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Kathleen Rogers, President of Earth Day Network, has worked for more than 20 years as an environmental attorney and advocate, focusing on international and domestic environmental public policy and law.
Kathleen has held senior positions with the National Audubon Society, the Environmental Law Institute, and two U.S. Olympic Organizing Committees. She has also worked for Garth Associates in New York City and the Beveridge & Diamond law firm, where she developed a white collar environmental crime defense practice. Kathleen was editor-in-chief of the University of California at Davis Law Review, and clerked for the Honorable John Pratt at the United States District Court for the District of Columbia. She also worked with the U.S. Delegation at the United Nations Conference on Women.
During her tenure as Chief Wildlife Counsel for the National Audubon Society, Kathleen directed several programs, including its international trade, migratory species, and biodiversity policy initiatives. While with National Audubon, Kathleen was Environmental Representative on the United States Delegation Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA). She was also responsible for bringing the first citizen complaint before the Commission for Environmental Cooperation, the tri-national agency formed to oversee North American environmental issues.
Kathleen Rogers has received numerous awards. She was named one of 2010’s top working mothers by Working Mother magazine. She has also been featured as Power Player of the Week on Fox News Sunday with Chris Wallace. Most recently, Kathleen was awarded the Luminary award by Womensphere and the Urban Zen Foundation, given to women who are inspirations in their fields. Kathleen is an official voting member of Greenpeace and a board member of The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI).
Under Kathleen’s leadership, Earth Day Network has developed a significant role in advancing the new green economy and has emerged as a dynamic year-round policy and activist organization. Earth Day Network now reaches into 192 countries, embraces new constituencies – including youth and people of color – and integrates civic participation into each of Earth Day Network’s programs and activities.
Read More: How She Leads
Susan Bass, Senior Vice President, Programs and Operations, has worked for over 20 years as an environmental attorney and public interest lawyer, focusing on capacity-building, public participation, human rights and international issues. Susan also worked for law firms in New York and Washington, D.C., specializing in corporate, banking and securities law. During her tenure as Director of the Inter-American Program at the Environmental Law Institute, Susan presented educational workshops and events for judges, prosecutors, congressional representatives and citizen activists in over a dozen countries in the region, produced research and policy reports on cutting-edge sustainable development issues and supervised a Visiting Scholars program. She also served as an Environmental Representative on the United States Delegation for the negotiation of the Free Trade Area of the Americas, Technical Advisor to the Organization of American States for the development of the Inter-American Strategy for Public Participation, and Consultant to the International Mining Minerals and Sustainable Development project.
Susan worked as a volunteer attorney with the International Human Rights Law Group, receiving a Pro Bono Service Award in honor of her efforts and interned with the Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe. Susan graduated cum laude from Georgetown University Law Center, served on the Georgetown Law Journal and graduated cum laude from Yale University.
Karena Mary Ruggiero is the Director of Education at Earth Day Network. Karena holds a PhD in Education with a focus on Environmental Education from the University of Tennessee. Her interests are in the intersection of environmental education and policy as well as climate change education and civic education for environmentally –responsible decision-making. Karena’s dissertation focuses on state Environmental Literacy Planning in the United States and the dimensions by which education policy and politics influences environmental literacy in K-12 education.
Karena holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism with a double major in Environment and Natural Resources from the University of Wyoming. She also holds a Master of Arts from the University of Rhode Island in Political Science. Between completing degrees, Karena served a year as an AmeriCorps member with Save The Bay as part of the Ocean State Environmental Education Collaborative.
Jeremy has been a web designer, IT specialist, and creative influence ever since first discovering his love for building computers and creating art through music at a very early age. Having worked in the non-profit realm for nearly his entire career, Jeremy loves to work for companies he believes in which makes Earth Day Network a natural fit.
Jeremy manages the website as well as keeps the office running through network management, security, computer support, and project management.
Benjamin began his career in nonprofit through AmeriCorps VISTA service in 2013. He has experience at all levels of nonprofit development, from small startups to international organizations like Earth Day Network, and enjoys creating effective ways to tell a nonprofit’s story. As Programs and Grants Manager, Benjamin supports current programs through fundraising efforts and seeks opportunities to expand Earth Day Network’s impact through partnership and programs development.
Benjamin obtained a BA in Liberal Arts from Hamilton College in 2012, where he studied History and Art. In his free time, he enjoys figure drawing, painting, video games, and supporting USA national soccer teams.
Orion Cruz is a lawyer from the small island of Maui, Hawaii. He grew up cliff jumping, hiking, traveling, and playing all kinds of sports. When he isn’t reading, writing, or attending some kind of political event, he’s usually training for an endurance triathlon or foot race. He has worked on legal cases and campaigns related to human rights and the environment, participated in multiple UN climate change conferences, undertaken projects related to international environmental law, and published articles on environmental issues and Latin American politics.
Orion has a B.A. from the University of Oregon, where he graduated cum laude with a double major in Political science and International Studies. He also holds an M.A. in Environmental Policy and Law from Vermont Law School and a J.D. from Lewis and Clark Law School.
Working closely with staff, Zengdi is responsible for coordinating daily operations in the office. As the Programs and Operations Associate at Earth Day Network, she envisions bringing her ability to resourcefully optimize any given assignment as the best way she can help the organization achieve its mission. Before joining Earth Day Network, Zengdi worked for White Ribbon Alliance as their Development Consultant, assisted in donor management and fundraising activities.
Zengdi received her Master degree in Public Administration from University of Pittsburgh, and Bachelor degree in Law and Accounting from Shandong University of Finance and Economics in China.
Karuna A. Singh, Country Director for Earth Day India, joined Earth Day Network in March 2010, after working for 24 years at the State Department’s US Consulate at Kolkata. A senior executive with them, Karuna’s major portfolio focus was on environmental affairs. She organized seminars with environmental experts, workshops, film screenings, and other events to build awareness about climate change and other environmental issues among a wide spectrum of audiences, from senior-level policy makers to grassroots NGOs. Karuna worked to inspire youth to work for the environment, and organized special media events on environmental reporting. Her work area covered 12 states of eastern and northeastern India, a region with a population of around 300 million that borders several countries. Karuna also helped put together cross-border programs on subjects such as Coastal Zone Management. She is also one of a small group of select persons who was trained by former U.S. Vice President and Nobel Laureate Al Gore to make presentations on climate change issues.
Ms. Saika has a distinguished career that spans some three decades of working to build awareness about environmental issues among youth in both in formal as well as non-formal spaces. Her career began as a teacher in several schools across India. Ms. Saikia’s last position was as Director, Youth for Sustainable Development Division at TERI, during which she made significant contributions toward sensitizing teachers and youth on issues related to water, energy, solid waste, air pollution, climate change, biotechnology, biodiversity, and other environmental issues. Ms. Saikia has conducted the Climate Champions program in partnership with British Council India. She has also put together inter-university competitions in India on water resource management. Her waste-related programs have helped several schools turn into zero waste zones. In village communities as well, Ms. Saikia has built awareness about ‘green’ issues. For the past several years, Ms. Saikia has been a significant part of the School Educators Conference, and has conducted the Green Olympiad across India.
Ms. Saikia’s skills include the development of resource material and other tools to lucidly explain difficult-to-understand environmental technologies and systems to varied audiences – from those who are lesser privileged to those who already have some knowledge about cutting edge environmental issues. She has authored several books and publications that include a book on Climate Change for high school students. This resulted from her visiting research fellowships at the Institute of Global Environmental Strategies in Japan.
Ms. Saikia is a member of the GIZ (now BMZ) International Education for Sustainable Development Expert Network, Forum under UNESCO, and a Member of the National Advisory Committee, National Council for Science &Technology Communication, amongst several other distinguished positions. She is regularly contacted to make presentations at high level seminars and other program, in both India and abroad.
Ms. Saikia has a Masters in History from Himachal University, Himachal Pradesh. She also has a degree in Education from Guwahati University, Assam.
Neela Majumdar is Manager Projects Development with Earth Day Network, India. The particular programs she has conceptualized and run include a ‘Go Organic’ movement that begun in Kolkata, which has now moved to to other cities as well. The exclusiveness of the campaign has drawn much media hype as well as appreciation from the government. The initial program has had several follow ups. Neela has worked with government officials, the general public, local hotels, schools on various Earth Day projects and environmental awareness campaigns.
Before joining Earth Day Network, Neela worked for the French diplomatic services at Ubifrance, French Trade Commission, Embassy of France New Delhi and the French Economic Mission, Consulate General of France in Kolkata where she did analytical economic surveys, organized B2B meetings, and visits from senatorial delegations to student ones. Neela has also worked with the TV Channels and was part of the launch of TV SouthAsia for cross border TV program content. Neela has corporate sector experience as PR and Communications Manager for L’Oréal in Mumbai. Having studied in France, she speaks French and Italian apart from Bengali and Hindi. Neela has an MBA from ESSEC, in Paris and a BA in English Literature from Calcutta University.
Devan Chichester, intern coordinator, is an undergraduate student studying Business and Finance at American University. He began working with Earth Day Network during the 2016 Summer as an intern. His interests include education, community outreach, and development. Devan is originally from New York, New York and was raised in Old Bridge, New Jersey and Durham, North Carolina.
Yasmin Abisourour (Moroccan/American) is a student of Economics and International Affairs, at The George Washington University. Following her family’s international background, she has a multicultural upbringing and practical experience having lived and studied in Africa, Asia, Europe, the Middle East, and the USA. Yasmin is actively involved in academic research, and the organization of conferences as part of her studies, and internships that she is undertaking in the Washington, D.C. area. Yasmin is fluent in English, French and Arabic, and now learning Spanish. She is particularly interested in researching issues related to sustainable economic and social development of the MENA region. Yasmin plans to expand her knowledge of global environmental issues and policies, and looks forward to working alongside the Earth Day Network team.
“My name is Ximena Diaz and I am currently a sophomore at George Washington University. I’m majoring in international affairs with a concentration in international development and double minoring in French and sustainability. I am originally from Mexico City, Mexico, but I have lived in Pennsylvania since I was seven years old. I am fluent in Spanish, English, and am learning French. My interest in the environment sparked when I began to notice the large, negative impacts of unsustainable and unregulated actions in large cities, especially in Mexico City. As a result, I am very interested in the creation and implementation of sustainable development worldwide. I look forward to interning with Earth Day Network, and hope I can learn and help educate others about the growing environmental movement.”
“My name is Shihong Du, and I just finished my master program at George Washington University. My major is Engineering Management, which focuses on Environmental and Energy Management. Before I join the Earth Day Network, I worked as a research intern at the International Fund for China’s Environment and as an energy efficiency analyst at D+R International. I have huge interest in energy efficiency and sustainable development area. I am looking forward to contributing my talents and getting great experience in Earth Day Network.”
“My name is Zhi Geng, and I am pursuing a Master’s degree at American University in Public Policy with a focus in International Development. I also have a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and Geography from the University of Kansas. I was born and raised in a very populous and big city in China. My interest in environmental issues began in my high school. That’s the time when people around me started to aware of serious environmental issues in China, and the fact of climate change. In college, classes in both Political Science and Geography have allowed me to gain an in-depth understanding of global environmental issue such as climate change, in both political and geographical context. I’m extremely excited to be a part of Earth Day Network’s team and expanding my experience in the environmental field.”
“My name is Daniel Klein. I am currently a sophomore at American University majoring in International Studies with a focus on Environmental Sustainability and Global Health. I was born and raised just outside Cleveland, Ohio. I became very passionate about the environment through a research project in which I participated in Nicaragua. There we studied the rainforest and interviewed locals about conservation and water pollution. I am looking forward to doing this internship so that I can expand my knowledge of the environment and get more involved in protecting it.”
“My name is Sarah Noe and I am first year master’s student at the University of Maryland in the Anthropology Department, with a focus in Environmental Anthropology. In my research, I focus on the interactions between the political, environmental, and biological dimensions of societies to understand how societies adapt and respond to environmental risks and changes. I grew up in Boston, Massachusetts and graduated from Mercyhurst University in 2013 with a degree in Anthropology with a concentration on Environmental Archaeology. From 2013-2015, I worked across North and Central America as an Environmental Anthropologist/Archaeologist. I am very interested in how cultural knowledge and institutions shape adaptation, vulnerability and resilience, and look forward to working for and learning from the Earth Day Network concerning environmental education, policy making and activism.”
William Pappas is a Sophomore in the Elliott School of International Affairs at the George Washington University. He is currently majoring in International Affairs, with a concentration in Global Public Health, and a double minor in Arabic and French. “I’ve always had an interest in environmental and health policy in the world. Living in a 1st world country often makes us forget to think globally. Earth Day Network seems like the perfect place for me to apply my passion toward helping to create a healthier and environmentally friendlier world. I’m very excited to be a part of the team, and look forward to working with everyone throughout my Fall semester.”
Jacquelyn (Jacci) Smith is a senior at American University, majoring in Environmental Science with a minor in International Studies. She was born and raised just south of Boston, Massachusetts. Jacci recently returned from Kenya, where she spent four months taking classes in Nairobi, and another two interning at Mpala Research Center, where her work focused on small carnivores. She is interested in the intersection of conservation, development, and anthropology, specifically how to manage all parties in human-environment conflicts. She is also interested in the impact of science on public policy and perception. Her favorite animal is the Bongo. Jacci is excited to be working with Earth Day Network this semester and hopes to be an integral part of the team.
“My name is Henan Sun and I just graduated from Georgetown University with a Master’s degree in Communication, Culture and Technology. I grew up in Tianjin, China and received my bachelor’s degree in English from Tsinghua University in 2014. I am fluent in Mandarin Chinese and English, and I am learning Japanese and Korean right now. I am very concerned with environmental issues since I have witnessed and suffered a lot from the severe air pollution in China. Besides, I am very interested in communication, especially in the field of social media. I am excited to be a part of Earth Day Network team and I look forward to getting some great experience during my internship.”
“Hello! My name is Colleen Wanner, and I am a current junior at American University, currently majoring in International Studies with a focus in Environmental Sustainability and Global Health. I grew up in Egg Harbor Township, New Jersey, where the wildlife diversity is rich and cherished. My interest, and involvement, with the environment began early by watching Steve Irwin on Animal Planet. From there I became active in volunteer opportunities to keep the local waterways clean, which led to my first environmental course (AP Environmental Science), and subsequently the career path I am on now. I’m excited to be interning at the Earth Day Network, where I hope to not only grow as an environmentalist, but also learn new ways to get involved with the global environmental movement.”
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