincon, City of Sacramento Sustainability Program

   Shawn Harrison ,   Soil Born Farms Founder & Co-Director

Shawn HarrisonSoil Born Farms Founder & Co-Director

2012 June: Green Chemistry Initiative

Hortensia Muniz, P.E.

Ms. Muniz is a Senior Hazardous Substances Engineer for the California Department of Toxic Substances Control. Ms. Muniz has been involved in the environmental field for over twenty three years in environmental restoration and policy setting, with experience in both the private and public sectors.  In recent years, Ms. Muniz has been one of the principal drafters of the Safer Consumer Products (“Green Chemistry”) regulations for the California Department of Toxic Substances Control.  Prior to this, Ms. Muniz worked on hazardous waste management issues, including: transfer facilities, used oil, rejected shipments of wastes, financial assurance, and permit appeals.  Earlier in her career, Ms. Muniz was responsible for leading and coordinating Site Assessments, Remedial Investigations, Feasibility Studies, and Engineering Evaluations and Cost Analysis.  For a brief period, Ms. Muniz partnered with a consulting firm and provided engineering support on contaminated sites that had been mismanaged and required extensive negotiations with state and local regulatory agencies.  Ms. Muniz graduated from the University of Texas at El Paso in 1988 with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Civil Engineering.

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 Joseph H. Guth, J.D., Ph.D

Dr. Guth serves as both the Legal Director for the Science & Environmental Health Network and as a Research Scientist in the U.C. Berkeley School of Public Health and in the Berkeley Center for Green Chemistry.

Joe is a member of the New York State Bar, has a law degree from New York University, a Ph.D. in biochemistry from the University of Madison, Wisconsin, and an undergraduate degree in biochemistry from the University of California, Berkeley. Joe has worked for the Natural Resources Defense Council in New York City, doing both litigation of Clean Water Act citizen's suits and toxic chemicals regulatory policy advocacy; as a litigator in private law firms in New York in the areas of environmental torts, intellectual property and products liability; and as a Vice-president of intellectual property for Chiron Corporation, a biotechnology company in California. Joe has been Executive Director of the California League for Environmental Enforcement Now, a coalition of environmental groups and law firms in Oakland, California, and also a Senior Policy Analyst for the Center for Environmental Health in Oakland, California, working on chemicals policy reform.

Joe serves as a member of Cal/EPA's Green Ribbon Science Panel, which advises Cal/EPA on the Green Chemistry Initiative.  He also serves as a member of Cal/EPA’s Cumulative Impacts and Precautionary Approaches Workgroup, which focuses on implementing California's Environmental Justice Action Plan.  He is also a past member of U.S. EPA's National Pollution Prevention and Toxics Advisory Committee (NPPTAC), which advised EPA on its implementation of U.S. laws governing toxic chemicals.

The central goal of Joe’s work is the transformation of the law so that it will promote preservation of the earth rather than accept environmental destruction as a byproduct of economic growth. Key areas that this work draws from include property law, the public trust doctrine, law of the commons, ecological economics and precautionary principle theory.

Joe also works to achieve comprehensive reform of chemicals policy in California and in the United States, which involves intensive study of the REACH legislation in the European Union, the proposed federal Safer Chemicals Act of 2011 and the California Green Chemistry Initiative.


 Mark McLeod

Mark McLeod, has served four years as Executive Director of Sustainable Business Alliance (SBA). SBA is a 501 C6 alliance of businesses in Berkeley/Oakland, CA, committed to "Think Local First" and to honoring the Triple Bottom Line -- the Environmental Bottom Line, the Social Bottom Line, and the Financial Bottom Line. SBA, in collaboration with Oakland Grown, has spent much of 2011-12 developing a complementary currency that can be used only in indie-and-locally-owned businesses.  The goal of this program is to keep currency flowing within the community of indie-and-locally-owned businesses, since that currency becomes more valuable every time it is spent and re-spent within the community. SBA is a very active member of the and Business Alliance for Local Living Economies (BALLE).

The national umbrella organization for Think Local First business networks around the country.  SBA is also an enthusiastic member of the American Sustainable Business Council (ASBC) -- a Washington, DC-based organization which serves as a voice for progressive businesses and business associations around the country. Mark sits on the ASBC Board of Partners.  The ASBC advocates in Congress and the White House for progressive public policy (such as our topic this evening --  reform of public policy related to use of toxic chemicals in American manufacturing and agriculture) that will improve the arena within which progressive businesses operate.

2012 May: Sustainable Landscapes

Building rating systems such as LEED help guide, recognize, and reward efforts to build and maintain buildings in sustainable ways. But what about landscapes? Inherently thought of as 'green' they are often far from sustainable. The Sustainable Sites Initiative, and River Friendly Landscaping are two programs trying to change that. Come learn about these local and national programs that are helping guide and recognize the design and maintenance of sustainable landscapes.


Allegra Bukojemsky

Allegra Bukojemsky is a landscape architect with a background that includes biology, animal behavior, sustainable architecture, and industrial design. This broad range of experience comes from her passion to strengthen and repair our connection to and stewardship of nature. Allegra has worked on a variety of projects, including master planning, commercial development, public parks, private residences, and habitat restoration. Currently at Wildlands, a mitigation banking firm, she spends her days designing wetlands and endangered species habitats. Having always had a strong focus on sustainability in life and work, Allegra is a LEED Accredited Professional, and founding member and current co-chair of the ASLA Sustainable Design and Development Professional Practice Network and, in this capacity, involved in the associated Sustainable Sites Initiative.

Allegra will introduce and discuss the Sustainable Sites Initiative (SITES) a national program developed through a partnership of the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA), the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, and the US Botanic Garden. With three recently certified pilot projects and hundreds more in line, the SITES  is poised to be the equivalent of a LEED rating system for landscapes. Based on the premise of ecosystem services SITES credits include points for native plants and plant communities, supporting healthy soil, and promoting human health and wellbeing to a wide range of landscapes.


Dave Tamayo

Dave Tamayo is an Environmental Specialist who has worked for 20 years in the water quality field for the County of Sacramento. As part of the County’s Stormwater Quality Program, Dave focuses on reducing pesticide and mercury contamination in local water bodies, and serves on a number of local, state, and national boards and committees that promote integrated pest management and advocate for reform of pesticide regulations. One of his key projects in recent years has been the development of the River Friendly Landscaping Program, which is a holistic approach to achieving multiple environmental goals through landscape design and maintenance. He has a  bachelor’s degree in zoology from UC Berkeley and is currently a graduate student in entomology with the University of Florida.

Dave will talk about the local River Friendly Landscaping program which is a Sacramento-region effort to promote a holistic approach to landscaping that provides a number of environmental  benefits, including water and energy conservation, reduced waste to the landfill, protection of water and air quality, and providing habitat for wildlife. The RFL coalition is a local partnership of public agencies, landscaping industry practitioners, and non-profit organizations that work together to promote this approach. Local training and information resources will be discussed.

2012 April: Sustainability in Business & The Realty of Greenwashing

A rare opportunity to hear expert input from a local business leader, a start-up technology entrepreneur, and a director of a prominent watch dog agency on what it means to run a sustainable business, develop green technology, and keep industry honest on their sustainability claims.


Tom Kandris

As a leading area business, America River PackageOne "walks the talk" in their sustainability agenda. Mr. Kandris is the CEO and Founder of American River-Packaging, an innovative corrugated manufacturing company with two factories located in Northern California. Mr. Kandris has over 30 years of experience in the combined areas of general management, technical sales, market leadership, and entrepreneurship in the semiconductor equipment and packaging materials industries. He has held domestic and overseas senior executive and board level positions with worldwide responsibilities in major American, Japanese, and European corporations. He has a proven track record in market creation, business start-ups, acquisition, and in corporate turn-around management; most notably with MRC, formerly a Sony company, Integrated Reactor Corporation acquired by CVC Products Inc. and ASML, Inc. formerly a Philips, NV Corporation. Currently, American River-PackageOne is one of the largest independently owned companies in their market. Mr. Kandris led his company from a self-funded start up to over $42 million in revenues within its first 6 years. His company has leveraged web services tools to create back office applications in order to become his related industry’s first Real-Time Enterprise. This was further enabled through joint technical enterprise collaboration with Intel: “From High Tech to No Tech and Back again!”

…and now for his passion, Mr. Kandris has spent his last 30 years as an Intra-preneur and Entrepreneur with near corporate death life experiences and rebirths. He owes his resiliency and resolve to the mentors who gave of themselves to him freely throughout his career. Armed with knowledge and appreciation, Mr. Kandris has sought to give back to his community and others; for profit and not for profits alike in similar ways. Not only does Mr. Kandris give financially, but he offers something of greater value, his experience sharing, his network, and his time. Mr. Kandris serves and has served on several Boards for Profit and Not, most of which have an education bias: for Children, for Educators of all types, and for Entrepreneurs. Mr. Kandris rarely turns down a request to meet and experience share with a budding entrepreneur from all walks or colleagues in need of a sounding board. Mr. Kandris has a rising tide goal for all in our community to make us all successful in our own rights and create jobs in our community. Mr. Kandris currently employees ~150 of his own and has influence and has helped others in our community who employee 1000s!

Mr. Kandris is affiliated with the multiple organizations throughout the community.  He is on the Sacramento Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce’s Board of Directors, and serves as Co-Chair on the Jobs and Growth Subcommittee and is a member of the Political Action Subcommittee.  He also serves with:  Greenwise Joint Venture as Director and Treasurer; SARTA (Sacramento Area Technology Alliance), as its Mentorship Co-Chair for the VentureStart Program;  EO Sacramento (Entrepreneur’s Organization; a notable worldwide organization) as the Chapter Alliance Chair; RAFT (Resources Area For Teaching) as its former Board chair; and SVP (Social Venture Partners) founding partner group; Member Sacramento Angels and former Director; the St. Francis High School Board of Director; Comstock Magazine’s Editorial Board and others….


Bing Gu

Dr. Bing Gu is the founder and CEO of California Sunlight Corporation. a start-up solar energy company in Sacramento. California Sunlight develops and designs small scale, cost-effective, portable solar energy products including solar powered BBQs, solar ovens, solar stoves, active daylighting, and micro-CPV systems. Dr. Gu has been working in the energy field for more than 15 years. He holds a MS and Ph.D degree in mechanics, and a BS degree in engineering physics from Tsinghua University. Dr. Gu is the inventor of two patents and five pending patents in solar energy.


Mike Somers

Mike is the State Director of Pesticide Watch and Pesticide Watch Education Fund, and manages the day-to-day operations of the organization. He graduated from the University of Illinois in 2004 with a degree in Cellular and Structural Biology. Mike has worked for a number of different organizations since graduating college including MoveOn, Enviroment America Voter Action, and most recently the Fund for the Public Interest. During his time with the Fund, Mike was the telephone outreach project director in Sacramento where he hired and trained a staff of 30+ telephone activists and managed telephone campaigns for 23 state and national environmental and consumer organizations.  As a watchdog organization, Pesticide Watch is keenly aware of the misleading and false "green and clean" claims made by major industry leaders.

2012 March: What's on Tap? Sustainability of Our Water & Health


Ken Landau

The Central Valley Regional Water Quality Control Board is the State agency with primary responsibility for protecting surface and ground water quality from the impacts of waste discharges in the Central Valley of California.  Ken Landau is an Assistant Executive Officer in the Water Board’s Rancho Cordova office, managing the surface water protection programs.  Ken has been with the Central Valley Water Board since 1984, and was previously with the Colorado River Basin Water Board starting in 1975.  He is a graduate of Cal Poly San Luis Obispo with a BS in Environmental Engineering, and College of the Deserts with an AA in Geology.  He is a California Registered Civil Engineer.


Dr. Peter Green

Dr. Peter Green is from the University of California at Davis, and has been a researcher there in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering since 2000.  His degrees are in Chemistry.  His research projects range widely over a variety of water quality and air quality projects, with collaborators including ecologists and clinical researchers. Among his more important projects in recent years are several involving mercury in the environment, as well as in children, plus a series of studies on agricultural emissions which can be precursors to ground-level ozone -- part of what is sometimes called 'smog'.  Ongoing research includes removal of arsenic from drinking water, remediation of mine drainage, and minimization of emissions from use of renewable resources.

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Dr. Emily Marquez

Emily Marquez, Ph.D. recently earned her doctorate from Boston University. While in Boston, she studied snakes that she collected from fish farms in North Carolina and Canada, and did her graduate thesis work on gene expression in turtles exposed to contaminated soil from an EPA Superfund site. She also volunteered at the nonprofit organization Bikes Not Bombs, teaching bike mechanics to Boston youth. At UC Berkeley, she majored in Integrative Biology and History and did research in the laboratory of Dr. Tyrone Hayes, where she worked on frogs, snakes, turtles, and lizards. Dr. Marquez was just hired as a staff scientist at Pesticide Action Network North America.

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Andria Ventura

Andria Ventura left a 13-year career in publishing in 1995 to work on environmental issues for the New Jersey Environmental Federation, Clean Water Action's New Jersey chapter. There she served first on the phone canvass and then became an organizer working on a wide array of issues, supplementing her work by joining her town's environmental commission. Andria joined the California staff in May 2003, after a two-year hiatus in Hawaii volunteering with the Waikiki Zoo's elephant program and working at the Oceanic Institute. She represents Clean Water Action on the Environmental Justice Coalition for Water's Program Advisory Committee and staffs our TMDL (Total Maximum Daily Load), drinking water contaminants, and chemical policy programs. Andria has a B.A. in history from U.C. Santa Barbara and did graduate work on immigration history at Utah State University.

2011 November: Sustainability of Our Food & Health

The Problems with Pesticides, Herbicides, and GMO v. The Benefits of Local, Organic Production and Our Health

Paul Towers

Paul Towers has more than eight years experience in community organizing, advocacy, fundraising and organizational development with environmental, health and social justice organizations. At Pesticide Action Network (PAN), he coordinates work related to corporate accountability, media relations, and on-the-ground advocacy & organizing aimed at building healthier food and farming systems. Before joining PAN, he directed Pesticide Watch Education Fund, and was a community organizer with New England-based Toxins Action Center. Paul is also a graduate of Green Corps, the field school for environmental organizing. Paul currently serves on the steering committees of two California coalitions - the Central Vally Air Quality Coalition and Californians for Pesticide Reform, and serves on the Environmental Advisory Board of Capital Public Radio.

Belinda Martineau

Belinda Martineau, Ph.D., was a genetic engineer in a previous life. As a Principal Scientist at Calgene, Inc. (in Davis, CA), she helped bring the world’s first commercially available genetically engineered whole food, the Flavr Savr™ tomato, to market. During the development of that tomato, however, she was transformed from a devout believer in the promise of agricultural biotechnology into a skeptic wary of its uncertainties.  Her book, First Fruit: The Creation of the Flavr Savr™ Tomato and the Birth of Biotech Food, details the birth of the ag biotech industry and her personal transformation. She has also written articles about biotechnology and other scientific issues for Orion, Cooking Light, California Coast and Ocean, and Nature Biotechnology, among other magazines.  Dr. Martineau is currently a Principal Editor with the Genome Center at U.C. Davis and occasionally gives talks to promote discussion of agricultural biotechnology, its warts and all.

"Organic Jack" Hertel

In the early ‘70s Hertel’s mother passed away from cancer at age 55.  Her early death started Hertel on an exploration mission learning all he could about nutrition and living healthy that’s still going on today. In the mid-80’s Hertel began what he calls an “organic” diet, about the same time he became involved with the beginnings of what would evolve into the thriving Auburn Farmers’ Market.  Hertel was one of a handful of community members instrumental in getting the fledgling farmers market concept of organizing local farmers to offer their produce to community members at a public market off the ground and operational.

For the last 18 years Hertel has been involved with a Community-Supported Agriculture program supplying about 250 families with locally grown organic produce in Harvest Boxes delivered every other week. In the past few years, Hertel has become a “health coach” to people who want to become healthier by better understanding the connection between an organic diet and better health. Foothill Organic Growers is a group of local organic farmers that have been offering locally grown organic produce for over 25 years! They provide and deliver fresh organic fruits, vegetables and Wheatgrass from local farms to you.

Pamm Larry

Founder & Ballot Initiative Organizer. Pamm Larry is a grandmother from Chico who had been studying all the issues around GMOs for about eight years. On January 20th, 2011, she had the idea that it was time for the people of California to vote on labeling genetically engineered foods. She took six weeks to learn what she needed to do, get a website set up, and strategize. On March 10th, 2011, she came out as the single voice to label GMO foods in California. She's been on the road for most of the time since, and is happy to report that there are now over 100 identified leaders around the state organizing their communities. Large organizations and businesses from around the country are now actively working on coordinating the signature gathering drive and have come together to create an ever growing coalition to get this on the ballot this year and then vote YES in 2012. 

2011 October: The Future of Solar

Elaine Hebert


Elaine Hebert has about 13 years of service on the NorCal Solar board. She’s been interested in solar since the late 1970s and started her renewable energy career as a volunteer for Boston’s Urban Solar Energy Association in the early 1980s. Before earning her B.S. degree from University of California/Davis in Environmental and Resource Science, she worked in the wind energy industry and continued to volunteer in solar. In 2005 the American Solar Energy Society (ASES) awarded her the prestigious Rebecca Vories Award for outstanding volunteer efforts supporting ASES’s mission. In 2007, ASES named her an ASES Fellow.

Elaine works at the California Energy Commission and has been there since 1994. Her current position is in the Public Interest Energy Research (PIER) program, where she manages contracted research work in zero energy homes and sustainable communities. In her spare time she renovates a 1910 Victorian house to be as “green” as possible.

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Patrick McCoy

Patrick McCoy is a Program Planner for the solar PV incentive programs with the Sacramento Municipal Utility District.  His responsibilities include program planning for the commercial and residential retrofit markets with a program goal of installing 125 MW by 2016.  Prior to joining SMUD, Patrick was a Program Manager for the California Department of General Services’ Solar Power Purchase Program.  With over sixteen years of experience in the energy industry, Patrick has developed a broad base of energy experience and expertise, including the natural gas industry, the electricity industry, the energy efficiency and conservation industry, and the distributed generation industry.  Past projects include 1.8 MW of cogeneration systems installed at several DGS facilities, 4.25 MW of solar PV systems utilizing third party power purchase agreements, and several multi-million dollar energy efficiency projects. 

He also developed additional solar PV power generation projects at numerous state and CSU facilities, totaling 16 MW with a number of projects currently under or completing construction, as well as evaluating wind power, fuel cell and biomass energy generating technologies.  Prior to leaving the state Patrick developed and launched a procurement program for the purchase of large commercial stationary fuel cell generated energy under a third party power purchase agreement business model.  Patrick has a Bachelors of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from California State University, Sacramento, and a Masters in Business Administration from the Graduate School of Management, University of California, Davis.

Jamie Cutlip

Jamie is an Associate Planner and Certified Green Building Professional (CGBP) TM with the City of Sacramento’s Long Range Planning Division.  Her expertise extends from permitting and entitlement review to sustainability program management and policy development with emphasis in green building, solar permitting and infill development.  Jamie also serves as Energy Committee staff for Mayor Kevin Johnson’s Greenwise Initiative and program manager for the City of Sacramento’s Solar America Cities grant award from the Federal Department of Energy.

With over 10 years of experience within the government and nonprofits sectors, Jamie has an extensive background in community planning, economic development and environmental advocacy.  Prior to joining the City of Sacramento, she had worked with several nonprofits including Sonoma County Conservation Action, Bay Area Local Initiative Support Corporation (LISC), Urban Solutions and Greenbelt Alliance in San Francisco. Jamie holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Urban Studies from San Francisco State University.

2011 September: Climate Change - Local Action

Local Groups and Local Government are actively engaged to address the global threat of Climate Change. Find out who's doing what, and what you can do to be part of the solution.

Thomas Pace

Thomas Pace has 15 years of expertise in municipal planning, including current planning, long range planning, housing policy, and community participation. His emphasis for the past ten years has been on revitalization of blighted and underdeveloped infill neighborhoods. Having recently managed the preparation of the Sacramento 2030 General Plan (, his current focus is on implementation of planning policy through preparation of a climate action plan, green building program, specific plans and area planning studies, extensive citywide rezoning, zoning code updates, public facility finance planning, capital improvement plan alignment with the general plan, and extensive education and public information about the new plan and its benefits.

Erik de Kok

Erik de Kok is a Senior Planner with the City of Sacramento’s Community Development Department. He has over 10 years of experience in land use, transportation, and environmental planning and policy. He is currently managing the City’s Climate Action Plan, as well as well as implementation of programs to increase Green Building, Solar and Electric Vehicles through permit streamlining and education.


Camille Kustin

Camille Kustin is the Director of Programs and Policy at the Better World Group, a firm specializing in coalition building and management, regulatory policy development and advocacy, and communications planning and execution. Some of the Better World Group’s current projects include managing the California Business Alliance for a Green Economy, supporting AB 32 implementation, and developing the campaign to support new statewide clean cars standards. Camille has worked on air quality issues since 2007 and holds a B.S. from UC Davis in environmental policy and planning and an M.S. from the University of Michigan’s School of Natural Resources and Environment.

2011 August: The Delta, Critical Issues Surrounding Our Vital Resource

Barbara Barrigan-Parrilla

Barbara Barrigan-Parrilla is the Campaign Director for Restore the Delta. Prior to joining the campaign, Ms. Barrigan-Parrilla served as the Business Development Manager for the Planning and Conservation League in Sacramento. Ms. Barrigan-Parrilla has also taught English in the California community college system, served as a field representative for the Oakland local of the California Federation of Teachers, worked in marketing and customer service for The Disney Channel, and served as Executive Director for Manifest Press and Literary Arts Center also in Oakland.

A Stockton resident of several years, Ms. Barrigan-Parrilla developed a love and appreciation of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta years prior to becoming a resident while observing its changing landscape during the 1996-97 floods, which she chronicled in a manuscript of poems published in various literary publications throughout the United States. Ms. Barrigan-Parrilla is enthralled with bird watching and enjoys taking walks with her seven-year old daughter in various locations throughout the Delta simply to observe its wildlife.


Brett Baker

Brett Baker is a sixth generation pear farmer from Sutter Island in the Northern Delta. He currently resides on the same dirt his family has called home since 1851. Brett is a Graduate of UC Davis where he earned his B.S. in Wildlife, Fish, and Conservation Biology under the tutelage of Dr. Peter Moyle and Jeffery Mount. Brett Spent a year working for the Department of Fish and Game as a Heritage and Wild Trout Biologist- Hiking throughout the Sierra Nevada obtaining data on California Native trout species. Brett then moved into a more rigid political surrounding taking a position as the Water and Agricultural policy Analyst for then Lieutenant Governor John Garamendi in the Capitol. For the Past year he has been working as a consultant for Restore The Delta and the Central Delta Water Agency.

2011 July: Waste, Recycling & Product Stewardship

Dean Tormey

Dean Tormey (Green Dean) is a graduate of California State University-Chico with a BA, in Graphic Arts, Marketing. He currently works as a Major Account Representative for Allied Waste Services in Sacramento. He specializes in waste audits for companies getting their buildings LEED Certified. In the pass 10 months he has completed LEED Audits for The EPA Building, 300 Capitol Mall, Wells Fargo Center and Renaissance Tower. He is known as Green Dean because of his commitment to helping people and companies go green.

Heidi Sanborn

Heidi has been active in the solid waste industry in California for 20 years, working in various public and private positions including with consulting firms to cities and counties on reducing waste and increasing recycling, as an independent consultant, and serving in state government as the technical advisor to the Chair of the California Integrated Waste Management Board (CIWMB), now CalRecycle. In her positions, Heidi observed the lack of attention to true “source reduction,”recognizing that local governments are not the source, but that manufactured products are responsible for 71% of our waste.

Ms. Sanford became interested in Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) as a policy tool to change the economics so costs of product waste are internalized back on the manufacturers instead of being externalized onto the taxpayers and garbage ratepayers. As a consultant, Ms. Sanborn was the primary author of the contractor’s report to the CIWMB titled “Framework for Evaluating End-of-Life Product Management Systems in California” (7/07). This report analyzed different policy systems around the world and recommended that California utilize EPR policy for problem products to ensure fully funded and sustainable recycling systems for products banned from disposal like mercury lighting and batteries.

Ms. Sanborn is widely recognized as the expert in EPR policy in California. She has been called to serve as an expert witness, and in 2009 she made presentations on packaging to the California Ocean Protection Council, National EPA Pollution Prevention conference in Washington D.C, and on two EPA national webinars on EPR. She has authored numerous articles and reports on product stewardship. She helped found and is currently the Executive Director of the California Product Stewardship Council (CPSC). Heidi speaks internationally on producer responsibility and in the fall of 2010 presented in Brussels, Belgium at the international packaging EPR conference and Zurich, Switzerland at the WEEE Forum. She continues to speak to legislators and large audiences in conferences across the United States. Ms. Sanborn is a graduate of the University of California at Davis with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science – Public Service and a Master’s of Public Administration from the University of Southern California. She lives in Sacramento with her husband Brad.


Donna Sneeringer

Donna Sneeringer brings to the position a vast knowledge of non-profit management, public policy and media strategy. She has extensive experience doing presentations before large and small groups to educate on policy issues and has worked for many years building coalitions between diverse organizations, government and the private sector.

Her experience began in Los Angeles working on state contracts and developing programs and community services in the San Fernando Valley. In 1999, Ms. Sneeringer  joined the management team at Child Action, Inc. and worked for 11 years. During her tenure she grew through various positions in the organization spending the last five years as their Public Affairs Manager focusing on local, state and federal public policy issues, contract management, fund development, agency communications and media relations. In addition Ms. Sneeringer works as a consultant on Government Relations assisting non-profit organizations as they navigate issues in state and local government.

Ms. Sneeringer holds a Masters Degree in Public Administration and Graduate Certificate in Political Management from the University of Southern California, and a Bachelors Degree in Child Development from California State University, Northridge. Ms. Sneeringer has also served as a member of various statewide and national association Board of Director's in the field of early childhood education. She also served as a Sacramento County Board of Supervisors appointee on the Sacramento County Children's Coalition from 2005 - 2011, including in the role of Chair from 2009 - 2010.

2011 June: The Transformation to Sustainable Schools

Margarita H. Colmenares

Margarita has over 30 years of leadership experience in the public, private and non-profit sectors.  As a public servant, she has served twice as a political appointee in two Presidential administrations in Washington DC.  She is an advocate for energy efficiencies and renewables, distributed generation and networked storage, smart grids and transitions to a low carbon society.  Margarita is also the founder of Think Verde, a consulting firm and has directed sustainability initiatives for Sacramento City Unified School District.  She is a board member of the Environmental Council of Sacramento (ECOS).  She graduated from the School of Engineering at Stanford University.

Jordan Knighton

Jordan Knighton, AIA, is a partner with NTD Architecture, an award-winning design firm recognized for employing innovative ideas and sensitive design solutions to educattion facilities. Jordan has over 30 years experience in architecture and construction involving programming, design, production and construction administration for education facilities ranging from primary and secondary schools to colleges and universities. Jordan has extensive background in 21st century learning environments and campus transformation design. His knowledge of learning patterns in education, sustainable design and community-based planning have led to numerous visionary designs and regenerative campus transformations, receiving significant recognition of client success and architectural awards.

Derek Labrecque

Derek is a licensed architect and LEED Accredited Professional with demonstrated experience in the planning, design and project management of educational projects. His approach to design and management of projects is in alignment with the sustainable criteria of both CHPS and LEED standards. The standards have led to innovative and cost effective design solutions for his new construction, modernized and transformed projects. Derek understands the unique challenges of working on existing sites and how to effectively plan and phase the sequence of work to minimize the impact to the students and the educational curriculum.

Ryan Connally

Ryan is a professor, and the lead faculty in the Construction Technology Program, and the Building Performance and Energy Assessment Program, at Cosumnes River College (CRC). He is the Department Chair for the Architecture, Construction Management, Building Inspection, Architectural Design, and Construction Programs, and has over 18 years of experience in the industry. Ryan is a Certified Green Building Professional, Advanced CGBP I & II, a Building Performance Institute certified "Building Analyst", and is a BPI written and field test proctor, as well as an authorized OSHA trainer. Ryan and his students have significantly contributed to the construction of 11 LEED certified homes with the Sacramento Habitat for Humanity in the last few years, and plans on assisting them with weatherizing 80 more homes in the coming months.

Ryan has led the charge for CRC in developing new green building and energy efficiency curriculum. The CRC programs are training local professionals and new comers alike, for regional jobs in green building and energy efficiency programs, including SMUD's Home Performance Program. Ryan will also discuss the other Green Force Programs across the Los Rios Community College District.

2010 July: Product Stewardship

Greg Hayes, President and co-founder of the bio energy company Clean World Partners, speaking at the Sacramento Sustainability Forum (SSF) on July 15, 2010.

Greg Hayes is President and co-founder of Clean World Partners, LLC (CWP), which is a bio energy company building the first solid organics waste-to-energy plant in the United States using technology developed at UC Davis. Hayes is an entrepreneur who has worked in the areas of government, marketing and strategic business consulting for 20 years. He has helped build and launch very successful companies in the financial services space and serves on the advisory boards of a Bay Area consumer software start-up company and Zinc Air, which is a company focused on battery storage for renewable energy production.

Prior to creating CWP, Hayes worked for On-Site Power Systems helping to create a go-to-market strategy for its anaerobic digestion technology, which is he where he developed an appreciation for the incredible and impactful opportunity in waste conversion technology. Formerly, he helped launch Liberty Reverse Mortgage and created the brand from the ground up. His work contributed to the company’s growth from launch to the third largest reverse mortgage company in the United States in just three years. Hayes’ efforts helped lead the company to double in size each of its first three years in business and eventually led to its acquisition by Genworth Financial, Inc, a Fortune 100 company.

Previously, Hayes served as a Managing Director for the Sacramento office of the international public relations firm Hill and Knowlton. His diverse communications background also includes a position as Senior Account Manager with the Sacramento based public relations and advertising firm Runyon Saltzman & Einhorn, and as a legislative aide and press secretary to four state Senators in the California Legislature. Over the course of his career, Hayes has consulted for companies both large and small – providing public affairs assistance to Wal-Mart for seven years and to numerous small and large businesses throughout California.

Renee Taylor, SMUD

2010 April: Building Sustainable Communities

Intro by Marty Maskall Project Manager Folsom EcoHousing


Kathryn McCamant, President, CoHousing Partners, LLC. Kathryn leads the CoHousing Partners team, oversees the firm's projects, and leads key training exercises for communities and staff. She also serves as liaison to the architecture and design consultants. She is based in Nevada City, California.

Shilpa Sankaran, Co-Founder, Vice President of Marketing; Communications, ZETA Zero Energy Communities. Shilpa is an expert in marketing, business strategy and operations performance for companies ranging from sustainable housing start-ups to Fortune Global 1000 corporations. At ZETA, she contributes over 15 years of experience in strategic planning, marketing strategy, communications planning, advertising strategy, and management consulting. Shilpa has driven projects and advised organization leadership, in a range of industry sectors including real estate, finance, telecommunications, retail, automotive and health care. Working with PriceWaterhouseCoopers and Sapient Corp., she has advised corporations such as, General Motors, Wells Fargo Bank, AAA, Nike, Verizon Wireless, and Blue Cross Blue Shield Association.

2010 February: SB 375: Sustainable Communities Planning Program

Hosted at the offices of Sacramento News & Review

Attorney Bill Yeates discusses the impact of California's SB 375. For the past several years Bill has conducted public education workshops on CEQA for the Planning and Conservation League Foundation (PCLF) and the Northwest Environmental Training Center throughout California. Bill is the author of PCLF’s Community Guide to CEQA, which was updated in 2007 with a special focus on the effects of global warming/climate change, and has also been translated into Spanish.


Mike McKeever, Executive Director of the Sacramento Area Council of Governments (SACOG), gives a presentation on SB 375 at the February 2010 Sacramento Sustainability Forum. During Mr. McKeever's tenure at SACOG, the organization has established itself as a national leader in sustainable, integrated regional planning. He was a key contributor to California Senate Bill 375, the nation's most comprehensive regional planning law linking climate change, transportation, land use and housing planning and was appointed by the California Air Resources Board to chair the Regional Targets Advisory Committee, a 21 person statewide committee to assist in the implementation of SB375.

Shamus Roller, the Executive Director of the Sacramento Housing Alliance, gives an overview of California's SB 375: "The Sustainable Communities Planning Program".

2010 January: Pearson’s Green Transformation & The California Product Stewardship

Hosted at Pearson’s offices in Rancho Cordova

Trena Ellis, Facility Manager at Pearson's Rancho Cordova location, discusses the implementation of green facility management in a leased space.

Report on International Summit in Copenhagen:


Larry F. Greene is the Executive Director of the Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District. Larry has a Bachelors Degree in Science Education from NC State University, and Masters Degrees in Logistics Management from Florida Institute of Technology and Human Resources Education from Boston University.He is a Past-President of the California Air Pollution Control Officers Association (CAPCOA) and serves as a permanent member on the CAPCOA Board of Directors.He serves on the National Association of Clean Air Agencies (NACAA) Board of Directors as Co-President and Co-Chair of the Global Warming Committee. Larry retired in 1995 from a 23 year career with the US Army.

Heidi Sanborn, Executive Director of the California Product Stewardship Council, Product Stewardship is a fundamental rethinking of the way we design, manufacture, and recycle products. Heidi is spearheading the effort for this change. There is no more room for the waste we are creating, we must find a solution