Keynote and Plenary Bios
- Keynote Speaker: Julia Novy
- Student Plenary Speakers: Emily Polk (moderator), Citlali Blanco, Natalie Cross, Trudie Grattan, Vrinda Suresh, and Nuzhah Tarsoo
Julia Novy is Professor of the Practice and Executive Director of Stanford's Change Leadership for Sustainability Program, which includes the Sustainability Science and Practice Interdisciplinary Masters degree. Her research and teaching focus on business strategies, leadership approaches and cross-sector partnerships that spur global development and align systems with the goal of intergenerational well-being. With over 20 years of experience leading non-profit and philanthropic organizations, Julia Novy is recognized for her innovative leadership in designing and scaling entrepreneurial solutions to global challenges that integrate economic, social and environmental objectives. In 2013, she founded Resilience in Action, dedicated to helping 21st century leaders cultivate resilience in their lives, organizations and sectors. Resilience in Action leads resilience journeys to dynamic natural environments like the Peruvian Amazon, and partners with diverse organizations to enhance strategic clarity. As Executive Director of the Lemelson Foundation for nearly a decade, Novy was responsible for guiding over $100 million of investment in new technology, inventors and social enterprises in the U.S and developing countries. As Director of World Wildlife Fund’s (WWF) Pacific Marine Office, Novy collaborated with colleagues at Unilever and WWF to help develop and launch the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC), a global partnership that uses third-party certification and eco-labeling to transform fisheries supply chains into sources of sustainable seafood with products now widely available in Walmart, Safeway, Target and other major retailers. As CEO of Washington STEM, Novy-Hildesley worked with Microsoft, Boeing, and the education community to bring business into the classroom and cultivate 21st century skills for underserved youth.
Student Plenary: Why is effective science communication essential for addressing our sustainability challenges?
Emily Polk (moderator): Emily is the Coordinator of Stanford’s Notation in Science Communication, a mini minor that provides an opportunity for students to develop their ability to communicate science to a variety of audiences using multiple genres and modes. Emily first became interested in science communication when she worked as a human rights and environmental–focused writer and editor for nearly ten years around the world, helping to produce radio documentaries in Burmese refugee camps, and facilitating a human rights-based newspaper in a Liberian refugee camp. She also worked as an editor at Whole Earth Magazine and at CSRwire, a leading global source of corporate social responsibility news before getting her doctorate in environmental communication. Her article, "Communicating Climate Change: What went wrong, how can we do better?" was published in the Handbook of Communication for Development and Social Change and is used in classrooms in the US and around the world. Emily is an Advanced Lecturer in the Program in Writing where her courses focus on global development, climate change, and environmental justice, and invite students to interrogate the discourses (and assumptions) around the approaches, methods, and ideologies regarding how and when social change happens.
Citlali Blanco is a senior majoring in Human Biology and pursuing a notation in science communication (NSC). She also identifies as a salsa dancer and life-long runner. As a daughter of immigrant parents, she values diversity, integrity, and courage in all areas of her life. She is ever intrigued by the potential of nutrition, the food supply, and behavior change to ameliorate nutrition-related chronic diseases at scale. A fun project she co-created was a podcast for Stanford SciCast on alternative proteins and the Good Food Institute, which you can listen to using this link: on SoundCloud. As an SFI intern, Citlali is currently proposing her own impact project to increase vegetable consumption at Stanford, revamping the snacks that students are offered during finals week to include more nutritious options, and making a healthy snacking brochure for the student body.
Natalie Cross is currently a senior studying on the Oceans, Atmosphere and Climate track of Earth Systems along with a Notation in Science Communication. She's really passionate about marine conservation research, environmental justice and accessible and engaging scientific communication. She's planning to pursue a coterminal masters degree of science in Earth Systems next year and is honored to participate in today's panel for the TEACH symposium.
Trudie Grattan is currently a coterminal student in the Earth Systems M.A. program at Stanford University. In 2021, she completed her B.S. in Human Biology with a concentration in Human-Environment Interaction from Stanford. Her interests sit at the intersection of policy, design, and justice relation to fisheries and the oceans. Outside of the classroom, she is a Captain on the Stanford Women’s Lacrosse team.
Vrinda Suresh is a senior completing a bachelor's in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology and pursuing a master's degree in Earth Systems. Her interests in both art and environmental policy prompted her to apply for the Notation in Science Communication program. She is excited to use the communication skills she's developed in the NSC to help people connect with nature and motivate environmental action, policy, and stewardship.
Nuzhah Tarsoo is a senior student at Stanford, majoring in Earth Systems with a concentration on land systems. She is currently working on completing a research project funded through a major grant by VPUE, on the use of ecological substitutes to compensate for functions lost with key species extinctions worldwide. She is also currently completing her Notation in Science Communication, which she pursued to learn how to communicate science effectively to both technical and non-technical audiences. In her free time, she enjoys reading and exploring new places.