The GCSE Delegation is made up of multidisciplinary and intergenerational scientists, policy-experts, and local decision-makers who will be on the ground in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt accelerating evidence-informed climate action. To connect with our delegation, please contact our COP27 email at email@example.com.
Ph.D. Candidate, University of Michigan
Abdullah is a Fulbright fellow Mechanical Engineer from Pakistan. He is a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering candidate at the University of Michigan, with research work in biofuels for automobiles. Apart from emissions reduction in the transportation sector, his research work and professional experiences include environment, climate change, and sustainable systems.
Senior Advisor for Digital Content, Global Council for Science and the Environment (GCSE)
Alec is a multi-award-winning broadcast journalist who has worn many hats at stations throughout the US. Alec traded former careers in banking and technology for the Fourth Estate by volunteering as a radio host for Oregon Public Broadcasting. He has since worked in television, radio, and digital storytelling for over 20 years. Stops have included stations in LA, Montana, Florida, Texas, and Washington DC. Alec has been a board member or volunteer for Mentoring Works 2, HER Resiliency Center, and The National Reentry Network.
Once upon a time, Alec swore he’d never leave Texas or drive anything but a pick-up. Times have changed. He's now holding out for the next best EV. He believes the art of storytelling is a crucial tool to inform and inspire others by communicating science complexity to all people throughout the world. Even those clinging tightly to fossils!
Alex Godoy-Faúndez, Ph.D.
Visiting Scholar, Weatherhead Scholars Program, Weatherhead Center for International Affairs, Harvard University
Director of Sustainability Research Center & Strategic Resource Management
School of Engineering, Universidad del Desarrollo
Dr. Godoy-Faúndez serves as the Director of Sustainability Research Center & Strategic Resource Management at School of Engineering at Universidad del Desarrollo. Further, he is the Head of Waste to Energy Research & Technology - Chile at WTERT Council and Research Associate at Earth Engineering Center at Columbia University and current mentor for the HBA Sustainability Certificate for Centre for Building Sustainable Value at Ivey Business School, Canada. In 2019, Dr. Godoy-Faúndez was awarded as Doctor Honoris Causa - Doctor of Laws at the University of Wisconsin - Green Bay to contribute to the creation of public policies and innovations in the private sector on sustainability issues.
Since 2019, Dr. Godoy-Faúndez has served as the Review Editor for the Working Group III to the IPCC Sixth Assessment Report (AR6) and lead author of Chapter "Moving from linear to a circular economy: What this means for business?” For Global Environment Outlook (GEO) for Business at UNEP. He has served as an expert reviewer of the 2019 Global Sustainable Development Report (GSDR) prepared by the independent group of scientists appointed by the United Nations Secretary-Genebra and for the "10 New Insights in Climate Science 2019" report of Future Earth & The Earth League, Stockholm, 2019 for COP25 and lead author for the "10 New Insights in Climate Science 2020" report. Also, he served as a Panel Member of the Water Quality Task Force (TF) for the International Water Resources Association (IWRA), working on the Water Quality Project: "Developing a Global Compendium on Water Quality Guidelines.” Today, he is a member of the ISO / TC 323 committee of the standard in preparation for ISO / WD 59004 Circular Economy - Framework and Principles for Implementation. Dr. Godoy-Faúndez is the coordinator for Chile as representative of the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN).
Assistant General Manager, Sonoma Water
Mr. Sherwood is Sonoma Water’s assistant general manager overseeing the administration services and community/government affairs divisions. In his role, Mr. Sherwood is responsible for developing and implementing Sonoma Water’s strategic funding and public policy strategies. He graduated with his masters in political management from the George Washington University in Washington, D.C. and received his undergraduate degree in government and journalism from California State University, Sacramento. He also serves as a trustee for the Mark West Union School District and is an active block captain helping to rebuild his community since the 2017 Tubbs Fire.
Mayor of Santa Rosa, California, USA
After being elected in 2016 and re-elected in 2020, Chris was selected by his colleagues to serve a two-year term as the youngest Mayor in the history of Santa Rosa. Mayor Rogers represents District 5, which includes the neighborhoods of Downtown Santa Rosa, Railroad Square, St. Rose Historic District, Luther Burbank. Additionally, Chris represents all nine Sonoma County cities on the Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit (SMART) board of directors, the Chair of the consolidated oversight board of redevelopment agencies, and is Chair of the California League of Cities Environmental Quality committee.
Prior to his council career, Chris served as a legislative aide in Sacramento during his tenure with the California State Senate and State Assembly. He has also worked on renewable energy financing and is currently an administrator for a nonprofit environmental organization.
Associate Professor of Engineering Design and Architectural Engineering
Director, Global Building Network
The Pennsylvania State University
Dr. Obonyo is the Director of the Global Building Network, a partnership between the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe and Pennsylvania State University. She is also an Associate Professor of Engineering Design and Architectural Engineering. Dr. Obonyo was a 2015/2016 Jefferson Science Fellow placed with the USAID Global Development Lab in Washington, DC. Between August 2004 and July 2015, she was a faculty member at the University of Florida's (UF) Rinker School of Construction Management. Dr. Obonyo has extensive industry experience, having worked as a Construction Engineer, Project Manager and Innovations Analyst in several engineering and construction companies in Kenya, the United Kingdom and the United States. Her work has been disseminated through over 150 journal papers, conference proceedings and presentations. She is on the editorial board of three Journals – Journal of IT in Construction, Buildings and Intelligent Systems. She was also guest editor for the Journal of Sustainability.
Mayor of Rohnert Park, California, USA
Jackie Elward is an educator and politician. She was born and raised in the Democratic Republic of Congo. She is married and the mother of three children. She has a bachelor’s degree in Sociology at Chico State University and is finishing her second bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice at Central State University. She made history in 2020 when she became the first black woman to ever be elected in her town of Rohnert Park, CA. She also is the first black woman to hold the title of mayor in Sonoma County and the northern coastal side of California. She is the first Congolese person to ever be elected in the USA. She was honored and recognized as 2022 Woman of the Year for the California Fourth Assembly District. Jackie is very involved in her community. “Jackie is a symbol of resilience and strength for Assembly District 4 and everyone in California. She has served as a great leader, with strength and grace, during these most difficult times,” said Assemblymember Aguiar-Curry. “Jackie’s passionate service and commitment to her community of Rohnert Park, while building an incredible network of support for the children of her home town of Kinshasa, is simply amazing. Jackie is very involved in her community. She is the Founder of the non-profit Les Enfants Baobab. She also sits on many different local and regional committees.”
A. Karim Ahmed, Ph.D.
Secretary-Treasurer, GCSE Board of Directors
Adjunct Professor, Occupational & Environmental Medicine, University of Connecticut Health Center
A. Karim Ahmed, Ph.D., is the secretary-treasurer of the GCSE Board of Directors and an adjunct professor at the University of Connecticut Health Center.
Previously, Ahmed was senior fellow and deputy director of the Program on Health, Environment, and Development at the World Resources Institute (WRI) in Washington, D.C. On behalf of WRI, Ahmed helped launch the 1998 – 1999 World Resources Report (WRR) at a press briefing in New Delhi, India, in July 1998, and gave a major public address on the impact of climate change on human health at the first Indian National Conference on Environment and Health. (The WRR is a bi-annual joint publication of WRI, United Nations Environment Programme, United Nations Development Programme and the World Bank.)
Between 1974 and 1988, Ahmed served as research director and senior scientist at the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) in New York City. Upon leaving NRDC, Ahmed was a senior executive with two environmental consulting organizations and has served on a number of high level advisory committees and technical panels of national and international government agencies and scientific institutions, including the Environmental Protection Agency, Department of Energy, National Institutes of Health, National Academy of Sciences, National Science Foundation, United Nations Environment Programme, United Nations Conference on Science and Technology for Development, World Health Organization, and World Bank. He has authored numerous publications, including technical books, scientific papers, and general articles in the fields of environmental health, risk assessment, and on issues related to science and public policy.
District Director to Supervisor Lynda Hopkins, Sonoma County, California
Leo Chyi is the District Director for Sonoma County’s 5th District in Northern California, supporting the work of Supervisor Lynda Hopkins. The 5th District encompasses beautiful West County, including the entire Sonoma County coast, the Lower Russian River area, Sebastopol, and portions of northwest and southwest Santa Rosa. He manages policy and operations within the office and is the point person for a range of issue including land use, vegetation management, resiliency, water, and climate policy for the team. Leo came to Sonoma County with a decade of executive management experience in finance and operations with the City and County of San Francisco, as well as federal experience at the U.S. Government Accountability Office. He holds joint Masters in Public Affairs and Urban & Regional Planning from Princeton’s School of Public and International Affairs, as well as dual undergraduate degrees in Earth Systems and Anthropology: Social Sciences from Stanford University. A child of immigrant Taiwanese parents and a proud member of the gay community, Leo is strongly committed to social justice, participatory democracy, and making space at the table for more voices.
F. Marty Ralph, Ph.D.
Scripps Institution of Oceanography at University of California at San Diego Director, Center for Western Weather and Water Extremes
Dr. F. Martin Ralph is a meteorologist focused on atmospheric rivers, understanding the origins of floods, and on improving predictions for water management and flood control applications After 21 years at NOAA, he created the "Center for Western Weather and Water Extremes" at UC San Diego. He's published over 150 peer-reviewed scientific articles and has developed programs on new science and technology and their application to solving practical problems. He is a leading expert on atmospheric rivers and provides input to policy makers on western weather and water extremes. He is a leader in development of Forecast-Informed Reservoir Operations (FIRO), working closely with federal, state and local water managers. He is a Fellow of the American Meteorological Society and has received awards from several organizations. He has a B. S. in Meteorology from University of Arizona, and a Ph.D. in Atmospheric Sciences from UCLA.
Senior Advisor, Global Council for Science and the Environment (GCSE)
Michelle Wyman is founder of Biosphere Strategies, a boutique consultancy focused on advancing climate, biodiversity, and sustainability. Prior to that, Michelle served as the executive director of the Global Council for Science and the Environment (GCSE), an international nonprofit that spans the boundaries between science, decision-making, and the environment. She has worked on clean energy, climate, and environmental policy with all levels of government for over two decades, developing strategic and tactical solutions to implement energy, climate, and sustainability strategies and solutions. Before joining GCSE, she served as the director of intergovernmental affairs at the U.S. Department of Energy. She led the Governors’ Accord for a Clean Energy Future, Applied Solutions - Local Governments Building a Clean Economy, and ICLEI USA, nonprofits that engage directly with state and local governments. Earlier in her career, she helped design and launch a public sector law practice at a major international law firm focused on proactive environmental management, worked as the natural resources director for the City of Fort Collins, Colorado, and recycling coordinator for the City of Euless, Texas, and as a park ranger with the National Park Service. She serves in a variety of advisory roles with domestic and international organizations to increase the recognition of and reliance on science in service to the environment and society.
Graduate Student, University of Michigan
Neeka Salmasi is a graduate student specializing in both Environmental Justice and Ecosystem Science and Management. She is interested in anti-colonial approaches to environmental sciences, and the ways that these studies can bolster indigenous rights and land defense globally. She has worked as a land defender, educator, and organizer with several frontline communities fighting extractive industries and other environmental injustices. Neeka is also a writer, and is currently working on a historical fiction, VATAN, based on her family's immigration story, and is a musician working on an album in partnership with the Duderstadt Center at the University of Michigan.