Ilays Aden lives in the Central District of Seattle, and co-founded the Eat With Muslims project, bringing people of all faiths and backgrounds together to learn more about Islam and share stories. Her work to counter the dehumanization of Muslims and xenophobia led her to receive Congressman Adam Smith’s 2018 Champion of Justice Award. She also advises numerous organizations and businesses in creating anti-racist policies that combat institutional and environmental racism. In her fundraising work, she focuses on community building around innovative housing solutions and environmentally sound urban planning. She is passionate about bringing people to the table, whether it is to share a meal or to engage in important dialogue that supports a healthy and thriving community. Ilays loves the outdoors and serves to keep Washington State beautiful and clean for all.
David Bricklin is a partner in the Seattle law firm of Bricklin & Newman, LLP. His practice emphasizes environmental, land use, and community issues. Dave earned his undergraduate degree from Michigan State University. He is a graduate of The Harvard Law School, where he was a co-founder and editor of the Harvard Environmental Law Review. Dave has practiced environmental and land use law throughout Washington State since 1979. He was closely involved in the development of the Washington Growth Management Act and Model Toxics Control Act. Dave is a past president and director of the Washington Environmental Council; former co-chair of Washington Conservation Voters; a founding member and current director of Futurewise (formerly 1000 Friends of Washington) and is on the board of Climate Solutions.
Justin Camarata has been active in civics and policy advocacy in Tacoma and Pierce County for over a decade. He previously served as interim City Councilmember for Tacoma’s District 2, which encompasses Downtown Tacoma as well as the Tideflats and the Port of Tacoma. In this capacity, he advocated for limiting fossil fuel expansion, electrifying transportation, densifying neighborhoods and business districts, and improving transit access. He is a member of Forterra’s Regional Leadership Council and the Protect Tacoma Tideflats Coalition, and has previously served on the City of Tacoma’s Bicycle & Pedestrian Technical Advisory Group, the Center for Urban Waters Board of Directors, and various advisory boards and commissions. Camarata is a University of Washington graduate in Political Science and has several years of experience working with Seattle area tech startups. He and his wife Bess live in Tacoma with their two children, who enjoy basketball and coding.
Sharon Chen first began thinking about the intersection of environmentalism and politics as a board member of the Washington Toxics Coalition where she has served as Board Chair. As a member of the Northwest Conservation Philanthropy Fellowship’s inaugural class of 2013, she found herself often reminding fellows about the zero multiplier effect on any non profit work when there is a lack of an effective policy making body in our governments. A native of New Jersey, Sharon first came to Seattle to work at Microsoft where she spent 12 years working in the development teams. Sharon speaks Mandarin Chinese, has a degree in Computer Science Engineering from Princeton University, and lives with her husband and 3 children in Seattle’s Capital Hill neighborhood.
Julie Colehour is founding partner of C+C, a public relations and social marketing firm that focuses on environmental and sustainability issues for a variety of public and private sector clients. She has spent her career working to motivate people to alter their behaviors for social good. Her causes have included everything from organic farming to water conservation to green building to recycling and energy-efficient products. Julie is a Seattle-area native who grew up hiking, skiing and kayaking in our beautiful backyard. She currently lives in rural unincorporated King County with her husband and son and has a daughter in college.
Maggie’s career in conservation spans four decades. She worked for over twenty years for The Nature Conservancy, gaining broad experience in state, national, and international land conservation in Latin America. She served for five years as Director of Government Relations for The Nature Conservancy. Maggie has deep roots in grassroots activism, starting with helping to found the Methow Valley Citizens Council. Her passion for place was born in the Methow, as was her belief in the ability of individuals to shape the future of the lands and waters they cherish. She lives on her Twisp River farm with her husband, Mark Wolf-Armstrong.
Maggie has served on a number of state and regional boards and as chair of the Washington Biodiversity Council, the Washington Wildlife and Recreation Coalition and the High Country News Foundation. Maggie holds a B.S. from Yale University and a Masters of Forestry from the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies.
Linda believes in the power of travel to learn about the world and in the power of images to spark curiosity and foster insights and understanding. Linda and her husband David are Executive Producers of the award-winning documentary film “Chasing Ice” which shows one photographers’ quest to document the science of climate change.
Linda received her M.S. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Sloan School of Management and has a B.S. from Miami University (Ohio) in Systems Analysis. Linda moved to the northwest in 1989 to work at Microsoft and quickly discovered a love for the spectacular scenery and outdoor activities in the region. She lives in Seattle on Queen Anne Hill with her husband David and enjoys travelling the world, photography, sailing, and the sport of curling.
Marc works as a consultant helping public and private sector clients achieve resource conservation outcomes such as eliminating waste, increasing recycling, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, saving water, and conserving biodiversity. He was on Washington Conservation Voters board for 10 years and board chair for three.
Josh Friedmann is a lawyer at Davis Wright Tremaine LLP, focused on supporting sustainable public-private and mixed-use community development projects, as well as other matters with sensitive public-facing concerns. He has worked on financing and development issues of transit stations, community colleges, interpretive sites, affordable housing, and hospitals. Josh also supports several 501(c) nonprofit organizations in governance, regulatory, and risk-management areas. Previously, he served as a legislative affairs aide to the White House’s Council on Environmental Quality. Josh is a Washington native who enjoys exploring the outdoors, volunteering on social action and advocacy projects with Seattle’s Jewish Federation, and undertaking various home improvement projects. He graduated from Tufts University and Harvard Law School.
A graduate of Seattle University Law School and Boston University, Peter was a law clerk for the late Justice James M. Dolliver at the Washington State Supreme Court. Peter worked for eleven years in the criminal division of the King County Prosecutor’s office where he was promoted to Senior Deputy. In 1997, Peter founded the Washington Forest Law Center, a non-profit public interest environmental law firm. Peter is also heavily involved in efforts to develop and promote progressive forestry policies. He and his wife Martha founded the Kongsgaard-Goldman Foundation in 1988. Peter is also active in helping elect environmental leaders in federal, state, and local races. He has served on the boards of numerous non-profit organizations including the Rails to Trails Conservancy. Peter and Martha have three boys. Peter has been a bicycle commuter his whole life. In his spare time, Peter loves to bike, climb, ski, and hike. He has climbed Broad Peak, an 8,000 meter peak in Pakistan other big mountains around the world.
Ken’s first job after arriving in Washington in 1993 was serving as a legal intern with WEC. He has practiced environmental law with government (serving as an AAG for now-Governor Chris Gregoire on behalf of the Washington State Department of Ecology) and now with Foster Garvey. Ken has been involved with Washington Conservation Voters for the past 10 years, serving as the chair of the King County Chapter, and as the chair of the WCV State Board. Ken, along with his wife, Meredith, and his daughter, Alexandra, love to spend their time skiing, playing soccer, sea kayaking, and enjoying the natural beauty of the Long Beach Peninsula.
Sydney is the Civil Legal Services Attorney for the Nooksack Indian Tribe. Prior to being an attorney, Sydney worked in campaign management, state government, disability advocacy, public defense, and environmental law. Sydney lives in Bellingham and enjoys climbing, biking, and knitting in her free time.
Nancy Ritzenthaler has been active in the Washington environmental community for 15 years, as a board member of Conservation Northwest, and as supporter of many other green causes. After a career in business development and marketing at Microsoft and Hewlett Packard, she and her husband now own a business which provides business and family retreats for groups of 10-14 people, at two beachfront properties on Whidbey Island. Nancy received her MBA from Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Sloan School of Management, and a BS degree in forestry from the University of Washington. She lives in West Seattle with her husband and 3 children. Nancy grew up on Bainbridge Island and is a native Washingtonian. She spent her formative years hiking and climbing on the Olympic Peninsula. Her passions include cycling, nordic and alpine skiing, being a soccer mom, and enjoying the beauty of the Northwest.
Preeti Shridhar is the Deputy Public Affairs Administrator for the City of Renton and reports to the Mayor. She oversees intergovernmental relations, working with state and federal elected officials. She also manages the city’s public affairs and communications department, is responsible for launching Renton’s nationally recognized inclusion program, and more.
Preeti has 26 years of experience working for the public sector. Previously, she was the Communications Director for the Seattle Mayor’s Office of Sustainability and Environment. She helped launch Seattle’s nationally recognized environmental programs.
She has received national recognition for the programs she manages. These include awards for Renton’s Inclusion Program from National League of Cities, United States Conference of Mayors, and International City Managers Association, as well as several communications and environmental awards including an Emmy and a Tully.
Among her proudest achievements are launching Renton’s Inclusion Program that has now become a national model; contributing to the national launch of Seattle’s Climate Protection Initiative; and organizing the Seattle visit of former vice president Al Gore leading to the production of An Inconvenient Truth.
Preeti has several publications to her name. Her work is recognized internationally and she has worked on projects in Jordan, several on behalf of USAID. She is very active with Tasveer, an organization committed to engaging and empowering South-Asian women. She has an MBA in marketing and finance from the University of Minnesota, and a bachelor’s degree in economics and business. In 2019 and 2017, she ran for Port Commission and was one of the first candidates to make environmental sustainability at the Port her priority. She received nearly 75,000 votes and finished a close third in 2019 and first in the 2017 primary and made history in the 106-year history of the Port made history by being the only woman of color in the 104-year history of the Port of Seattle to win the primary. She serves on the board of Inspire Washington and volunteers with Tasveer, a South-Asian non-profit organization. She lives with her family in the greater Seattle area and her son is an engineer in Chicago.
Sapna Sopori was born in Arizona as a first generation Indian-American, raised by a single-mother whose own challenges and opportunities in this country shaped Sapna’s understanding of the intersection between race, gender, and immigrant-status. Sapna has spent 16 years working in environmental education. As the Director of Youth and Community Education with IslandWood, Sapna worked with her staff to decolonize their programs to ensure that the reason they do the work is not undermined by how they do it. In these programs, stakeholder input drives evolution, which is constantly explored to unearth the embedded saviorism and deficit modeling so prevalent in the greater field. Sapna also worked with IslandWood’s Graduate Programs, teaching the Nonprofit Leadership course, in which the next generation of nonprofit leaders are challenged to uncover and address the hidden biases in the administrative systems, from hiring practices to board development to fundraising. Outside of her work with IslandWood, Sapna is active with and learns from the Seattle chapter of the Environmental Professionals of Color. She is also a Senior Fellow with the Environmental Leadership Program and facilitates their Fellows of Color Affinity Group. Sapna was recently honored with the Kitsap YWCA’s Mission Award for Eliminating Racism and Empowering Women. Sapna firmly believes that she has been fortunate to have all of these life experiences as a result of the generosity, courage, and support of those around her, and she strives to do this belief in her justice.
As a lawyer and policy analyst, Toby has worked with environmental groups, Tribes, local governments, and others on forestry, fisheries, water quality, land use, and development issues for almost forty years. Toby became the first staff attorney at WEC in the mid-1990s, organizing volunteer lawyers to represent WEC and other NGOs in numerous cases, such as conservation of forest lands under the then new Growth Management Act, preventing inappropriate shoreline developments, and submitting amicus briefs in appellate cases of state-wide significance. From 1998 through 2006, he was staff attorney at the Washington Forest Law Center. Toby is presently a Natural Resource Law & Policy consultant, working with communities around the country on climate change adaptation, advocating for conservative forest management in Washington State, and helping move Seattle land use planning and development policies toward a sustainable future.
Peggy has 30 years professional experience working in local government technical and senior managerial positions, including serving as Technology and Management Information Manager for King County Metro Transit, directing strategic planning, market research efforts and transit technology projects. A lifelong conservationist, Peggy served on environmental boards including the Pacific Crest Trail Association, the Olympic Coast Alliance and as Chair of the Alaska Coalition of Washington. Peggy grew up in Seattle, completed her doctorate from the University of Washington, and taught at Fort Lewis-McChord and Pacific Lutheran University. Peggy and her husband Ted, enjoy hiking, sailing, skiing, and shrub steppe land restoration. They have traveled to every continent and have hiked the Pacific Crest Trail, the GR5, the Rota Vicentina and plan to complete the Continental Divide Trail. She was the first female yacht club Commodore in the Northwest and has extensive personal experience recreating in the Puget Sound/Salish Sea.