OUR TEAM

The Power Behind SCEN

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ALEX EASDALE

Executive Director (Fort Lauderdale, FL)

Alexander is Managing Principal of Forging Alliances consulting firm and the Executive Director of the Southeast Climate & Energy Network (SCEN), where he leads and manages a network of approximately 60 organizations across 12 Southeastern states. Alexander was most recently Associate Campus Director of Ana G. Mendez University System - South Florida Campus, where he helped manage the entire Campus operation, including academic and student affairs, and community outreach. Previously, he was Foundations Director at the Democracia USA project of the National Council of La Raza, where he was charged with managing its institutional donor portfolio, while also supporting major individual donor fundraising. Alexander has worked in Hispanics in Philanthropy, where he was responsible for leading program design, fundraising, and project management for capacity building, educational, and economic development projects in varied regions such as Florida, North Carolina, Argentina, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Mexico, and Nicaragua. Alexander also worked with the Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA) Secretariat for the negotiations held in Panama and in Mexico, and as a consultant in the Argentine Consulate General in Miami. In his varied roles and as a consultant, Alexander has managed and built multiple stakeholder networks, also raising more than $15 million for multiple initiatives and causes through donor cultivation and grant-writing activities.  He is a college professor and seasoned presenter at conferences and training workshops on topics such as leadership, fundraising, organizational development, and network management. Alexander has authored publications on international trade issues and has been featured in television interviews and newspaper articles on a variety of topics that include transnationalism, Latino participation in U.S. politics, educational models, and opportunities.

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SARA OCHOA

Membership & Operations Coordinator (Coral Springs, FL.)

Sara is an international business professional with experience in business strategy, logistics, and marketing. Sara worked with BMA, a German company specializing in engineering for the sugar industry. Her roles included: market intelligence and account management for 10+ Latin American countries. She worked with the German American Business Chamber of Miami on Marketing activities and the development of strategies to increase the organization’s public awareness. By the end of 2018, Sara decided to focus her career on developing environmental solutions to incentivize a more responsible use of resources. In April 2019, Sara, alongside her husband Juan, created Ciclica LLC, an ongoing project that seeks to decrease the amount of plastic packaging in the CPG industry. Recently, Sara joined SCEN to collaborate in membership, operations, and fundraising, among other fields. Outside of her professional life, she is an animal lover and has recently rescued a beautiful puppy named Milano, an Australian Shepherd mix.

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SOPHIA PESSAGNO

Programs & Communications Coordinator (Greenville, SC)

Sophia is a sustainability scientist whose passion lies in communications and marketing. 

She graduated from Furman University with a Bachelor of Science in Sustainability Science and a passion for grassroots movements. Over the summer of 2018, Sophia conducted research for her senior thesis in Costa Rica, which focused on the challenges of scaling up grassroots conservation programs and mapping partnerships in the area. 

 

Since graduating in 2019, she interned for Miliken & Company, a diversified industrial manufacturer. Her roles included: data visualization, an overhaul of the recycling program at headquarters, and the creation of sustainability PowerPoints. Most recently, she worked with a non-profit located in Greenville, SC on marketing and research projects. Recently, Sophia joined SCEN as a fellow to assist with communications and the new asset mapping project. 

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DALLAS CONYERS

Justice, Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Manager (Greenville, SC)

Rev. Dallas Conyers works as a Body Restoration Specialist: teaching yoga, foods for healing, and spiritual reestablishment to help people become ABLE to live out their creation purpose.She is a certified Sustainable Agriculturalist, Beekeeper, and Greenhouse Husbandman. She uses her micro-farm to practice and educate others on: eco-system restoration, soil regeneration, no-till square foot farming, and pollinator cultivation; for our world and for our survival. Dallas delightedly sits under the leadership of Rev. Dr. M. Keith McDaniel as an associate at Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church.

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ABIGAIL FRANKS
Programs Coordinator (Birmingham, AL)

Abigail Franks is a recent Honors graduate from the University of Alabama at Birmingham with a degree in Political Science and Peace, Justice, and Ecology. Next year, she will pursue a Master’s degree in Environmental Justice and Environmental Policy and Planning at the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor. She is especially passionate about transforming the South into a sustainable and resilient region. Her ultimate goal is to work on a regional scale to craft climate mitigation and adaptation policies that would operate with decarbonization through nature-based ideas. She hopes to expand on these policies and include regulations for fossil fuel companies that mandate environmental cleanup and promote environmental accountability. Abigail’s specialties include nonviolent social movements, Alabamian environmental policy, community-based leadership, solar energy, and climate mitigation and adaptation strategies.  She is the founder of the organization WEARE (We Envision Alabamian Renewable Energy). Through this organization, Abigail advocates for solar energy policy reform, educate Alabamians about sustainability and exposes the prevalent environmental injustice in her state. In her free time, Abigail enjoys listening to podcasts, doing yoga, and cuddling with her dog: Ginny.

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NICOLE JARA

Advancement & Communications Fellow (Miami, FL)

Nicole is an Honors Graduate from Florida International University with a Bachelor's Degree in International Relations and Political Science and a Minor in Marketing. Her certificate in Latin American & Caribbean Studies and Portuguese Certificate has inspired her passion for social justice.

She has participated in leadership and volunteer mission trips in countries such as Guatemala and Israel. Her experience serving as Vice President of Communications and Director of Communications for the Brazilian Culture Club and GlobeMed at FIU have molded her passion for cultural awareness and global health. Her most recent social project as a United Nations Millennium Fellowship fellow exposed her to the need for community development and fostering social change. Her work experience at the German American Business Chamber allowed her to participate in networking events, panels, and marketing development. Nicole is a dedicated and hardworking professional with experience in public relations, public speaking, leadership positions, marketing, global affairs, and much more.

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ALEXANDER DOEDDERER

IT Consultant 

Alexander is a cybersecurity consultant with more than 19 years of experience in the IT industry, managing the entire life cycle of projects and leading teams. During his career, Alexander worked in different industries and government customers, developing and implementing many IT and security solutions.

He considers himself a self-taught entrepreneur whose passion is solving problems.

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GLORIA CULLY

Bookkeeper (Boca Raton, FL)

Gloria Cully is a professional with experience in business management; she holds an international business degree and has served in different industries such as: technology, government, nonprofit, hospitality and construction.

Gloria has managed internal payroll of 300 employees, has directed all aspects of E-Verify and managed departments of accounts payable / accounts receivable: vendor set up, cash flow, staff reimbursements, bank reconciliation and invoicing. She has also worked directly with controllers and accountants completing annual external audits and generating quarterly financial budgets.

Our working group co-chairs and collaborators

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MICHAEL HANSEN

Co-chair FRESH Working Group 

Michael is the executive director of GASP, a Birmingham-based healthy air advocacy organization. A Tennessee native, Michael has lived and worked in Birmingham since 2008. Michael has a bachelor’s degree in marketing management from the University of Memphis and a master’s degree in public relations from the University of Alabama. He has nearly a decade of experience in nonprofit advocacy, management, and strategic communications. Michael is an active member of the Birmingham community and is a passionate advocate for health equity, food access, civil rights, and equality.

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DALLAS CONYERS

Co-chair Southeast Faith Leaders Network Working Group

Rev. Dallas Conyers works as a Body Restoration Specialist: teaching yoga, foods for healing, and spiritual reestablishment to help people become ABLE to live out their creation purpose.
She is a certified Sustainable Agriculturalist, Beekeeper, and Greenhouse Husbandman. She uses her micro-farm to practice, and educate others on: eco-system restoration, soil regeneration, no-till square foot farming, and pollinator cultivation; for our world and for our survival. Dallas delightedly sits under the leadership of Rev. Dr. M. Keith McDaniel as an associate at Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church.

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REV. MICHAEL MALCOM

Co-chair Environmental Justice Working Group

The Reverend Michael Malcom is the Executive Director of Alabama Interfaith Power and Light and a licensed and ordained United Church of Christ Minister. Rev Malcom is the Senior Pastor of Rush Memorial Congregational UCC in Atlanta, GA. He is also the Founder of Martha’s Corner, Inc. and The People’s Justice Council which are 501(c)3 non-profits and the Environmental Justice Representative for the Southeast Conference of the United Church of Christ. He is currently the co-chair of the Building Power from the Grassroots Task Force with Climate Action Network International, and the co-chair of the Environmental Justice working group for the Southeast Climate and Energy Network. Please find full bio here

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JENNIFER CROSSLIN

Co-chair FRESH Working Group

Jennifer Crosslin is Regional Organizer with Gulf Coast Center for Law and Policy. She is native of the Mississippi Gulf Coast, where she has been organizing for the last eight years on issues related to economic justice, environmental and climate justice, civic and voter engagement, and reproductive health and rights. Jennifer has recently completed her second master’s from Prescott University in Social Justice and Organizing. She received a master’s degree in Political Science from the University of Southern Mississippi and bachelor’s degree from the University of South Alabama in both Political Science and Philosophy. She volunteers in her community providing organizing support to Cherokee Concerned Citizens, a fence line community in Pascagoula fighting against industrial pollution, is a board member for the East Biloxi Food Market, an organizing project to create a grocery co-op, and active member of the Mississippi Rising Coalition.

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JORY FLEMING

Co-chair Southeast Faith Leaders Network Working Group

Jory is a climate scientist with Carolinas Integrated Sciences and Assessments (CISA). He is based at the University of South Carolina. His job is to assist communities in accessing climate data as well as communicating about climate change. His background is in geography, marine science, and environmental management. He is also a board game enthusiast, bird watcher, and Scottish country dancer.

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KALEIA MARTIN

Co-chair Environmental Justice Working Group

Kaleia Martin is a community advocate who firmly believes in the power of individuals and communities to make extraordinary change. She is an institutional organizer who understands that in order to create sustainable change, root causes need to be identified and addressed at the policy, system and environmental level. Kaleia is the Southeastern Climate Justice Organizer for Climate Reality Project, the co-chair of the environmental justice working group for the Southeast Climate and Energy Network (SCEN), a youth organizer and the former program manager of environmental justice and community organizing at Youth Empowered Solutions (YES!). She obtained her Bachelor of Social Work degree at UNC- Greensboro and went on to obtain her Master of Social Work degree the following year.