NatCap is guided by an Advisory Board of thought leaders, and a Governing Committee comprised of institutional partner representatives that provides strategic and fiscal oversight.
The Governing Committee has fiduciary and strategic responsibility for the success of NatCap. It approves NatCap's strategic direction, budgets, and fundraising plans; appoints and oversees the Managing Director; and facilitates NatCap's engagement and visibility within the partner organizations. The Governing Committee currently comprises nine individuals: two representing each of the partner organizations and appointed by the presidents of The Nature Conservancy (TNC), World Wildlife Fund (WWF), Stanford University, and the University of Minnesota; and the Managing Director.
Gretchen Daily, Ph.D.
Professor of Biology
Senior Fellow, Woods Institute for the Environment, Stanford University
Gretchen Daily, an ecologist whose work ranges from conservation science to environmental policy analysis to public outreach, is one of the founders of the Natural Capital Project and serves as its chief emissary to financial and government leaders. She is working to develop a scientific basis - and political and institutional support - for managing Earth's life-support systems. She has published ~200 scientific and popular articles and her most recent books are The New Economy of Nature: The Quest to Make Conservation Profitable, with journalist Katherine Ellison, and Natural Capital: Theory and Practice of Mapping Ecosystem Services, co-edited with several colleagues. She serves on the boards of The Nature Conservancy (and its Science Council) and the Beijer International Institute for Ecological Economics, and at Stanford she is Director of the Center for Conservation Biology.
Jonathan Foley, Ph.D.
Jonathan Foley is the director of the Institute on the Environment (IonE) at the University of the Minnesota, where he is a professor and McKnight Presidential Chair in the Department of Ecology, Evolution and Behavior. He also leads the IonE's Global Landscapes Initiative. Foley's work focuses on the sustainability of our civilization and the global environment. He and his students have contributed to our understanding of global food security, global patterns of land use, the behavior of the planet's climate, ecosystems and water cycle, and the sustainability of the biosphere. This work has led him to be a regular advisor to large corporations, NGOs and governments around the world.
Jon Hoekstra, Ph.D.
Vice President & Chief Scientist, World Wildife Fund
Jon Hoekstra leads WWF's Conservation Science Program, a team of 30 scientists and professionals that work with the more than 400 scientists across the WWF Network to provide cutting-edge research and technical assistance to WWF's global conservation programs. Jon brings a unique perspective to WWF's science program from his career experience with NGOs, government agencies and higher education. He served as Senior Scientist at The Nature Conservancy (TNC), Science Director for TNC's Washington State Chapter, and has worked with the federal government at the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service and NOAA's National Marine Fisheries Service. Jon holds a B.S. and M.S. in biological sciences from Stanford University and a Ph.D. in zoology from the University of Washington where he now maintains a faculty appointment.
Peter Kareiva, Ph.D.
Chief Scientist, The Nature Conservancy
Natural Capital Project co-founder Peter Kareiva is the project's liaison with The Nature Conservancy, while also offering strategic vision and leadership. Kareiva's interests encompass agriculture, conservation, ecology, and the interface of science and policy. In addition to a long academic career, including faculty positions at Brown University, the University of California at Santa Barbara and elsewhere, he worked for NOAA Fisheries for three years, and was Director of the Northwest Fisheries Science Center Conservation Biology Division. Academically, Kareiva is best known for contributions to insect ecology, landscape ecology, risk analysis, mathematical biology, and conservation. His current projects emphasize the interplay of human land-use and biodiversity, resilience in the face of global change, and evidence-based conservation.
Jeffrey Koseff, Ph.D.
Director, Woods Institute for the Environment, Stanford University
At Stanford, Jeff Koseff has been instrumental in developing the vision for the interdisciplinary work on environmental issues. Long-term research projects under his supervision include attempts to understand the transport of mass and energy in estuarine systems such as San Francisco Bay, and the functioning of coral reef systems of the Red Sea and Hawaii and the kelp forest systems of California. Prior to coming to Stanford as a graduate student in 1977, Koseff worked as a consulting engineer in South Africa, where he was born and educated initially.
Chief Operating Officer, World Wildlife Fund
Marcia Marsh oversees the execution of WWF's strategy, guiding their work in policy, markets and field conservation and resolving complex business problems. She is also our executive lead for the CARE-WWF Alliance, a partnership addressing the linkages between poverty and environmental degradation. Marcia serves on the Governing Committee of the Natural Capital Project, a partnership between Stanford University, The Nature Conservancy and WWF to transform institutional and market decision-making using ecosystem services. She has 26 years of general business and human capital consulting experience focusing on helping complex organizations achieve their business strategies. Marcia, a graduate of Randolph-Macon Woman's College, studied international politics at the University of Virginia and is a certified public accountant. She also serves on the board of WEAVE (Women Empowered Against Violence).
Steve Polasky, Ph.D.
Professor of Ecological/Environmental Economics, University of Minnesota
Steve Polasky is one of the leaders of the Natural Capital Project's environmental service mapping and valuation effort. At the University of Minnesota, Polasky holds the Fesler-Lampert Chair in Ecological/Environmental Economics. His research interests include biodiversity conservation, environmental services, integrating ecological and economic analysis, renewable energy, and game theory. Polasky was the senior staff economist for environment and resources for the President's Council of Economic Advisers from 1998-1999, and served as associate editor and co-editor for the Journal of Environmental Economics and Management from 1996 to 2002. Today he's a member of the Environmental Economics Advisory Committee and the Committee on Valuing the Protection of Ecological Systems and Services for the Science Advisory Board of U.S. EPA and a member of The Nature Conservancy's Science Council.
Chief External Affairs Officer, The Nature Conservancy
Glenn Prickett oversees international and U.S. government relations, corporate practices and sustainability efforts, and relationships with leading international institutions and non-governmental organizations for the Conservancy.
Walter Reid, Ph.D.
Director of the Conservation and Science Program, Packard Foundation
Reid was responsible for the creation of the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment, which he directed from 1998 until the release of the findings in March 2005. In recent years, he has also been a Consulting Professor with the Woods Institute for the Environment at Stanford University, coordinator of the Puget Sound Salmon Collaboration, a group of Washington State environmental and business leaders that recommended actions to help recover threatened salmon species, and Vice President of the World Resources Institute in Washington D.C. He has published 87 papers and five books.
Taylor Ricketts is Professor of Natural Resources & Environment and Director of the Gund Institute for Ecological Economics at the University of Vermont. Taylor's interests focus on the overarching question: How do we meet the needs of people and nature in an increasingly crowded, changing world? In his research and teaching, Taylor integrates natural and social sciences to address both fundamental scientific issues and real-world conservation problems. Taylor's recent work has focused on the economic benefits provided to people by forests, wetlands, reefs, and other natural areas. He is a co-founder of the Natural Capital Project, and, like Kareiva, provides strategic guidance. Taylor also served as Convening Lead Author for the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment, a 5-year, UN-sponsored effort to assess global ecosystems and their contributions to human well-being. These and other collaborations are part of a continuing effort to link rigorous research with practical conservation and policy efforts worldwide. Before arriving at UVM in 2011, Taylor led World Wildlife Fund's Conservation Science Program for nine years, and he remains a senior fellow at WWF. He is the author of over 70 scientific publications, and his work has been featured in over 100 stories in more than 20 media outlets. Taylor received his B.A. in Earth Sciences at Dartmouth College and his Ph.D. in Biological Sciences at Stanford University.
Mary Ruckelshaus, Ph.D.
Mary Ruckelshaus oversees all work of the Natural Capital Project partnership including strategy, coordination, fundraising, communications, and hiring. She is based in Seattle, WA, where she previously led the Ecosystem Science Program at NOAA's NW Fisheries Science Center. Prior to that, she was an Assistant Professor of biological sciences at The Florida State University (1994-1997). The main focus of her recent work is on developing ecological models including estimates of the flow of environmental services under different management regimes in marine systems worldwide. Ruckelshaus serves on the Science Council of The Nature Conservancy and is a Trustee on its Washington Board, and is a past chair of the Science Advisory Board of the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (NCEAS). She was Chief Scientist for the Puget Sound Partnership, a public-private institution charged with achieving recovery of the Puget Sound terrestrial, freshwater and marine ecosystems. Ruckelshaus has a bachelor's degree in human biology from Stanford University, a master's degree in fisheries from the University of Washington, and a doctoral degree in botany, also from Washington.
Barton H.(Buzz) Thompson Jr.
Director, Woods Institute for the Environment, Stanford University
Buzz Thompson is one of the Natural Capital Project’s principle experts in policy and finance, while also acting as a key liaison with The Woods Institute for the Environment at Stanford. A national expert in environmental and natural resources law and policy, he has contributed a large body of scholarship on environmental issues ranging from the future of endangered species and fisheries to the use of innovative economic strategies to support conservation. He is the founding director of Stanford University’s Law School’s Environmental and Natural Resources Program, the Robert E. Paradise Professor of Natural Resources Law, and a board member of the Nature Conservancy of California and the American Farmland Trust. Before joining the Stanford Law School faculty in 1986, Thompson was a partner at O’Melveny & Myers in Los Angeles, a lecturer at the University of California at Los Angeles School of Law, and a law clerk to the late Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist.
The Advisory Board advises and assists the Governing Committee and Managing Director on matters of fundraising, outreach, communications, strategy, and substantive content areas including science, finance and policy. The Advisory Board is purely advisory and does not have governing authority over NatCap or its partner organizations. The Advisory Board consists of exceptional individuals appointed by the Governing Committee.
Director of Environment Department, World Bank
Neil Hawkins, Sc.D.
Vice President, Sustainability & EH&S The Dow Chemical Company
Dr. Neil Hawkins serves as Vice President of Sustainability and Environment, Health & Safety (EH&S) for The Dow Chemical Company. In this global role, he drives strategy and implementation for Dow's sustainability programs, including the enterprise-wide 2015 Sustainability Goals. His team of sustainability, life-cycle and EH&S professionals deliver best practices in product safety, regulatory affairs, medical/health & wellness, and EH&S auditing, compliance, and remediation. Since 1988, Hawkins has served at Dow in a broad range of functional, business, and operations roles.
Charles Katz, Jr.
Katz Family Ventures
Katz brings 25 years of legal and business expertise to his role as an advisor on management and several of the Natural Capital Project strategic initiatives. He will also be leading efforts to form a Natural Capital Project International Advisory Council. Previously, he practiced corporate finance law at Perkins Coie, Seattle, Washington, and then served as Executive Vice President of Opsware, Inc., a Sunnyvale, California infrastructure technologies software company. Currently he sits on the board of outdoor retailer REI, Inc. and has been active with the World Wildlife Fund and other conservation organizations. He is a member of the Board of Advisors of the Woods Institute for the Environment and Stanford's School of Earth Sciences.
Pamela Matson, Ph.D.
Dean of the School of Earth Sciences, Stanford University
Matson is an international leader in efforts to harness science and technology for sustainable development, serving as a member of the National Academies Board on Sustainable Development and as the founding chair of the National Academies Roundtable on Science and Technology for Sustainability. Her research interests include ecological and biogeochemical responses to agricultural intensification, climate change, nitrogen deposition, and the impact of policy decisions on developing region’s environments. At Stanford, she is the Richard and Rhoda Goldman Professor of Environmental Studies in the Department of Geological and Environmental Sciences, in addition to her post as Dean of the School of Earth Sciences. Her honors include a MacArthur Prize and being elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the National Academy of Sciences.
Hal Mooney, Ph.D.
Professor of Environmental Biology, Stanford University
Mooney has been an international leader in efforts to solve problems related to biodiversity and global warming, serving as a panel co-chair of the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment and organizing networks of ecologists and other scientists. His expertise ranges from measuring the adaptations of individual plants to charting the processes of ecosystems and showing how human-induced ecological disturbances modify the functioning of the earth as a whole. Research in his laboratory focuses on the study of the impact of enhanced carbon dioxide on ecosystem structure and function.
Managing Director, Environmental Markets, Goldman Sachs & Co.
Managing Director, Spectrum Equity
Vic joined Spectrum in 1998, and has been a Managing Director of the firm since 2000. His focus areas are digital media, software, and online information services. Before joining Spectrum, Vic was with Summit Partners where he originated and completed expansion stage investments in privately held software, telecommunications services, and communications technology companies. Previously, Vic was a Product Manager at ONYX Software and Consultant at Andersen Consulting (now Accenture). Vic serves on the Advisory Committee of the Natural Capital Project and on the National Council of the World Wildlife Fund.
Program Officer, Agricultural Development, The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
Paul Ehrlich, Ph.D.
President, Center for Conservation Biology, Stanford University
Ehrlich is a pioneering entomologist and author who is most widely recognized for his work in alerting the public to the perils of overpopulation. At Stanford University, he has pursued long-term studies of the structure, dynamics and genetics of natural butterfly populations, and is co-founder with Peter Raven of the field of co-evolution. Ehrlich is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the American Philosophical Society. His many awards include a MacArthur Prize, the Crafoord Prize of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences (given in lieu of a Nobel Prize in areas where the Nobel is not given), the United Nations’ Sasakawa Environment Prize, and the Blue Planet Prize.
Marc Feldman, Ph.D.
Professor of Biological Sciences, Stanford University
Feldman’s work on human genetic variation and its relationship to continental ancestry has received wide recognition. He has written more than 335 scientific papers and four books on evolution, ecology, and mathematical biology. Feldman uses applied mathematics and computer modeling to simulate and analyze the process of evolution. He helped develop the quantitative theory of cultural evolution, which he applies to issues in human behavior, and also the theory of niche construction, which has wide applications in ecology and evolutionary analysis. In China, he supervises a large research program on demographic issues related to the gender ratio, and at Stanford, he directs the Morrison Institute for Population and Resource Studies.
Lawrence Goulder, Ph.D.
Professor of Environmental and Resource Economics, Stanford University
Goulder is the Shuzo Nishihara Professor in Environmental and Resource Economics at Stanford. He is also a Senior Fellow at SIEPR and Stanford’s Freeman-Spogli Institute for International Studies, a Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research, and a University Fellow of Resources for the Future. Goulder’s research examines the environmental and economic impacts of U.S. and international environmental policies, including policies to deal with climate change and pollution from power plants and automobiles. His work also explores the “sustainability” of consumption patterns in many different countries. He graduated from Harvard College with an A.B. in philosophy, and received his Ph.D. in Economics from Stanford.
Senior Vice President, Conservation Strategy and Sciences, World Wildlife Fund
Hemley oversees WWF’s conservation programs, leading broad conservation initiatives at a national and international scale. Through the execution of strategies that link local field-based conservation efforts with global market, policy and partnership initiatives, Hemley helps advance the organization’s work in 19 priority places around the world. Hemley previously served as WWF’s Managing Vice President for Conservation Programs, as Vice President for Species Conservation, and directed WWF’s international wildlife policy program and wildlife trade program, TRAFFIC. A biologist with over 20 years of international conservation experience, she received a BS in biology from the College of William and Mary, studied history and philosophy at Oxford University, and is an ELIAS Fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.