Jamie Wimberly (Chair) founded and currently serves as CEO of the Distributed Energy Financial Group LLC (DEFG LLC). He has more than 20 years of experience in the energy and environment space and is widely regarded as one of the nation’s top energy experts. Jamie has published more than 50 articles and/or been cited in a number of trade and mainstream publications, including The Economist, USA Today, Washington Post, Atlantic Monthly, to name a few. In addition to DEFG LLC, he is currently a guest lecturer at New York University. Prior to founding DEFG LLC, Jamie co-founded and formerly served as President of the Center for the Advancement of Energy Markets (CAEM), a non-profit think tank focused on the energy sector. He served as the Vice President of the Consumer Energy Council of America (CECA), the oldest public interest organization in the nation focusing on the energy, telecommunications and other network industries providing essential services to consumers.
Kathleen Earl Colverson (Vice-Chair) is the Associate Director of International Agricultural Programs at the University of Florida. Prior to holding this position, she was the Senior Social Scientist for the Livelihoods, Gender, Impact and Innovations program at the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) based in Nairobi, Kenya. She has also served as the Associate Director of the International Center at the University of Florida and as the Regional Director of Programs in North America at Heifer International, with particular focus on the development of local food systems. She was an Animal Science professor for many years, including time on the Navajo Indian Reservation in Arizona. Kathy received her Ph.D. from Cornell University working with indigenous women farmers in Honduras. She has over 15 years of management experience, which includes strategic and operational planning, and 25 years of formal and non-formal experience in education and training. Her areas of expertise include gender and agricultural development, participatory extension approaches and integrated community development. Kathy’s international experience includes work in Kenya, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Egypt, Syria, Honduras, Nicaragua, Bangladesh, Haiti and Ecuador.
Perry Clutts (Treasurer) as over 12 years of experience with organic farming. Perry’s family has farmed Pleasantview Farm, located in Circleville, Ohio, for four generations. His great-great grandfather was a German immigrant, who came to Circleville in the mid 1800’s, and his great-grandfather purchased was named “Master Farmer of Ohio” in 1928. His grass-based dairy was certified organic in 2007, and he now distributes to Horizon Organic. Perry is also a member of his local grazing council, Milky Way Graziers and has served two terms as president of the Ohio Forage and Grassland Council. Additionally, he is serving on the Board of directors of the American Forage and Grassland Council, Ohio Ecological Food and Farm Association, and Organic Trade Association (where he holds the farmer seat).
Eileen Oldag (Secretary) is an independent contractor/consultant drawing on more than 25 years experience in executive management and development for nonprofit organizations. With an advanced degree in Human Relations and Supervision, she directed community based and national organizations, bringing expertise in strategic, financial and programmatic adaptation. As director of foundation relations for Heifer International, she worked with development programs in Africa, Central and South America, Asia and the US to generate institutional funding for agricultural development projects. Successes included funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to increase income and reduce poverty for 179,000 households—one million people—in East Africa through production-to-market dairy development. She and her husband Tom Neale reside in Arkansas.
Ross Mary Borja (Board Member and Representative from the International Council) is Executive Director of the Ecuadorian NGO EkoRural. Before taking the helm at EkoRural, Ms. Borja served as the Program Monitoring and Evaluation (PME) Specialist for World Neighbors Andes program, where she developed a global PME system that was implemented in Ecuador and Peru. She holds a BA in Economics from the Universidad Catolica del Ecuador in Quito and a Masters of Professional Studies degree from Cornell University’s Community and Rural Development Program in the Rural Sociology Department. In January 2004 she obtained her degree and went back to her native Ecuador. She has authored or contributed to a number of professional works, including “Documenting Farmer Field Schools in the Ecuadorian Highlands: A Case Study of the Province of Carchi”.
Bernard Guri (Board Member and Representative from the International Council) is the founder and Executive Director of the Center For Indigenous Knowledge and Organizational Development (CIKOD) in Ghana. In addition to founding CIKOD, Bernard co-founded the Ecumenical Association for Sustainable Agriculture (ECASARD). He is the Regional Coordinator of COMPAS Africa, Chairman of the Alliance for Food Sovereignty in Africa (AFSA), and a visiting lecturer at the COADY International Institute of the St Francis Xavier University in Canada. Previosuly, Bernard served as Programmes Director with the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung of Germany in the Republic of Benin and Ghana. He holds a Masters in Development Studies and a Diploma in Rural Policy and Project Planning from the Institute for Development Studies in The Hague. He received a bachelor’s degree in Agricultural Science and a Diploma in Education from the School of Agriculture in the University of Cape Coast. Bernard is currently a doctoral student at the Institute for Development Studies in the University of Cape Coast in Ghana.
Muthusami Kumaran (Board Member) is the Assistant Professor of Nonprofit Management & Community Organizations, Department of Family, Youth & Community Sciences, College of Agricultural & Life Sciences, University of Florida. He teaches courses on various aspects of nonprofit and NGO management. His areas of research interest include: nonprofit capacity building, roles and impacts of NGOs, community development and civic engagement, and environmental justice. Prior to his academic career, Kumaran worked for a nonprofit organization and a state government agency. He has assisted numerous nonprofits in the USA and NGOs in six countries for their organizational capacity development. He has published articles, book chapters and presented several research papers related to the nonprofit and NGO sectors.
Vance Russell (Board Member) is the California Director of Programs for the National Forest Foundation where he manages, leads and funds community forestry projects throughout the state. Prior to joining NFF, he was director of Audubon California’s Landowner Stewardship Program, working with farmers and ranchers throughout California to restore habitat in a manner compatible with existing agricultural operations. He has nearly 30 years of experience working in agriculture and natural resources management. Vance is one of the founding members of the Wild Farm Alliance, which promotes agriculture that helps to protect and restore wild nature, and currently serves on the organization’s board of directors as the treasurer. Vance served on the Management Board of the Central Valley Habitat Joint Venture that protects and restore habitat for waterfowl and shorebirds. He co-authored Wild Harvest – Farming for Wildlife and Profitability which details the importance of conservation incentives for landowners and Maximum Yield? Sustainable Agriculture as a Tool for Conservation, which examines the relationship between agriculture and conservation. Vance received his M.S. degree in Forest Science and Natural Resources Management from Cornell University in 1996 and a B.A. in Biology from the College of Wooster in 1987.
Sonja Swift (Board Member) was raised on a subtropical fruit farm and small-scale cattle ranch in the central coast foothills of California, a landscape that continues to inform her worldview. She serves as an active trustee for the Swift Foundation and sits on the board of International Funders for Indigenous Peoples as well. She has consistently advocated for more coherency and accountability in philanthropy is further engaged in efforts to revive place-based economies of scale that prioritize well being and healthy landscapes over profit. Sonja is a writer and artist, writing is her creative medium for grappling with the complexity of our times, and she also works in ceramics. She has a BA in Cultural Ecology from the University of California Santa Cruz and a MA from Goddard College, Vermont with a focus on place-based creative writing, trauma and embodiment studies. She currently lives in San Francisco.
Edwin Naylor (Honorary Member) was Groundswell’s first Board Chair and he is now an honorary Board Member. Ed has 51 years of organizational management experience, including over 16 years serving as President/CEO of Lutheran Social Services of the National Capital Area, Washington, DC (1987-1995) and Executive Director/CEO of Lutheran Social Ministry of the Southwest, Phoenix, AZ (1978-1987). In 1995 Mr. Naylor retired from Lutheran Social Services to found The Naylor Group, which offers consultation services to non-profit organizations around the country. He has provided strategic planning, organizational assessments, board development and training and other professional services to dozens of nonprofit clients from 18 states. He also worked as a Senior Consultant for the Child Welfare League of America for 14 years and recently served as Executive Director of the Association of Lutheran Older Adults (ALOA) for 2 years (2003-2004). Currently Mr. Naylor is the founding Coordinator of the Verde Food Council, a collaboration of four food banks in the Verde Valley of Arizona. Naylor holds a master’s degree from the Lutheran Theological Seminary in Gettysburg, PA, and a bachelor’s degree in English from Gettysburg College.