Tony Frank Co-Chair

Tony is the Chancellor of the Colorado State University System, home to Colorado State University in Fort Collins, CSU-Pueblo, and CSU-Global. Prior, during his 10-year tenure as President of CSU, he co-founded the Salazar Center and oversaw the naming of university as the most sustainable campus in the nation. His leadership has also been essential to the development of the CSU complex at the National Western Center in Denver, which will provide a platform for collaboration on issues at the intersection of food, water, and human and animal health.

Jim Kelley Co-Chair

Jim is the founder and Managing Partner of the Colorado Impact Fund, which invests in Colorado-based companies meeting the dual criteria of achievable market rates of return and positive community impact. He is also co-founder and Managing Director of Vestar Capital Partners, a New York-based private equity fund, and he has served on the boards of the Denver Foundation, Great Outdoors Colorado, The Nature Conservancy, and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation.

Luis Benitez

Luis is the Vice President for government affairs and global impact at the VF Corporation, a $23 billion holding company that includes some of the outdoor industry’s most iconic brands. Prior, he led Colorado’s Outdoor Recreation Industry Office, during which time the state’s outdoor economy grew from $28 billion to $65 billion. Luis is a former Everest guide, and he currently sits on the advisory board for the Warner College of Natural Resources’ tourism programs at CSU.

Anne Castle

Anne is a senior fellow at the Getches-Wilkinson Center for Natural Resources, Energy, and the Environment at the University of Colorado Law School, where she focuses on western water policy issues. She served previously as Assistant Secretary for Water and Science at the US Department of the Interior and had practiced water law for nearly 30 years prior.

Carlos Fernandez

Carlos is the State Director for The Nature Conservancy in Colorado. He works closely with the Colorado Chapter’s Board of Trustees as well as partner organizations, agencies, elected officials, and other key decision-makers to advance conservation in Colorado and around the world. Carlos is a native of Argentina and holds law degrees from Mendoza and Georgetown universities. 

Tom Gougeon 

Tom has served as the President of the Gates Family Foundation since 2010, where he oversees investments in public education, natural resources stewardship, and community development throughout Colorado. Tom has served on the boards of numerous land conservation, urban redevelopment, environmental, and historic preservation organizations and is a former chair of Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado, The Nature Conservancy, the Urban Land Conservancy, and the Denver Water Board.

Allegra “Happy” Haynes 

Happy is the Executive Director of Denver Parks and Recreation and a Denver native. She received a degree in Political Science from Columbia University and an MPA from the University of Colorado at Denver. Happy currently serves on several non-profit boards, including the Trust for Public Land, the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, and the Denver Botanic Gardens.

Jocelyn Hittle

Jocelyn Hittle

Jocelyn is the Assistant Vice Chancellor of the Spur Campus & Special Projects for the ‎Colorado State University System. She is overseeing the design, construction, and program development of the new Spur campus, which focuses on inspiring life-long learners around topics of food, water, health and sustainability. She worked previously in sustainable and inclusive urban planning and has a degree in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from Princeton and a Master’s in Environmental Management from Yale’s Environment School.

Benita Hussain

Benita is the Chief External Affairs Officer at American Forests, where she oversees marketing, philanthropy, and partnerships around the organization’s national tree equity and resilient forests efforts. Previously, she was the Director of the 10 Minute Walk, and she has also served as a policy advisor to Mayor Mike Bloomberg and to late-Boston Mayor Thomas Menino. Benita and her writing have been featured in The New York Times, The Hill, CityLab, and Fast Company, among others.

Teresa Martinez

Teresa is the Executive Director and co-founder of the Continental Divide Trail Coalition, and for over 30 years, she has worked to increase awareness, engagement, access, and stewardship of the National Trails System. Teresa is a life long outdoor recreationist, and she worked previously for the Appalachian Trail Conservancy and the Continental Divide Trail Alliance; she also serves on the Trail Leadership Council of the Partnership for the National Trails System. She is actively involved in the creation of equitable spaces for all people in the outdoors and currently serves as the acting chair of the Board for the Next100 Coalition.

Jim Petterson

Jim is the Colorado & Southwest Region director for The Trust for Public Land, where he works to create parks and protect land for people across Colorado, New Mexico, Utah, and Arizona. Prior to joining TPL, Jim spent 17 years at The Nature Conservancy and 10 years working in Washington, D.C. as a communications director and legislative assistant for a senior member of Congress and as a press secretary for the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture. Jim is an avid trail runner and competed in the Leadville 100 in 2012. He lives in Denver, Colorado with his wife and two teenagers.

Patrick Phillips

Patrick most recently served as Global CEO of the Urban Land Institute, a non-profit organization considered a leader in developing and advocating best practices in sustainable, equitable urban development. Prior to heading ULI, Patrick led economic-planning consultant, heading Economics Research Associates, now part of AECOM. He is the author or co-author of eight books and numerous articles and has taught at Harvard’s Graduate School of Design and Johns Hopkins University.

Martha Records

Martha is an impact investor and managing partner in Green Spark Ventures, which invests in the areas of conservation, clean energy and regenerative agriculture. She lives in Denver, Colorado where she serves on the boards of Colorado Open Lands and the Museum of Contemporary Art Denver. Martha earned a B.A. in International Relations from Stanford University and an M.B.A. from the Tuck School at Dartmouth. In her free time she enjoys hiking Colorado’s trails.

Kathay Rennels

Kathay was named interim Vice President for Engagement and Extension at CSU in July 2022. She previously served three terms as a Larimer County Commissioner and is co-leader of the Food and Agriculture Key Industry Network for the State of Colorado. Kathay has been a special advisor to the Chancellor of the CSU System on rural-urban issues since 2019 and has served on the Northern Colorado Economic Development Council, Community Foundation of Northern Colorado, El Pomar Foundation, The Matthews House, Larimer County United Way, and Colorado Youth Conservation Association.

Lynn Scarlett

Lynn Scarlett retired in December 2021 from The Nature Conservancy where she served as Global Chief External Affairs Officer. In this role, she served on the global executive team, oversaw and influenced climate and conservation policy in the United States and the 79 countries and territories, and advanced private-sector partnerships to support corporate sustainability and enhance ambitious actions to address climate change. Prior to her role at the Conservancy, Lynn served at the U.S. Department of the Interior from 2001-2009 in the GW Bush Administration, where she was the Deputy Secretary/Chief Operating Officer of the department. She served as Acting Secretary of the Interior in 2006.

Dave Secord

Dave is principal of Barnacle Strategies, a consultancy based on Salt Spring Island, BC, where he works closely with foundations, environmental and Indigenous organizations, and academic institutions. He is descended from Alaskans, trained as a marine invertebrate ecologist, and has evolved into strategic philanthropy for conservation and communities. He has long been active in funder affinity groups in land and marine conservation and Indigenous philanthropy, including the Arctic Funders Collaborative and the Canadian Environmental Grantmakers’ Network.

Dan Stiles

Dan is the Managing Partner of Stiles.Legal and provides counsel to organizations seeking to make a positive human impact, from the global climate change nonprofit founded and chaired by former Vice President Al Gore to the Colorado Cattlemen’s Agricultural Land Trust.  Dan serves on the Board of ICLEI USA and as a mentor for entrepreneurs with the Techstars-TNC Sustainability Accelerator. 

Gary Tabor

Gary is an ecologist and wildlife veterinarian based in Bozeman, Montana. In 2007, he founded the Center for Large Landscape Conservation to help people and institutions make better conservation decisions at the scale nature functions and now serves at the Center’s president. Gary has worked on behalf of large landscape conservation for over 35 years, including as the co-founder of the Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative, Patagonia’s Freedom to Roam wildlife corridor campaign, and the Network for Landscape Conservation.