Board of Directors
Board of Directors:
- Peter Donaldson,
- Dr. Jonathan Harrington,
- Jason King,
- Bert Loosmore,
- Ellen Miller-Wolfe,
- Lucia Pirzio-Biroli, AIA/LEED AP,
- Nancy Weil
- Roger Weinheimer (72hills)
Individual member bios and focus are presented below
3635 88th Ave SE, Mercer Island , WA
IslandVision Focus: I am focused on connecting the work of IslandVision to the work of the School District, especially where it can reinforce the District's 2020 Vision. I will be facilitating the Watershed Report, a new outreach partnership between Friends of the Cedar River Watershed, local governments, high schools, business associations, media broadcasters and grass-roots organizations. Through the Watershed Report, leadership students from multiple school districts are trained to be policy analysts, project managers, public speakers and broadcast journalists. Students produce a series of short video reports that benchmark, year by year, positive advances in local sustainability efforts across four sectors; school districts, city governments, local businesses and restoration efforts. Additionally, I am working with Rita Moore and others to certify Mercer Island as a Wildlife Habitat Community by planting native vegetation, eliminating chemical fertilizers, and conserving water.
Biographical Highlights: Peter works as strategic storyteller, educator, leadership coach and community facilitator touring two one man shows, Salmonpeople, and The Life and Times of Leonardo da Vinci. Peter has 27 years experience in supporting learning communities, managing non-profits, designing curriculum, building partnerships and promoting new forms of organizational learning. Peter has taught at all levels from kindergarten to college and has created numerous school partnerships integrating sustainability, history, the ecological sciences, and excellence in writing, drawing, and theatre.
PETER'S WORK PLAN as a Board Member
1. Collaborate with the Mercer Island School District to advance sustainability education standards as a way to support the District’s 2020 Vision: (a) Coordinate annual sustainability summit for junior class. (b) Mentor senior projects. (c) Develop sustainability curriculum and support teachers. (d) Produce annual community screening of the Watershed Report. (e) Support student environmental clubs and Green Teams in aligning activities with the IslandVision annual calendar.
2. Help lead strategic planning and board development.
IslandVision Focus: Ellen is interested in connecting sustainability work on Mercer Island with other work in the region, with an emphasis on sustainable economies and intergenerational and other programs that allow people to age in place.
Biographical Highlights: Ellen is the Economic Development Manager for the City of Kirkland. Prior to her present job, Ellen served in the same capacity for the City of Bellevue. Ellen's earlier work in the private and public sectors focused on managing local and regional planning and development projects, most notably the redevelopment of seven miles of Connecticut Riverfront in the Capitol Region of Connecticut for Riverfront Recapture, Inc., a public development authority. She has a long history of leading green projects including: Chairing the Blackledge River Basin Project, a multi-town effort to conserve a Connecticut watershed for which she was the recipient of a Governor's Award; Board member, Colchester Land Trust; Founding member, IslandVision ; and Executive Committee member of Sustainable September, an Eastside sustainability promotion effort. She holds an undergraduate degree in English and American Studies from Skidmore College, and a Masters in City and Regional Planning from Cornell University. Her daughter Amy attends the University of Oregon and son Aaron is a student at MIHS children. She has lived on the island since 1992.
Lucia Pirzio-Biroli, AIA/LEED AP
IslandVision Focus: As a founding member of IslandVision, I am passionate about creating an inclusive environment where people can learn about and take control of their personal choices for a more sustainable society. I want to help make IslandVision a community forum for sustainability education. It is important to establish strong roots in our local community, government and school district; finding its voice from all aspects of our Island. This years second annual Leap for Green Fair, an Earthday Event, made great strides in demonstrating our inra-community action, showcasing all the great work our community is doing on this issue from the farmer’s market, electric cars, bicycle safety, healthy ways to school, wildlife habitat certification, footprint reduction, recycling, urban farming and so much more.
Biographical Highlights: Lucia was born and raised on Mercer Island and has seen it transform dramatically over her lifetime. As an undergraduate in the ‘80’s she studied the application of inter-connective design to provide globally healthy solutions in the built world. She holds a Masters in Architecture from the University of Pennsylvania and a Bachelors of Environmental Design from the University of Colorado. She spent several years in Europe working on post earthquake restoration of buildings and landscapes. Lucia is a licensed architect and accredited LEED professional in practice with her husband on Mercer Island. A focus of their work is the integration of sustainable principles in buildings and their sites. She currently serves on the Mercer Island Design Commission and the IslandVision board. Her professional and personal objective is to leave the world a better place than she found it.
LUCIA’s WORK PLAN as a Board Member
Long Range Planning and Visioning for a Sustainable Community
- Serve as Chair of the Green Ribbon Commission Transportation Sub-Committee with the goal to create a “first steps” plan for community wide carbon free transportation.
- Develop a plan and rationale for an Urban Farming Network.
- Conceptualize a process for mapping sustainable community.
- Create a brief concept paper to launch a public discourse on Compact Housing
Education- Changing minds without admonishing or proselytizing
- Organize Leap For Green- 3rd year, developing more community centered program.
- Work on sustainability in the Pre-Schools/Schools
- Organize (3) GRC Transportation Events: LFG, Southend Bike Rodeo, Farmer’s Market
Engaging with Community
- Continue work with City Council, Staff and members of community on the above topics.
- Work with schools via my daughter’s enrollment on above topics.
- Act as a community ambassador: Informal discussions, involvement and information provider/gather with family, friends and acquaintances.
- Serve on Design Commission
Self Improvement – personal strategies toward a more sustainable lifestyle.
- Examine personal habits with energy use, consumption, political support, waste etc…
- Tweak habits to get continually closer to a net-zero existence.
- Teach my daughter frugality.
Cell: (206) 979-9210
IslandVision Focus: I am interested in how information technology can be used to enhance the objectives of IslandVision. Designing the IslandVision website to act as a social network service has the potential to increase the social capital of the organization and help advance its message throughout the community. I want to explore how the ideas of sustainability can best be propagated to Mercer Island’s residents so that citizens and families will actually internalize sustainable practices. I will also champion a range of projects including introducing sustainability and environmental education to the preschools, creating a liaison research program between IslandVision and UW and/or MI high school, and developing a presentation about my individual goals and plans for sustainability and reducing my ecological footprint.
Biographical Highlights: Bert is a graduate student in the Quantitative Ecology and Resource Management interdisciplinary program at UW, pursuing his PhD related to understanding how spatial statistics are used to evaluate ecological data. He is also working toward a graduate certificate in Environmental Management through the UW’s Program on the Environment, and has taught undergraduate classes on ecological modeling. Prior to graduate school, Bert worked as a co-founder and director of engineering for I.D. Systems, Inc. where he served on the board of directors for eight years. He has two small children and is concerned about the world they will face.
BERT’s WORK PLAN as a Board Member
1. Preschool, Elementary School Sustainability: Serve on CVDS Green Team to both guide direction and implement green changes. Document and publicize the results from CVDS, SJCC and others. Collaborate with Lucia, Nancy and MIPA on outreach to other preschools on MI to start other green teams where necessary and begin interschool learning. Create a set of resources related to greening preschools, elementary schools relevant to MI. Reach out to all three elementary schools on MI to at least understand their current programs, plans, interests, etc.
2. IslandVision Website: Maintain site and monitor content addition. Develop simple lesson plans about how to edit content. Collaborate with Peter on enhancements and how the website fits in with the overall communication strategy. Initiate a Sustainability Blog to increase the exchange of learning with members.
3. Carbon Neutrality Goal: Create a community presentation. Continue research on state of the science and policies, and update content to presentation as appropriate. Develop a script to allow others to give the presentation with the IV slides. Enhance the version on the website with potentially some type of video version. Present this presentation and this goal at a number of community forums throughout the year. Continue to document my individual progress toward carbon neutrality, including working with the MI CRAG. Strategize about how to get GRC to adopt this as their goal.
cell phone: 931-8844 cell
IslandVision Focus: I am personally committed to improve the environment in our locale. After all, shouldn't our neighborhoods and home city be our first concern when it comes to clean air and water, and a protected environment? The best way to achieve environmental goals is to communicate, build consensus, then organize a strong constituency that will create a positive atmosphere for important change. We can all talk about "sustainability" but reasonable, specific objectives and timetables are necessary to reduce carbon emissions. My goal is to build local support to embrace and welcome the transformation from oil combustion engines to electric plug-in vehicles. Transportation is "where the oil is" and an astounding 97% of this sector is oil based. Much can, and should, and will be done on the regional level to welcome this pending revolution. We need to begin now.
Biographical Highlights: Jason was born in Seattle and grew up in Snohomish County. He has been involved in public policy formulation for three decades at all three levels of government. He led the effort among Northwest investor owned electric utilities to urge Congressional passage of the landmark Pacific NW Power and Conservation Act. Jason has been a key staff member for a US Senator, a Governor, and was Director of Government Relations for Puget Sound Energy (19 years). He holds a Bachelor of Science degree and has leadership roles with the Mercer Island Farmers Market and is volunteer coordinator for the City's Emergency Preparedness effort and Operations. He serves on the Mercer Island Public Safety Civil Service Commission. Jason owns a consulting company, Government Related Solutions LLC.
JASON'S WORK PLAN as a Board Member
1. Continue to work with the MI Farmers Market team. Serve on the newly constituted Board and assist with marketing and various governmental liaison issues.
2. Work to promote and welcome carbon reducing electric plug-in vehicles and bicycles into our region and city. Coordinate with like-minded interests to accommodate these vehicles as they become available over the next several years.
3. Urge the City, its elected officials and staff, to accept building code updates that will encourage or mandate electric outlets in new residential garage construction and in new commercial buildings and parking lots.
4. Take a proactive approach and assist personally on public policy initiatives that improve our environment, increase recycling, and lessen pollution. Assist in mobilizing constituent support for improving the political atmosphere to accept these initiatives and provide accountability in the process.
5. Keep IslandVision Board up-to-date on the changing status of the above issues and communicate regularly with our broader audience of interested citizens.
6. Work collaboratively with other IslandVision board members on their priorities and activities in order to assist where needed.
Dr. Jonathan Harrington
Address: 8441 se 68th #325
Home phone: 206-232-3238
IslandVision Focus: I am especially passionate about the challenge of climate change and will champion and facilitate citizen-driven activities; i.e. capacity building, environmental education, energy conservation, and general public outreach, that help families, organizations, schools, and our local government reduce production of the greenhouse gases that are warming our world.
Biographical Highlights: A university professor, writer, and public policy analyst, Jonathan has been educating the young and old about environment and development issues for almost twenty years. He has hosted, organized, and spoken at international conferences on four continents and authored numerous peer reviewed and popular publications including a book entitled The Climate Diet: How You Can Cut Carbon, Cut Costs and Save the Planet (Earthscan/James and James 2008), which was recently chosen as a finalist for a major national publishing industry accolade, The Books for a Better Life Award. Jonathan is committed to harnessing his thirst for knowledge, flexibility, nebulous world view, and life experiences to help the Island that we love seize the dream of real sustainable development. visit www.climatediet.com
JONATHAN’s WORK PLAN as a Board Member
1. Assist with re-visioning of the Recycling Center site.
2. Promote development of Island sustainability-focused institutions; i.e. the Green Ribbon Commission.
3. Actively encourage the development of carbon reduction action groups (CRAGs) and related activities to educate Islanders about how they can reduce their carbon footprints.
4. Work with others to develop a ‘sustainability blog’ that promotes community communication about sustainability issues.
5. Foster communication and idea sharing with international sustainability-focused NGOs.
6. Support interfaith dialogue about sustainability through involvement in the Communion with Creation conference and similar events.
7. Promote implementation of the Washington State Cool Schools and King County Green Schools Programs in Island schools.
8. Promote the Island Crest Way Three Lane reconfiguration plan to improve safety and encourage healthy and sustainable transportation choices.
Home phone: (206) 941-4333
IslandVision Focus: Nancy is interested in bringing heightened awareness, practice and education of waste reduction to the residents and businesses of Mercer Island.
Biographical Highlights: Nancy is a stay at home mom of three who started her green crusade last fall. Her first project was creating and implementing a composting and recycling program in the SJCC's preschool which hosts 17 classrooms. She did a faculty, family and student education about the importance of caring for our earth. It turned out to be the stepping stone for many MI schools that learned of the program and had her consult for their school. From the French American School to MIPA, Nancy has presented and educated many teachers and parents about how to reduce, reuse, recycle and compost at the school level. Using the King County Green Schools Program as her template, Nancy's next target was the elementary school, Lakeridge. She implemented a compost/recycling program that reduced their lunchroom trash by 90% and put into practice an education for all of the faculty and it's students. This program then spread to West Mercer Elementary School and is now starting at the High School level. Nancy is currently the lead facilitator on the District's Green team to get the district Level 1 Certified through King County. Nancy worked with the MI Farmers Market in becoming a "Zero Waste" from educational signage for customers to educating the vendors about the importance of reducing their use of plastic purchasing products are compostable or recyclable. Nancy is a member of the Green Ribbon Commission and is working with them on bringing waste reduction to the city level. She is also the green consult for the Community for Mindful Parents. You can check out her articles under "Green Parenting" at http://www.parentmindfully.com/
NANCY’s WORK PLAN as a Board Member
-Help the school district get level 1 certification from King County by educating the entire administration, faculty, student body and their families about how important it is to stop being wasteful and start being responsible
-Create a program for local businesses to join where they will pledge to be more sustainable in their purchasing policies etc..
-Writing and presenting a Carbon Neutral Initiative to the Mercer Island City Council to bring our city up to the same standards that Seattle is working to achieve.
-Continue working with the preschools to educate and incorporate waste reduction practices to our littlest environmentalist- they are the future!
-Bring 10-10-10 to MI and get the attention, interest and passion of our citizens to seize the moment and make a difference right now
-Bring Green Halloween to Mercer Island
-Help out with Leap For Green
-Continue work with Farmers Market