John Wick, Marin Carbon Project Director and Steering Committee Member, is co-owner with his wife, Peggy Rathmann, of the Nicasio Native Grass Ranch. His background is in construction project management. As Director of the Marin Carbon Project, Mr. Wick's role is to help launch the Marin Carbon Project and to plan, execute, and finalize projects according to deadlines and within budget. This includes acquiring resources and coordinating the efforts of Steering Committee members, member organizations, volunteers, contractors, and consultants in order to deliver projects according to plan.
Jeffrey Creque, Jeff Creque Consulting, is Co-Founder of the Marin Carbon Project. He brings thirty years of applied experience and theoretical training to the task of informing and facilitating the goals of the Project. He is an agricultural and rangeland consultant and Natural Resources Conservation Service certified nutrient management planning specialist and an Agroecologist for the McEvoy Ranch. In addition, he has many organizational affiliations including: Founding Board Member, Alliance for Local Sustainable Agriculture (Marin); Co-Founder, Bolinas-Stinson Beach Compost Project; Agricultural Director, Apple Tree International; and Co-Founder, West Marin Compost Coalition. Dr. Creque holds a PhD in Rangeland Ecology from Utah State University, and is a California State Board of Forestry Certified Professional in Rangeland Management.
Dr. Whendee Silver is a co-founder and the lead scientist on the Marin Carbon Project. Her role on the Steering Committee is to conduct and coordinate the scientific research of the project. She also participates in the outreach and education activities by helping to translate scientific findings to project participants and the general public. Dr. Silver consults on the implementation plan and manages the long term monitoring program and carbon monitoring protocol development. She is Professor of Ecosystem Ecology in the Department of Environmental Science, Policy, and Management at the University of California, Berkeley. She also holds an appointment on the Geological Science Faculty of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. Her research seeks to determine the biogeochemical effects of climate change and human impacts on the environment, and the potential for mitigating these effects. She holds PhD and MS degrees from Yale University.
Robert Berner is Executive Director of Marin Agricultural Land Trust (MALT) and holds an LLB (law degree) and MBA. Mr. Berner will participate in MCP planning and organization, identify MALT's ongoing role, and support MCP goals and programs.
Charlette Epifanio has been the District Conservationist for the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service since 1997. She manages the NRCS Petaluma Field Office and provides assistance to four Marin-Sonoma Resource Conservation Districts. She holds a M.S. degree in Range and Wildland Science from the University of California, Davis, and a B.S. degree in Natural Resource Conservation from the University of California, Berkeley. She is a State Certified Rangeland Manager, State of California Board of Forestry. Her current responsibilities include managing the local EQIP program to address watershed water quality, livestock manure management, and riparian restoration. The Petaluma NRCS ranks 3rd highest in California for $14.1 million dollars obligated 1997-2008. Ms. Epifanio's role in the Marin Carbon Project will be to assist as the USDA contact for the project to help facilitate communication between USDA and the Marin Carbon Project. She will provide technical assistance if needed including the assistance of the NRCS Area Soil Scientist and a Summer 2009 Rangeland Management Specialist Intern. Ms. Epifanio will also facilitate implementation of existing conservation practices that may benefit carbon sequestration and encourage implementation of MCP verified management approaches to carbon sequestration.
Helge Hellberg is the Executive Director of Marin Organic. Prior to his work at Marin Organic, Hellberg was the Director of Marketing and Communications for California Certified Organic Farmers (CCOF), one of the largest organic certifiers in the United States. Hellberg has a postgraduate degree in Marketing and Communications, and a Bachelor's degree in music from his native Germany. He also is a Certified Nutrition Counselor, after studying holistic nutrition in Santa Cruz, California. Hellberg serves on the Board of the Ecological Farming Association, as well as on the Advisory Board of Cal Poly's Sustainable Agriculture Program in San Luis Obispo.
Patricia Hickey is Marin Agricultureal Land Trust's Stewardship Director. Prior to working for MALT she served for four years as Agricultural Program Director for the Gold Ridge Resource Conservation District in Southern Sonoma County. She holds M.A.s in Environmental Science and Management and Community Planning. Ms. Hickey will actively assist in the planning and implementation of MCP education and outreach, market development, and verification protocols. In addition, Ms. Hickey will work in partnership with the Marin RCD, USDA NRCS and agricultural landowners to promote the adoption of conservation management practices with the potential to increase carbon sequestration in pasture and rangeland soils.
Stephanie Larson is Range Management Advisor, University of California Cooperative Extension, and UCCE Interim Director for Sonoma County. She holds a M.S. in Animal Science and is a Certified Rangeland Manager. Her role in the Marin Carbon Project is to provide feedback and give guidance on research trials as they relate to range and practical outputs to end users, and to possibly seek funding for complementary carbon work on grazing lands. She will provide expertise in rangeland management, including research on grazing strategies, design, timing, intensity and monitoring success of the grazing treatments. She will also provide outreach and education to rangeland owners and operators in results of the Marin Carbon Project and opportunities to implement new grazing strategies that could result in these owners' ability to sell carbon credits. Ms. Larson has worked in Sonoma and Marin Counties with livestock producers, rangeland owners and operators for over 25 years. She is currently finishing her PhD at Oregon State University in Rangeland Ecology and Management.
David Lewis is Director of the Marin County UCCE. Mr. Lewis is a Watershed Advisor and holds a M.S. in International Agricultural Development. He specializes in agroforestry, soil science, and watershed management and research. Mr. Lewis' role in the Marin Carbon Project is to fund and guide research in another area of critical carbon work that directly relates to the watershed services work of the Marin RCD. This research will focus on the dynamics of carbon sequestration and nitrogen in restored Mediterranean riparian areas. This work will begin in May 2009. Mr. Lewis and Ms. Larson will collaborate with the RCD, NRCS, and MALT staff to demonstrate and educate landowners, if and when the positive benefits of carbon sequestration are validated.
Nancy Scolari will continue the Marin RCD's focus of on-the-ground implementation while supporting the mission and goals of the Marin Carbon Project. Ms. Scolari is the Executive Director of the Marin RCD. She received a B.A in Environmental Studies and Planning at Sonoma State University with an emphasis in water quality before enlisting in the U.S Department of Agriculture's AmeriCorps National Service Program. During this time she assisted dairy producers in the development of regional water quality monitoring programs and ranch conservation plans. She has been with the Marin RCD for 10 years and has brokered and managed $8 million in grant contracts; been a liaison between funders, landowners and board members; and implemented over 100 on-the-ground conservation and restoration projects, based on watershed-wide plans and research.