Madison Czerwinski, Executive Vice President and former Senior Researcher at Environmental Progress, explores the factors driving the construction and cancellation of nuclear power plants and the politics of energy deprivation and development in impoverished countries. She also oversees EP's historical analysis, creating comprehensive timelines of all cancelled or constructed nuclear power plants in the United States.
A Wisconsin native, she graduated with degrees in environmental science and political science from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2017. Madison loves to spend her time crossword puzzling, exploring the outdoors, and cheering on the Green Bay Packers and Milwaukee Brewers over a cold craft beer.
Paris Ortiz-Wines, Office Manager & Executive Assistant
Originally from Santa Barbara, Paris graduated from the University of Santa Cruz with degrees in Environmental Studies and Liberal Arts. During her academic career she concentrated on understanding human interactions with the natural environment, focusing on how sociology, psychology and politics plays a role in achieving environmental and social justice. It is through her travels throughout Mexico and Europe that she decided to pursue a career that allowed her to combine her passion of aiding people and the natural environment. When she is not managing the operations at EP headquarters in Berkeley, you can find her at the beach, camping along the coast, or out with friends salsa dancing.
Mark Nelson, Senior Analyst
Mark Nelson, Senior Analyst, oversees EP's ground-breaking Energy Progress Tracker, the most comprehensive review of nuclear power plants planned, under construction, and at-risk of premature closure.
Mark's research into the environmental impacts of nuclear closures in Germany and California has been cited in the New York Times and other publications.
Mark completed his graduate work in nuclear engineering at the University of Cambridge under the supervision of Tony Roulstone, and studied aerospace and mechanical engineering at Oklahoma State University. Mark is a competitive runner, musician and photographer.
Mark's Twitter handle is @energybants
Jack Austin, EP Fellow
Jack, originally from Pittsburgh, PA, is a researcher for EP and studies English and History at U.C. Berkeley, expecting to graduate in 2021. He has volunteered in Malawi, Guatemala where he worked as a photojournalist to document Community Cloud Forest Conservation's (CCFC) work conserving the cloud forest, with homeless shelters and development programs in both Pittsburgh and the Bay Area. Jack was the editor-in-chief of his high school newspaper and he plans to become a journalist or a professor/author. Jack is passionate about music, photography, and soccer, and works as a DJ at the local radio station in his spare time.
Grace Pratt, EP Fellow
Originally from Southern California, Grace Pratt is studying Society and Environment and minoring in Spanish at the University of California, Berkeley. She will graduate with her B.S. in 2020. She is also an Associate Consultant in the Bay-Area Environmentally Aware Consulting Network (BEACN) and enjoys hands-on problem-solving to improve environmentally aware businesses. In addition to her experience in the private sector, Grace is also very interested in policy and is planning on attending law school. She hopes to be able to change our legislation surrounding climate issues in order to mitigate the effects of climate change and ensure that the people who will be most harmed by global warming are protected. In her free time, Grace enjoys going outside to hike and camp, and dancing for Berkeley’s competitive ballroom dance team.
Nicholas Burt, EP Fellow
Nicholas is a writer and investigative journalist studying Media Studies at University of California, Berkeley. He will graduate with his B.S. in 2021 with a minor in Journalism. In his free time, Nick enjoys cycling around the Bay and exploring the local music scene.
Arun Ramamurthy, EP Fellow
Arun Ramamurthy, Research Fellow, Environmental Progress. Arun develops models and visualizations of energy trends on global, national and local scales, using data analytics to study the levers and effects of climate mitigation and energy policy.
Frank Jablonski, Director
Frank Jablonski, founder of Progressive Law Group LLC, acts as EP’s lawyer. He has, since the 1980’s, been involved in many environmental and energy lawsuits, as well as legislative, and other advocacy efforts. Along the way he had some success, collected some compliments from clients and organizations, and got his name in some law books. Following a couple of years of intensive study in the early ‘00’s he changed his mind on nuclear energy, and, after giving a speech about it, lost his institutional environmental and renewable energy clients. Eight years later, after hard work with bi-partisan allies ended Wisconsin’s nuclear moratorium and resulted in advanced nuclear energy being added to the State’s energy priority list ahead of fossil fuels, he joined with Environmental Progress.
His driving aspiration is to be some percentage of the person his father was.
Frank is writing a blog series for Environmental Progress, “Pro-Nuclear Now: Why My View Changed, And What I Learned Along the Way.” You can read part one of the series here.
Steve Kirsch, Director
Steve Kirsch founded Mouse Systems Corporation is 1982. Then he went on to co-found Frame Technology Corporation in 1986 to market publishing software called FrameMaker. In 1994, he founded a web portal company called Infoseek Corporation. Steve then founded Propel Software Corporation in 1999 and then led Abaca Technology Corp in 2007. More recently, Steve started OneID which allows for an Internet-scale digital identity system that uses key cryptography to replace usernames and passwords with a single digital identity which is being utilized by a number of non-profits.
Kristin Zaitz, Director
Kristin Zaitz is a licensed professional civil engineer who works in nuclear energy, supporting the production of over 20% of California’s emission-free electricity at Diablo Canyon Power Plant. Kristin is a co-founder of Mothers for Nuclear, and she believes in supporting all clean energy sources to address major humanitarian and environmental issues. Kristin is a licensed professional engineer and project manager with over fifteen years of engineering and project management experience. She is a past president of the North American Young Generation in Nuclear and a board member for Diablo Canyon Women in Nuclear. Kristin holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Civil Engineering from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo.
Norris McDonald, Senior Advisor
Norris McDonald is president of the Center for Environmental Hope and Justice. An award-winning researcher and writer, McDonald co-founded the environmental justice movement in the 1980s when he helped lead the fight to create the EPA Office of Environmental Justice, advocated for green jobs programs in poor and minority communities, and oversaw the first comprehensive study of pollution in Washington, D.C.
Dave Hervol, Ohio Coordinator
Dave Hervol is a mechanical engineering contractor working in support of NASA’s Glenn Research Center. A native of Wadsworth, Ohio, he studied mechanical engineering at the University of Akron and was initially fascinated by the possibility of a solar- and wind-powered economy. However, after touring the Perry Nuclear Power Plant in 1986 with a group of engineers from school, Dave’s opinions began to slowly change, culminating in research and training on the effects of radiation. He believes that nuclear power will allow a cleaner future without decimating the Ohio landscape with tens of thousands of windmills and countless millions of solar panels.
Robert Stone, Senior Advisor
Robert Stone is New York Coordinator of Environmental Progress and the documentary filmmaker behind “PANDORA’S PROMISE,” which premiered at Sundance in 2013 broadcast on CNN. He is co-founder of Energy for Humanity based in London, and is a co-author of the Ecomodernist Manifesto. Stone has twice been nominated for Academy Awards, once for Best Feature Documentary, and twice for PrimeTime Emmys. His best known work includes “GUERRILLA: The Taking of Patty Hearst” (2004) OSWALD’S GHOST” (2007) EARTH DAYS” (2009) He is a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Directors Guild of America, Writers Guild of America, and the Television Academy.
John Lavine, Senior Advisor
John Lavine is Senior Advisor to EP on Digital & Data Journalism. Lavine is former Dean of Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism and is a professor of media management and strategy at Medill and the Kellogg School of Management. He focuses on the emerging role and trends of media ranging from traditional and digital journalism and marketing communications to social networking, participatory media, the impact of new technologies, and how to increase audience engagement with the media. Read more >>
Alan Medsker, Coordinator, Environmental Progress - Illinois
Alan Medsker is Coordinator of Environmental Progress - Illinois. He works as a technical solutions engineer, designing networks and solutions that allow people to communicate. His professional background includes electrical engineering, software development, network consulting, project management, sales engineering and management. He resides in Arlington Heights, IL.
Cesar Penafiel, Senior Advisor
Cesar Penafiel is EP's Director of Analytics and Operations. Cesar served as CEO of Engineerica Systems, Inc, a software development company. He recently received his Master's in Policy from Columbia University where he concentrated in energy and the environment and was research assistant to Former IEA Executive Director, Nobuo Tanaka. Cesar's publications include a report on the New York electricity capacity markets for Bloomberg New Energy Finance and co-chaired the Columbia University Coalition for Sustainable Development student organization.
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