Recent Recipients

Following is a selection of recent Switzer Leadership Program Grants. These grants are awarded to organizations working with a Switzer Fellow on critical environmental issues, providing ample leadership development opportunities for the Switzer Fellow, and building the organization’s capacity on the issue. Leadership Grants have supported fellows in national organizations such as Wildlife Conservation Society and Clean Air Task Force, as well more local grassroots programs such as Sierra Watch and California Institute for Rural Studies. In all cases, projects aim to use a Switzer Fellow's science, policy, or technical expertise to achieve positive and equitable environmental outcomes.

$55,000 awarded to Amazon Watch in 2015
Amazon Watch is partnering with Dr. Tracey Osborne to lead the Climate Alliance Mapping Project. This project is a critical piece in a larger climate equity campaign with Amazon Watch, the Sierra Club, and other partners which spans the Americas and focuses on keeping fossil fuels in the ground...Read more >
$15,000 awarded to Sierra Watch in 2015
Sierra Watch received $15,000 for a second year of funding to support Isaac Silverman’s position as Staff Attorney. This position was created in 2014 with help from a $40,000 Switzer Leadership Grant. In this second year, Isaac will be chiefly responsible for providing legal and regulatory...Read more >
$15,000 awarded to Oikonos Ecosystem Knowledge in 2014
Oikonos Ecosystem Knowledge has promoted Ryan Carle to a new position of Conservation Training and Development Manager. In this new position, Ryan will oversee Oikonos's conservation work in Chile on a threatened seabird species, the Pink Footed Shearwater. Ryan has worked as a biologist with...Read more >
$20,000 awarded to Association of State Wetland Managers in 2014
This grant will support a second year of Brenda Zollitsch's work as Policy Analyst at the Association of State Wetland Managers (ASWM). Last year, ASWM was awarded a $30,000 Switzer Leadership Grant to create this new position for Brenda. The organization is actively fundraising for the...Read more >
$25,000 awarded to California Institute for Rural Studies in 2014
The California Institute for Rural Studies (CIRS) has hired Ildi Carlisle-Cummins for the newly created position of Director of the Cal Ag Roots Project. The concept for the Project was developed by Ildi, and will be launched by her and CIRS through her new position. The Project's goal is to...Read more >
$40,000 awarded to California Landscape Conservation Cooperative in 2014
Dr. Amber Pairis was hired by the California Landscape Conservation Cooperative (CA LCC) to develop and lead the San Diego Climate Science Alliance. The CA LCC is a collaborative of regional networks organized under the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service that links scientific expertise with on-the-...Read more >
$30,000 awarded to Pepperwood Foundation in 2014
Pepperwood Foundation, with a $30,000 Switzer Leadership Grant, has hired Nicole Heller as its Climate Adaptation Coordinator for the Terrestrial Biodiversity Climate Change Collaborative (TBC3). TBC3 is an innovative science-management collaborative comprised of over 40 scientists from diverse...Read more >
$40,000 awarded to Sierra Watch in 2014
Sierra Watch received a $40,000 Leadership Grant to hire Isaac Silverman as its Staff Attorney. Isaac, a graduate of UCLA School of Law and native of the Sierra Nevada region, will be charged with legal review and guidance on Sierra Watch’s conservation campaign to protect the iconic Squaw...Read more >
$10,000 awarded to Clean Air Task Force in 2014
Clean Air Task Force is launching a new campaign called Stop the Leaks. This campaign focuses on building public awareness and political will to press for new regulations to reduce methane emissions from the oil and gas industry. Methane leaks from the fossil fuel industry waste billions of dollars...Read more >
$30,000 awarded to Center for Environmental Health in 2014
The Center for Environmental Health, based in Oakland, California, received $30,000 to help fund Sue Chiang's work in a new programmatic area for the organization. Sue, the Co-Director of CEH's Pollution Prevention Program, will play a lead role in a new program that will investigate and,...Read more >

Spotlight on Leadership

Marissa McMahan: Straight from the Scientist
Earlier this spring, COMPASS led a policy communications training for the Switzer Fellows in Washington, D.C. that included practicing communication skills and learning about the world of policymakers, and was capped by meetings with policymakers on Capitol Hill. Marissa McMahan, a graduate student at Northeastern University who is studying the northern range expansion of black sea bass and how that affects both human and ecological systems in the Gulf of Maine, talks more about her experience in D.C.Read more >

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