Russell Unger, Executive Director, LEED AP
As Executive Director, Russell has grown Urban Green Council exponentially in both membership and organizational capacity, while establishing it as a national leader in advocacy, education, and major initiatives for the green building movement. He has spearheaded GPRO: Green Professional Building Skills Training and convened the Green Codes Task Force at the request of Mayor Bloomberg and City Council Speaker Quinn. Russell drafted and led negotiations on many environmental laws - including the City's green building law (Local Law 86) - while serving as Legislative Counsel for three City Council committees. As the former Assistant Director in the New York City Mayor's Office of Contract Services, Special Counsel for Environmental Procurement; and Special Advisor on Sustainable Development to then-Speaker Miller of the New York City Council, his unique approaches to problem-solving established him as an industry leader on programs and lasting policy.
Currently serves on: New York City Energy Policy Task Force (Board), Center for Architecture Buildings=Energy Exhibition (Advisory Committee), Department of Environmental Protection Green Infrastructure Citizen’s Group (Steering Committee), Urban Assembly School for Green Careers (Advisory Committee), NYU Sustainability Task Force (Board), and the New York City Energy Conservation Code (Advisory Committee)
Christina Anjesky, Director, Development & Communications
Chris comes to Urban Green Council with extensive experience in the nonprofit and for-profit worlds. She’s held senior development positions at The Partnership for the Homeless and Make the Road New York, and managed the individual giving and Health and Safety Services programs at the American Red Cross in Greater New York. Prior to that, she honed her marketing and communications skills at Citibank and Random House. Chris holds a B.A. from The Ohio State University.
Tiffany Broyles Yost, Director, Programs, LEED AP BD+C
Tiffany has been involved in the research, design, and development of green building and master planning projects for over 10 years. As the Director of Programs, she is responsible for developing educational programs for the green building community and promoting green building in and around New York City. Prior to joining Urban Green, Tiffany was an Associate Principal at Kohn Pedersen Fox. Trained as an architect, she led KPF's global Environmental Network providing sustainable design strategies for a variety of commercial office, residential, academic, and mixed-use projects. Tiffany has also taught at the New York School of Interior Design and been a guest critic at the City College of New York, New York Institute of Technology, University of California at Berkeley, and the University of Kentucky. She recently presented at the Buildings=Energy Symposium at the AIA NY Center for Architecture and as a panelist at the Architecture and Design Film Forum. She holds a M. Arch in Sustainable Environmental Design from the Architectural Association in London, a Certificate of Sustainable Design from the Ecosa Institute, and a B. Arch from the University of Kentucky.
Currently serves on: New York City Mayor's Carbon Challenge, Technical Advisory Group (Advisory Committee), ASHRAE NY Sustainability Committee
Ellen Honigstock, Director, Construction Education, RA, LEED AP, GPRO: CM
Ellen runs GPRO, a national green building certificate program for Contractors, Building Managers/Operators and Trades. Ellen practiced architecture for over 25 years, running her own firm from 1999-2010 which specialized in energy-efficient retrofits for existing residential, commercial and institutional buildings. Ellen was the first Residential Green Building Advocate for Urban Green Council, working to increase the level of green building and LEED for Homes certification in the New York residential marketplace, and was also a committee chair of the Green Codes Task Force. In addition, Ellen has substantial experience as an educator; she taught at the 1,000 Green Supers program for SEIU Local 32 BJ Thomas Shortman Training Fund, and holds a number of BPI certifications.
Currently serves on: Urban Assembly School for Green Careers (Advisory Committee), and Sustainable Kensington Windsor Terrace (Founder).
Jessica Joanlanne, Programs Associate
Jessica joins Urban Green Council as the organization's Programs Associate, working to develop and promote educational programs centered around sustainability. Through her experiences with various architecture and interior design firms in both the New York and Washington, D.C. areas, she was inspired to spread the message of environmentally responsible building practices. Jessica recently earned her M.P.S. in Sustainable Interior Environments from the New York School of Interior Design. She also holds a B.F.A. in Interior Design with a minor in Art History from The George Washington University.
Erin Johnson, Development & Communications Coordinator
Erin joins Urban Green Council with a background in design and a passion for sustainability. Through her work at non-profits, she has experience with communications, event planning, community outreach, and program development. Erin completed her B.S. at Cornell University in beautiful Ithaca, NY. There, she studied Design and Environmental Analysis and was very active in campus organizations, including Cornell’s USGBC student chapter. Erin caught the travel bug after spending a semester in Copenhagen, and most recently spent a year in Israel working with asylum-seekers.
Jamie Kleinberg, Task Force Associate
Jamie joins Urban Green Council to assist in the planning, organization, and implementation of the Building Resiliency Task Force. Prior to this position, she interned with Richard Leigh in the Research Department to co-author the “90 by 50” report, which determined the energy efficiency measures necessary to reduce NYC greenhouse gas emissions 90% by the year 2050. Jamie holds a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Tufts University. There, she focused on clean energy technologies and completed her senior project on biofuel, characterizing the feasibility of producing ethanol from Duckweed.
Richard Leigh, Director, Research, LEED AP
With over 30 years of experience in energy efficiency and sustainability, Dick has been leading Urban Green Council's research efforts for the past five years. He played a central role in the Green Codes Task Force, contributed to New York City's ban on #6 heating oil, oversaw There are Holes in Our Walls, led 90 by 50, and provides ongoing guidance on course content for GPRO. Prior to joining Urban Green, Dick was Senior Engineer at the Community Environmental Center, where he provided technical leadership for energy efficiency projects in existing and new buildings. Earlier, he worked at Brookhaven National Laboratory on energy and solar technologies and national energy planning. He is also Visiting Associate Professor of Physics at Pratt Institute.
Currently serves on: NYC ACRE (Board of Advisors).
Sarah Palmisano, GPRO Administrative Associate
Sarah became involved in environmental work through a series of internships after college that allowed her to explore the field of conservation. She managed an environmental education center for a municipality in Michigan, developed environmental school programs for the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, and worked to improve environmental policy in Pittsburgh while working in the Mayor’s Office of Sustainability. Sarah also brings experience in event planning and nonprofit development from working at other nonprofits including Family House, Inc. and the Social Science Research Council. Sarah holds a B.S. degree from Michigan State University, where she double-majored in Social Sciences and Psychology.
CJ Sandy, Office Manager
CJ comes to Urban Green Council with extensive office management and nonprofit experience. Most recently, she was at NADAP in New York, where she served as administrative supervisor for this large workforce development provider. CJ holds a B.A. from Douglass College, Rutgers University.
Cecil Scheib, Director, Advocacy, LEED AP, GPRO:O&M
With over twenty years sustainability experience, Cecil was most recently Director of Energy and Sustainability at New York University, cutting energy use and greenhouse gas emissions by 30% in five years. NYU received AASHE STARS Gold and the highest rating of any institution in the Operations category. He also wrote NYU's Climate Action Plan and Energy and Water Design Standards for new construction, and managed the Sustainable Landscaping and Recycling Shops. Prior to NYU, he founded Dancing Rabbit Ecovillage, an off-grid community of 75 residents dedicated to innovating sustainable technology and social systems. Cecil teaches GPRO:O&M through SEIU Local 32 BJ Thomas Shortman Training Fund. He holds a B.S. in Civil Engineering from Stanford University and a Professional Engineer's license from New York State, and is a Certified Energy Manager and LEED Accredited Professional.
Currently serves on: Dancing Rabbit Ecovillage (Board of Directors).
Charlotte Stanley, GPRO Curriculum Associate
Charlotte comes to Urban Green Council from California, where she interned at various environmental consulting firms during and after college. At these companies, she assisted with researching the environmental impact of multiple projects in Northern and Southern California. Charlotte holds a B.S. from UCLA in Environmental Science with a minor in Environmental Engineering, and spent her senior year conducting in-depth analysis on the management practices of protected areas around the world. Following a cross-country move in January, Charlotte spent six months interning with GPRO before taking on her current role.
Ariana Vito, Development & Communications Associate, LEED Green Associate
Ariana joins Urban Green Council with experience at the federal, state, and non-profit level. She previously interned for Solar 1, the White House Council on Environmental Quality, and Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick’s Press Office. She received a B.A. in Environmental Studies and International Affairs, with a minor in French from Northeastern University, where she helped to improve on-campus sustainability through a student organization. As a Northern California native, she has an inherent interest in all things environmental – particularly renewable energy and improving energy efficiency in buildings. She is originally from Sonoma County, California but loves to move around, having lived and studied in Victoria, BC; Grenoble; Belfast; Boston and Washington, D.C.
Jonce Walker, Programs Manager, LEED AP, CSBA
Jonce joins Urban Green Council from the Southwest with a background in sustainability policy, urban planning, and green building consulting. He has served on several environmental non-profit boards and community development organizations. Additionally, Jonce is the Co-Founder of Pedal Craft, an organization that merges graphic design and bicycles to help a local cause. Jonce has presented at Greenbuild, the League of Cities National Conference, and the Arizona Transit Association Conference. He has a B.S. in Urban Planning and a minor in Geographic Information Systems from New Mexico State University. Jonce is a LEED Accredited Professional and a Certified Sustainable Building Advisor.