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Research Assistants

Avana Andrade is a first year Master of Environmental Management candidate at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. She earned her B.A. in International Studies and Western European History at Colorado State University in 2010. Before returning to school, she worked as a public historian and backcountry ranger with the Student Conservation Association and the National Park Service in both Northern Arizona and Southern Utah. Her work has focused on the history of grazing and cultural resource management in Glen Canyon National Recreation Area and Canyonlands National Park. Work and recreation on the Colorado Plateau motivates her primary interest in grad school, environmental conflict mediation. Avana is a Colorado native and an avid backpacker and gardener.

Veronique Bourg-Meyer is a first-year Master of Environmental Management candidate at the School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. She is interested in corporate sustainability and environmental strategy for businesses, especially water issues. Vero spent the past five years working as an attorney on infrastructure project financing and project development in emerging markets for international law firms, with a specific emphasis on mining, oil and gas projects and public private partnerships in the port/shipping industry. She also assisted Vermont-based non-profit organizations in land use law and policy studies aimed at informing policymakers on the issue of forest fragmentation in New England. Vero is a native of Paris, France, a ski fanatic and when she was 16, she went scuba diving with a great blue whale.

Jena Clarke is a first-year Master of Environmental Management candidate at the School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. She earned her B.S. in International Agricultural Development from the University of California, Davis in 2009.  She is interested in agricultural policy, especially relating to livestock production and rangeland management. Her background is in cattle ranching in the US and Australia, where she worked as a cowgirl and later as a business analyst for a corporate agricultural funds manager.

Kelly Coplin is a first-year Master of Environmental Management candidate at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. Prior to coming to Yale, Kelly worked at the Natural Resources Defense Council on aquatic ecosystem protection and restoration. Kelly graduated from Stanford University in 2009 with a B.A. in Human Biology and a concentration in environmental policy and economics.

Joanna Dafoe is a second-year Master of Environmental Science candidate at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. Her master's research examines the role and policy preference of oil and gas companies in Canadian climate politics. In addition to working with YCELP, Joanna also works as a consultant for the International Institute for Sustainable Development and as a writer and editor for the Earth Negotiations Bulletin. Prior to joining Yale, Joanna served on the Canadian Government Delegation to the 16th and 17th United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development as a civil society representative. Joanna received her Hon. B.A. in Peace and Conflict Studies and Environmental Policy from the University of Toronto. You can follow her on twitter @jodafoe.

Becky Gallagher is a first-year Master of Environmental Management candidate at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. She holds a B.S from Tufts University, where she majored in Environmental Studies and International Relations. Her professional and academic interests are in energy and policy, especially as they topics relate to cities. Before coming to Yale, she worked for The Trust for Public Land. For their Conservation Finance team, she mapped conserved lands in the U.S. and advised conservation ballot measure campaign committees. At Yale, she plans to study conventional, unconventional, and renewable energy technology and markets, with the hope of finding new applications for her environmental policy background.

Sarah Guy is a first-year Master of Environmental Management candidate at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. She previously worked on land and water policy at the White House Council on Environmental Quality and on western lands conservation at the Wyss Foundation. She is a graduate of Washington and Lee University and a native of Westport, Massachusetts.

Christopher Halfnight is a first-year Master of Environmental Management candidate at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. Prior to joining Yale, he worked as a litigation attorney in New York, where his pro bono practice included a Massachusetts-based Clean Water Act citizen suit. Christopher is currently focused on environmental policy and particularly interested in the intersection of law, politics, and science around looming water quality and management challenges. He is originally from Toronto, Canada, and studied English and law at McGill University.

Nora Hawkins is a second-year Master of Environmental Management candidate at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. She graduated from Whitman College in 2008 with a Bachelor of Arts in English and a minor in chemistry. Prior to commencing her studies at Yale, Nora worked as a paralegal in the Environment and Natural Resources Division of the U.S. Department of Justice in Washington, DC. At FES she is focused on environmental policy and is committed to building a richer, more genuine dialogue between scientists and policymakers. She is excited to be working as a research assistant at YCELP and is interested in exploring how environmental metrics can catalyze solutions to environmental issues that balance competing interests and are grounded in science. Nora is a native of Seattle, Washington.

Anne Householder is a first-year masters student at the Yale School of Architecture. Her main interests include urban design, sustainable planning, and contemporary city development. Anne has a Bachelor’s of Science in Architectural Studies from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with a minor in the Environmental Fellows Program. Previously, Anne served as an outreach volunteer with the East St. Louis Action Research project, the 2011 USGBC Solar Decathlon Design Competition, and her undergraduate university’s Ecological Design Consortium, among other extracurriculars.  For the past three summers, Anne has worked as an intern architect developing schematic design presentation materials and illustrations.

Rachel Lipstein is a junior at Yale College majoring in English major with a concentration in Writing. She is interested in sustainable agriculture and enjoys spending time on farms. Previously, she worked on the 108-foot sloop, Clearwater, which is dedicated to protecting the Hudson River through education, advocacy, and celebration.

Breanna Lujan is a fourth-year Environmental Studies major at Yale College. She is concentrating on biodiversity conservation and sustainable development, especially as these topics pertain to environmental policies in Brazil. At the Yale Center for Environmental Law & Policy she is looking forward to learning more about how the interaction between scientific data and policymaking can be used to resolve environmental issues.

William Miao is a second-year Master of Environmental Management (MEM' 14) candidate at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. His research focus is on the application of integrated environmental tools and frameworks at corporate, industrial, and national levels. Originally a chemical engineer from Auckland, New Zealand, his previous work involved risk management for oil and gas production, waste to energy research, and life-cycle assessment for the steel industry.

Lia Nicholson studies coastal ecosystems and governance, with a special interest in system responses to global climate change. Originally from Antigua & Barbuda, Lia has a geographic focus of the Caribbean region, however she has pursued opportunities to work with and study islands globally through her Master's candidacy at Yale's School of Forestry & Environmental Studies. Lia has been awarded a Gruber Fellowship to implement adaptation measures, with the Government of Antigua & Barbuda, to address climatic impacts on vulnerable communities, which she will begin after her graduation in May.

Yinan Song is a fourth-year art and political science double major at Yale College. She is originally from Chengdu, China.

Connie Vogelmann is a fourth-year joint-degree student with the Yale School of Forestry and the Yale Law School.  She grew up in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, then went to college at Johns Hopkins to study biology.  After realizing how little scientists and policy makers communicate, she decided to study both fields, in order to “bridge the gap” between scientists and policymakers. Connie is interested in a variety of environmental issues, but is particularly interested in land conservation and scientific accountability.

Amy Weinfurter is a first-year Masters of Environmental Management (MEM '15) candidate at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, focusing on the intersection between environmental communication and policy. Before arriving at Yale, she studied English and environmental science at Colby College, and worked with non-profit organizations in  Colorado and Washington, D.C., on communication, watershed management, and community outreach and engagement initiatives.

Verner Wilson, III is a first-year Master of Environmental Management candidate at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. He is originally from Bristol Bay, Alaska, and obtained a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Studies in 2008 from Brown University. He previously worked for the World Wildlife Fund, as well as a coalition of Alaska Native tribes, on issues related to sustainable wild salmon fisheries, environmental justice, mining, oil and gas, and climate change.


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