Dana launched Confluence Philanthropy in August of 2009 after serving as the executive director of the Environmental Grantmakers Association (EGA). While at EGA, Dana provided networking services to over 250 grantmaking organizations from across North America and Europe. From 2009-2011 Dana served as the Program Director and Board Advisor at The Swift Foundation while launching Confluence.
Prior to Philanthropy, Dana founded Literacy for Environmental Justice (LEJ), an environmental education and youth empowerment organization for at risk youth. While there, she acted as a lead organizer in the closure of San Francisco’s infamous Hunters Point Power Plant; raising funds to supplant it with the region’s first off-the-grid educational Eco Center.
She has been a fellow at the Donnella Meadows Program in Systems Theory and the California Women’s Foundation Policy Institute. Dana has also lived and worked among the Samburu (Maasai) in northern Kenya for many years; the Cheyenne River Lakota; and Roma refugees in Europe. A nomad in spirit, Dana sometimes lives in Oakland, California and at other times in Bed Sty, Brooklyn, NY.
Chris Larson, President and Chief Executive Officer, New Island Capital
Chris is the President and Chief Executive Officer of New Island Capital. In this capacity, Chris directs New Island’s investment program including portfolio strategy, asset allocation and risk management. He also manages New Island’s Real Assets investment program and company operations. Previously, Chris worked as an independent farmland investment and conservation finance consultant. At Cambridge Associates, Chris supported the launch of the Mission-Related Investment initiative, and authored research on real assets investments for institutional clients. He served as the Executive Director of the Mattole Restoration Council, a community-led conservation NGO in rural northwestern California. Chris completed a BS at Cornell University’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and an MBA at the Yale School of Management. Chris operates a small farm in Marin county focused on organic vegetable and fruit production.
Colin le Duc, Partner & Co-Founder, Generation Investment Management
Colin is co-head of Generation's growth equity business. He invests in sustainable solutions businesses globally. Generation is a mission-driven investment partnership focused on continuing to prove the investment case for sustainable capitalism. Al Gore serves as Chair and David Blood serves as Senior Partner.
Previously, Colin worked for Sustainable Asset Management where he ran research for the Dow Jones Sustainability Index and helped select companies for SAM's actively managed sustainable investment funds. He has also worked for the energy practice at Arthur D. Little and as a natural gas analyst at Total. He serves on a variety of Generation portfolio company Boards. Colin graduated from Bath University, UK with a BSc in International Management and Modern Languages and has completed the Corporate Finance Programme at London Business School.
Steve Lydenberg, Partner, Domini Social Investments
Steve Lydenberg is Partner, Strategic Vision for Domini Social Investments, a Founding Director of the Initiative for Responsible Investment, and CEO of The Investment Integration Project. For over three decades he has been active in the responsible investment field with KLD Research & Analytics and Trillium Asset Management, among other organizations. He is author of numerous articles and monographs on responsible investment including “Reason, Rationality and Fiduciary Duty” and “On Materiality and Sustainability: The Value of Disclosure in the Capital Markets” as well as several books on responsible investment, including Corporations and the Public Interest (Berrett-Koehler) and Dilemmas in Responsible Investment (Greenleaf) with Céline Louche. He attended Columbia College (BA, English) and Cornell University (MFA, Theater Arts) andholds the Chartered Financial Analysts designation.
Sanjiv Malhotra, Director, Clean Energy Investment Center (CEIC), U.S. Department of Energy
Dr. Sanjiv Malhotra joins DOE as the first Director of the Clean Energy Investment Center (CEIC), located within the Office of Technology Transitions. As the center’s first Director, Dr. Malhotra will be responsible for standing up the CEIC, which will serve as a single point of contact for investors to access technical experts, acquire the latest reports on clean energy technology, and identify promising projects. He will also be instrumental in supporting Mission Innovation, an initiative that was announced at the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris to dramatically accelerate public and private global clean energy innovation to address global climate change, provide affordable clean energy to consumers, including in the developing world, and create additional commercial opportunities in clean energy. Through the initiative, 20 countries, including the top five most populous nations, committed to double their respective clean energy research and development investment over five years.
Dr. Malhotra holds a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, and he holds a master’s degree in business administration and a doctoral degree in chemical and biochemical engineering from the University of Iowa.
Greg Neichin, Director, Ceniarth LLC
Greg is the Director of Ceniarth, a single-family office focused on funding commercial solutions to the world’s big challenges. Ceniarth aims to provide capital to accelerate the deployment of products and services that directly impact underserved communities. The firm’s investing activities are oriented toward the challenges of effectively scaling the adoption of appropriate solutions in ways that are commercially sustainable. Ceniarth’s primary sectors of interest are energy access, agriculture, and financial inclusion with a geographic emphasis on frontier markets.
Prior to Ceniarth, Greg served as Executive Vice President of Cleantech Group where he led the firm’s global advisory business helping investors identify and evaluate opportunities in energy and resource markets. He spent four years on the management team of GetActive Software, one of the earliest, online fundraising platforms for charities and political advocacy groups and co-founded PlaceVine, an online marketplace to fund independent film & media. Greg began his career as a consultant with Oliver Wyman.
Greg has a B.A. from Dartmouth College and an M.B.A. from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.
Rodney Overcash, Director, Credit Strategies, Margaret A. Cargill Philanthropies
Rodney Overcash joined Margaret A. Cargill Philanthropies in September 2012 as an Investment Director. He leads planning and implementation of the credit investment function for each of the three grantmaking entities that make up the Philanthropies: Margaret A. Cargill Foundation, Anne Ray Charitable Trust, and Akaloa Resource Foundation. Rodney also is head of the Philanthropies’ effort in mission-related investing spanning across asset classes and impact areas.
Rodney attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, earning a bachelor’s degree in Economics and International Studies. He earned his MBA from the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business, concentrating in Analytic Finance and International Business.
Before joining the Philanthropies, Rodney was Director of Credit and Inflation Strategies for the North Carolina Department of State Treasurer (NCRS). In that role, he was responsible for the development and implementation of two portfolios investing in credit hedge funds, private debt and equity, commodities, and other real assets. Before joining NCRS, Rodney was the Director of Research at Marquette Associates, an institutional investment consulting firm in Chicago.
Amie Patel is a Vice President with Goldman Sachs Asset Management. Ms. Patel joined Goldman Sachs through the acquisition of Imprint Capital to help expand the firm’s ESG and impact investing capabilities. Ms. Patel is with the Alternative Investments & Manager Selection (AIMS) Group and based in New York, where she is a member of the AIMS Imprint team, focused on emerging market investments across all asset classes. Prior to this, she was with the Soros Economic Development Fund where she focused on early to growth stage investments. She managed the Fund’s investments in Haiti and worked on several other investment opportunities in Palestine, India and parts of Africa. Previously, she worked with the Overseas Private Investment Corporation as a Presidential Management Fellow responsible for developing and evaluating top-quartile and first-time emerging market private equity fund managers. Ms. Patel began her career as an M&A analyst with Merrill Lynch and First Union Securities covering the automotive, healthcare and telecommunications industries. She also spent just under a year in Nepal with Students Partnership Worldwide as a Program Manager working on environmental education and women’s issues. She holds an M.B.A. from Georgetown University and a B.S. in Business Administration from Washington University in St. Louis, MO.
Nicholas Parker, Managing Partner and Co-Founder, Global Acceleration Partners
For over three decades, Nicholas Parker has pioneered sustainable venturing ideas and initiatives. He is currently Founding Managing Partner of Global Acceleration Partners Inc. (“GAP”), established to address global megatrends shaping basic needs forclean energy, food, water and sustainable infrastructure by accelerating cross-border deployment oftechnologies and business models into emerging economies, particularly China. GAP seeks superior value creation and positive impact at scale.
Known as “Mr. Cleantech”, Nicholas introduced the “cleantech” concept to the finance and business community in 2002 while launching Cleantech Group (“CTG”), the market-leading research and advisory company he chaired until the end of 2013. Under his leadership, CTG helped mobilize over $6B in private equity while building an innovation ecosystem involving corporations, governments and institutions around the world. During 2010-2013, Nicholas was Chair of Corporate Knights (“CK”), the media and financial research company for clean capitalism, best known for the Global 100 rankings launched annually at the World Economic Forum in Davos.
Jeffrey Prins, Program Manager, DOEN Foundation
Jeffrey was born and raised in Michigan, U.S.A. After receiving his college degree (Bachelor of Arts) he decided to move to the Netherlands permanently, where both his parents are from, and to study in Amsterdam for his Masters Degree. He subsequently worked at the European Parliament (Brussels and Strasbourg) and then the Dutch Parliament (The Hague) as a policy advisor. He later become a City Council Member (Amsterdam). He joined DOEN Foundation in 2005, the main fund of the three private Charity Lotteries in the Netherlands (i.a. Dutch Postcode Lottery). At DOEN he is, as program manager, responsible for establishing investment priorities and allocating funding, particularly in the field of climate change/energy and DOEN’s most recent program “designing a new economy” (i.e., Biomimicry, Cradle to Cradle, Circle Economy).
Jim Rogers, Retired Chairman, Duke Energy Corporation
Jim Rogers, journalist, lawyer, CEO, author and philanthropist. He currently is a Rubenstein Fellow at Duke University. He was most recently CEO at Duke Energy and served as CEO for almost 25 years in the electric utility industry. He did a series of mergers and acquisitions culminating in the creation of Duke Energy, the largest electric utility in the US. He also owned and/or operated assets in 17 countries in Africa, South Asia, Europe, and Central and Latin America. He has served on the boards of eight Fortune 500 boards. He currently is on the boards of the Aspen Institute, Brookings Institution, The Nature Conservancy, Bloomberg New Energy Finance, among others. In 2015, he authored "Lighting The World: Transforming Our Energy Future by Bringing Electricity To Everyone" in which he advocates for bringing electricity to the 1.2 billion rural poor through off-grid primarily renewable solutions. He is a co-founder of the Global Brightlight Foundation, which delivers solar-powered lanterns capable of charging cell phones to rural communities around the world. He is co-teaching a groundbreaking graduate seminar entitled: Renewables and the World’s Poor at Duke University. In 2009, Newsweek named him one of “the 50 Most Powerful People in the World.”
Pat Sapinsley, Managing Director of Cleantech Initiatives, NYU’s Tandon School of Engineering
Pat Sapinsley is the Managing Director of Cleantech Initiatives at NYU’s Tandon School of Engineering where she leads the Urban Future Lab/ NYC ACRE/ Powerbridge --NYC’s premier cleantech business incubator and an educational and policy hub where issues of climate change, smart cities, smart grid, and clean energy technology are explored. Prior to joining the Urban Future Lab, she was the founder of Watt Not, and Build Efficiently, both consulting companies in the energy efficiency/ green buildings space. She was formerly a Venture Partner at Good Energies, a venture capital fund that invested in clean energy and energy efficiency companies. As a Visiting Scholar at Harvard’s Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering, she assists in translating biologically-inspired technologies into commercial products. Previously she was the founder of Sapinsley Architecture. She is a LEED AP architect, Co-Chair of the Committee on the Environment at AIANY and serves on the board of Green Light NY/BEEx.
Jason Scott, Co-Managing Partner, Encourage Capital
Jason Scott is a Co-Managing Partner and on the Board of Directors of Encourage Capital. He was a co-founder of EKO. Jason is a member of the Investment Committee of the EKO Green Carbon Fund. Prior to EKO, Jason was a founding Director and investment analyst at Generation Investment Management, co-founded by David Blood and former Vice President Al Gore, Jr. As its first employee, Jason helped build the firm and its first and second products, investing in global listed equities and climate change solutions respectively. From 1999 to 2004, Jason worked with Acumen Fund, Flatiron Future Fund/Foundation and New Philanthropy Capital. From 1996-1999, Jason was President of a NYC-based software company. Previously, Jason helped found and build Public Allies, a youth and community development organization. In 1998, the Rockefeller Foundation selected Jason as a fellow in its Next Generation Leadership Program. He co-founded Cleantech for Obama and served on several transition advisory boards for the Obama Administration and is currently on the boards of Oil Change International, the Frankfurt Zoological Society and Public Allies. Jason also co-founded and jointly leads a network of family offices investing in Cleantech, Renewables and other Environmental Opportunities (called the CREO Syndicate). Jason graduated from Duke University cum laude and has an M.B.A. with honors jointly from Columbia and London Business Schools.
Reid Smith, Principal, Mercer
Reid is a Principal in the private markets group at Mercer based in Norwalk, CT. He advises the firm’s clients on private markets investments including buyouts, venture capital and other non-traditional private investments. This includes advising on portfolio strategy and implementation, assessing and recommending specific funds, directing client searches and evaluating trends and opportunities across this spectrum. Previously, he was the Director of the private markets research group at Evaluation Associates and had worked in the Bank Debt Portfolio Group at Goldman Sachs and as an analyst at General Atlantic Partners, a global growth equity private equity firm. He began his career as an equity analyst at Value Line, an equity research firm. He is a Chartered Alternative Investments Analyst, and has an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management and a BA from Southern Methodist University.
Ethan Zindler, Head of Americas and Policy, Bloomberg New Energy Finance
Ethan Zindler is Head of Americas and Policy at Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF), the definitive source of insight, data and news on the transformation of the energy sector. Zindler manages the company's analyst and commercial teams in New York, Washington, San Francisco, and Sao Paulo. He has also manages the production of Climatescope, a project to profile clean energy investment conditions in emerging markets underwritten by the the Inter-American Development Bank, the UK Department for International Development, and the US Agency for International Development. Based in Washington, Zindler serves as BNEF's primary spokesperson in North America, has been quoted extensively in the media, and has testified multiple times on clean energy issues before Congressional committees, the US-China Economic and Security Review Commission, and elsewhere. Zindler is a Senior Associate (Non-Resident) at the Center for Strategic & International Studies Energy and National Security Program. He holds an MBA from Columbia Business School and a BA from Georgetown University.