Annual Meeting 2019

The Institute on the Environment’s Annual Meeting brings together our community for a day of inspiration and lively discussion about how we can work together even more effectively toward a just and environmentally sound world. The meeting is for everyone – staff, students, affiliates, partners, and friends. Together, we’re building a future in which people and planet prosper together.

Friday, September 27, 2019
9:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Registration opens at 8:45 a.m.
Humphrey School of Public Affairs

Any questions, please contact:
Kimberly Long, Events Manager,


Time and Event
8:45 am: Registration opens
Coffee and light breakfast provided
9:30 – 11:30 am: Morning Programming
11:30 – 1:00 pm Lunch
Sandwiches and salads provided
1:00 pm – 3:00 pm Breakouts
Rooms as assigned below
3:00 pm – 4:00 pm Closing and reception

Morning Program

9:30 a.m. Director’s Address
10:15 a.m. Panel Discussion and open Q&A (further information below)

Community-Engaged Scholarship: Best Practices and Ethical Considerations

Panelists will share what they have learned from their own community-based research, reflecting on the key components of mutually beneficial and ethical community-university partnerships.

  • Virajita Singh, Assistant Vice Provost, Office of Equity and Diversity & Senior Research Fellow, Center for Sustainable Building Research
  • Dr. Cathy Jordan, IonE Fellow and Associate Director for Leadership and Education, Institute on the Environment
  • Dr. Crystal Ng, IonE Associate and Assistant Professor, Earth and Environmental Sciences
  • Dr. Nicholas Phelps, Assistant Professor & Minnesota Aquatic Invasive Species Research Center (MAISRC) Director

Moderated by Carissa Slotterback, IonE Fellow and Associate Dean and Associate Professor, Humphrey School of Public Affairs

Afternoon Breakout Sessions

The overall goal of the breakouts is to provide a platform for the IonE community to gather and have directed conversations amongst a diversity of backgrounds about topics of interest. All breakouts will be self-selected on the day of the Annual Meeting.

Accelerating climate action while advancing social justice: tension or opportunity?
Location: Blegen Hall 317

Is there a tension between acting as quickly as possible to mitigate climate change and the potential for harnessing climate mitigation to advance equity and justice? Can the urgency for climate action accelerate a broader, equitable systems change or does it simply imply doubling down on existing institutions and market actors thereby exacerbating current inequities? Come to engage in a conversation that shapes our collective understanding of these questions and potential insights and learnings that could shed light on pathways forward.

Room Leads:

  • Christine Baeumler, IonE Fellow, Professor, Art, College of Liberal Arts
  • Lissa Pawlisch, IonE Fellow, Clean Energy Resource Team Statewide Director

Invited Practitioners: 

  • Ansha Zaman, Policy Coordinator, Center for Earth, Energy and Democracy
  • Nazir Khan, Organizer, Minnesota Black, Indigenous, and People of Color Climate & Environmental Justice Table
  • Richa Nagar, Professor, Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies, College of Liberal Arts
  • Timothy Den-Herder Thomas, General Manager, Cooperative Energy Futures

Place-Based Carbon Neutral Goals
Location: Humphrey Forum

Pat Hamilton, Director of Global Initiatives at the Science Museum of Minnesota and Shane Stennes, UMN-TC Sustainability Director will each lead a subgroup discussing opportunities around their respective organizations as they create ambitious goals towards achieving carbon neutrality. These include not just buildings but operational, outreach and educational opportunities.

Room Leads:

  • Patrick Hamilton, IonE Fellow, Director, Global Change Initiatives, Science Museum of Minnesota
  • Shane Stennes, IonE Fellow, Director of Sustainability, University Services

Planetary Health: Theory, Education, and Practice and Call for Leadership
Location: Humphrey Room 215

Planetary Health is an emerging concept that started in 2015. It takes One Health a step further to fully integrate environmental health into the health of humans and animals. Planetary health is deeply committed to transdisciplinary systems thinking. The University of Minnesota has a growing relationship with the Planetary Health Alliance at Harvard and is positioned to be an early leader in the field. This session will provide an overview of cutting-edge planetary health theory, a planetary health competency framework to guide education, and planetary health practice exemplars. Participants will begin to envision the role that the IonE community and the University can play in this global movement.

Room Lead: Teddie Potter, IonE Fellow, Professor, School of Nursing

Source Water Protection and Rural Development
Location: Humphrey Room 180

Throughout the greater Minnesota, there is growing concern about the changing quality of source water. It’s a complex problem as demographics, climate, and economics are all changing at the same time. A brief knowledge assessment will be presented and discussion groups will brainstorm forward-looking ideas about protecting source water given these current and looming changes and where new opportunities for UMN might exist.

Room Lead: Kate Brauman, IonE Fellow, Lead Scientist, GWI

Invited Practitioner: Anna Claussen, Founder, Voices for Rural Resilience

Sustainability Forecasting: Building a Navigation System for Climate Action Planning & Sustainable Land Use
Location: Blegen Hall 330

Climate Action Planning is critical for our future. However, on our state’s journey to carbon neutrality we will continue to need food, provide clean water, protect biodiversity and more, i.e. we still need to be sustainable. To aid in evaluating potential plans and policies, we must be able to forecast impacts of plans on our natural resources and climate goals. The University can contribute its broad expertise towards sustainability forecasting to better characterize emissions, potential mitigation options and the synergies and tradeoffs with other sustainability targets, looking sector by sector (e.g., agriculture, forestry, urban, etc.). The discussion in this breakout session will focus on opportunities for the University of Minnesota community and other stakeholders to develop an integrated assessment and monitoring of the potential mitigation options that each sector in Minnesota can provide as contributions to the state’s current emission reduction goals.

Room Lead: Eric Lonsdorf, Lead Scientist, NatCap and IonE Impact Goal Lead

Who’s Coming?

122 Ioneers so far! Plus 16 guests. Last update: 8:30 a.m. on September 24

  • Lilli Ambort, IonE Student, Assistant Communications Assistant, Sustainability Education
  • Bob Backman, Regional Sustainable Development Partnerships (Guest of Kathryn Draeger)
  • Christine Baeumler, IonE Fellow, Professor, Department of Art
  • Grace Becker, Undergraduate Communications Associate
  • Elizabeth Borer, IonE Fellow, Professor, EEB
  • Kate Brauman, IonE Fellow, Lead Scientist, GWI
  • Jonee Brigham, IonE Fellow, Senior Research Fellow, Minnesota Design Center, College of Design
  • Jordyn Bucholtz, IonE Student Development Assistant,  Environmental Sciences, Policy and Management
  • Ruthie Burrows, Student, Geography
  • Andrew Butts, Impact Goals Researcher
  • Jillian Cady, Undergraduate Program Associate, Acara
  • Dustin Carlson, The IonE IT Guy
  • Becky Chaplin-Kramer, Lead Scientist, NatCap
  • Ansu Chatterjee, IonE Fellow, Professor, School of Statistics
  • Yuan Cheng, IonE Associate, Assistant Professor, Humphrey School of Public Affairs
  • Catherine Clark, IonE Grant recipient, PhD Candidate, Materials Science
  • Anna Claussen, Founder, Voices for Rural Resilience (Guest of Kate Brauman)
  • Barrett Colombo, Lead Education & Communications Platform Development
  • Jay Coggins, IonE Fellow, Professor, Applied Economics
  • Timothy DenHerder-Thomas, General Manager, Cooperative Energy Futures (Guest of Lissa Pawlisch)
  • Jack DeWaard, IonE Associate, Associate Professor, Sociology & Minnesota Population Center
  • Christy Dolph, Evolution & Behavior (Guest of Jacques Finlay)
  • John Downing, IonE Fellow, Director and Professor, Minnesota Sea Grant, Large Lakes Observatory, UMN-D Biology
  • Salli Dymond, IonE Associate, Assistant Professor, UMD – Earth and Environmental Science
  • Ardeshir Ebtehaj, former IonE Associate,  Professor, CEGE
  • Akisha Everett, Energy Program Coordinator, ETL
  • David Faust, University Libraries (Guest of Richa Nagar)
  • Xue Feng, IonE Associate, Assistant Professor, Civil, Environmental, Geo-Engineering
  • Jacques Finlay, IonE Fellow, Professor, EEB
  • Doug Franchot, Regional Sustainable Development Partnerships (Guest of Kathryn Draeger)
  • Lee Frelich, IonE Fellow, Director, Center for Forest Ecology, Forest Resources
  • Michelle Garvey, IonE Educator, Teaching Specialist, GWSS, SUST
  • Jan Gerstenberger, Director of Partnerships & Development
  • Susanna Gibbons, IonE Fellow, Managing Director, Carlson Funds Enterprise
  • Troy Goodnough, IonE Fellow, Sustainability Director, UMN Morris – Office of Sustainability
  • Richard Graves, IonE Fellow, Director, Center for Sustainable Building Research
  • Julie Grossman, IonE Fellow, Associate Professor, Department of Horticultural Science
  • Abby Guthmann, Graduate Student, Ecology, Evolution, Behavior (Guest of Craig Packer)
  • Patrick Hamilton, IonE Fellow, Director, Global Change Initiatives, Science Museum of Minnesota
  • Mary Hannemann, Educational Coordinator
  • Aaron Hanson, Energy Program Associate Energy Transition Lab, IonE
  • Randel Hanson, IonE Fellow, Director, Eco-Entrepreneurship Program, Lake Superior College
  • Julie Hanus, Director of Communications
  • Peter Hawthorne, Senior Scientist, NatCap
  • Jessica Hellmann, Director
  • Anna Henderson, IonE Fellow, Scientist and artist, Humphrey
  • Kimberly Hill, IonE Fellow, Associate Professor, Department of Civil, Environmental, and Geo-Engineering
  • Mary Hoff, Editor in Chief, Ensia
  • Russell Holmes, IonE Fellow, Professor, Chemical Engineering and Materials Science
  • Barb Jacobs, Project Manager, Energy Transition Lab
  • Justin Johnson, Senior Scientist and Economist, Natural Capital Project
  • Lucinda Johnson, IonE Fellow, Associate Director/Water Team Leader, UMD- NRRI
  • Nathan Johnson, IonE Associate, Associate Professor, Duluth Civil Engineering
  • Cathy Jordan, Associate Director for Leadership & Education
  • Emily Kalnicky, IonE Fellow, Evaluation and Research Specialist, Minnesota Zoo
  • Melissa Kenney, Associate Director for Knowledge Initiatives
  • Nazir Khan, Organizer, Minnesota Black, Indigenous, and People of Color Climate & Environmental Justice Table (Guest of Christine Beaumler)
  • Taegon Kim, IonE Post-doc, Postdoctoral Associate, Northstar Initiative
  • Linda Kingery, Executive Director, UMN Extension NWRSDP (Guest of Fred Rose)
  • Alexandra Klass, IonE Fellow, Professor, Law School
  • Laurie Kleinbaum Fink, IonE Fellow, Chair of Science Center of Research and Collections, Science Museum of Minnesota
  • Len Kne, U-Spatial (Guest of Kate Brauman)
  • Kristi Kremers, Director of Graduate Leadership Programs
  • Dan Larkin, IonE Associate, Assistant Professor, Fisheries, Wildlife and Conservation Biology
  • Clarence Lehman, IonE Fellow, Faculty, General Advisor to the Dean EEB
  • Peter Levin, IonE Student Assistant, Educators Grad Student Leader and Education
  • David Lipset, IonE Fellow, Professor, Anthropology
  • Clement Loo, IonE Educator, Lecturer/Assistant Professor, Student Success Coordinator Environmental Studies; Office of Equity, Diversity, and Intercultural Programs
  • Kimberly Long, Events Manager
  • Eric Lonsdorf, Lead Scientist, NatCap and IonE Impact Goal Lead
  • Saleh Mamun, IonE Postdoctoral Associate, Department of Applied Economics
  • Alfred Marcus, IonE Fellow, Professor, Carlson School
  • Kristen Mastel, IonE Librarian, Outreach and Instruction, Librarian Libraries
  • Brett McDonnell, IonE Fellow, Professor, Law School
  • Richard McGehee, IonE Fellow, Professor, School of Mathematics
  • Beth Mercer-Taylor, Coordinator, Sustainability Education
  • Kathryn Milun, IonE Fellow, Associate Professor, Anthropology
  • Jack Moebius, Assistant to the Director
  • Caryn Mohr, Regional Sustainable Development Partnerships (Guest of Mary Hannemann)
  • Laura Musacchio, IonE Fellow, Associate Professor, Landscape Architecture
  • Richa Nagar, IonE Fellow, Professor, Bennett Chair in Excellence, Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies
  • Crystal Ng, IonE Associate, Professor Earth and Environmental Sciences
  • Chris Nootenboom, Researcher, Natural Capital Project
  • Paige Novak, IonE Fellow, Professor, Co-director Department of Civil, Environmental, and Geo- Engineering, MnDRIVE:Environment
  • Dr George Omondi, Veterinary Population Medicine (Guest of Dr. Dominic Travis)
  • Marek Oziewicz, IonE Fellow, Professor, Curriculum & Instruction
  • Lee Paddock, IonE Fellow, Associate Dean, George Washington University Law School
  • Bill Paulus, Facilities Management (Guest of Shane Stennes)
  • Lissa Pawlisch, IonE Fellow, CERTs Director, Extension Regional Sustainable Development Partnerships
  • Mark Pedelty, IonE Fellow, Professor, College of Liberal Arts, Communication Studies
  • Rylie Pelton, IonE Post-doc Post-Doc, Northstar Initiative
  • Lee Penn, IonE Fellow, Professor, Chemistry
  • Courtney Peters, Events Coordinator
  • Dan Philippon, IonE Fellow, Associate Professor, English
  • Steve Polasky, IonE Fellow, Professor, Applied Economics; EEB
  • Teddie Potter, IonE Fellow, Professor, School of Nursing
  • Sean Quinn, Graphic Designer
  • Rai Rajan, IonE Fellow, IonE Faculty Leadership Council
  • Aruna Raman, Study abroad teaching partner, Acara, PhD Student College of Education and Human Development
  • Deepak Ray, Senior Scientist, GLI
  • Alex Reich, IonE Visiting Scholar, Creator, MinuteEarth YouTube Videos
  • Todd Reubold, Associate Director, IonE and Publisher, Ensia
  • Heidi Ries, Policy Expert, ETL
  • Maggie Rogers, Collaborative Researcher Student, Humphrey, MS-STEP ’20
  • Fred Rose, Impact Goals Manager
  • Elja Roy, Environmental Communication, 4th Year PhD Candidate, Communication Studies
  • Michael Sadowsky, IonE Fellow, Director, BioTechnology BTI and SWC
  • Ashwini Sankar, Research Associate, Carlson School of Management (Guest of Jennifer Schmitt)
  • Jennifer Schmitt, Program Director and Lead Scientist, Northstar Initiative, IonE Fellow
  • Rich Sharp, IonE Fellow, Software Architect, The Natural Capital Project
  • Shashi Shekhar, IonE Fellow, Professor, Computer Sc. & Eng.
  • Sarah Skikne, IonE Post-doc, TNC NatureNet Fellow
  • Brandon Sloan, PhD Student, Dept of Civil, Environmental and Geo-Engineering (Guest of Xue Feng)
  • Gaston Small, IonE Fellow, Associate Professor, University of St. Thomas – Biology Department
  • April Snyder, Administrative Director
  • Scott Spicer, IonE Educator, Media Outreach and Learning Spaces Librarian, University Libraries
  • Shane Stennes, IonE Fellow, Director of Sustainability, University Services
  • David Syring, IonE Educator, Professor, Anthropology UMD
  • Jennifer Thissen, Grants and Contracts Coordinator
  • Kimberley Todd, IonE Fellow, Associate Professor Creative Writing
  • Dominic Travis, IonE Fellow, Associate Professor & Co-Lead, One Health Division Department of Veterinary Population Medicine
  • Anna Treimer, IonE Student Assistant, Undergrad Communications Assistant Sustainability Education
  • Fatima Tufail, IonE Student Assistant Ph.D. student, Comparative International Development Organization GRA, Sustainability Education,
  • Tracy Twine, IonE Fellow, Associate Professor, Department of Soil, Water, and Climate
  • Priscilla Villa-Watt, Program Coordinator, Leadership & Education
  • Megan Voorhees, Acara Director
  • Paul West, Co-Director & Lead Scientist, GLI
  • Andrew Wickert, IonE Associate, Assistant Professor, Earth & Environmental Sciences and SAFL
  • Dave Wilsey, IonE Educator, Director – Masters of Development Practice (MDP), Humphrey
  • Tiffany Wolf, IonE Associate, Assistant Professor, Veterinary Population Medicine
  • Yingying Zhang, Graduate Student, Mechanical engineering