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About us

Katie Walsh

Katie Walsh leads the cities, states and regions program at CDP North America to measure and manage climate and environmental action. She has more than a decade of experience working on urban planning and climate change. She served as an Environmental Defense Fund Climate Corps fellow in the Mayor’s Office of Sustainability in the City of Philadelphia and served as a fellow at the US Department of Energy Policy and International Affairs Office. Katie is a Senior Fellow with the Environmental Leadership Program, and an alumni of the POCACITO program. She holds a Master’s in Urban Planning from Tufts University and a Master’s in International Business and Environmental Policy from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy. 

Katie serves on her local Community Board in Southern Brooklyn, New York and was elected to chair her district’s local Democratic County Committee. In 2020, she ran for the New York State Assembly. While Katie did not win this seat, she stays focused on supporting her district while also giving people with experience in environment, clean energy and climate change action  the tools to run and win local and state office.

Robert Thomas

Robert Thomas is the Chief of Energy and Environment in the City of Newark, New Jersey. In this role, Rob leads the development and implementation of the City’s Municipal Energy Efficiency Program and advises senior officials on energy, telecommunications, stormwater management and right-of-way regulatory issues. With over a decade of local government experience and on behalf of the City’s Director of Engineering, Rob also supervises, directs, and coordinates public work and engineering projects with contractors, utility companies, developers, city departments as well as State and Federal partners.

Outside of work, Rob is a member of the Student Conservation Association (SCA), Alumni Council, serving as a volunteer leader on service days, helping to organize outreach events and assists in keeping SCA alumni connected and engaged. In addition to serving on the SCA’s Alumni Council, Rob also is the Chairman of the Brick City Supper Club, a bi-weekly informal networking event at local restaurants (pre-pandemic) that explores Newark’s amazing restaurants, supports local businesses, and brings people together.

Rob is a Senior Fellow with the Environmental Leadership Program, and an alumni of the POCACITO program. Rob holds a bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering Technology from New Jersey Institute of Technology’s Newark College of Engineering and is an alumni of NJIT’s Division I Men’s Volleyball Program. 

Max Gruenig

Max is the co-founder and principal at POCACITO, Post-Carbon Cities of Tomorrow, based in Charlottesville, Virginia. Working in the field of sustainability on both sides of the Atlantic for over a decade, Max has a strong network from politics, policy, science, advocacy, grassroots organizations, cultural groups and the private sector. He is a recognized climate expert, able to communicate climate change action to a diverse range of stakeholders – from kindergarteners about zero waste, university students about emissions trading systems, US Congress about clean energy and energy security and to the world energy expo about sustainable finance.

Max is a native speaker of German and fluent in English and French and has lived and worked in Germany, Iceland, Italy and Japan and the United States.

Tessa Lee

Tessa Lee is the Senior Corporate Engagement Manager in the Climate Group’s New York offices. She incubates new workstreams and strategic program areas for the Business Action campaigns, including RE100 and EP100, and provides a suite of member engagement services to corporate members. She is also leading the Climate Group’s newly launched Sustainable Supply Chain efforts.
Previously, she led monitoring, evaluation and learning at 100 Resilient Cities, pioneered by the Rockefeller Foundation, and before that, business development and program implementation at the Rocky Mountain Institute and the Carbon War Room, for industries including freight trucking and maritime shipping, global energy access, mining and islanded economies, low-carbon cement, and agriculture and forestry. She has a MSc in Development Studies from the London School of Economics, and a BA in International Relations from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.