Chapter Election 2022

Roles up for election:
(1-year terms, April 1–March 31)

  • Chapter Chair

  • Chapter Vice Chair

  • Campaigns Chair

  • Communications Chair

  • Membership Chair

  • Public Education Chair

  • At-Large Chairs
    (three elected, more may be appointed)

Election Timeline:

Jan. 20: Chapter Meeting — Election announced

Jan. 27: Self-nominations open

Feb. 17: Chapter Meeting — Second election announcement

Mar. 10: Self-nominations close

Mar. 11: Last chapter membership list eligible to vote in the election

Mar. 17: Chapter Meeting — Candidate presentations; Voting opens and ballots emailed

Mar. 24: Voting ends at midnight CST

Mar. 25: Results announced (two non-candidate members audit)

Apr. 1: Transition to new Chairs/Leadership Committee

Apr. 21: Chapter Meeting — Leadership Committee announces any additional appointed at-large chairs**

**At-large chair positions are described below.

**At-Large Chair Positions

Once the new Leadership Committee has been elected and installed on April 1, additional at-large chair appointments may be made. Three at-large chair positions are elected but more may be added by Leadership Committee appointment as deemed in the chapter interest. Additional at-large chairs can be added to assure enough coverage is available to run our chapter effectively, to bring in some expertise or representation not yet present or to prepare members for future leadership in desired capacities. The Leadership Committee will nominate and vote to choose members who have demonstrated commitment, availability and effectiveness with our chapter. The final number of positions will be determined by the new Leadership Committee with possible directive from Climate Reality staff.

— 2022-23 Candidates —

CHAPTER CHAIR

Tom Coleman

Provide a short statement explaining why you wish to serve in the role and why you would be successful in the position.

I have a strong motivation to spend most of my time in coming years dedicated to getting the word out about the climate crisis and solutions to the problem. I have a long and successful track record in management leading departments and cross-functional teams. I am strategically motivated.

Describe your involvement with the Climate Reality Chicago Metro Chapter thus far.

I chair the Presenter’s Group and the Electric Vehicle Team.

For the SPECIFIC CHAIR ROLE for which you are applying, describe what priorities you see and how you will build the role.

We need to enhance connections of top USA emissions to our teams. We need to create new key teams where we lack emissions activities. We need to amplify the communications between core teams, support groups, in the field action teams.

For the CHAPTER, describe what you see as top priorities over the next few years.

Transportation, energy, buildings, agriculture, industry, and circular economy/plastics.

 

CHAPTER VICE CHAIR

Bruce Mainzer

Provide a short statement explaining why you wish to serve in the role and why you would be successful in the position.

My experience in serving in government and then as a corporate executive in the travel industry provides me with the knowledge and experience on how to make a difference with leaders and the key players of organizations. I am passionate about saving the planet and am never hesitant to do the work to research and lead.

Describe your involvement with the Climate Reality Chicago Metro Chapter thus far.

I served on two campaigns: Electric Vehicles and Electrify Public Transportation.

For the SPECIFIC CHAIR ROLE for which you are applying, describe what priorities you see and how you will build the role.

I will seek to increase the capabilities and improve strategies of the chapter to lobby government officials and pressure corporations to make a difference. My experience in effecting change across governmental and corporate structures is based on detailed knowledge of how these organizations work and the most effective opportunities for advocacy and success.

For the CHAPTER, describe what you see as top priorities over the next few years.

Continued activism on behalf of supporting electrification of all transportation. Actions to reduce dependence on fossil fuels for commercial and residential and manufacturing. Initiatives to increase recyclable energy sources in Illinois (wind,solar). Establishing initiatives to increase sinks AND reduce extraction of coal, gas, and oil throughout the world (including banning sale of Illinois coal).

CAMPAIGNS CHAIR

Pam Tate

Provide a short statement explaining why you wish to serve in the role and why you would be successful in the position.

I have been serving in this role for the past two years and have overseen a huge expansion in the number of teams and campaigns, and I think the teams are working well. I would like to continue and expand this work in the coming year.

Describe your involvement with the Climate Reality Chicago Metro Chapter thus far.

Member, Lead Team; Co-Chair, Campaigns; Co-Chair, Task Force on Electrifying Public Transit; Chair, Federal Advocacy Team; Member of Trees Team, EV Team, RA Team, Chicago Climate Action Plan Team, Suburban Climate Action Plan Team

For the SPECIFIC CHAIR ROLE for which you are applying, describe what priorities you see and how you will build the role.

I believe we have most of the teams we need in terms of content and focus, but my priority is to grow the number of members on these teams so we can make change at a more rapid pace. I would also like to collaborate more closely with the new chapter chair to create any new teams that are deemed important. I continue to believe we need to do more with federal and state advocacy and plan to experiment with new ways to get our members involved.

For the CHAPTER, describe what you see as top priorities over the next few years.

1) More active engagement of our members; 2) Increasing the numbers and participation of team members; 3) Becoming more involved in state and federal policy change; 4) Collaborating with other environmental groups on critical campaigns; 5) achieving great visibility for the work of our chapter

COMMUNICATIONS CHAIR

Cynthia Linton

Provide a short statement explaining why you wish to serve in the role and why you would be successful in the position.

Communications is key to getting the word out about our activities and getting people involved. I am a retired journalist who spent two decades in newspapers and another two decades teaching at Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern.

Describe your involvement with the Climate Reality Chicago Metro Chapter thus far.

I was one of the founders of the chapter. For nearly two years I’ve been chapter chair.

For the SPECIFIC CHAIR ROLE for which you are applying, describe what priorities you see and how you will build the role.

I’d continue the stellar job the previous chair did, with emphasis on social media and regular ActionAlerts.

For the CHAPTER, describe what you see as top priorities over the next few years.

Action! Contact influencers to stop fossil fuels and increase carbon sinks. Educate people about using renewable energy, driving EVs and eating a plant-based diet (with composting). Work with coalitions. Get a strong Climate Plan approved for Chicago.

MEMBERSHIP CHAIR

—no applicants—

PUBLIC EDUCATION CHAIR

Scott Reed

Provide a short statement explaining why you wish to serve in the role and why you would be successful in the position.

I’d like to grow out presenters base. I taught chemistry in CPS for 20 years which gave me experience crafting an education plan. I was an operation director for a small multinational company and that gave me experience building teams and strategic planning.

Describe your involvement with the Climate Reality Chicago Metro Chapter thus far.

Meeting attendance, two visits to Springfield CEJA), providing testimony, writing lots of letters, etc, etc. 60+ presentations, testifying

For the SPECIFIC CHAIR ROLE for which you are applying, describe what priorities you see and how you will build the role.

Getting a motivating message out to as many people as possible so they take action, especially joining an organization like ours, and then, take more action.

For the CHAPTER, describe what you see as top priorities over the next few years.

Prompting a migration towards using public transportation, unifying with other organizations (ie, becoming more influential, kind of like the NRA, which has been able to stifle gun laws no matter what the scope of the tragedy is), bringing the climate reality front and center to as many people as possible and joining with other groups to elect climate aware politicians.

AT-LARGE CHAIRS (3 elected positions available)

Six candidates applied for three positions. They are listed in the order in which they applied.

Natalie Lichtenbert

Provide a short statement explaining why you wish to serve in the role and why you would be successful in the position.

I would like to continue my role as an At Large Chair because I enjoy leading our teams and communities through actions to create positive change for our environment.

Describe your involvement with the Climate Reality Chicago Metro Chapter thus far.

Trained in 2015, Miami. Became West Suburban Chapter Leader in 2019 and At Large Chair in 2020.

For the SPECIFIC CHAIR ROLE for which you are applying, describe what priorities you see and how you will build the role.

With so many of us having a ton of “to do’s” on our plate, it’s great to have the support and expertise of other team members. I enjoy supporting my fellow team members in any way to help ease the effort of all that needs to be done.

For the CHAPTER, describe what you see as top priorities over the next few years.

Priority is educating, training and engaging our chapter members into real action…the bigger the voice we have, the more we’ll be able to accomplish.

Karen Daiter

Provide a short statement explaining why you wish to serve in the role and why you would be successful in the position.

I would like to do whatever I can to help the natural world and to advocate for increased awareness and action related to protecting natural resources and biodiversity. I hope increase the appreciation of a less solely people centric world where everything (animals, plants, habitats) are seen as resources for human need. I am a psychotherapist, educator and also have recently trained in conservation. I am a big picture, systemic thinker and believe this is a helpful mindset for leadership.

Describe your involvement with the Climate Reality Chicago Metro Chapter thus far.

Chair of the Tree team, helped at fair and brainstorming ideas. I am networking with CRTI and joined the Tree Equity Group in Chicago, Save Our Ash and other groups as a representative of CR

For the SPECIFIC CHAIR ROLE for which you are applying, describe what priorities you see and how you will build the role.

Support and enhance the work of various chairs and teams.

For the CHAPTER, describe what you see as top priorities over the next few years.

Become well know in Chicago as a resource for conservation; Identify and engage in action oriented steps we can do to make a difference; Instill hope through action and help grow future environmental activists; Personally educate about and protect our urban forests and natural resources.

Dave Rice

Provide a short statement explaining why you wish to serve in the role and why you would be successful in the position.

I have a strong background in project management and believe I could help in leading various initiatives to successful completion.

Describe your involvement with the Climate Reality Chicago Metro Chapter thus far.

Not as involved as I’d like. The pandemic has kept us fairly remote. I’m really looking forward to raising my participation.

For the SPECIFIC CHAIR ROLE for which you are applying, describe what priorities you see and how you will build the role.

I see my role in the At Large Chair as a leader and catalyst to move specific initiatives forward. Again my expertise is in project management and getting stuff done. That is where, at least initially, I can contribute the most.

For the CHAPTER, describe what you see as top priorities over the next few years.

We need to move from education to action. I see the chapter as becoming more vocal about what we can do as individuals to reduce our carbon footprint. And educating the public in direct things they can do to shift to a more sustainable mindset. I think we should consider tools the average citizen can use to improve their personal sustainability.

John Kavalunas

Provide a short statement explaining why you wish to serve in the role and why you would be successful in the position.

I have been a member of two CRP task forces for almost two years – Electrifying Public Transit and the Electric Vehicle teams. During that time, I have learned much more of the landscape and challenges on electrification. I have made public statements at several Pace and RTA Board meetings and public workshops. Prior to that, I was Chair of the Sustainability Committee of the City of Crystal Lake. These experiences show that I can support and execute team activities as assigned by CRP Chairs, and do so in an efficient and action-oriented manner. I can contribute to discussion without being an expert in the environmental community – I am a Certified Public Accountant by profession. This CPA training helps me to assess a process objectively, and seek to make correspondence understandable to a wide audience.

Describe your involvement with the Climate Reality Chicago Metro Chapter thus far.

As noted above, I have been a regular contributor to the Electrifying Public Transit and Electric Vehicle Task Forces.

For the SPECIFIC CHAIR ROLE for which you are applying, describe what priorities you see and how you will build the role.

As an At Large Chair, I see my priorities as 1.) supporting the Chairs of the Chapter and important needs of the Campaigns of the Chapter in the execution of action plans and 2.) broadening my individual knowledge across the environmental spectrum. I can achieve these priorities by objective listening, informed reading and research, and willingness to offer ideas, even when they may not be widely held.

For the CHAPTER, describe what you see as top priorities over the next few years.

I see support and oversight of the CEJA implementation, integration of State and Federal climate policy initiatives, and transportation electrification as the three top priorities for the Chapter.

Kristina Murphy

Provide a short statement explaining why you wish to serve in the role and why you would be successful in the position.

I wish to share my knowledge and experience of climate change adaptation and emission reduction actions with Chicago Metro members. I would be successful because I enjoy getting to know individuals’ interests and working together to further our collective goals.

Describe your involvement with the Climate Reality Chicago Metro Chapter thus far.

Since becoming a trained Climate Reality Leader in the summer of 2020, I regularly attend the Electric Vehicles, Presenters (Education), Federal and State Policy Advocacy, and Suburban Climate Action Planning committees. I co-chair of the Suburban Climate Action Planning committee.

For the SPECIFIC CHAIR ROLE for which you are applying, describe what priorities you see and how you will build the role.

I will build additional advocacy between committees. For example, the Suburban Climate Action Planning committee is impacted by every other committee’s focus, such as education, electric vehicles, net-zero waste, and policy. A priority is urging decision-makers to act through outreach and education.

For the CHAPTER, describe what you see as top priorities over the next few years.

I believe we must be more strategic or thoughtful in our approach to potentially create the most impactful changes. For example, advocating at the state, regional, or county level may produce a bigger result than only trying to reach over 200 local units of government individually.

Citizens, businesses, and local governments may require education and urging to act. All these stakeholders are intertwined and we need those in decision-making positions to take action.

Danica Sun

Provide a short statement explaining why you wish to serve in the role and why you would be successful in the position.

I wish to serve in this role as I am very passionate about climate action and specifically for Climate Reality. I’ve always been interested in climate change growing up as a kid, but in middle and high school my interest increased exponentially and led beyond just learning about it to taking action. Getting trained as a Climate Reality Leader further launched my passion and really guided me to become the activist I am today. I would love to serve on the leadership council of the organization that had such a big role in my climate activist journey, and I hope to ensure the organization continues to inspire others like it did to me. I would be successful as an at-large chair as I have experience leading organizations and have the passion to do the job well. I am a head of the Chicago Climate Youth Coalition, a sophomore board representative at my school’s Club Terra, and I am the Logistics Director of Sophomore Class Club (fundraising committee at my school). I also enjoy working with others, especially on issues important to me like climate activism, and above all, I love seeing the positive impact of my work. As an at-large chair, I will channel all the passion I have for climate action into Climate Reality to ensure I put my best work into serving this chapter.

Describe your involvement with the Climate Reality Chicago Metro Chapter thus far.

So far, I have been a head of the Chicago Climate Youth Coalition (CRC Youth Action Team) and have been the representative of the team at all Climate Reality Meetings. I have been part of the Youth Action Team since its formation, and became the co-head and representative last August. In the spring, I became an officially trained Climate Reality Leader! I loved the training so much and hope that starting with this role I can further my involvement in the CRC Metro Chapter.

For the SPECIFIC CHAIR ROLE for which you are applying, describe what priorities you see and how you will build the role.

As an at large chair I will prioritize making the organization run as smoothly as possible and overall helping with the other members of the leadership team. As an at-large member, you don’t have specific jobs to do. But, there are lots of essential tasks that don’t fall within a set role of the leadership committee, so as an at-large member I will make sure to fill in the gaps of those jobs and make it as easy as possible for other committee members to do their job. But despite the “general” role of an at-large member, I aim to build the role into something more than a person who does the extra tasks. As someone who doesn’t have an assigned role on the team, I hope to use that extra flexibility to contribute new and exciting perspectives to the committee.

For the CHAPTER, describe what you see as top priorities over the next few years.

As a youth, one of my top priorities is engaging more youth. In order to sustain the fight against climate change, we need to train incoming generations so they can continue our work after we are gone. The world we are fighting for is their world, so we need to teach the youth how to fight for and take care of their home. Of course, this goes along with other goals for general climate activism like more efficient and affordable renewable energy, electric vehicles, sustainable agriculture, and more. But, with the help of youth efforts towards those others goals will be much more effective and powerful.