YBG Alumni Board

2020-2022 Board Members

Saleem Ali, ’96 MES

Olga Babakina ’05 MEM

Mark Foster ’19 MF

Richard Kidd ’93 MPPM

Maureen Kline ’86

Huda (Hudita) Nura Mustafa ’85

Anne Peters ’76 MFS

Jessica Scott ’15 MEM

Chip Spear ’74

Jane Thery ’82 MA


Saleem Ali ’96 MES

Saleem H. Ali is an environmental systems scientist whose research and practice focuses on ways of resolving ecological conflicts through technical and social mechanisms, as well as exploring novel ways of peace-building between corporations, governments and communities. He holds the Blue and Gold Distinguished Professorship in Energy and the Environment at the University of Delaware, and is also a Senior Fellow at Columbia University’s Center on Sustainable Investment.

Professor Ali’s books include Treasures of the Earth: Need, Greed and a Sustainable Future, (Yale Univ. Press); Environmental Diplomacy (with Lawrence Susskind, Oxford Univ. Press), Mining, the Environment and Indigenous Development Conflicts (Univ. of Arizona Press) and Islam and Education: Conflict and Conformity in Pakistan’s Madrassahs (Oxford Univ. Press).  In addition to his academic roles, Professor Ali also serves as the Climate Change Advisor on the 7-member Science Panel of the Global Environment Facility (the world’s largest multilateral trust fund for the environment held in trusteeship by the World Bank) and on the United Nations International Resource Panel.

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). Saleem also serves on the Yale School of the Environment Alumni Advisory Board. He is a citizen of Australia, Pakistan and the United States.

Twitter @saleem_ali

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Olga Babakina ’05 MEM

Olga is a professional business project evaluator with experience of working internationally across clean-tech, infrastructure and energy deals requiring financial, commercial skills and in-depth knowledge of technology and environmental risks. In India, Olga managed the due-diligence process for over 50 low-carbon projects ranging from biomass gasification to small hydro projects from start to finish. This involved identifying the projects with local developers, reviewing business plans and financials with my colleagues at ICICI bank, negotiating Emission Reduction Purchase Agreements with the potential buyers of carbon credits and sending the successful projects to UNFCCC board for registration. She also provided technical and financial consulting services in support of investment decisions in the UK, Kazakhstan, USA, Jordan, Oman, UAE, Kuwait and China.

Olga has a broad experience of working with SMEs, charities and social enterprises on projects that generate environmental and social benefits and deliver financial returns in deprived areas in the UK. She was also involved in economic empowerment projects focusing on development of micro-financing programmes for the rural poor in India to help families and communities to maintain a sustainable livelihood. In Russia, Olga was involved in development of Joint Implementation projects aimed at reduction of GHG emissions from manufacturing, oil and gas, and chemical sectors.

Olga has been awarded an MBA from Cambridge University, Master’s Degrees from Yale School of the Environment and from Moscow State University in Environmental Geology. Olga supports London Wildlife Trust and Brilliant Butterflies network.

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Mark Foster ’19 MF

Mark Foster is an attorney and recent graduate of Yale‘s School of Environment.  Prior to attending Yale, Mark spent time in public and private practice, including serving as an assistant attorney general for the New York State Office of the Attorney General, clerking for the Honorable Peter W. Hall of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, and working as a senior associate for the law firm Hogan Lovells LLP. His practice focused on air emissions compliance matters, permitting of major liquid natural gas projects, and natural resource conservation issues. He collaborated with engineers, consultants, and lawyers to produce NEPA documents, advised clients on compliance options under the Clean Water Act and the Clean Air Act, and analyzed mitigation bank opportunities throughout the United States.

Mark returned to academia to obtain a Master of Forestry degree, and now works with the U.S. Forest Service as the environmental coordinator for the Shoshone National Forest out of Cody, Wyoming. He leads interdisciplinary teams that address landscape-scale natural resource management in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. In this role, he utilizes his past experience as a regulatory attorney to build dialogue between team members, identify issues pertinent to moving projects and programs forward, and consider the means to accomplish both short-term management objectives and long-term ecosystem goals. These efforts include dialogue with engaged members of the public, agency partners, and other organizations. Mark is excited to join the inaugural board of Yale Blue Green and help it chart a path forward.

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Richard Kidd ’93 MPPM

Richard Kidd is a leader in public sector sustainability and resilience planning with decades of service as a soldier, relief worker, and diplomat. Mr. Kidd’s experience includes implementing national policies on renewable energy and climate change, green infrastructure, and sustainability strategic planning. He has a proven track record of executive-level accomplishment combined with a unique set of domestic and international experiences through federal and intergovernmental organizations.

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Maureen Kline ’86

Maureen Kline is Vice President, Public Affairs and Sustainability for Pirelli North America, responsible for the US, Canada and Mexico. She is based in New York. She is a member of the board of Pirelli North America Inc., a board member and former board chair of the Tire and Rubber Association of Canada, and is a former board member of the US Tire Manufacturers Association. She is a member of the Corporate Responsibility Steering Committee of the Automotive Industry Action Group, and of the Standards Advisory Group of the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board.

Maureen writes a column on sustainability for http://www.Inc.com, and also co-teaches a course called Enterprise Sustainability within Clarkson University’s Engineering Management Master’s program, with Tom Polton.
Previously she was based in Pirelli’s headquarters in Milan, Italy, where she coordinated government affairs for the company’s foreign subsidiaries, and before that was responsible for Pirelli’s international media relations.

Prior to her public affairs and communications career, Maureen worked as a journalist over a 15-year period. She was a Milan-based correspondent for the Wall Street Journal Europe, Breaking Views, and Business Week. She edited a blog on the topic of meritocracy, hosted by Italian daily newspaper Corriere della Sera, and wrote and co-hosted a TV talk show in Italy on business and finance, broadcast on the local channel Telelombardia.

Maureen Kline holds a Bachelor’s degree from Yale University and a Master’s degree from the London School of Economics. She lived in Italy for over 20 years, working in the communications, public affairs and legal fields, and holds dual US-Italian citizenship.

Twitter @kline_maureen

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Hudita Mustafa ’85

Hudita Nura Mustafa is a researcher and author whose interests concern the relationships among cities, globalization, and gender. She has a special interest in human experiences of societal crisis and their exposure of deep sociopolitical and economic tensions. Her experience ranges across Africa, Europe and Asia. Within this broad area, diverse topics include fashion, art,  technology and pubic space. This work always examines the entanglements of local social dynamics with broad global processes. She has worked with universities, community organizations, museums and foundations.

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Anne Peters ’76 MFS

Anne is a graduate of the Yale School of the Environment, MFS, ’76.  She is an environmental attorney at the firm of Carmody Torrance Sandak & Hennessey LLP in New Haven, where she advises clients in the remediation of contaminated properties, environmental aspects of business transactions and environmental compliance. After YSE, she worked as a research assistant at Brown University, using pollen data to study the relationship between climate and plant communities since the last glacial maximum.

She is a member of the Board of the Yale School of the Environment Alumni Association and is the immediate past chair of the Environmental Section of the Connecticut Bar Association. In addition to representing the regulated community, she has served on Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection workgroups on environmental use restrictions, spill reporting and DEEP’s Comprehensive Evaluation and Transformation of Connecticut’s Cleanup Laws.

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Jessica Scott ’15 MEM

Jessica is an Empire State Energy and Environmental Policy Fellow in the Office of New York Governor Andrew Cuomo. In this role, she develops and implements policy and legislative initiatives to advance the Governor’s priority energy and environmental goals, with a focus on the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act and on the inclusion of equity and justice throughout climate action.  Prior to joining the NY team, Jessica produced massive online open courses (MOOCs) on the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for the SDG Academy, the global online education arm of the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network.

While in graduate school at the Yale School of the Environment, Jessica developed substantive expertise at the intersection of climate and security, writing climate policy for the Department of Defense and the UN Development Programme. She also worked as a research consultant at the Edward Zigler Center in Child Development & Social Policy, where she developed a proposal to align the field of early childhood development with the SDGs, using methodology developed by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Formerly, Jessica co-directed a US State Department fellowship on US foreign policy for international scholars and directed a national sustainability leadership program for college students, both at Bard College. Jessica holds a Master’s degree in Environmental Management from the Yale School of the Environment, as well as a B.S. in Animal Behavior from Bucknell University.

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Chip Spear ’74

Chip is the founder of Earth+30, initially focusing on podcasts with people who are creating a healthy, sustainable, human friendly world. He brings an eclectic background to the Board, and has been involved in local politics since graduating from Yale in 1974. Chip started several community organizations and served on the Community Board Parks Commission while making art in Williamsburg, Brooklyn for many years. After moving to CT, he founded Bethany Citizens for Planned Development and served on the Board of Assessment Appeals and the Board of Finance. Chip was Chairman of the Democratic Party, Vice-Chair, and Treasurer and led one commission to provide tax relief to seniors, and another to provide a long range financial plan for the town.

In addition, Chip founded an event management company, and co-founded a nutrition company, Generation UCAN, that was started to help with maintenance of an ultra-orphan disease, GSD-1a. The company has expanded its product focus to included endurance and weight loss applications, and now has over 45 professional and 85 collegiate varsity teams using UCAN. Until moving to Westchester County, New York, Chip served Yale as coach, or co-coach, of the Men’s Water Polo team for 18 years and has been on the Board of another Yale affiliated non-profit for over 15 years. During his current tenure as President, he expanded the endowment by 500%, increased regional meetings, published two catalogues, initiated a mentoring program and started 2 multi-million dollar infrastructure projects.

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Jane Thery ’82 MA

Jane Thery brings her policy and economics expertise to protecting the environment with a focus on the stewardship of equestrian lands. She is committed to promoting sound environmental practices through strategic alliance building, measurable results and linking horse farms to stewardship advocacy programs and technical and financial assistance. 

Her career began as a program officer for the Ford Foundation in Lima, Peru and includes senior positions at the Institute for International Economics, the University of Maryland, the Western Hemisphere Subcommittee of US House of Representatives and the Organization of American States. She holds a BA in International Relations from Duke University, an MA in International Relations/Economics from Yale University (1982) and is fluent in Spanish.

Ms. Thery founded the Farm Stewardship Committee of the Maryland Horse Council which holds regular events on horse farm stewardship. Under her leadership, the Committee promoted the Maryland Association of Soil Conservation Districts’ Farm Stewardship Certification and Assessment Program (FSCAP) for horse farms, raising the number of certified horse farms from one to over thirty. Ms. Thery recently launched her own business, Green Horse Enterprises, LLC, to work on “greening” horse farms and equestrian competition venues.

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