Meet Our Leadership Team

Our Board of Directors, Advisory Council and staff have many years of experience in managing programs and shaping policies that advance sustainability. Click on each name to learn more.

SSMC Board of Directors

Terry Nagel photo

Terry Nagel is a veteran journalist who was elected to the Burlingame City Council in 2003 and served 12 years, including three terms as mayor. During her first term as mayor, she appointed a Green Ribbon Task Force that created the city’s first Climate Action Plan. After the plan was adopted in 2009, she helped form the Citizens Environmental Council of Burlingame, and she continues to serve on its Board. 

She also serves on the Board of the Burlingame Neighborhood Network, a community resilience organization that she founded in 2006. She started the Burlingame Pet Parade in 2003 and continues to help manage it. Terry worked as a writer and editor at the San Mateo Times, the San Francisco Chronicle and Forbes magazine, and she managed  communications for various nonprofits, the Skoll Foundation, Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment and Stanford Law School. She has been a Burlingame homeowner and active community volunteer since 1978.

Georgi

Georgi LaBerge was born and raised in Colorado, and she has lived in Redwood City for 60 years. Her professional career includes serving as executive director of the San Mateo County Community College Foundation and the Redwood City Library Foundation. She was elected to the Redwood City Council in 1986, where she served for three terms, including two years as mayor. A longtime volunteer, she currently serves on the Board of CityTrees (Redwood City) and on the Social Action Committee of her church. She enjoys gardening, hiking, travel and competing in senior games in the sport of power walking.

Seamus Murphy is the Director of Government and Community Affairs for SamTrans, Caltrain and the San Mateo County Transportation Authority. Seamus has been recognized as a leader and rising star in the California transit industry. He is proficient at weaving through the legislative thicket of state and federal governments and converting elected officials and the public into transit advocates.

While his primary responsibility is legislative advocacy on behalf of the three local agencies he serves, Seamus has become a key player on the California Transit Association Executive and Legislative Committees and a crucial strategist in efforts to build a statewide high-speed rail network that has as its centerpiece the Caltrain right-of-way. In 2009 he was named one of the industry’s “Top 40 Under 40” by Mass Transit Magazine.

He serves on the Boards the Service League of San Mateo County and the San Mateo County Union Community Alliance.

Barbara McHugh

Barbara McHugh has served as Treasurer of Sustainable San Mateo County since 2016. From 2006 to 2018 she was Revenue Manager for Mellon Capital Management in San Francisco, where she oversaw 1,000 accounts held by more than 400 clients totaling $200 million. From 2001 to 2006 she was President and Treasurer of the San Carlos (Calif.) Education Foundation and served as Treasurer of the San Carlos School District 2008 Measure S Parcel Tax Campaign.

Bryan Chen
Bryan Chen has spent his professional career focused on air quality and human health issues. Bryan is currently the air quality and greenhouse gas lead in Northern California at ARCADIS, a multinational engineering company. Prior to that, he was the Director of Air Quality Programs at the environmental planning firm Christopher A. Joseph and Associates. He has been a regular contributor to SSMC’s Annual Indicators Report since 2010. He joined the SSMC Board in the summer of 2014 and served as Chair from 2017 to 2019.

Bryan graduated with a B.A. from Pomona College and earned an M.S. in Environmental Engineering at Johns Hopkins University. His interest in sustainability led him to pursue and receive a sustainability professional certificate from the International Society of Sustainability Professionals (ISSP), a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Green Associate credential, and Environmental Sustainability Professional accreditation from the Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure (ISI).

Kirsten Keith photo

Kirsten Keith is the former Mayor of Menlo Park, where she served on the City Council for eight years. As an elected leader she championed a carbon-free future by supporting the Paris Climate Accord, adopting 100 percent carbon-free zoning standards, setting aggressive GHG emission targets, approving Menlo Park’s participation in Peninsula Clean Energy (a countywide Community Choice Energy initiative to create a carbon-free grid at no additional cost), and supporting Menlo Spark and Grid Alternatives solar installations on Belle Haven homes.

On her watch, Menlo Park expanded its tree investment by partnering with Canopy to plant new trees in Belle Haven and co-hosted a community-wide tree planting event. Additionally, Kirsten promoted expanded energy assistance programs for low-income families. Kirsten also championed increasing public EV charging stations, prioritizing safe routes to school and public transit to reduce solo-auto trips.

Kirsten has a law practice in Redwood City, and in her free time she enjoys hiking, backpacking, traveling and walking her dogs

Bill Schulte devoted 29 years to the California Public Utilities Commission, retiring in 2000 after heading its Consumer Services Division. Since retiring, he has been engaged as a regulatory and consumer affairs consultant for a number of public agencies and private industry. In addition to his own practice, he was a partner in Regulatory Partners LLC, which provided consumer affairs and call center training to governmental agencies here and abroad.

Bill has also conducted a number of poverty-reduction missions for the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank, and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) in Eastern Europe, Asia, and Western and Southern Africa. He is a former member of the Board of Self Help for the Elderly and is the former Board Chair of the Institute of Environmental Entrepreneurs (which created the Green MBA program at Dominican University). He chairs the Board of Autumn Glow, an Alzheimer’s facility, and also chairs the Board of a low-income senior housing facility, Pine View LLC, in San Francisco. Bill also volunteers delivering meals to homebound seniors. He holds a B.S. in Management Engineering from the University of the Pacific and an M.S. in Civil Engineering from Stanford. Bill is a registered Civil Engineer in California. He served as the Chair of the Board of Directors for SSMC from 2009 to 2015.

Robert Whitehair photo
Robert Whitehair received a degree in Political Science in 1971 and a Master’s in Public Administration in 1973, both from U.C. Riverside. He spent his working career managing infrastructure, including as an Airport Manager, Public Works Director and more than two decades as a Facilities Director for large companies. He taught Facilities Management in the U.C. Extension program for 12 years. He was a Little League coach for 13 years, a volunteer for the Queens County Farm Museum in New York as well as a member of its Board of Directors, and a charter member of Queens Quiet Skies, an airport noise group. He now volunteers for the Housing Leadership Council of San Mateo County and is a facilitator for the Peninsula Conflict Resolution Center.
Marsha Pagels photo

Marcia Pagels, founder of SSMC in 1992, was instrumental in launching the green movement in San Mateo County. She was inspired by the United Nations Earth Summit in Brazil in 1992 to focus on thinking globally and acting locally, holding informational meetings with local leaders, recruiting “Energy Ambassadors” and starting a “Biggest User” contest to encourage homeowners to make their homes energy efficient. She began tracking progress on the county’s economy, environmental and social equity, and issued SSMC’s annual Indicators Reports beginning in 1997.

Marcia was an expert gardener who was ahead of her time in planting an organic, bio-intensive vegetable garden and drought-resistant California native plants. She also was an accomplished artist who had many solo exhibitions and won widespread recognition for her paintings of California landscapes and wildflowers.

Marcia earned a B.A. degree in Art from Stanford University, a Diplome d’Etude from the Sorbonne in Paris and a full scholarship to the San Francisco Academy of Art. After completing a secondary teaching credential, she taught art in the San Mateo Union High School District, then worked as a Library Specialist at Stanford for 12 years. Memorial galleries of her art may be seen here and here.

Ruth Peterson’s leadership, passion and energy transformed SSMC into a nonprofit that helped bring sustainability issues to the forefront of local policy and planning efforts. For more than 12 years, she was an integral part of SSMC, holding numerous positions within the organization and leading the effort for SSMC to become a stand-alone nonprofit. She served as Chair of the Board from 2002 to 2009 and remained a Board Member until her death in 2012.

Ruth attended the University of Southern California and then San Francisco State, where she graduated with an M.A. in English Literature and a teaching credential. After discovering she had an affinity for business, she started Bovet Professional Center, an executive suite for attorneys.

In addition to her work with SSMC, Ruth served on the Board of Directors for Shelter Network for six years. In 2002 she was inducted into the San Mateo County Women’s Hall of Fame, and in March 2012 she was recognized with the David D. Bohannon Memorial Award by the San Mateo County Economic Development Agency (SAMCEDA). In recognition of her contributions, SSMC’s board established the Ruth Peterson Award in 2013. It is the organization’s highest honor and is awarded by the Board to an individual who has contributed significantly to SSMC’s mission.

SSMC STAFF

Christine Kohl Zaugg photo

Christine Kohl-Zaugg is a longtime San Mateo County resident and accomplished sustainability practitioner. For more than 20 years, Christine has worked in and with the private sector, the government, nonprofits and several startups, providing strategic and technical sustainability management consulting. Many of her projects included multi-stakeholder partnerships, looking to find innovative and practical solutions to sustainability issues. They included an early “circular economy” project involving the cement industry and the government, that led to the development of technical guidelines on waste-derived, alternative fuels. Details on Christine’s professional background can be found on her LinkedIn profile.

A strong proponent of design thinking and solving issues by using a holistic, systems-wide approach, Christine is excited to help shape Sustainable San Mateo County’s impactful next chapter. She welcomes your support, ideas and continued commitment to the organization.

Christine has an M.S. in Environmental Sciences from the ETH Zurich and completed a Certificate in Executive Education at Stanford University Graduate School of Business.

Akansha photo

Akansha Yadav is a climate change and sustainability practitioner with extensive experience in building capacity through grassroots leadership and multi-stakeholder collaboration. Prior to joining SSMC, Akansha worked on a wide range of international development projects that ranged from designing climate-resilient natural resource management structures and strengthening agricultural value chains to accessing climate finance and using renewable energy to power off-grid locations. She has authored publications and presented her work at global conferences on local solutions to the issues of agency, literacy, gender and power structures for equitable and sustainable growth.

Akansha believes that the huge amounts of data generated in the field of climate change, greenhouse gas emissions and the water-food-energy nexus can be harnessed to aggressively push for more sustainable and equitable solutions across sectors and stakeholders. The SSMC’s Indicators Report aligns with her interest in storytelling through data. Akansha’s work is driven by her keen interest in integrating design thinking in climate adaptation planning. She enjoys driving program success through applied research, communications and skillful coordination of resources.

Akansha has a M.A. in Development Studies (first class) from the University of Sussex and a B.A. (with Honors) in Political Science from the University of Delhi. She completed a Graduate Certificate in Energy, Environment and Social Change from the University of Oslo, Norway, where she was awarded a scholarship based on her work in developing countries.

Majory photo

Marjory Matic is a native of Scotland. Sustainability and living in harmony with nature were of immense importance in the Celtic culture where she grew up. In the Scottish countryside where she lived, food was mostly homegrown, and fresh milk, eggs, chicken and vegetables were readily available and were organically grown as the norm before “organic” ever became advertised. Warm baked goods were also a daily staple and seasonal jams were made from the blackberries picked along the hedge groves. Commercial pesticides were not known. Nothing went to waste and reuse and repurpose of household items meant an absolute minimum in household waste.

Being environmentally aware, Marjory believes everyone has a social responsibility to help heal the wounds we have inflicted on the earth to support the basic needs of future generations. One particular passion is to support the reduction of plastics that end up in our oceans and to advocate for stricter fish farm regulations and alternatives.

Marjory believes that SSMC aligns with many of her personal values of sustainability.

SSMC ADVISORY COUNCIL

David Hinckle was born and raised in Los Angeles, and he moved to the Bay Area in 1970. In 1971 he opened Earthbeam Natural Foods in Burlingame, which he operated until he retired in April 2017. He was an early adopter of sustainable farming practices, and he was one of a few retailers of natural and organic foods in San Mateo County until the turn of the century. In 2011 he was recognized with a Sustainability Award from Sustainable San Mateo County. In 2014 Earthbeam became the only food retailer in the Bay Area to offer exclusively Certified Organic and Certified Non-GMO choices.

David has served on the Boards of the Broadway (Burlingame) Merchants Association, the Burlingame Chamber of Commerce, Sustainable San Mateo County and the King’s Grove, a private Redwood preserve in the county.

Doug McGlashan

After graduating from San Mateo High School, Doug McGlashan received his B.A. degree from Yale with honors in Economics in 1968. He then served for four years as a nuclear submarine officer in the U.S. Navy. He received his J.D. degree in 1975 from Stanford Law School and practiced law for the next 25 years, founding the San Mateo law firm of McGlashan and Sarrail in 1983. Doug changed careers and taught U.S. History at Aragon High School in San Mateo until he retired in 2012. In addition to serving on SSMC’s Advisory Council, he volunteers as an escort for Planned Parenthood of San Mateo.

Ricki McGlashan

Ricki McGlashan has lived in San Mateo County since kindergarten. She graduated from San Mateo High School and Connecticut College. She served as a founding member of the Board of Sustainable San Mateo County and on its Awards, Management and Program Committees. On an ongoing basis she provides graphic design services pro bono for many of SSMC’s materials, including the Awards Program and Indicators Report. She also has volunteered extensively for local schools, Beyond War, the Foundation for Global Community, the San Mateo City Bikeways Committee, Western Wheelers Bicycle Club, the Hulihia Women Prisoners Writers Project and Swing Left Peninsula.

Mark Moulton

Mark Moulton worked in sales, package engineering and residential design/build for 20 years. After being appointed as Executive Director at Peninsula Habitat for Humanity in 1993, Mark assembled a team that built 75 homes in San Mateo County and raised more than $20 million in 10 years. Mark has been advising business clients in the for-profit and nonprofit sectors since 2006. From 2011 to 2015, he became Executive Director of both the Housing Leadership Council and the Housing Endowment and Regional Trust. Currently, Mark is co-owner and Board Chair of Acqualogic, Inc., and he continues to practice as an organizational and fund development consultant.

Mark earned a B.A. from Stanford University. He lives in Redwood City with his wife, Lisa Moulton, who is a landscape architect.

Kan Parthiban photo

Kan Parthiban has a global background in a plethora of environmental sciences, including permaculture, landscape architecture and urban planning. She has worked on and researched various sustainability practices around the world, including agricultural cooperatives in Cuba, eutrophication in the Gulf of Mexico, farm enterprises in Italy and closed-loop composting systems in France. Kan’s graduate research at Harvard included implementing Target 2.4.1 of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals in Southern Asian countries. With her extensive knowledge in the circular economy, life cycle assessment and climate change mitigation, she is an advocate and an educator for all things sustainable and organic. She has a passion for connecting grand environmental ideas and concepts with practical and feasible applications in our built environment. Kan is the Sustainability Coordinator for Lyngso Garden Materials.