Author Archives: ANSEditor

Kristina Smith

SENIOR CONSULTANT
CONCORDIA CONSULTING

Areas of Expertise:
Corporate Training
Diversity and Inclusion
Leadership Development

Kristina Smith

As an independent coach and trainer, and a Senior Consultant with Concordia Consulting, Kristina (Tina) Smith has effectively worked at improving performance for individuals and teams. She generates and saves money through diversity and inclusion focused on meeting strategic goals. Her skills are centered around managing change in organizations, building relationships within and between departments, and facilitating large and small groups.

Tina has successfully worked with organizations on developing employee engagement strategies. She has used her facilitation and negotiation skills to have participants engage in designing their ideal work environment and ways they can bring all their strengths to work.

Tina has coached C-Suite leaders, managers, supervisors, and individual contributors. Her coaching strategies center around improving performance related to sales, customer service, working more effectively within a team, delivering performance reviews, leading a team as a leader vs a manager, emotional intelligence, and individual contributors as “change agents.” Her coaching and training have also centered on how to hire, retain, and manage a diverse workforce.

Tina has successfully worked with organizations on developing employee engagement strategies. She has shared best practices with organizations that are leveraging talents and skills from various generations. She has used her facilitation and negotiation skills to have participants engage in designing their ideal work environment.

Her ability to partner with senior leadership positions her to help leaders enhance their leadership skills. The end result is that organizational leaders are able to build upon the work Tina started and continue to move their organizations toward their goals. Additionally, Tina has designed and delivered change management initiatives as organizations have launched new strategic directions.

Tina most recently was president of a local non-profit organization that serves people with disabilities. She continues to serve on the organization's board and she serves as a member of the Alumni Board of Directors of Emerson College (Boston, MA).

Randy Kenyatta Rowel

ENVIRONMENTAL CONSULTANT
RR & ASSOCIATES

Areas of Expertise:
Community Engagement
Diversity and Inclusion
Environmental Careers
Environmental Education
Stormwater Management
Sustainability
Youth Development

Randy Kenyatta Rowel

Randy Rowel is an environmental sustainability professional who works with under-resourced communities, public/private sectors, and non-government agencies to help bridge the gaps and build networks to opportunities.

Randy believes his life purpose is to provide his skills and expertise to promote and be an advocate for communities who need it most in preserving and restoring our natural environment.

Mr. Rowel has worked at federal and state government agencies, educational institutions, and internationally having spent a residency in India. Randy’s most compelling experiences thus far have come from being featured at speaking engagements and motivating and encouraging youth to get engaged with the natural environment. Randy also is a direct descendant of Harriet Tubman through his 6th great grandfather Reverend Samuel Green Sr. who was Harriet’s first cousin, their parents being siblings. Rev. Green was also a conductor of the Underground Railroad, and was one of the founders of Morgan State University and University of Maryland Eastern Shore.

Randy Rowel is recipient of an Executive Citation from the Anne Arundel County Executive Steve Schuh for his outstanding commitment to the health of our watersheds through education, outreach, and restoration. He also was a board member at the Banneker-Douglass Museum in the arts district of historic downtown Annapolis.

Mr. Rowel Jr. holds an Executive Masters of Natural Resources Degree (XMNR) from Virginia Tech. He also holds a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in African/African American Studies from University of Maryland Eastern Shore.

Tracy McCurty

CO-FOUNDER, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
BLACK BELT JUSTICE CENTER

Areas of Expertise:
Agriculture
Community Engagement 
Environmental Justice
Environmental Law and Policy
Farming
Food Equity
Social Justice

Tracy McCurty

Tracy Lloyd McCurty, Esq. is the Co-Founder and Executive Director of the Black Belt Justice Center (BBJC), a legal and advocacy nonprofit organization dedicated to the preservation and regeneration of African American farmlands and land-based livelihoods through effective legal representation, advocacy, and community education. For more than a decade, McCurty has served as a legal advocate on a range of issues disparately impacting the African Diaspora community; however, her most cherished work has been in service of multigenerational farm families living on the land in the rural South. In addition to serving farm families and cooperatives, McCurty has provided legal representation to numerous community-based farm organizations that serve diverse farmers and rural communities, including the Oklahoma Black Historical Research Project, the National Immigrant Farming Initiative, and the Southeastern African American Farmers Organic Network (SAAFON).

Before launching the Black Belt Justice Center, McCurty served as the Policy Advisor for the Rural Coalition, a national coalition of 70 community-based organizations representing diverse farmers and farmworkers. In that role, she led coalition efforts to ensure complete implementation of the equity provisions of the 2008 Farm Bill. To ensure maximum participation of African American claimants in the In re Black Farmers Discrimination Litigation (“Pigford II”), she drafted and submitted legal memoranda to assist the federal court in its deliberations regarding the coordination and implementation of the Pigford II settlement agreement.

McCurty has demonstrated leadership in her field of work through her participation in several national farm and food equity conferences and symposiums including the W.K. Kellogg Foundation Food and Community Gathering, the Professional Agricultural Workers Conference (Tuskegee University), the Critical Race Studies Symposium (UCLA School of Law), and the International Food Sovereignty Forum (Carnegie Endowment for International Peace). Additionally, she is the co-coordinator and co-author of the Black Agrarianism chapters featured in the 2017 Food First publication, Land Justice: Re-imagining Land, Food, and the Commons.

McCurty earned her Bachelor's of Science at North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University and her law degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel-Hill School of Law. She is licensed to practice in Maryland, the District of Columbia, and Georgia, and currently serves on the Board of Directors for the National Conference of Black Lawyers. 

Chanceé Lundy

CO-OWNER, PRINCIPAL
NSPIREGREEN

Areas of Expertise:
Civil Engineering
Community Engagement
Environmental Policy
Environmental Science
Planning
Sustainability

Chanceé Lundy

Chanceé Lundy is a community conscious engineer. The Selma, Alabama native uses her passion for eradicating inequities as fuel to provide technical competence and adept communication on environmental and transportation projects. As Co-owner and Principal of Nspiregreen, she is responsible for the management of environmental projects such as stormwater, energy, environmental policy, solid waste, air quality, and sustainability planning.

"I have always been interested in helping communities become better," Chanceé explains. "I understood that from the policy perspective but wanted to provide the technical expertise to communities. Growing up, I didn’t know what an engineer was but my love of politics, math, and science opened this world of innovative problem solving to me."

Chanceé earned her Bachelor's of Science in Environmental Science at Alabama A&M University, and her Master's of Science in Civil Engineering at Florida A&M – Florida State College of Engineering.

Chanceé has been recognized as one of Ebony Magazine’s 30 Leaders of the Future and one of the Top 100 Most Important Blacks in Technology by US Black Engineer. Chanceé is a former National Chairperson of the National Society of Black Engineers. She also serves on the Executive Committee of the Chesapeake Bay Scientific and Technical Advisory Committee. 

 

Vince Leggett

PRESIDENT AND CEO
THE LEGGETT GROUP USA

FOUNDER
BLACKS OF THE CHESAPEAKE FOUNDATION, INC.

Areas of Expertise:
Community Engagement
Environmental Education
Environmental History
Maritime Trade and Development
Outdoor Recreation

Vince Leggett

As a young boy growing up in east Baltimore, Vincent Leggett was introduced to the Chesapeake Bay by weekend fishing trips with his father. "I caught the spirit of the Chesapeake," he recalls. "There was a freedom that came with being on the water, away from the asphalt and concrete." For more than thirty years, Leggett has roamed the expanses of the Chesapeake waterfront, tirelessly interviewing people, "hanging out and mixing up" with waterside residents.

In 1984, Leggett began the “Blacks of the Chesapeake Project” documenting the contributions of Black Watermen on the Chesapeake Bay. In 1999 the organization established the Blacks of the Chesapeake Foundation which was dedicated to sharing the legacy of African American achievements in the seafood and maritime industries, preserving and conserving the environment and promoting the success of the seafood industry in the mid-Atlantic region.

In 2000, working in conjunction with U.S. Congressman, Wayne Gilchrest, and Mr. Leggett spearheaded the effort to have the Blacks of the Chesapeake recognized as a local legacy project. The centerpiece of the submittal to the Library of Congress was Mr. Leggett’s two publications, Blacks of the Chesapeake: An Integral Part of Maritime History (1998) and The Chesapeake Bay Through Ebony Eyes (1999).

Leggett’s seminal research project, “Chesapeake Underground: Charting the Course to Freedom”, (2000) began examining the extent to which the Chesapeake Bay and its many tributaries were used to spirit bondsmen to the freedom utilizing the secretive trail which became known as the Underground Railroad.

In 2002, he was appointed and commissioned an “Admiral of the Chesapeake Bay” by former Governor Parris N. Glendenning, “for bringing to the light the many contributions of African Americans to the seafood and maritime industries in the Maryland.”

Leggett served as the historical consultant for the “Black Captains of the Chesapeake Documentary Film” (Steve Berry) which aired on Maryland Public TV, The “Black Watermen’s Documentary Quilt “(Dr. Joan Gaither) and the Captain Eldridge Meredith: A Quintessential African American Waterman film and project.

He has served on the Advisory Committee for the John Smith Trail, and the Star Bangled Banner Bi-Centennial Celebration. During 2014, served as a Maryland Humanities Scholar, Leggett depicted the character Charles Ball, watermen, and run-away-bondsmen, who bravely fought in the War of 1812 at Fort McHenry in Baltimore. In addition, he served an expert in the national broadcasted PBS Documentary film, The War of 1812.

Mr. Leggett served on the Advisory Committee for the Harriet Tubman, National Park and Maryland Visitors Center scheduled to open in Dorchester County in 2017 and also served as Chairman of the Board of Directors for the Wiley H. Bates Legacy Center in Annapolis.

He earned a B.S. Degree in Urban Planning and Community Development at Morgan State University and a Master’s Degree in Public Administration at Central Michigan University.

Mr. Leggett currently is the President and CEO of The Leggett Group USA, an Annapolis-based Government Relations and Lobbying Firm.

Tonya Johnson

PARK NATURALIST
MARYLAND-NATIONAL CAPITAL PARK AND PLANNING COMMISSION

Areas of Expertise:
Environmental Education
Environmental Interpretation
Environmental Management
Outdoor Recreation
Volunteering
Watershed Issues
Youth Development

Tonya Johnson

Tonya Johnson is an outdoor enthusiast who loves helping youth of all ages enjoy memorable educational experiences in nature. For the past 17 years, Tonya has been a Park Naturalist with Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission working at facilities including Clearwater Nature Center, Watkins Nature Center, Mount Rainier Nature Center and Bladensburg Waterfront Park. Tonya studied biology and sociology at The University of Texas at San Antonio, Fayetteville State University, University of Maryland, College Park and University of Maryland, University College. She is currently working on a Master’s of Science in Environmental Management at UMUC.

Tonya is the recipient of the 2008 Prince George’s County Award for Best Youth Volunteer Group, the 2010 Governor’s Service Award for managing the best volunteer youth group in the State of Maryland, and the 2016 Governor’s Service Award for the American Indian Village Creation Project, a project that can contribute its success to the 300 teenagers who help build the village from the ground up.

Karen Driscoll

SENIOR ASSOCIATE
THE RABEN GROUP

Areas of Expertise:
Community Engagement
Event Coordination
Leadership Development
Policy Engagement

Karen Driscoll

As a Senior Associate at The Raben Group, Karen Driscoll supports clients through in-depth research, writing, and event coordination. Working with Liberty Hill Foundation, a public foundation supporting community organizing and advocates at the frontlines of change, Karen managed a campaign geared toward improving outcomes for boys and men of color and developed expertise in coalition-building, local policy engagement, and leadership development.

Karen works with a number of important clients. Her work with Green 2.0 is helping increase diversity in the mainstream environmental movement. Her work with Union Theological Seminary helps highlight the role of faith in politics. Working with the University of Chicago, Karen helps convene civil rights leaders, scholars, and activists to discuss inequality in American cities. Karen’s pursuit of justice and creating a more equitable world inspires her to go the extra mile for any client.

Karen holds a master’s degree in Social Entrepreneurship and Change and a bachelor’s degree, magna cum laude, in International Studies, both from Pepperdine University.

Kevin T. Bryan

SENIOR POLICY DIRECTOR
KEYSTONE POLICY CENTER

Areas of Expertise:
Climate Change
Environmental Decision Making
Government Relations
Public Policy
Sustainability

Kevin T. Bryan

As Senior Policy Director at Keystone Policy Center, Kevin T. Bryan has more than a decade of experience collaborating with other professionals to design, convene, and facilitate multi-party problem-solving aimed at resolving public policy problems of mutual interest. Most recently, Kevin helped guide policy discussions and analysis for coalitions focused on climate and energy legislation and policy, public infrastructure investment, and sustainable consumption. He has led negotiations among stakeholder groups developing consensus policy positions on the economic impacts of climate policy, renewable energy and nuclear power issues, energy technology transformation, and international governance issues.

Prior to his work at Keystone, Kevin spent 10 years with the Meridian Institute, supporting and leading collaborative problem solving efforts on climate change, homeland security, transportation, and sustainable communities. Kevin also worked previously as Senior Coordinator for the National Wind Coordinating Committee (NWCC) at RESOLVE, Inc., working to identify opportunities for the NWCC to work with individuals and stakeholder groups on wind energy issues. Kevin has worked with federal agencies to help establish guidelines for stakeholder involvement in environmental decision making; and with local governments to address issues and develop solutions for small businesses and residents to implement energy efficiency improvements in their facilities and homes.

Kevin earned a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from Howard University in 1994 and received the Patricia Roberts Harris Fellowship in 1996 while undertaking graduate work there in public administration. Kevin was selected in 2002 as a fellow with the Environmental Leadership Program (ELP) and served on that organization’s Board of Trustees from 2005-2011, including a stint as Board Chairperson from 2008-2010. Kevin has also served as a member of the Association for Conflict Resolution’s Environment and Public Policy Section Leadership Committee.

Kevin and his wife Rosie live in Washington, DC.

Teri Brezner

SENIOR FELLOW
DIRECTOR OF DIVERSITY, EQUITY & INCLUSION
ENVIRONMENTAL LEADERSHIP PROGRAM

Areas of Expertise:
Adult Learning
Diversity and Inclusion
Leadership Development
Social Change
Social Justice

Teri Brezner

Teri Brezner leads the Environmental Leadership Program's internal and external Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) strategies and programming, including the design and implementation of the Doris Duke Conservation Scholars Alumni Network, RAY Marine Conservation Diversity Fellowship and ELP's DEI curriculum. She has spent the last 10+ years designing, facilitating and managing leadership and community development projects for hundreds of diverse leaders working for social justice and social change in more than 7 countries.

Teri is a Senior Fellow of the Environmental Leadership Program. She holds a Masters of Education in Adult Learning and Global Change from the University of British Columbia with a specialization in intercultural training from American University and a Bachelors in International Studies and Spanish from the University of Richmond.

Teri is originally from Canada but has called the DMV area home for the last 11 years.

Curtis Bennett

DIRECTOR, CONSERVATION COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT
NATIONAL AQUARIUM

Areas of Expertise:
Community Engagement
Environmental Science and Policy
Green Classrooms
Wildlife Conservation
Wildlife Ecology and Management

Curtis Bennett

As Director of Conservation Community Engagement at the National Aquarium (Baltimore), Curtis Bennett works collaboratively with community residents and stakeholders to develop relatable environmental programs and projects that meet the needs of people directly where they are, within their communities. One such project is the Urban Conservation & Education Summer Internship Program, designed to provide opportunities for Baltimore college students to experience environmental stewardship and expose them to career options in conservation. Similarly, his involvement in the EPA Chesapeake Bay Program’s Diversity Workgroup and the State of Maryland’s Project Green Classrooms helps introduce diverse audiences to career pathways in the environmental fields and helps ensure that students not only have opportunities for entry but for matriculation as well. 

For a far back as he can remember, Curtis has loved nature and animals. Growing up, his goal was to become a veterinarian. But as he got older, Curtis learned about other opportunities in the environmental fields and discovered wildlife ecology while in college. He knew instantly that was where he needed to be. Curtis earned his Bachelor's of Science degree in environmental science and policy (specializing in wildlife ecology and management) at the University of Maryland, College Park, and his Master's of Science in wildlife conservation at the University of Delaware.