ACEER is shaking things up! We’re proud to welcome new members to the team and to celebrate current members as they continue to grow professionally in their careers and in the world of conservation.
New Board Members
Paola Moreno-Roman, Ph.D.
Paola was born and raised in Lima, Peru. She majored in Biology in Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia (Peru), later moving to the U.S. to pursue a doctoral degree in Cellular and Molecular Biology at Stanford University and graduated in 2019. Currently, she is the Director of Strategic Partnerships at Foldscope Instruments, Inc. She advocate for science’s crucial role in society as a powerful tool to empower others. This conviction has led her to be involved in a wide variety of science outreach initiatives in both the U.S. and in Peru.
John Matise is the President of Carlson-Matise, LLC, a private equity investment and management company with holdings in manufacturing, consumer packaged goods, and technology companies. Most recently John was the CEO and a Board Member of Vege Labs, LLC, which has sponsored an ACEER Conservation Fellow. John is partnering with ACEER in exploring ways to bring sustainably sourced exotic ingredients from the Amazon to commercial markets helping to support the local indigenous tribes. His is an avid backpacker and canoer, and has been an active leader in Scouts BSA (formerly Boy Scouts of America) for over a decade. One of the John’s favorite pastimes has been leading youth scouts on wilderness backcountry adventures, including with his two sons. John has a Masters in Business Administration from UCLA and a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from UC Davis with High Honors.
New Members of the Team
Alanna is joining ACEER as our Director Of Rainforest Relations. She will be helping spread the word about ACEER and taking our fundraising efforts up a notch. Alanna Tarkington was a psychotherapist in private practice for many years and has a passion for helping people and animals. She was a member of the President’s Advisory, National Wildlife Federation & National Council and Humane Society of the United States. She is currently a member of the Equine Council, Humane Society of the United States & Board of Directors, People Helping People.
“Studying Indigenous cultures inspired me to connect with and teach others to understand and save our planet. All species, including humans, are intimately interconnected and interrelated in this magnificent matrix of life, which makes our existence possible. The Amazon rainforest, being the Lungs of Mother Earth, is necessary for our very survival. We must all humbly learn to honor and to teach our connections with the plants, the animals, and the magic of our planet with others not only to protect the environment but to save our own species.”
Rachel is joining ACEER as our Director Of Philanthropy and will also be pitching in to help with fundraising. Rachel holds a degree in Environmental Science from Western University and a postgraduate degree in Fundraising Management. Rachel is an experienced fundraiser, working with global charities to raise $50M+ for an array of causes. She is an advocate for conservation and climate action and believes the first step to igniting change is creating mission-driven communities and partnerships.
Moving On Up
We are delighted to announce that Holly O’Donnell, ACEER’s Director of Social Media and Marketing, has started a PhD (DPhil) in Biology at the University of Oxford. Holly was formerly our Director of Social Media and a 2020 Conservation Fellow. Her research will look at medium and large mammal populations in and around gold mines in Madre de Dios, Peru, with a special focus on large carnivores and seed dispersal. Holly will carry out her research in collaboration with CINCIA (Centro de Innovación Científica Amazónica) and the University of Oxford’s Wildlife Conservation Research Unit (WildCRU).
Brian Griffiths, ACEER’s Director of Research (and Director of the Conservation Leaders Program) is now an Assistant Teaching Professor in The Earth Commons and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, at Georgetown University. He holds a Ph.D. in Environmental Science and Public Policy (George Mason University) and bachelor’s degrees in Plant Science and Environmental Engineering (University of Delaware), and is a faculty member in the Earth Commons at Georgetown University where he teaches courses in sustainability. Before coming to Georgetown, Brian was a Postdoctoral Fellow at George Mason University, the Executive Director of ACEER, and a Fulbright grantee.
Spring 2023 Intern
Madison is a Junior at West Chester University studying English with a minor in Media and Culture. She has always loved to read, write, research, and learn about the world around me through education and travel. Her first blog article for ACEER was Reaching For The Treetops: Canopy Walkway Systems. Check it out!