Keynote Speakers

Jenn Phillips, California Natural Resources

Assistant Secretary for Climate Change

Jenn Phillips

Jenn Phillips serves as Assistant Secretary for Climate Change at the California Natural Resources Agency. She helps lead the Agency’s work on climate adaptation, nature-based solutions, and international engagement. She was formerly a senior policy advisor with the U.S. Climate Alliance, where she led the organization’s natural and working lands and resilience portfolios to best support a coalition of U.S. states. Prior to this role, Jenn worked in the California Governor’s Office of Planning and Research (OPR) as a senior scientist and worked on OPR’s Integrated Climate Adaptation and Resiliency Program and the advancement of key science initiatives to support the state’s climate goals. Prior to OPR she worked at the California Ocean Protection Council (OPC) and led OPC’s work on climate impacts on the ocean and coast, including on sea level rise. Before OPC, Jenn worked in the NOAA Administrator’s Office in Washington, D.C. as a Knauss Marine Policy Fellow and as key staff to the Administrator. Jenn received a master’s degree in environmental science from University of Wisconsin-Madison. 

Lisa Wallace, Truckee River Watershed Council 

Executive Director

Lisa Wallace

Lisa Wallace is the Executive Director and employee #1 of TRWC. Lisa holds her B.A. in  psychology from University of the Pacific. She grew up coming to the Truckee-Tahoe  region with her family and has held a deep appreciation for the region ever since. Lisa  moved to Truckee in 1999 as the Director of Restoration Initiatives for the Earth Island Institute. In 2001, an opportunity to become the first staff member of what is now the  Truckee River Watershed Council presented itself and Lisa accepted the role. Over the  past 20 years, Lisa has helped the Truckee River Watershed council grow its number of  staff and deepen its partnerships within the community to get more and more  restoration work done. Outside of work you can find Lisa hiking with friends all over  the watershed!

Event Hosts

Scott Bower, Martis Camp

Director, Martis Camp Club and General Manager, Martis Camp Community

Scott Bower

Scott Bower has been leading Martis Camp's environmental stewardship and forest management since 2000. Through his efforts, Martis Camp was the first community in the Truckee/Tahoe region to achieve Firewise USA@ qualification (2018) and establish a Residential Emergency Preparedness Program (2019). In 2021 and 2022, Scott hosted California Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara for two on-site sessions about residential fire insurance. Scott's dedication to forest health, fire safety and land conservation reaches far beyond the boundaries of Martis Camp, proven by the relationships he has forged with Cal Fire and Truckee Fire Protection District, as well as numerous Nevada and Placer County agencies.

Hardy Bullock, Nevada County 

District 5 Supervisor

Hardy Bullock

Hardy Bullock, Supervisor for Nevada County's Fifth District, is a lifelong resident of Nevada County. Hardy has served his Truckee community for the past 30 years including: Town of Truckee Planning Commissioner, Nevada County Planning Commissioner, Chairman of the Northern Sierra Air Quality Management District, Chairman of the Truckee River Basin Water Group, Alternate Member of the Sierra Nevada Conservancy Board, Board Member of the Local Agency Formation Commission, and Chair of the Convene Champion Catalyze Group (CCC). As District V Supervisor, he has developed initiatives serving Truckee, East County and Nevada County as a whole. Hardy worked to pass the first Justice-Equity-Diversity-lnclusion Mission Statement in the County's history. Hardy has worked with his colleagues on the Board to place "Recreation" as a priority initiative, developing and awarding local grant funds to reduce visitor impacts and enhance sustainability for our regional tourist economy. 

Heidi Hall, Nevada County 

District 1 Supervisor 

Heidi Hall

Heidi Hall, supervisor for Nevada County's 1st district has been serving since 2017. Since taking office, she has led major county 9 initiatives on homelessness and housing, the expansion of broadband infrastructure, justice and equity, and work on the County's current effort to develop its first Recreation Master Plan. Additionally, she co-chairs the Yuba River Public Safety Cohort. Outside her role as Supervisor, she currently serves as a program manager with the California State Department of Water Resources. She works with government leaders at all levels and expertise, from both the scientific and policy communities, to find solutions to pressing policy issues. Her leadership is informed by 25 years as an environmental professional with the federal and state governments, including as a manager for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and as program manager at the State Water Resources Control Board, (SWRCB) and the Department of Water Resources (DWR). 

Anna Klovstad, Town of Truckee

Town Council Member

Anna Klovstad

Environmental and sustainable practices are Anna’s passions. Along with partner agencies, she started the Climate Transformation Alliance (CTA) in 2021; a regional public-private partnership with the mission of the Truckee North Lake Tahoe region to be net zero by 2045. She has managed the State and Federal award-winning TTUSD sustainability program.  Her leadership has resulted in energy efficiency and sustainable programs throughout the Truckee Tahoe region.  Anna was elected to Truckee Town Council in 2018 and re-elected in 2022. These successes were built on the vision of Truckee becoming a model sustainable mountain town with a triple-bottom-line approach that integrates the benefits of promoting the environment, economy, and equity.  

Anna holds a degree in Architecture from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. She is a licensed Certified Construction Manager through the Construction Managers Association of America (CMAA) and a licensed Certified Energy Manager from the Association of Energy Engineers. Anna is also a Certified Project Manager through the San Francisco Institute for Architects. 

Herman Filmore, Washoe Tribe of NV & CA

Culture/Language Resources Director

Herman Filmore

Herman Fillmore serves as the Culture/Langauge Resoruces Director for the Washoe Tribe of NV and CA. Herman graduated from the University of New Mexico in 2012 where he majored in Native American Studies with a minor in Linguistics. Since graduating, he has worked  within the Culture/Language Resources Department as a Language Teacher and now serves as Director. It is his passion to work towards the reclamation and revitalization of the Washoe Language.  He comes to Summit  today to welcome guests to the homelands of the Washoe People.

Moderated Panel: Tahoe-Central Sierra Initiative       

Steve Frisch, Sierra Business Council


Steve Frisch

Steven Frisch is the President and CEO of the Sierra Business Council (SBC), a regional business based non-governmental organization.  The Sierra Business Council member network includes more than 4,000 community champions linked through social media and communications dedicated to the future of the region. Since 2000 the business council has leveraged more than $500 million in direct investment in the Sierra Nevada.; implemented projects saving millions of kilowatt-hours of electricity per year for Sierra businesses; led the development of a   $1.3 billion initiative to protect habitat and species in Placer County, California; partnered to preserve and restore more than 150,000 acres of forestland; and trained more than 550 community leaders.  Steve serves on the board of the California Stewardship Network, the Large Landscape Practitioners Network, and the Alliance of Regional Collaboratives for Climate Adaptation.  He is also a former Fulbright Exchange Program Fellow, sharing information and knowledge gained in the Sierra Nevada in China and Mongolia.  Steve is a graduate of San Francisco State University with a B.A. in Political Science, and the California Culinary Academy.

Eli Ilano, Tahoe National Forest USFS

Forest Supervisor

Eli Ilano

Eli Ilano is the Forest Supervisor for the Tahoe National Forest and has been in this position since 2016. Prior to becoming the Tahoe Forest Supervisor, Eli worked as the Deputy Forest Supervisor for both the Tahoe National Forest and the Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit in South Lake Tahoe. Eli brings years of natural resource and public land management experience to the field, not only from his time with the Forest Service, but also from working for the Bureau of Land Management, the United States Senate, and for the non-profit sector in communities around the country. Eli earned his Bachelor’s degree in Economics from the University of California at Santa Cruz in 1995 and his Master’s degrees in Environmental Policy and Landscape Architecture, and City and Regional Planning, from the University of California at Berkeley in 2001. 

Angela Avery, Sierra Nevada Conservancy

Executive Director

Angela Avery

For more than 20 years, Angela’s career has centered on protecting the forested watersheds of California. In this time, she has developed a deep understanding the needs, issues and opportunities associated with forest and climate health and believes that sound, science-based policy, strategic partnerships, and innovation are key to protecting the benefits healthy forests provide for all Californians.  

Angela has been the Executive Officer of the Sierra Nevada Conservancy (SNC) since 2018.  In this time, she has been dedicated to implementing the Sierra Nevada Watershed Improvement Program (WIP) which is a large-scale, holistic effort to restore resilience to the forested landscapes and communities of the Sierra Nevada.  With forest health as the foundation, the WIP weaves together four priorities: restoring healthy ecosystems, improving community resilience, promoting sustainable recreation and tourism, and conserving natural and working lands. Through the WIP, Angie and her team lead, fund, and support work that improves the environmental, economic, and social well-being of the Sierra Nevada.   

Moderated Panel: Financing Tools   

Kristin York, Sierra Business Council

Vice President

Kristin York

Kristin leverages 25 years of experience in strategic planning, finance, operations and ESG to help organizations thrive economically while understanding their environmental and social impact. Kristin directs all SBC programs including economic development, SBDC, climate, and Gold Country Broadband. Previously she served as Chief Development Officer for Cutting Edge Capital and Senior Manager at Andersen Consulting (Accenture) specializing in restructuring, high conflict crisis mitigation, and advising businesses in their return to financial viability. Kristin serves on the board of the Tahoe Truckee Community Foundation and is an Adjunct Professor of Sustainable Business at Presidio Graduate School. She holds an MBA in Finance and an Executive MBA in Sustainable Business. 

Teal Zimring, Executive Lab to Land | Galvanize Partners

Director | Managing Partner

Teal Zimring

Teal Brown Zimring is the Executive Director of the Lab to Land Institute and a General Partner with Galvanize Partners. Lab to Land Institute is committed to delivering biotechnology for climate resilience and carbon removal, with a specific focus on at-risk wildlands such as arid forests and temperate redwood coasts. Lab to Land is partnered with University of California laboratories and several climate strategists and entrepreneurs to build bioethical and regulatory frameworks, early stage in-lab research, and an alliance of land stewards interested in the long-horizon, climate-resilience management of land. Galvanize Partners is a climate change and environmental stewardship consultancy. Through her technical expertise and background in wildfire mitigation, forest restoration, climate finance and climate policy; Teal has supported clients including: The California Wildfire and Forest Management Task Force, The Joint Institute for Wood Product Innovation, UC Berkeley’s Carbon Removal Laboratory, Phoenix Energy, and others. Notable past clients of Galvanize Partners include the Schultz Family Foundation’s veteran’s economic inclusion program, NIKE’s health care access and girls’ empowerment programs, and the Aspen Institute’s Energy and Environment Program. In 2017, she moved to Truckee, and has since committed her time, network and passion to the Sierra Nevada and the community which is helping raise her two tiny children and one very large dog. Teal is an avid trail runner and gardener.

Khaim Morton,  State of California Treasurer 

Deputy Treasurer

Khaim Morton

Khaim Morton joins the State Treasurer’s Office as the new Deputy Treasurer. As Deputy Treasurer, Khaim will have responsibility for public policy formation and will oversee the California School Finance Authority, California Educational Facilities Authority, California Health Facilities Financing Authority, California Pollution Control Financing Authority, and California Alternative Energy and Advanced Transportation Financing Authority. 

Khaim joins us from Portola Valley Partners, where he served as Managing Partner for NextGen Grant Funding helping emerging technology companies capture market share through strategic relationships with governments. He is also the principal and founder of KRM Strategies, a public policy, advocacy, and strategic planning firm where he represents clients at the state and local government levels. He previously held positions as Vice President for Public Policy and Economic Development at the Sacramento Metro Chamber of Commerce, Deputy Secretary for Legislation at the California Government Operations Agency, and held multiple positions in the California Legislature. 

Zach Knight, Blue Forest Conservation 

Founder and CEO

Zach Knight

Zach Knight is a co-Founder and the CEO of Blue Forest. Prior to founding Blue Forest, Zach started his career in finance at Merrill Lynch where he specialized in structured finance. Zach also served as a high-yield and distressed corporate bond trader before leaving Wall Street to pursue an MBA at UC-Berkeley’s Haas School of Business with a focus on sustainability and environmental investing. Zach holds an MBA with honors from UC Berkeley and a BA in economics from Cornell. 

At BFC, Zach leads the outreach program with foundations and the conservation finance community. Zach also leads BFC’s engagement with the US Forest Service and the State of California. A passionate finance nerd, Zach loves digging into new structures, contracts, and anything related to financial engineering.  

Moderated Panel: Local Stories of Action & Leadership

Greg Williams, Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship 

Founder and Executive Director

Greg Williams

Greg leads the Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship and is a descendant of the Deer Creek Band of Northern Sierra Miwok. Greg has spent his life in the Sierra Nevada Mountains living by the examples of his elders — developing a passion for community, clean streams, big mountains, and long trails. Greg is a trailblazer and pioneer of backcountry mountain biking in Downieville, establishing Yuba Expeditions guide service in 1991 and the Downieville Classic Mountain Bike Festival in 1995. In 2003 Greg founded the Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship in order to maintain and enhance the trail system, create local jobs, and grow the recreation economy in the Lost Sierra region. Today, the Sierra Buttes Trail Stewardship is focused on revitalizing disadvantaged communities through its Connected Communities Project; a visionary effort led in partnership by federal land managers and community partners to connect 15 mountain towns for economic prosperity through outdoor recreation. 

Aaron Zettler-Mann, PhD, South Yuba River Citizen's League (SYRCL)

Executive Director

Aaron Zettler-Mann

Aaron Zettler-Mann is the Executive Director of SYRCL, the South Yuba River Citizens League. He recently moved into this position from his role as the Watershed Science Director where he oversaw restoration and monitoring projects throughout the Yuba River watershed including major salmon habitat restoration projects below Englebright Dam, meadow restoration in the South and North Yuba, forest health projects, and a long-term river monitoring program. Aaron’s academic background focused on human-river-landscape interactions. He earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Colorado at Boulder, a master’s from the University of Denver, and a PhD from the University of Oregon.  

Erika Seward, Nevada County 

Community Development Agency

Erika Seward

Erika is a Sr. Administrative Analyst with Nevada County leading the development of its Recreation and Resiliency Master Plan and projects focused on access, visitor safety, natural resource management, destination stewardship, and sustainability. Her career began at ESPN and the Walt Disney Company in 2001 while earning her master’s at the University of Kansas. She spent over a decade marketing and managing global sports franchises, events, and brands, eventually specializing in purpose-driven campaigns with professional athletes and influencers to elevate environmental and social issues. In 2015, Erika and her family moved to Northern California where she discovered her passion for public administration and rural resilience through leadership roles with Bear Yuba Land Trust, Sierra Nevada Alliance, Sierra Consortium, Nevada County Food Policy Council and Land Trust Alliance. Erika is a Certified Park & Recreation Professional with a Land Use and Environmental Planning Certificate from UC Davis. 

Keira Scott, Tahoe Youth Action Team (TYAT)


Keira Scott

Keira Scott is a senior at Truckee High School and the president of the Tahoe Youth Action Team (TYAT), a local youth climate group that was founded in December 2020. She also leads her high school sustainability club's advocacy team and engages in community service work through various school organizations. Outside of school and the TYAT, Keira races on a competitive cross country ski team and enjoys reading and cooking. She's passionate about implementing climate solutions and preserving the Tahoe area and hopes to pursue further education in environmental science and engineering. 

Chairman Serrell Smokey, Washoe Tribe of NV and CA 


Chairman Serrell Smokey Pic 2

Washoe Tribe Chairman, Serrell Smokey, was elected to office in 2018.  He was nominated as the President of the Inter-Tribal Council of Nevada in 2019.  He is a graduate of the University of Nevada, Reno.  He has an educational background in Psychology, Business, and Tribal Law.  Chairman Smokey is a Veteran, serving in the Unites States Army and the Nevada National Guard.  He was deployed in Operation Iraqi Freedom (2003-2004) and Operation Spartan Shield (2016-2017).  Chairman Smokey actively utilizes the leadership skills acquired in the military to progressively lead the Washoe People. Chairman Smokey serves main functions, such as:  working towards better economic development opportunities, stable administrative functions, and giving Tribes a bigger voice in the Federal Government.  “For too long have Tribes been left out, and the government neglected their trust responsibilities”.  Chairman Smokey has also played an integral part in the fight against local racism, with the name change of “squaw” valley resort and fighting the Minden, NV sundowner siren.  

Amie Engerbretson, Protect Our Winters

Amie Engerbretson

Amie is a professional skier, producer and host. The seed of passion for skiing and adventure was planted on the slopes of Palisades Tahoe and has grown into a lifestyle and career of creating content to share those passions with the world. Amie spent her first day on snow at 10 months old and has been skiing for the camera (and for fun!) ever since. Following in the footsteps of her former pro skier father, Jeff Engerbretson, Amie developed a unique set of skills and deep knowledge of the mountains. With a bachelor’s degree in Media Management from Columbia College, Amie approaches her career, partnerships and life with a focused, skilled and determined outlook.  

Hard work and a strong spirit have taken Amie around the world, working behind and in front of the lens on various outdoor industry productions. Skiing in Warren Miller Entertainment films, being featured in numerous print outlets, video projects and hosting her own podcast, “Long Underwear,” keep her busy and engaged through all the seasons. From skiing to mountain biking to paddle boarding and playing in any way possible among beautiful mountains, Amie’s warm personality, infectious smile, and passion for exploration are present on her many adventures. Through her commitment to flourish as an athlete, while including and uplifting as many women along the way as possible, she has her eyes set on the moon, knowing at the very least, she will land among the stars.