Sara Queen (Chair) is Managing Director and Head of Real Estate Equity for MetLife Investment Management, a role in which she oversees a $32.7 billion real estate portfolio with offices in the United States and international markets, including London, Mexico City, Santiago, and Tokyo. She was formerly head of U.S. Operations and Asset Management for Singapore-headquartered Mapletree, a global real estate development, investment, and capital management company with approximately $35 billion invested worldwide, for which she grew U.S. real estate assets to $10 billion. Prior to Mapletree, Sara spent nearly 11 years at Brookfield, where she headed Asset Management for the U.S. office portfolio (45 million square feet). She was integral in the smooth integration of the $7.2 billion Trizec acquisition, streamlining and optimizing leasing and operations efforts. Sara was also responsible for the company’s occupancy profile, annual strategic planning/budgeting, oversaw the Lease Administration group, and served on the Global Asset Management and the Executive Committee for the U.S. Office Division. Prior to joining Brookfield, Sara was Senior Vice President at Clarion Partners, the New York City-based real estate management and advisory services firm, in charge of managing a $1.9 billion portfolio. Previously, she worked for Metropolitan Life Insurance in the investment and asset management groups. Sara has an M.B.A. from the Harvard Business School and a B.A. cum laude in Economics and History from Wellesley College. Sara also is an adjunct professor at Columbia University’s Master of Real Estate Development Program and serves on a number of nonprofit boards.
Ellen Witzling Roff (Treasurer) is a founding Solar One board member, who has served as the Treasurer of since its inception. She brings the benefit of her many years of experience in nonprofit management, program oversight, finance, and administration of organizations in refugee resettlement and reproductive health. She has been a CFO of large international service agencies and a consultant to local providers starting up new services. Ellen is a Brooklyn girl who grew up in East New York, attended public schools, and graduated from Brooklyn College with a BA in English. She raised her children in Park Slope, where she organized two successive, parent-run, cooperative child care groups, one for each of her children, Jessica and Matthew. As her children grew, Ellen resumed her education while continuing to work. She earned her MBA in 1982, which prepared her to deepen her understanding of complex business operations, moving from Budget Officer of a $30MM international organization to Director of its Internal Audit function, and then to other organizations as Chief Financial and Administrative Officer. Now in retirement, Ellen does volunteer work for Solar One and other service organizations and spends as much time as she can with her grandson.
Jane R. Crotty (Secretary) has been on the Solar One Board since the 1990s. Jane is Senior Vice President and lobbyist with George Arzt Communications Inc., specializing in public relations, community outreach and government relations. She has vast experience in higher education and with large development projects. Since joining the firm in 2003, Jane has served many clients including The Hearst Corporation and The New School, as well as other nonprofits, businesses, housing organizations and community groups. A former New York City school teacher, Jane has held a number of positions in the area of neighborhood and community development including serving as a two term chair of Community Planning Board 6 in Manhattan. As Director of Communications and Economic Development at CUNY’s Baruch College, she was a key facilitator in the approval process for the college’s $280 million academic building in Manhattan. As Executive Director of The 23rd Street Association for several years, she was instrumental in securing funding for the renovation and revitalization of Madison Square Park. Jane has a BS from Elmira College and an MS from Nazareth College. She has served on several nonprofit boards. In 1999, she received the Helen C. Vanderbilt Public Service Award as a community supporter for affordable housing. Jane and her husband Paul have 3 adult children.
Kara Allen is Senior Advisor for Policy and Regulatory Affairs at the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) where she leads development of the New York State Energy Plan. The 2015 Plan set New York on a path to achieve 50 percent renewable electricity, a 40 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, and a 600 trillion British thermal unit increase in energy efficiency by 2030. Kara came to NYSERDA from Governor Andrew Cuomo’s office where she served as Assistant Secretary of Energy. As Assistant Secretary, she oversaw the operations of NYSERDA, the Department of Public Service, and the power authorities of New York and Long Island. She led energy discussions during annual negotiations of the State’s $150 billion budget, counseled decisions on energy legislation, and crafted annual State of State policy initiatives. Prior to moving to New York, Kara was Executive Director of the U.S. House of Representatives Sustainable Energy and Environment Coalition, a caucus of 57 members dedicated to advancing policies pertaining to clean energy innovation and job creation, environmental protection, and global climate change. Kara holds an M.S. in Environmental Science and Policy from Johns Hopkins University and a B.S. from Vanderbilt University in Political Science and U.S. History.
Katherine L. Boden is Vice President of Gas Engineering at Consolidated Edison Company of New York. She leads an organization of over four hundred professionals and is responsible for a $900 million annual capital budget primarily aimed at public safety, customer connections, reliability, and infrastructure improvements on the company’s natural gas transmission and distribution systems in New York City and Westchester County. She joined Con Edison in 1990 and has held leadership positions in various organizations. She worked two decades in the electric distribution business and over eight years in gas transmission and distribution, and has taken on roles with increasing responsibility. She was Con Edison’s Manhattan Electric Control Center Manager during the tragedy of September 11th, 2001, and helped coordinate the company’s restoration of power to lower Manhattan in the aftermath. Katherine is Chair of the Northeast Gas Association’s Operations Managing Committee, a member of the American Gas Association’s Operations Section Managing Committee and is on the Executive Committee of the Society of Gas Lighting. She holds a BS in Electrical Engineering from Polytechnic University and an MBA from Hofstra University. Katherine grew up on Long Island and resides there with her husband.
Bill Browning is interested in the interaction of the built and natural environment and how that supports health and wellbeing. In 1991, he founded Green Development Services at the Rocky Mountain Institute. Clients included Wal-Mart, the White House, Disney, LucasFilm and the Sydney 2000 Olympic Village. In 2006, Bill co-founded Terrapin Bright Green LLC, an environmental strategies research and consulting firm. He advises corporations, governments, and large-scale real estate developments. Clients include PNB Malaysia, New Songdo City, Interface, Google, Bank of America and the National Geographic Society. His work has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, the Washington Post, Elle and Popular Science, and he has been interviewed by NPR, CNN, Reuters and PBS. Bill writes and lectures on sustainable design and building practices and is co-author of Green Development: Integrating Ecology and Real Estate; A primer on Sustainable Building; Greening the Building and the Bottom Line and many other publications. Bill received a Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Design, University of Colorado and Master of Science in Real Estate Development, MIT. In 2001 he was selected honorary member of the American Institute of Architects, in 2004 he received the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership Award and in 2015 the American Society of Interior Designers’ Design for Humanity Award.
Chris Carolan is an experienced debt finance and corporate attorney and a partner at Baker & Hostetler LLP. Chris represents arrangers, agents, lenders, and borrowers in a wide range of debt finance transactions in a variety of industries including commodities, technology, renewable energy and project finance, telecommunications, media, and real estate. Chris’ work often has international components, and includes workouts and restructurings. He also serves as general outside counsel to a leading national investment group focused on emerging cybersecurity and data privacy technologies. Chris and his firm are pro bono counsel to Solar 1. Before joining the board at Solar 1, Chris was a member of the National Board of Directors of the Human Rights Campaign, where among other things, Chris served on HRC’s national Public Policy Committee, and also was a co-chair of the HRC Greater NY Steering Committee. Chris lives in Brooklyn with his husband and their puggle, and grew up in Woodlawn in the Bronx. He is a proud graduate of Fordham University and NYU Law School and was on the editorial board of the NYU Law Review.
Majora Carter is a real estate developer, urban revitalization strategy consultant, MacArthur Fellow and Peabody Award winning broadcaster. She is responsible for the creation and successful implementation of numerous economic developments, technology & green-infrastructure projects, policies and job training & placement systems, and is the founder of Sustainable South Bronx. Majora has served on the boards of the US Green Building Council, Ceres, The Wilderness Society, and the Andrew Goodman Foundation. She is quoted in the permanent collection of the Smithsonian Museum of African-American History and Culture in DC: “Nobody should have to move out of their neighborhood to live in a better one”.
Virginia Davies is a business and social enterprise entrepreneur. She is a former Bank of Montreal executive officer whose responsibilities included worldwide legal and accounting Taxation. Virginia sat on the Board of Directors of the Mortgage Corporation and the Pension Society of the Bank. She also served as Vice President of Capital Partners for the United Nations Foundation and has been a consultant to the Government of Canada, International Fund for Agricultural Development and other Non-Government Organizations and to a private practice law firm. Virginia started her career with the Canadian Department of Justice. She received her LLB, Masters in Law and SJD (doctorate) from the University of Toronto and is a graduate of the Advanced Management Program at Harvard Business School. She has two children and three grandchildren.
Donna De Costanzo As Director, Eastern Region for the Climate & Clean Energy program at the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), Donna oversees NRDC’s work on climate and clean energy across the Eastern states and advocates for the implementation of policies that increase the deployment of energy efficiency, renewable energy, and clean transportation options. Prior to NRDC, Donna was Counsel to the New York City Council’s Committee on Environmental Protection, where she advised the Speaker and Council Members on environmental policy and crafted legislation on various issues, including sustainability planning, climate change, clean energy, air and water quality, endangered species, and green procurement. Before joining the New York City Council, Donna was an Assistant Regional Counsel in the Waste & Toxic Substances branch of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region II. She holds a BS in biological sciences from Cornell University and a JD from New York University School of Law.
Brian Fielding has over 30 years experience as an attorney, business executive and a digital media consultant. He was on the senior leadership team for 16 years at Audible.com, during its initial start-up in 1997 and rapid growth phases and for five years after it was acquired by Amazon.com. Prior to Audible, Brian worked at CBS Sports for 9 years as Director of Programming/VP Business Affairs. Since retiring from Audible he has worked as a digital media consultant and is a Senior Counsel with OutsideGC.com, where he provides digital media companies with strategic guidance and general legal services. Brian is a co-founder and chief business strategist of OpenStudioNetwork.com, a leading online jazz educational company. He is an accomplished jazz pianist and composer and recently released his first album of original music, An Appropriate Response, Volume 1. Brian grew up in Grosse Pointe Park, Michigan and received his undergraduate degree from the University of Michigan (Philosophy & Music) in 1976 and his JD from New York Law School in 1983. He played music in Detroit before moving to NYC’s TriBeCa neighborhood in 1979 prior to moving to Montclair, NJ with his wife and two children in 1995.
Patricia M. Grayson joined the Solar One Board in 2016. She was formerly Vice President for Development of the Children’s Aid Society (CAS), a nonprofit serving high-need children and families in New York City. She led the organization’s fundraising, public relations, marketing and volunteer services departments, raising private funding of $21 million annually and $283 million from 2001-2013. Prior to joining CAS, Patricia was Director of Development for the NAACP Legal Defense Fund (LDF), responsible for fundraising for litigation, advocacy, and public education and management of regional fundraising and advisory board committees. For more than a decade, Patricia was Vice President for Planning and Development at National Medical Fellowships, Inc., a nonprofit focusing on increasing the number of underrepresented minority physicians and improving access to quality healthcare in medically underserved communities. At NMF she developed new partnerships with the New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation, Harvard School of Public Health, and the National Institutes of Health. Patricia graduated with High Honors from the University of Michigan LSA Honors Program and received a Master’s Degree from the Harvard University Graduate School of Education, in Administration, Planning and Social Policy. She has served on several nonprofit boards.
Julie Gallanty is the Senior Director, Alliance Services at the New Jersey YMCA State Alliance, where she provides consulting services in strategic planning, board Governance and resource sharing with 30+ YMCAs in the state. Prior to this role, she served in executive leadership roles for the past 20 years in the greater New York City area. Julie holds a B.A. from Binghamton University and a M.A. in Education from Adelphi University. She serves on several nonprofit boards.
Stephan Roundtree is a lawyer who currently serves as Northeast Director for Vote Solar, the highly effective solar advocacy organization that Solar One worked closely with to help pass New York State’s first net metering law, allowing solar installation owners to sell excess power back to Con Edison. With degrees from Boston College, the Vermont Law School and the Northeastern University School of Law, Stephan brings a passion for social and environmental justice along with extensive technical knowledge gained through his previous work with Green Mountain Energy, the American International Group (AIG) and Solar One’s long-term partners WEACT for Environmental Justice.
Thor Thors is a sixth generation New Yorker with deep roots in New York’s economic and social life. With Compass, he currently facilitates multi-million-dollar property transactions. As an architect & development construction executive, Thor helped design and construct significant residential and commercial projects in New York such as Zeckendorf Development’s 520 Park Avenue and 15 Central Park West. Thor has led all types of projects, from shingle style & modern resort homes to commercial offices and billion dollar condominium towers.With his BA from Princeton University, he holds a graduate degree in Real Estate from NYU and a Masters of Architecture from The University of Pennsylvania. For over 10 years as a board member, Thor has brought his creativity and organizational skill to Solar One. He is an artist and urban explorer who mountain-bikes around the city relentlessly, watching growth trends in emerging neighborhoods and celebrating New York’s dynamic growth and resilience. With his wife Melissa, Thor is raising two teenagers whose passion for new energy sources and urban sustainability began with building solar cars and green roofs at Solar One on first grade class trips.