Search Our Team

Michael Jenkins

Founding President and CEO

Michael Jenkins is the founding President and CEO of Forest Trends. From 1989-1999, he was the Associate Director for the Global Security and Sustainability Program of the MacArthur Foundation. In 1998, Michael was in a joint appointment as a Senior Forestry Advisor to the World Bank. Before entering the MacArthur Foundation, he worked for three years as an agro-forester in Haiti with the USAID Agroforestry Outreach Program. Previous to that, he was a technical advisor for a Washington-based development organization, Appropriate Technology International. In the late 1970s, Michael was a Peace Corps volunteer in Paraguay working in agriculture, apiculture, and forestry projects. He has traveled and worked throughout Latin America, Asia and parts of Africa, and speaks Spanish, French, Portuguese, Creole, and Guaraní.

Michael holds a Master’s of Forest Science from Yale University and has contributed to and authored numerous books/publications, including The Business of Sustainable Forestry: Strategies for an Industry in Transition and Capital Markets and Sustainable Forestry: Opportunities for Investment.

In 2010 he received the Skoll Award for Social Entrepreneurship and in 2015 the Social Entrepreneur Award from the Schwab Foundation. Also in 2015, Forest Trends was awarded the 2015 Award for Creative and Effective Institutions from the MacArthur Foundation.

Óscar Angulo

Senior Coordinator for Sanitation Sector Investments in Natural InfraestructureNatural Infrastructure for Water Security (NIWS) Project

Óscar is a biologist with an MSc in Integrated Water Management from University of Queensland, Monash University, Griffith University, and Western Australia University. He is a senior lecturer at Catholic University (PUCP) and Scientific University of the South (UCSUR) in Peru and has more than ten years experience working in public and private institutions. His main areas of research are natural resource management, integrated water resource management in both rural and urban areas, community development, green infrastructure public investment, and drinking water & sanitation programs.

His work with Forest Trends, to date, has focused on the development of environmentally sustainable socio-economic strategies, integrating socio-economic and hydrological monitoring, and evaluating natural infrastructure investment.

Yessica Armas

Senior Public Investment SpecialistNatural Infrastructure for Water Security (NIWS) Project

Yessica is a civil engineer with more than 13 years of experience in programming, formulation, evaluation and management of public investment programs and projects on environmental issues with national financing, public debt, and international technical cooperations. She has led technical teams from the Ministry of Environment of Peru for the development of regulatory, methodological, and technical instruments related to public investment in Natural Infrastructure in Peru. She studied Pollution and Environmental Management at the Private University of Moquegua and has a master’s in Investment Projects and Environmental Technologies. She also has a Post Degree in Project Management (PMBOK) and Climate Change.

Liseth Asto

Natural Infrastructure Investments SpecialistNatural Infrastructure for Water Security (NIWS) Project

Liseth is a professional in Economics from UNMSM, where she specialized in investment projects and public policies. She has more than 5 years of experience in the sanitation sector in Peru – she supported SEDAPAL’s Operational-Financial Planning team. She was part of the Rural Fiscalization team of SUNASS and initiated the implementation of  monitoring rural and small town providers at the national level, as well as the workshops and reports on Benchmarking of Community Organizations in 2018, 2019, and 2020.

Abel Aucasime

Senior Coordinator for Integrated Solutions for Water SecurityNatural Infrastructure for Water Security (NIWS) Project

Abel directs coordination of integral solutions for water security for the NIWS Project. He has 18 years of experience in issues that link environmental management and strategic development of natural resources.

Notably, he has promoted and participated in the design and implementation of public and sectoral policies aligned with territorial policies and developed sectoral planning and technical instruments within the framework of the National Environmental Management System (SNGA) in Peru. He has also provided technical advice on the following topics: governance and implementation of public institutional management, results-based budget management, management of public and private projects in biodiversity and environmental conservation, environmental financing, environmental information management, evaluation and valuation of ecosystem services, and others. Abel has a degree in Biology with a specialty in Natural Resources and Ecology from the National University of San Cristóbal de Huamanga.

Jennifer Balachowski

Carbon Markets Special Projects ManagerEcosystem Marketplace

Jen is an ecologist and expert in nature-based solutions with over a decade of experience in climate change science, policy, and communication. She specializes in developing partnerships, products, and services that make complex climate change information accessible to diverse decision makers, including land managers, policymakers, and corporate clients. Previously, she was a national-level expert in climate change adaptation and technology transfer at the US Forest Service where she led and advised on initiatives in climate-smart reforestation, land management planning, and environmental justice. She has worked in the public and private sectors for land management, research, technology, and international development organizations.

Jen completed her Ph.D. in restoration ecology at the University of California, Davis, and as a Fulbright Fellow at CEFE-CNRS in France. She also has an M.Ed. in science education and has taught in a wide range of formal and informal settings from California to Kenya. She grew up in Maryland and lives in Washington, DC with her family.

Debora Batista

Finance & Project ManagerCommunities and Territorial Governance Initiative

Debora has over 10 years of professional experience managing projects at NGOs. She has a post-graduate degree in social innovation from Amani Institute and a masters degree in sustainability management from Fundação Getúlio Vargas Business School. Her masters’ dissertation researched the impact of agribusiness on traditional communities in Brazil and their efforts to stop environmental degradation. She is fluent in English and Spanish in addition to her native Portuguese.

Prior to joining Forest Trends, Debora was a senior analyst at WWF-Brazil, working with deforestation and conversion-free finance. Before WWF, she was a program analyst at the Institute for Entrepreneurial Citizenship working on impact investment and social innovation and also was the co-founder of Engajamundo Youth Association, raising awareness among young people regarding social and environmental issues, including developing  a capacity-building methodology for young people to understand how to participate in the construction of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Genevieve Bennett

DirectorCommunications and Strategic Outreach

Genevieve Bennett leads Forest Trends’ strategic outreach and communications work. Genevieve works to advance Forest Trends’ mission through strategic partnerships; creative, content-driven communications; meaningful engagement of our coalitions of partners and thought leaders in the field; and strengthened internal capacity for strategic partnerships and outreach.

Genevieve has expertise in environmental markets and finance, and has written extensively for both Forest Trends and a range of trade and academic publications including Environmental Finance magazine, Civil Engineering, and Nature, on topics including biodiversity finance, natural infrastructure, eco-entreprenuership, strategies for scaling public and private conservation investments, and other market cross-cutting issues. Prior to joining Forest Trends she managed a demand assessment project for the Willamette Partnership in Oregon, and has also held positions with the Breakthrough Institute, the NYC Commission to the United Nations, and NYU Wagner School of Public Service. She holds an MSc from the London School of Economics and a BA from New York University.

Lilit Bodakowski

Finance Controller

Lilit Bodakowski has over 11 years of experience in the nonprofit finance and accounting field. Her experience ranges from small local membership nonprofits to large international organizations with a variety of different donors. Some of her expertise is in the area of accounting, annual audits, project audits, annual financial and management reporting,  donor reporting, compliance, internal controls, and financial risk management.

Beto Borges

DirectorCommunities and Territorial Governance Initiative

Beto was born and raised in São Paulo, Brazil, where he obtained an AA degree in industrial chemistry from Escola Técnica Oswaldo Cruz and worked as an ecotourism guide in the Atlantic rainforest, while pursuing nature photography and rock climbing. Beto holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Conservation and Resources Studies from the University of California, Berkeley, and an MBA in Strategic Leadership from the Dominican University of California. Previously, he was Director of the Brazil Program of the Rainforest Action Network, promoting forest policies, community economic development and indigenous land demarcation in the Amazon region. He also worked for Aguirre International, evaluating environmental programs for AmeriCorp-USA and was the Manager of Sustainable Harvesting at Shaman Pharmaceuticals, developing ethnobotanical drugs from rainforest medicinal plants. As the Executive Director of Adopt-A-Watershed, he worked on watershed conservation through place-based learning methodologies. Beto also was a Program Officer with the Goldman Environmental Foundation, selecting finalists for the Goldman Environmental Prize and evaluating project proposals for funding. Beto has also consulted for Aveda Cosmetics, Conservation International, Instituto Terra, Occupational Knowledge International, and Wildlife Conservation Network, and others. He was co-chair of Grantmakers Without Borders and currently sits on the board of the Global Greengrants Fund, Earth Island Institute, and the Environmental Law Defenders Center. He is fluent in Portuguese, English, and Spanish.

Ryan Boshart


Ryan is an experienced non-profit and education professional with a background in education advocacy, project management, and program operations. Serving as Operations Manager, he is responsible for all administrative, HR, and executive support tasks at Forest Trends. Prior to joining the organization in 2022, Ryan worked for Little Kids Rock, a music education non-profit dedicated to providing student-centered music education programming in US public schools.

He holds a Bachelors of Music Education from SUNY Fredonia in New York and, as a lifelong musician and educator, he still teaches and performs within the Washington DC metro area.

Oly Bracho


Oly Bracho is the Chief Financial Officer at Forest Trends. In this role, she is responsible for managing the institution’s financial affairs, and in conjunction with the Board of Directors and senior leadership team, ensures that the organization makes sound strategic decisions on the use of its resources and operates in an effective and fiscally sound manner. 

Ms. Bracho has over 20 years of experience in international finance and operations with global nonprofit organizations. Prior to joining Forest Trends, she held the positions of Vice President of Finances and Operations at Women for Women International and Rare Conservation, where she led all financial aspects of the organization and oversaw its legal, information technology, annual planning and budgeting. Before Women for Women and Rare Conservation, Ms. Bracho worked at Conservation International (CI) as the Senior Operations Director for Field Programs, where she led efforts to formulate and implement sustainable financing strategies. She also worked at The Nature Conservancy (TNC) and World Wildlife Fund (WWF) leading financial and operational functions.

Ms. Bracho holds a Master’s degree in International Management, specializing in international finance from the University of Maryland, where she also received her Bachelor’s degree in Economics. Ms. Bracho speaks fluent English and Spanish

Kate Brandaw Ellis

Budget & Project ManagerEcosystem Marketplace

Kate works as an Associate with the Supply Change initiative, investigating commodity based corporate commitments which reduce or eliminate deforestation. Prior to joining Forest Trends, she interned with the office of United States Senator Ron Wyden of Oregon, assisting legislative staff on issues pertaining to the environment and public works. She also has experience researching corporate sustainability practices with Nike’s Innovation Department. Kate holds a Bachelors of Arts in Political Science from the University of Redlands.

Kerstin Canby

Senior DirectorForest Policy, Trade, and Finance Initiative

Kerstin is Senior Director of Forest Trends’ Forest Policy, Trade, and Finance Initiative, overseeing Forest Trends’ work on regulatory and market approaches to promote legal and sustainable production and associated trade of timber and other commodities harvested from forest areas, as well as policy and public finance for forests. Increasingly, this work is highlighting illegal land use / conversion, the role of conversion timber in the global sourcing of wood fiber, and agricultural supply chains from legal or zero-deforestation zones. A significant portion of her time is spent on the China/East Asia region.

Prior to joining Forest Trends, Kerstin worked at the World Bank developing natural resources management projects and grants, and other forest governance programs. She has advised governments and stakeholders on REDD+ donor programs and FLEGT initiatives in Asia, Africa, and Latin America. She has also worked with the US Forest Service in Oregon and was the co-founder of an environmental education program in Durham, North Carolina. Kerstin holds a BA and Masters of Environmental Management from Duke University’s School of Forest and Environmental Sciences, where she focused on economics, forestry, wetlands, and coastal ecosystems.

María Canchari

Senior Administrative and Financial SpecialistNatural Infrastructure for Water Security (NIWS) Project

María has over 25 years of experience managing general operations for development projects  by nongovernmental organizations and/or international cooperation (e.g. USAID, Canadian Cooperation). She has broad experience in everything from finance and human resources to IT, supervising employees, and managing contract budgets. She is also skilled in preparing financial projections and reports in compliance with Peruvian regulations, and with planning, accounting, and auditing.

Her protocol knowledge makes María excellent at project implementation from start to finish. Collaboration and sound judgement allow her to work well within defined procedures and policies, and she oversees her teams with efficiency and teamwork.

Patricia Olinda Carillo Montenegro

Senior Gender SpecialistNatural Infrastructure for Water Security (NIWS) Project

Patricia is a lawyer and feminist. She has served in the Ministry of Women (Promudeh and MIMP) and the Ministry of Economy and Finance in Peru and has consulted for MINAM, MIDIS, NGOs, international cooperation organizations, and international organizations. As General Director of Mainstreaming of the Gender Approach of the MIMP, she was responsible for the process of preparing the Action Plan on Gender and Climate Change. She graduated from the Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos and has a master’s degree from the Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú.

Jan Cassin

Senior AdvisorWater Initiative

Jan is an ecologist with expertise in terrestrial, marine, and freshwater systems.  Her career has emphasized applied research and practice in a wide range of water resource management issues – including integrated watershed management, environmental flows assessment, ecosystem services quantification, and innovative financial mechanisms such as wetland banking, and investments in watershed services (IWS). Jan directs Forest Trends’ work on investments in watershed services; she has also worked with Forest Trends’ Business and Biodiversity Offset Programme to support and promote the use of best practices in biodiversity offsets and biodiversity conservation around the world.  Prior to joining Forest Trends, Jan received her Doctorate at the University of Michigan and worked for eleven years as a senior project manager and ecologist for Parametrix (a Seattle-based engineering and environmental consulting firm), and for nine years as a biologist for The Nature Conservancy.  Jan developed recommendations to the Puget Sound Partnership on the use of innovative financial mechanisms for the recovery of the Puget Sound ecosystem, worked with the Puget Sound Restoration Fund to establish a payments for services pilot for nitrogen removal by shellfish in Puget Sound, assisted BC Hydro develop performance measures for their long term environmental goal, and led studies evaluating impacts of flow alteration on aquatic ecosystems for King County. Jan has traveled extensively in Central and South America, has proficiency in Spanish, and enjoys photography, travel, kayaking, and hiking.

Terry Chen

Senior Staff Accountant

Zhuoran Terry Chen is a Junior Accountant in the finance team of Forest Trends, where he assists and processes Accounts Payable functions, reviews and processes staff timesheets, and help with month-end close. He also supports financial reporting processes, reconciles bank accounts, and other balance sheet accounts, and provides support for grant project audits and annual organizational audit. 

Terry holds an MS in Accounting with a graduate certificate in forensic accounting from George Mason University and a BA from Renmin University of China.

Cheyenne Coxon


Cheyenne manages communications staff and projects and leads strategy, outreach, and storytelling across all areas of Forest Trends work in collaboration with Directors and the CEO.

Cheyenne is a biologist by training, and before joining Forest Trends, worked as a laboratory researcher and animal care aide at the UC Davis Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital, One Health Institute, and Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute. More recently, she completed a Science Communication Fellowship at the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (NCEAS) and a land use and water quality risk assessment for Denver Water. Some of her main interests include One Health, conservation planning, and science communication. Cheyenne has a B.S. in Animal Science from UC Davis and a master’s from the Bren School of Environmental Science & Management (UC Santa Barbara).

Stephen Donofrio

Managing DirectorEcosystem Marketplace

Stephen Donofrio is Managing Director of Ecosystem Marketplace, the world’s first and only globally recognized and standardized Voluntary Carbon Markets (VCM) end-to-end transparency platform providing exclusive carbon trade pricing data, insights, and news. Over the past two decades, he’s held key roles at prominent environmental markets and climate action organizations, including Forest Trends, and the Chicago Climate Exchange, and CDP (formerly, Carbon Disclosure Project). He’s also served as a Consultant to the United Nations Forum on Forests (UNFF) and Educator with the Boston College Center for Corporate Citizenship and Arizona State University. Working to shape the climate and sustainability landscape towards pragmatic and science-focused goals, he’s a creative strategist and experienced leader with a strong sustainability/ESG track record in building programs, products, and teams, developing partnerships, and capital raising through fundraising and sales. He is the author of dozens of publications, articles, and reports, and an active participant in specialist working groups.

Rupert Edwards

Senior Finance and Carbon AdvisorPublic-Private Finance Initiative

Rupert Edwards is Senior Advisor, Public Private Finance Initiative. He provides thought leadership on topics related to REDD+, climate finance and investment, carbon markets, and valuing environmental benefits. He was formerly a Managing Director of Climate Change Capital (2004-11), where roles included Head of Portfolio Management, Carbon Finance, and where he invested in low- carbon projects in developing countries on behalf of major institutional investor clients. From 1988 to 2002, he worked in financial markets for US bank JPMorgan, including as Head of European Government Bond trading. Rupert has also acted as a consultant to the World Bank, and has authored and contributed to a number of papers on topics such as investment and climate change. He is often invited to participate as an expert on environmental finance issues, including with the US State Department, UK government, OECD, United Nations and the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) of China, as well as with government ministries in forest countries such as Brazil and Peru and with other NGOs. Rupert has an MSc in Environmental Technology from Imperial College, London and an MA in History from Trinity College, Cambridge.

Willy Espinoza

Blended Finance LeaderNatural Infrastructure for Water Security (NIWS) Project

Willy has a background working in the private, public, and nonprofit sectors in Peru and the USA. He was a coordinator in Peru’s Delivery Unit at the Presidency of Council of Ministers, where he was in charge of two government priorities: water & sanitation and “reconstruction with changes.” Willy has experience designing, managing, and executing innovative mechanisms linking the private and public sectors for social impact, including “obras por impuestos” and others related to results-based financing such as impact bonds or pay-for-success. Earlier in his career he worked at PWC in transfer pricing issues, as well as analyzing capital markets. Willy has a Bachelor’s and licentiate in Economics from Universidad de Lima. He also holds a Master’s degree in Public Policy & Management from Carnegie Mellon University and post-graduate studies in Sustainable Development Management at Universidad ESAN.

Grace Ferguson

Program Coordinator

Grace is the Program Coordinator for Forest Trends, where she supports multistakeholder partnerships and convenings. 

Grace holds a BA in Environmental Studies at Colorado College. She is passionate about protecting the environment and developing innovative solutions to climate change. 

Growing up in the Rocky Mountains, she has always craved adventure and challenge. When she is not working to save the environment, she is enjoying it. In her free time, she loves skiing, backpacking, and all things outdoors.

Tracy Ferrier

Senior Donor Engagement OfficerDevelopment

Tracy Ferrier has over 25 years of fundraising and development advancement experience and success. She has worked in large and small shops in a variety of sectors, from public media with PBS, to service with the American Red Cross directing the expansion of programs that enhanced overall revenue in the areas of special events, capital campaigns, and annual, major, and planned giving. Her passion for connecting donors to the causes they care about is what led her to Forest Trends, where she serves as the Senior Donor Engagement Officer, building connections and enhancing these important relationships.

Tracy is a graduate of the University of South Florida where she got her fundraising start as a student phone-a-thon caller. She is an adventurous traveler, avid hiker, cyclist, and skier, and lifelong Cleveland Browns fan.


Gena Gammie

DirectorWater Initiative

Gena Gammie is Associate Director of Forest Trends’ Water Initiative, which aims to scale up incentives and other economic tools that recognize the value of nature and upstream communities in assuring secure, safe water. In this role Gena works collaboratively with civil society, government, and professional associations to systematically address barriers to realizing effective watershed investments and leads Forest Trends’ work on analyses and tools for evaluating the cost-effectiveness of green infrastructure, with the aim of promoting performance-based investments in green infrastructure by mainstream water resources managers. Gena brings to this role experience on forest carbon project development and analysis, climate policy analysis with ICLEI-Local Governments for Sustainability, and strategic communication at McKinsey & Company’s Sustainability and Resource Productivity practice. Gena holds an MSc with Distinction in Environmental Policy & Regulation from the London School of Economics, where her dissertation focused on multi-stakeholder platforms for cooperative water resources management.

Nick Goodman

Senior AssociateForest Policy, Trade, and Finance

Nick is a Program Associate in the Forest Policy, Trade, and Finance Initiative Team. He has prior work and internship experience at Collaborating for Resilience, a natural resource governance non-profit, Yamba Malawi, an international development non-profit, and Verite, an international labor rights and supply chain risk management organization. His main interests include equitable resource access, environmental issues & human rights, and global development issues. He has a bachelor’s degree in International Affairs from George Washington University and a master’s degree in International Peace & Conflict Resolution from American University.

Marcio Halla

Local Economic Initiatives LeadCommunities and Territorial Governance Initiative

Marcio Halla leads economic indigenous governance projects and coordinates field activities in Latin America for Forest Trends’ Communities and Territorial Governance Initiative. Prior to joining Forest Trends, Marcio was implementing several sustainable development projects, working closely with traditional communities and indigenous peoples in the Atlantic Rainforest and Amazon region. Since 1997, he has actively managed projects on agroforestry, organic agriculture, sustainable forest value chains, community based ecotourism and forest management and certification.  Marcio has provided auditing services for Smartwood/IMAFLORA and the Union for Ethical Bio-trade in Latin America. Marcio has also participated in several training programs related to sustainable development and management of natural resources, including the Beahrs Environmental Leadership Program at UC Berkeley and LEAD International. He graduated from São Paulo State University (UNESP) in Agronomy, and has a master’s degree in Territorial Planning from Santiago de Compostela University (Spain). Marcio speaks Portuguese, English and Spanish.

Guisella Infantes Bracamonte

Training Programs CoordinatorNatural Infrastructure for Water Security (NIWS) Project

Guisella studied Education for Development at the Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú and, in recent years, has specialized in e-learning. She is an instructional designer and e-learning content developer. Her training and knowledge come from her work as a project assistant, virtual tutor, course coordinator, instructional designer, and e-learning consultant for different institutions, such as NGOs, universities, and public entities. Her goal and motivation is to design learning experiences that respond to the needs of users.

Devika Jaipuriar

Manager of Institutional Budgets & GrantsFinance
Devika Jaipuriar is the Manager of Finance & Grants for the Forest Policy, Trade, and Finance Initiative. Devika brings many years of experience in non-profit operations, grant/contract procurement & management, budgeting, and financial management with World Resources Institute (WRI), where she supported the Energy Program, Sustainable Finance Center, and Climate Program during her tenure. During her time at WRI, she not only became a master at successfully managing day-to-day financial operations, but also assisted in the growth of multiple teams by ushering in several impactful grant agreements via donors from a wide variety of government agencies (both US and international), foundations, and private corporations. Devika holds a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology & Environmental Studies from Binghamton University in New York.

Gabrielle Kissinger

Senior Policy AdvisorForest Policy, Trade, and Finance

Gabrielle works on land and forest policies, constitutional reform, and recognition of customary and ethnic land rights in Myanmar. She is also Principle of Lexeme Consulting, in Vancouver, Canada.  She brings almost 30 years of experience in developing policy responses to drivers of forest loss, designing (or reforming) fiscal policies and incentives for more sustainable land use, and harnessing markets to drive changes in land use.

She was a Senior Advisor to the UN-REDD Programme and UN Environment, and has worked mostly in Indonesia, Vietnam, Myanmar, Bhutan, Zambia, Kenya, and Brazil in the last ten years. In the mid-2000’s, she helped legislate the historic Great Bear Rainforest agreements along Canada’s west coast. She has capitalized on opportunities to protect land and promote sustainable forestry when large-scale timberland divestiture occurred across the Northeastern US in the late 1990’s and early 2000s. She helped create the Maine Woods Initiative of the Appalachian Mountain Club, now 70,000 acres of conserved forest land, over 120 miles of recreational trails and nature-based tourism, and Forest Stewardship Council certified forestry in Maine. She was a Peace Corps volunteer in Lesotho when South Africa transitioned from apartheid. Gabrielle holds a M.A. in natural resources management and environmental policy from Tufts University, a B.A. in philosophy and political science from University of California, Santa Barbara, and is a PhD candidate in the Environmental Policy Group at Wageningen University in the Netherlands.

Katherine Lin

AssociateEcosystem Marketplace

Katherine Lin is an Associate with Ecosystem Marketplace. She has professional experience in the environmental, sustainability, natural resources and policy fields. Katherine graduated from Columbia University with a Masters in Environmental Science and Policy. During her graduate studies, she worked with both private and public clients on climate issues, including reporting for a variety of implemented projects. She was formerly an intern at Mass Audubon and has worked on climate mitigation by conducting environmental impact assessment using GIS. When not at work, Katherine is a travel enthusiast, skier, and budding gardener.

Patrick Maguire

Senior ManagerEcosystem Marketplace, Supply Change

Patrick is the Senior Program Manager of Forest Trends’ Ecosystem Marketplace and Supply Change Initiative which he joined in May 2019.  Previously he was Program Manager of Forest Trends’ Business and Biodiversity Offset Program (BBOP) from 2007 to 2018. Patrick has twenty years of diverse international conservation and development experience including managing remote teams and multi-stakeholder coalitions for environmental NGOs, the private sector and government. Previous work includes managing community forestry-based enterprises in Nepal for the World Wildlife Fund; helping to establish the Conservation Finance Alliance and overseeing the development of a guide on innovative conservation financing while at The Nature Conservancy; and serving as a consultant to USAID’s Biodiversity and Forestry Team with Chemonics Inc

Verena Manolis


Verena works as a Communications Associate at Forest Trends, where she supports the communications team to develop successful communications strategies, produce and coordinate content, and conduct meaningful outreach.

Verena holds a BA in Political Science from American University. She has a passion for advocacy and social change, with climate and environmental solutions at the forefront. She has a wide range of internship experience, which includes political campaigns, nonprofits, and lobbying. In her spare time, Verena enjoys running, hiking, and vegan baking.

Doris Mejía

Communication DirectorNatural Infrastructure for Water Security (NIWS) Project

Doris is a communication specialist from Lima University, with a master’s in Social Management from the Catholic University of Peru. She has more than 20 years of experience creating and delivering development communication strategies and products.

As a communication manager for Practical Action Latin America, she worked closely with international teams, other NGOs, cooperatives, authorities, and communities on a variety of significant issues such as climate change, renewable energy, risk management, environment, agriculture, ICTs, etc.

In the last 5 years she created and lead important strategies and campaigns for the Andean Community, WWF, IDB, Belgium Embassy, European Union, among others. Doris is the creator and administrator of Comunicambio-Communication and development, an active network for 12,500 development specialists from all over the country.

Fernando Momiy Hada

Chief of PartyNatural Infrastructure for Water Security (NIWS) Project

Fernando Momiy is an internationally-recognized champion of natural infrastructure in Peru and is the Chief of Party (COP) of Forest Trends’ Natural Infrastructure for Water Security (NIWS) Project. Fernando holds an MBA and MA in Regulation of Public Services and Infrastructure Management. He has held numerous leadership positions in his nearly 25 years of government service at Peruvian infrastructure and sanitation agencies. Most recently, Fernando has been the Chairman of the Board of Directors at the Latin American Association of National Water and Sanitation Regulators (ADERASA), the President of the Board of Directors of Peru’s National Superintendence of Sanitation Services (SUNASS), and Director of Investment Promotion at the Agency for Promotion of Private Investment. In these roles, he has promoted more than 100 public-private investment projects in the infrastructure sector, created a regional Green Infrastructure Working Group in Latin America, and led Peru’s water sector tariff and regulatory reforms.

Fiona Morelli

Contracts and Awards SpecialistNatural Infrastructure for Water Security (NIWS) Project

Fiona has more than 10 years of experience in finance and operations with global nonprofit organizations. Prior to joining Forest Trends, she was Project Finance Specialist and Project Management Specialist at the International Potato Center, where she managed a portfolio of over 20 projects from Africa, Asia, and South America. She also managed regional projects at the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and has close familiarity with the regulations of many major donor institutions (e.g. BMGF, USAID, IFAD, EU, UNDP and FAO). Before working for nonprofit organizations, Fiona worked in the private sector for 10 years in banking and transnational companies.

Agustin Nervi

Private Sector Engagement and Value Chains SpecialistNatural Infrastructure for Water Security (NIWS) Project

Agustin holds a BSc in Economics from Universidad de Buenos Aires-Argentina and a MA in Agribusiness & International Rural Development from Lincoln University-New Zealand. At the NIWS Project, he leads relationships with private companies investing in watershed ecosystems to secure long-term access to water, while providing guidance on sustainable value chain development. He also liaises with government and civil society stakeholders to leverage project financing, increase value for communities, corporations, and responsible buyers, and develops business models working at the intersection of hydrological and economic analyses.

Mabel Pajares Policarpio

Administrative CoordinatorNatural Infrastructure for Water Security (NIWS) Project

Mabel holds a bachelor’s degree in Systems Engineering. She has extensive knowledge in office automation, administration and accounting, and has more than 7 years of experience dealing with administrative, accounting, logistical and human resource issues.  In the past, she has worked for private companies, as well as both local and international NGO’s, through projects funded by USAID, The Big Lottery Fund of the United Kingdom, and the Canadian Embassy. Mabel is an optimistic, responsible, humble, goal-oriented team player.

Nguyen Vinh Quang

Program AnalystForest Policy, Trade, and Finance Initiative

Quang joined Forest Trends in July 2013 as a Program Analyst for the Forest Trade and Finance Program. He is based in Vietnam where he focuses on Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT), Reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation, sustainable forest management, and enhancement and maintenance of carbon stocks (REDD+), and Payments for Ecosystem Services (PES). Most recently Quang worked for the REDD+ Program of the Netherlands Development Organization (SNV) in Vietnam, focusing on integration of multiple benefits into REDD+. He also has extensive experience working on climate change, natural (forest) resource management and conservation, forest policy and tenure. Quang holds a Ph.D in Forest Sciences from Kyushu University in Japan (2008), an M.Sc. in Social Development from Ateneo de Manila University in the Philippines (2003), and a BA in Business Administration from Hanoi National Economics University in Vietnam (1997).

Alfredo Rodriguez

Asia-Pacific Regional Coordinator, Timber Regulation Enforcement Exchange (TREE)Forest Policy, Trade, and Finance

Alfredo Rodriguez is the Asia-Pacific Regional Coordinator for the Timber Regulation Enforcement Exchange (TREE) program within the Forest Policy, Trade, and Finance Initiative. Based in South Korea, he facilitates the coordination between the program and the Asia Pacific network and liaises with governments and key actors, while reporting policy development and implementation processes of relevant regional initiatives focused on tackling the trade in illegally harvested timber and forest products.

With experience in the private and public sectors, Alfredo has provided advisory services focused on forest products and nature-based solutions by enhancing economic and financial mechanisms for nature conservation and production, developing and improving sustainable supply chains, implementing international certification schemes, and performing due diligence for the compliance of trade regulations. Prior to joining Forest Trends, Alfredo worked at the GIZ as a forest governance Senior Advisor and with WWF coordinating forest management-related projects in the Amazon. He holds a M.Sc. in Tropical Forestry from the Technical University of Dresden (Germany) and a Bachelor’s in Business Administration.

Gabriel Rojas

Communications Analyst Natural Infrastructure for Water Security (NIWS) Project

Gabriel is a communicator for the NIWS Project. He has more than five years of experience developing and implementing communication strategies with a gender and intercultural approach for international development projects and the public sector. He has a communication degree from the University of Lima and is currently completing his master’s in Human Development Approaches and Policies at the Pontifical Catholic University of Peru (PUCP).

Mercy Sandoval

Capacity Development Specialist, Natural Infrastructure for Water Security (NIWS) ProjectWater Initiative

Mercy has a Master’s Degree in Social Management (PUCP), Municipal Management (ESAN), and Corporate Social Responsibility (PUCP. She has twenty years of experience in the design, implementation and monitoring of development projects, focused on public policy, building capacity and citizen participation areas. Mercy is an expert in designing training programs, particularly in the areas of gender and multicultural training.

Anna Sivohins

Project and Budget ManagerForest Policy, Trade, and Finance

Anna is a Project and Budget Manager for the Forest Policy, Trade, and Finance Initiative. Prior to joining the organization in 2022, Anna worked for CRDF Global managing grants from government funders NIH, DOS, NSF and USDA, as well is private funders. She brings many years of experience in financial management, grant administration, program support, and proposal management.

She holds a Master of Arts in International Commerce and Policy from George Mason University and a Bachelor of Science in Economics from Altai State University in Barnaul, Russia. In 2019 Anna earned a PMP Certification from PMI. Anna is a native Russian speaker fluent in English and Russian.

Mia Smith

Knowledge Management SpecialistNatural Infrastructure for Water Security (NIWS) Project

Mia completed a master’s degree in Environmental Engineering at MIT, where her thesis evaluated green infrastructure alternatives for stormwater management in urbanized watersheds. She has worked as an engineering consultant designing a variety of water treatment and reuse plants, including wastewater to drinking water, recycled urban stormwater, groundwater remediation, and industrial treatment. She is passionate about community-driven environmental projects and has traveled across Latin America working on projects in Peru, Guatemala, Mexico, and Ecuador.

Angel Soto

Operations and Finance AdministratorNatural Infrastructure for Water Security (NIWS) Project

Angel has over 20 years of experience in finance and operations with international nonprofit organizations. Prior to joining Forest Trends, he held the position of Senior Manager, Global Administration at Rainforest Alliance, where he led all operational aspects of the organization in the Latin America region. Before Rainforest Alliance, Angel worked at Conservation International (CI) as the Operations Director for Mexico and Central America, where he led efforts implement financial and operational strategies for the region. He also worked at Save the Children Guatemala, leading financial and operational functions for USAID funded projects.

Xiufang Sun

Senior Policy AnalystForest Policy Trade and Finance

Xiufang works with Forest Trends as an Analyst, based out of Beijing, China. She holds an MS in Forest Products Marketing and Management from the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University and an MA of Engineering in Management from Jilin University of Technology in Changchun, Jilin Province in China. Most recently Xiufang held the position of Agricultural Specialist in the Agricultural Affairs Office (USDA/FAS) in the United States Embassy in Beijing. Her responsibilities included market analysis reporting for China’s forestry and forest products, tracking market and policy changes for other commodities assigned, facilitating negotiations between the U.S. and Chinese officials for trade conflicts in the agricultural sector (including forest products)and serving as interpreter for such negotiations when needed. In addition, Xiufang has worked as a consultant to the WWF China Program. She has prepared and delivered numerous presentations on hardwood use in China’s furniture industry and on potentials for exporting forest products in China. Her research has been published in various publications including the Journal of Forestry and the Forest Products Journal.

Sofia Tenorio Fenton

Senior Research AssociateForest Policy, Trade, & Finance

Sofia Tenorio Fenton is a Research Associate for the Forest Policy, Trade, and Finance Initiative, where she contributes to developing, conducting, and managing policy-relevant and innovative research. Prior to joining Forest Trends, Sofia worked at the World Cocoa Foundation providing technical and programmatic support for the implementation of programs and initiatives in West Africa and Latin America. Sofia also brings years of experience working in the design and execution of qualitative and quantitative research aiming to solve pressing environmental challenges and promote sustainability. She holds a Master’s of Environmental Management from Duke University and a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Engineering from Universidad la Salle A.C in Mexico City, Mexico. Sofia is a native Spanish speaker fluent in English and French.

Phuc Xuan To

Managing DirectorForest Policy, Trade, and Finance

Phuc is the Southeast Asia Analyst for the Forest Trade and Finance Program, based in Hanoi, Vietnam. He received his doctoral degree in Geography at Humboldt University in Berlin in 2007, where he also worked as a junior researcher at the Junior Research Group on Post-socialist Land Relations. His dissertation examines the political economy of the forest sector in Vietnam, with particular attention given to the dynamics of access and control over forestland and forest resources. From 2007 to 2009, Phuc was a Post-Doctoral Fellow at the Anthropology Department at the University of Toronto, where he was involved in a research project entitled “The Challenges of Agrarian Transitions in Southeast Asia” (ChATSEA). Currently, in addition to his work with Forest Trends, Phuc continues to work with ChATSEA and serves as a Research Fellow at the Asia Institute at the University of Toronto.

David Torres

Watershed Services AnalystNatural Infrastructure for Water Security (NIWS) Project

David holds a BS and a PE in Forest Engineering from Peru’s National Agrarian University, La Molina and a MS in Coastal Management from the University of California, Santa Cruz. At the NIWS Project, he is in charge of synthesizing technical information to justify new investments aimed at ensuring water supply in key Peruvian watersheds. Since the beginning of his career, David’s focus has been the practice of Payments for Ecosystem Services. Previously, he was part of Lumina Decision Systems, where he was involved in the application of Analytica (a software for decision-support) in the integration of greenhouse gas modeling processes to support decarbonization efforts in cities in the United States.

Chris Van Dam

Territorial Governance LeadCommunities and Territorial Governance Initiative

Chris is a rural sociologist with a Master’s Degree in Environment and Development (FLACSO). His main field of expertise are the social, political and economic issues related to Indigenous people and local communities, throughout Latin America. Within Forest Trends’ Communities and Territorial Governance Initiative, he leads the Capacity Building Program on Indigenous Territorial Governance, which covers a broad range of aspects, including Indigenous Economy, and Life Plans. Prior to joining Forest Trends, he worked with the FAO and GIZ in community forestry projects, he was a member of the FSC Board representing the Social Chamber and was a consultant for many organizations, including DGIS (Netherlands), the EU, Inter-cooperation, Helvetas, and IUCN.

Laura Weatherer

Senior AssociateSupply Change

Laura is an Associate with the Supply Change initiative. She was formerly an intern with World Resources Institute and has worked on a diverse range of environmental issues, including land tenure rights, climate equity, and sustainable agriculture. Laura holds a Master of Arts in International Environmental Policy from Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey, and a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations from the University of St Andrews.

Kevin Woods

Senior Policy AnalystForest Policy, Trade, and Finance Initiative

Dr. Kevin Woods has worked in the Mekong Region, including Myanmar (Burma), for nearly two decades on environmental governance and conflict in the land, forestry and agricultural sectors. For the past decade he has worked to help build Forest Trends’ program in Myanmar. Initially focusing on more narrow legality aspects of Myanmar’s timber trade with regards to FLEGT, the Myanmar program has since expanded to encompass conversion timber from agribusiness concessions and more recently, Myanmar’s EITI for forestry and broader resource governance reforms that contribute to political federalism and environmental peacebuilding. Dr. Woods has a master’s degree in environmental science from Yale University and a Ph.D. in political ecology from UC Berkeley. He has published extensively in NGO reports, including for Forest Trends, and other policy fora, as well as academic book chapters and journal articles.

Sarah Yang

Junior AssociateForest Policy, Trade, and Finance

Sarah is a Junior Associate of Forest Trends’ Forest Policy, Trade, and Finance Initiative, where she works on timber trade data analysis, dashboard and website updates and assists the rest of the team.

Sarah recently graduated from the George Washington University with a Master of International Development Studies.

Alex Zambrano Ramirez

GIS Specialist for Investments in Natural InfrastructureNatural Infrastructure for Water Security (NIWS) Project

Alex is an Environmental Engineer from the Universidad Nacional Federico Villarreal with a specialization in Business Intelligence from ESAN University, with more than 15 years of experience in the use of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and Remote Sensing applied in processes of Ecological and Economic Zoning, investment projects related to ecosystems, ecosystem services, disaster risk management, and environmental diagnostics and assessments. He is also knowledgeable with Integrated Management Systems (ISO 9001, 14001 and OSHAS 18001) and Environmental Legislation, and is experienced in public management for the design and implementation of public and sectoral policies with a territorial approach, elaboration of sectoral planning instruments (environment sector), management of budget by results, management of public projects, sustainable economic development, environmental and forestry financing mechanism.