Board of Directors
Kate Wing – Chair of the Board
Kate Wing is the principal of K|W Consulting, where she works with clients to design strategy, develop business models, build networks, and support ocean conservation. She is deeply curious about complex systems. She likes designing solutions to wicked problems that bridge multiple perspectives.
Kate is also the founder of the databranch, a project connecting the conservation and technology sectors to create data solutions. She was a 2016 resident at the open science space Manylabs, where she hosted the first-ever San Francisco Fishackathon and received a National Fish and Wildlife Foundation grant to teach computers to identify fish.
She has a wide breadth of experience in the social sector, from managing a $20 million grant portfolio at the Gordon & Betty Moore Foundation to running nonprofit campaigns and serving as a Congressional fellow.
Mike Herring – Treasurer of the Board
Mike Herring is a technology and finance executive currently serving as the VP, Business Finance Officer at Google. He was President of Pandora Media from March 2016 to June 2017 and CFO of Pandora from February 2013 until February 2017.
Mike was responsible for balancing the overall monetization strategy at Pandora, including online, mobile and automotive, through advertising on its free service as well as paid listening within the complex cost structure of music licensing. This enabled a next generation music service to thrive while building bridges with Pandora’s label and publisher partners.
Mike has held leadership positions with technology companies both private and public including Omniture and Ancestry.com, and has helped develop business models, define markets, and drive rapid growth for over 20 years. Mike is a certified public accountant and holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics and Political Science from the University of California at Los Angeles. He lives with his wife Lisa in Orinda, California and has two sons.
Heana Chung – Secretary
grow and support Parks California as Vice President of Operations & Finance. Parks California
is a statewide nonprofit working to ensure that the state, regional, and local parks thrive working
in partnership with the California Department of Parks and Recreation.
Prior to joining Parks California, Heana spent 16 years at the Positive Coaching Alliance (PCA), where she held several executive positions including Chief Operations Officer. PCA’s mission is to transform the youth sports culture into a development culture where all youth and high school student-athletes have a positive, character-building experience. Heana led the national expansion activities and the day-to-day management of the national office and 18 chapter operations.
For more than 15 years before that, she managed and led several information technology companies, as President of Reliant Integration Services, President and COO of Masters Institute, General Manager-Silicon Valley of Ciber, Inc., and General Manager-San Francisco of One World Software Solutions.
Heana fell in love with nature and being outdoors in 1991 when she moved near the Rancho San Antonio Open Space Preserve in northern California. Any chance she gets she is hiking and communing with nature somewhere in the U.S. and beyond.
Heana has a Bachelor of Science in Computer Engineering from University of the Pacific and attended Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business Executive Program for Growing Companies.
Saleem H. Ali is the Blue and Gold Distinguished Professorship in Energy and the Environment at the University of Delaware, and a Senior Fellow at Columbia University’s Center on Sustainable Investment. His research focuses on environmental security, climate diplomacy, and industrial ecology, particularly involving extractive industries.
Professor Ali’s fieldwork experience has spanned over 100 countries on six continents for which he has also been named a National Geographic Explorer and a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum. His books include Treasures of the Earth: Need, Greed and a Sustainable Future, (Yale Univ. Press) and Environmental Diplomacy (with Lawrence Susskind, Oxford Univ. Press), as well as over 120 peer-reviewed journal articles.
Professor Ali received his doctorate in Environmental Planning from MIT, a Master’s degree in Environmental Studies from Yale University, and Bachelor’s degree in Chemistry from Tufts University (summa cum laude). He is a citizen of Australia, Pakistan, and the United States.
Scott earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in applied mathematics and economics from Harvard University in 1985 and a Master of Business Administration degree in finance from New York University in 1991.
He serves on the boards of Rare, the Berkshire School, the Harbor Funds, The Nature Conservancy Massachusetts chapter, and the Harvard Kennedy School’s Mossavar-Rohmani Center for Business and Government.
A graduate of Duke University, Ann is the chair of the Advisory Board for Duke University Libraries, a past chair of the Duke Women’s Studies Council, and a member of the Sarah P. Duke Gardens’ capital campaign committee.
She is a graduate of both Leadership Atlanta and Leadership Georgia and a member of the YWCA Academy of Women Achievers where she was the co-honoree as the 2017 Woman of Achievement.
Ann and her husband Jim have two adult children and three grandchildren. They enjoy city-living, balanced with a passion for adventure travel to as many of the Earth’s special places as they can access. They also share a passion for Duke basketball, having been present for all five national championships.
Leigh is also the Founder and Director of Persistent Ventures, a consulting team of experienced finance, legal, and operational executives who work with early and growth stage companies. Leigh holds a Bachelor of Science degree in economics from Santa Clara University.
Leigh feels lucky to call the Bay Area home with endless opportunities for exploring on land or water. She is the proud mom of Gigi and Colin and wife of Patrick, her partner in all her best outdoor adventures.
An avid sailor, open water swimmer and ski mountaineer, Peter trained to be a National Outdoor Leadership School instructor in the 1990s and led courses in the US, Baja California, and British Columbia.
He served as a pollution patrol skipper for San Francisco Baykeeper and recently completed an eight-year stint on that organization’s board, helping establish it as a leader in the worldwide Waterkeeper Alliance with a disciplined legal and scientific strategy that holds polluters accountable.
Since 2017, Peter has collaborated with the Whitney Laboratory of Marine Bioscience at the University of Florida to build the Ocean Genome Atlas Project. That project’s goal is to sequence 80% of living marine organisms over the next decade. He has captained genome sampling voyages throughout the North Pacific from Baja California to the Hawaiian Islands, the Aleutian Chain, the Gulf of Alaska, and British Columbia.
He lives with his patient wife Jess, energetic twins Eszter and Gabriel, and semi-sane dog Jericho in Berkeley, California.
Writer, filmmaker and adventurer Jon Bowermaster is a six-time grantee of the National Geographic Expeditions Council and one of the Society’s “Ocean Heroes.” Bowermaster and his teams have sea kayaked in the Aleutian Islands, Vietnam, French Polynesia, Chile, Argentina, Bolivia, Gabon, Croatia, Tasmania, and Antarctica, telling the story of the world’s oceans.
Christy Chin is a Venture Partner at the Draper Richards Kaplan Foundation, representing the Foundation as a board member to portfolio organizations. Prior to this and other roles at DRK, she was the Deputy Director of The Philanthropy Workshop West at the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, and a Senior Program Officer at the Skoll Foundation. Christy also has for-profit experience with Bedrock Capital Partners and Norwest Venture Capital. She serves on several other boards as well.
Alan Eustace is a computer scientist who worked as Senior Vice President of Knowledge at Google. In 2014, he set the world record for the highest-altitude free-fall jump, leaping from 135,889 feet. He has co-authored nine publications and holds 10 patents.
Sy Kaufman is one of the Founders of Crosslink Capital, which operates as both a venture capital partnership and a public market investment vehicle. He has recently become involved with several organizations working in immigration including Welcoming America and Upwardly Global. He is a past Governor of the Pardee RAND Graduate School, which awards doctorate degrees in Political Science. Sy previously worked in investment banking in Silicon Valley and as a philanthropist supporting numerous San Francisco Bay nonprofits working with the region’s youth.
As managing director, Steve McCormick is responsible for identifying and supporting Draper Richards Kaplan Entrepreneurs. Steve has spent over forty years in the not-for profit sector. He is the co-founder of Earth Genome and prior to starting Earth Genome he served as President of the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation from 2007-2014. Prior to that, Steve worked at The Nature Conservancy for 32 years, serving as President and CEO from 2002-2008, overseeing operating in 30 countries as well as every state in the U.S.
Christopher Michel is a photographer, writer and entrepreneur. His photographic subjects cover the extremes of the Earth, from the edge of space to below the sea and to both Poles. His work is prolific and has been published by National Geographic, the Smithsonian, BBC and more. Prior to his career as a photographer, Chris started two companies and was a Naval Officer.
Frazier Miller is CMO of Wrike, a cloud-based collaboration and project management software company. Previously, he was COO at the enterprise software company Articulate and COO at Bloomspot, where he helped drive the company’s acquisition by JPMorgan Chase. He has also been General Manager of Yahoo! Local, and a product and business team leader at Yahoo! Instant Messenger.
Bo Parfet is a mountaineer, naturalist, author, impact investor, and philanthropist. He is the founder of Denali Venture Philanthropy, an investment organization that funds entrepreneurs committed to creating social change. Bo has worked at the Financial Accounting Standards Board and J.P. Morgan, and he founded Iconic Development. He has completed the Seven Summits, reaching the highest peak on each continent.
Bill Unger worked as a special education teacher and in community mental health before becoming a technology executive recruiter and co-founding his own firm. He joined the Mayfield Fund in 1983, where he was an early investor in industry leaders including Sandisk. With 25 years in venture capital, he now serves on a number of nonprofit boards, among them CARE Enterprises and the Wildlife Conservation Network.
Dr. Brian Wee
Dr. Brian Wee is the Founder and Managing Director of Massive Connections, LLC. He was formerly the science, technology, and policy liaison to the U.S. Government for the National Ecological Observatory Network. Brian’s work focuses on the use of data and information to address socio-environmental
Science Advisory Council
Dr. Enric Sala
Dr. Enric Sala is a National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence actively engaged in exploration, research, and communications to advance ocean policy and conservation. His more than 100 scientific publications are used for real-world conservation efforts such as the creation of marine reserves.
Dr. Lauren Oakes
Dr. Lauren E. Oakes is a conservation scientist with the Wildlife Conservation Society, and an adjunct professor in the Department of Earth System Science at Stanford University. Her research, teaching, and communications work all focus on impacts to forest ecosystems and how people adapt to environmental changes. Her first book, In Search of the Canary Tree, about lessons from her research in remote Alaska, was published in 2018.
Dr. Tim McDermott
Dr. Tim McDermott is a microbial ecophysiologist at Montana State University, where he teaches Soil & Environmental Microbiology. He is an international authority on microbe-arsenic interactions, conducting grant-supported research in environments ranging from the human gastrointestinal track to Yellowstone Hot Springs. His other research focuses on microbial contributions to methane cycling in Yellowstone Lake.
Founding Advisory Council
Dr. Beth Holland