Russell Siegelman, Board Chairman
Lecturer, Stanford Business School and Partner Emeritus, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers
Russell Siegelman has spent over twenty years in technology as a manager, investor and director. Currently he is splitting his time between angel investing, non-profit activities, and teaching. He has made personal investments in over thirty technology start-ups.
In the non-profit area, he is the Chairman of the Board of Sustainable Conservation, a Director of Innovations for Poverty Action, and an active donor of the Jamal Poverty Action Lab at MIT. Russell is a Lecturer at the Stanford Graduate School of Business where he co-teaches the courses Startup Garage, Product Launch and Formation of New Ventures. He is a frequent mentor and adviser to many for-profit startups and social ventures and their founders.
Starting in 1996, Russell spent eleven years as a Partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, where he invested in consumer and technology related technologies and markets, including software, electronic commerce, Web services, semiconductors, mobile systems, media and telecommunications. He continues to serve on the boards of several KPCB companies.
Russell joined KPCB after seven years at Microsoft. At Microsoft he helped launch several networking and Windows products. Later he worked directly for Bill Gates, resulting in the formation the Microsoft Network (MSN), Microsoft's online service. Russell became the first employee of this division and its General Manager and then Vice President. Under his direction, MSN was developed and launched and reached over one million paying members. Russell was also responsible for the formation of the Slate project, Microsoft's World Wide Web political and arts commentary. He recruited the editor, Michael Kinsley, and was the business manager in charge of Slate until he left Microsoft in July 1996.
Before Microsoft, Russell was a software engineer who wrote artificial intelligence applications for the financial services industry at Applied Expert Systems, a Cambridge, Massachusetts startup, and was also an engineering consultant. He earned his BS from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Physics in 1984 and an MBA from Harvard University where he was a Baker Scholar in 1989.
Chris Buchbinder, Treasurer
Portfolio Manager and Senior Vice President, Capital Group Companies
Chris Buchbinder is a Portfolio Manager and Senior Vice President at the Capital Group Companies, the manager of the American Funds family of Mutual Funds. He is also a Vice President of the Investment Company of America and of the American Mutual Fund. Chris has been with the Capital Group since 1995, first in a rotational development program, then as the analyst responsible for the telecommunications and auto industries, then as Director of Research for the U.S., before moving into his current role.
Prior to joining the Capital Group, he graduated from Brown University with degrees in Economics and International Relations. He and his wife Nina have four children. In his (limited) free time he enjoys biking and skiing.
Owner, Charles Ahlem Ranch and Hilmar Cheese Company
Charles Ahlem, a lifetime resident of California's Central Valley, has been one of the region's most active and prominent advocates for many years. After graduating from California State University, Fresno, Charles began his own farming operation. Charles is also the owner/operator of Charles Ahlem Ranch, a 2,000-cow, Grade-A Jersey dairy, which he began in 1975 with just 100 cows. In 1984, Charles became one of the founding partners in the Hilmar Cheese Company, which accepts milk from nearly 250 California dairies and is the largest single-site cheese plant in the world, producing up to 1 million pounds of cheese per day.
Charles serves on the California Dairy Council, California Dairy Quality Assurance Program, Central Valley Regional Water Quality Control Board, University of California President's Advisory Committee on Agriculture and Natural Resources, and many other state and local agricultural groups. Charles is also a member of the US Department of Agriculture's Trade Policy Committee.
Charles has often spoken about his desire to bring care and concern for the environment to a higher level among his fellow dairymen. Now, through his work with Sustainable Conservation, Charles will be able to share his passion for the environment with business and agricultural leaders throughout California.
Partner, Bain & Company
Laura Beaudin is a partner in Bain & Company’s San Francisco office. She is a leader and active contributor to the firm’s Customer Strategy & Marketing and Telecom, Media and Technology practices. Since joining Bain in 2000, Laura has focused on the intersection of media and marketing, helping media, entertainment and technology companies develop sales effectiveness and customer-led growth strategies, and brands define high impact marketing strategies. Laura has deep expertise with sales force effectiveness and go-to-market strategy, revenue management, pricing, cost and change management efforts and she has worked extensively with traditional and digital media clients. Laura is also highly committed to the social and public sectors. She is on the board of an environmental non-profit in San Francisco and is an active contributor to Bain’s multi-year partnership with KIPP Bay Area Schools. Within the office, she leads Associate Consulting recruiting for the Bay Area.
Laura earned her Bachelor of Commerce degree from Queen’s University in Canada. Laura also earned her MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business.
California Program Director, Defenders of Wildlife
Kim Delfino is the California Program Director for Defenders of Wildlife, where she oversees Defenders' work to protect and restore California's imperiled wildlife and the places in which they live. She is also a member of the California Water Commission. Before joining Defenders, Kim worked for the US Public Interest Research Group as a staff attorney and for CALPIRG as Legislative Director. She began her career as an associate attorney in Washington, D.C. with the public interest law firm of Meyer & Glitzenstein, where she specialized in cases involving the Endangered Species Act, Clean Water Act, National Environmental Policy Act, and other environmental laws.
Kim holds a BA in political science, public service (environmental policy emphasis) from the University of California, Davis and a JD, cum laude, from the McGeorge School of Law at the University of the Pacific.
Senior Vice President for External Relations, University of California
Daniel M. Dooley was appointed UC senior vice president for external relations on March 19, 2009, after leading the division on an interim basis since Nov. 5, 2008. In making the appointment, UC President Mark G. Yudof cited Dooley's decades of experience in developing constituent and legislative support for important public policy priorities and the high level of respect he enjoys in both Sacramento and Washington, D.C. Dooley also served as the UC Vice President of Agriculture and Natural Resources for January of 2008 through September of 2011.
Dooley is a distinguished agricultural and environmental attorney with extensive experience in California. Throughout his career, he has held leadership positions in local, state and national agricultural organizations, as well as with the university. Prior to serving as UC vice president of ANR, Dooley was a partner at Dooley, Herr and Peltzer LLP, a Visalia-based law firm emphasizing agricultural, environmental, business and water rights law. He was a partner from 1980-2002 in the family-owned Dooley Farms, a diversified San Joaquin Valley farming operation producing cotton, alfalfa and walnuts.
Dooley previously served as chief deputy director of the California Department of Food and Agriculture (1977-80) and chair of the California Water Commission (1982-86). He also served as UC representative to and chair of the Council for Agriculture Research, Extension, and Teaching (CARET), a national grassroots organization of the land-grant universities and colleges. He has served as vice chair of USDA's National Agricultural Research, Extension, Education, and Economics Advisory Board, Chair of the Farm Foundation Board of Trustees and Roundtable Steering Committee, and a member of the U.S. Trade Representative's Agricultural Technical Advisory Committee for Trade. He has served as a member of the National Academy of Sciences' Board on Agriculture and Natural Resources and was a member and chair of the Board of Trustees of Children's Hospital Central California.
In 2007, Dooley was cited by California Lawyer magazine's Lawyer of the Year publication for his work to achieve settlement of two-decades-old litigation relating to the San Joaquin River. In 2004, he was inducted into the USDA's Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service Research Hall of Fame. He also received the UC Davis College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences Award of Distinction in 2000.
Dooley received his bachelor's degree in agricultural economics from UC Davis and his J.D. from the McGeorge School of Law at the University of Pacific. He is also a graduate of the California Agricultural Leadership Program.
Director of State Relations, Wine Institute
Steve Gross is Director of State Relations at Wine Institute, where he has been employed since 1986. Steve's duties entail overseeing the activities of Wine Institute's six State Relations Regional Counsels as they address state legislation affecting the wine industry, as well as coordinating Wine Institute's legislative and regulatory activities with staff, contract lobbyists, and member wineries.
Steve regularly participates in many national programs dealing with issues facing the wine industry, both on the legislative and regulatory levels. Steve serves on the Board of Directors of both Sustainable Conservation and the California Council for Environmental and Economic Balance (CCEEB). He also serves on the Sonoma State University Wine Business Institute's Executive Board. A native of Nebraska, Steve brought to Wine Institute knowledge garnered during his 10 years of employment in the on-sale food and beverage industry, as well as extensive experience in political campaigns and legislative activism.
Manager, Environmental Planning and Permitting, PG&E
Chip Koch combines 20 years of experience as a geologist, environmental consultant, and general manager with a long-standing focus on the energy industry. Chip currently works for Pacific Gas & Electric Company, and is the founder of Petrosus Energy, an environmental and management consulting firm focused on delivering renewable energy to the market. Chip recently served as Vice President of Marketing and Investor Relations at Mineral Acquisition Partners, Inc., a $1 billion private investment group focused on natural gas and renewable energy royalty acquisitions. Prior to that Chip was President of TRC-Essex (NYSE: TRR), a consulting firm focused on planning, permitting, and environmental compliance of major energy infrastructure projects. Chip previously held positions at Levine-Fricke (a 500-person environmental consulting company) as Vice President of Marketing and Strategic Planning, and as a Senior Exploration Geologist at Exxon Company, USA.
Chip holds an MBA from Stanford University, an MS in geology from Ohio State University, and a BS in geology from St. Lawrence University.
Cynthia Hunter Lang
Director of Business Development for Brazil, Urban Innovation Exchange
Cynthia Lang began her professional career in the Office of Development at Stanford University, where she was a large gifts fundraiser for the most of her ten years at Stanford. Ms. Lang continues to be an active volunteer at Stanford and advises several nonprofits on fundraising strategies in a volunteer capacity. She maintains close ties with the institution by supporting Stanford students through a fellowship program geared toward environmental issues.
Cynthia served as the first vice president and then Chair of the Crystal Springs Uplands School's Governing Board of Trustees and on the Stanford Associates' Board of Governors. Ms. Lang has also been involved in conservation causes in California, Montana and Brazil for many years.
Cynthia currently is the Director for Organizational Development and Business Development for Brazil at Urban Innovation Exchange Global. Here she combines her passion for Brazil and its people with her deep understanding of Brazilian culture to identify and fortify synergies between the US and Brazil in non-profit and for-profit endeavors. Cynthia, a seasoned fundraiser and connector, coordinates engagement activities and strategic conversations with colleagues in the Bay Area and all over the world.
Cynthia received her Bachelor of Arts degree from Stanford University in French and English Literatures and her MBA in Sustainable Management from Presidio Graduate School. She is fluent in French and Portuguese and is conversational in Spanish. Cynthia, who lives in Woodside, is an avid traveler who also enjoys piano, tennis, hiking and SCUBA diving.
Cynthia has served on the Sustainable Conservation Board since 2002.
Co-Founder, Earth Genome Project
Steve is co-founder of the Earth Genome Project, a start-up venture to create the first global, open-source database on ecosystem services and natural capital. Steve served as President of the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, one of the largest Foundations in the U.S., from 2007-2014. He led the Foundation through development of new strategies in each of its three Programs – Environment, Science, and Patient Care.
Steve served as President and CEO of The Nature Conservancy (TNC) from 2000-2008. As president, Steve led the organization into becoming a truly global enterprise, operating in 30 countries as well as every state in the U.S. Steve began his career with TNC in 1976 as western regional legal counsel and rose through the ranks to spend 16 years as executive director of the California state program and Western Region. In that role, he led an organization-wide effort that created Conservation by Design, the strategic framework that now guides all of TNC’s work around the world.
A leader in the social innovation sector, Steve serves on the boards of Independent Sector, Sustainable Conservation and the California Wildlife Officers Foundation. He has also served on the U.C. Berkeley College of Natural Resources Advisory Board.
Steve’s work has been profiled in Forbes, San Francisco Chronicle and the Washington Post, and he has been a featured speaker at numerous high-profile events. Steve is also the recipient of the Chevron Conservation Award, the Edmund G. Brown Award for Environmental and Economic Balance, the John Pritzlaff Conservation Award and the California League of Conservation Voters’ Conservation Leadership Award.
Steve holds a B.S. in Agricultural Economics from the University of California at Berkeley (1973), where he graduated with honors, and a J.D. from the University of California, Hastings College of Law (1976).
Adán Ortega, Jr.
Adán Ortega, Jr. is sole proprietor of AOA, a media, public and government affairs practice. He has over twenty-five years of experience and understanding of issues through senior leadership roles in Southern California, California, and U.S. government, business and environmental organizations. Well known for utilizing entrepreneurial, innovative and organizational approaches in consulting practice, business ventures and volunteer activities. His specialties include crisis management, issues management, strategic planning, and addressing regulatory matters in the utility, manufacturing and agricultural sectors. Recent accomplishments in 2013 include orchestration of efforts to defeat of a county-wide storm water fee on behalf of the California Metals Coalition; formation of the California Association of Mutual Water Companies; and creation of an industry-wide agricultural employers/employee workplace information network.
Some of Adán’s previous accomplishments include helping the California Charter Schools Association in a dispute with United Teachers of Los Angeles; defending Gregg Industries with support of the Coalition for Clean Air and Mujeres de La Tierra against charges of nuisance odors; successfully investigating voter fraud in Southeast Los Angeles and Santa Ana, CA; and helping California’s table grape industry and the Washington State Apple Commission overcome false allegations of pesticide contamination by labor and environmental groups. Adán has played prominent roles as a board member on organizations such as the The Hispanic Media Coalition, The California Water Commission, Heal the Bay, Roots of Change, the National Audubon Society, and as a member of KPCC/Southern California Public Radio’s Regional Advisory Council. He currently chairs the board of Mujeres de La Tierra.
His employment history includes the positions of Deputy Managing Director of Rose & Kindel (2005-2009); Vice President of External Affairs for the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California (1999-2005); Chief Deputy Secretary of State under Secretary of State Bill Jones (1997-1999); Assistant General Manager of West & Central Basin Municipal Water Districts (1994-1997); and Vice President of the Dolphin Group Inc. (1985-1994).
Co-Founder, Industrial Property Manager and Broker, Oppenheim Properties
Tina co-founded Sustainable Conservation and served as the organization's Executive Director from 1990-1993. She has worked as a consultant for Douglas Emmett and as Director of Acquisitions for Mountains Restoration Trust in Santa Monica, CA. Tina is an industrial property manager in Orange County and an independent real estate broker. She currently is a member of the Board of Advisors at UCLA's Institute of the Environment and Sustainability (IoES). Tina received a BA in international politics from the University of California, Santa Barbara.
COO, Faculte, Inc.
Mark Valentine was a founder of Faculte, Inc., a startup that helps professionals and businesses produce, publish, and distribute on-line videos, presentations, and slideshows. He formerly served as Chairman of the Board at SigmaQuest Corporation, a startup software company that provides an on-demand suite of solutions to help companies build better products using business intelligence techniques for product design, manufacturing, supplier quality, repair, and returns.
Prior to joining SigmaQuest, Mark was Vice President of Operations at Geyser Networks, an optical networking startup. Mark started his career with Tandem Computers, where he spent 10 years moving through Tandem's management structure, including a two-year period establishing the company's manufacturing facility in Scotland.
Mark serves on the Board of Directors of the Valentine Family Foundation and also on the board of Sustainable Conservation, a San Francisco-based nonprofit that believes promoting a healthy environment can be good for business.
Mark received a BS in industrial engineering from Stanford University in 1986 and an MS from Stanford in 1987.