Who we are
We're a disruptive start-up
Built by entrepreneurs passionate about climate. We’ve big aspirations and the financial backing to pursue them. We’re building a world-class team with exceptional talent. We’re non-partisan.
Thomas Walsh, Managing Director
Advisor. Mentor. Entrepreneur.
Thomas is a restless, mission-orientated person whose passion lies in scaling innovation to improve social outcomes.
He’s a Techstars mentor to aspiring founders and early stage entrepreneurs. He spent a decade at McKinsey advising global executives on strategy, growth and transformation. He co-founded enke, a South African education, entrepreneurship and social networking organization. And he lived between the garage and a plane to get RedBubble.com off-the-ground (now one of the largest online creative communities).
He’s worked in more than 25 countries, travelled to over 60 and lived in Africa, Asia, Europe and the Americas.
His personal motto is to leave all things better than when we found them.
Jay Faison, Chairman
Philanthropist. Clean Energy & Flooding Nerd.
Jay is a successful entrepreneur who pivoted a career to pursue his passion for philanthropy, becoming the catalyst for some of the country’s most successful climate impact organizations.
He was the founder, CEO and Chairman of SnapAV (Inc 500 company 4 years in a row) which he sold in 2013 to found ClearPath. He has also helped other climate entrepreneurs start and scale impact that fits the mission of the 2040 Foundation, which he also leads.
He’s been one of the Politico 50 – the thinkers, doers and visionaries transforming American politics. He’s on a mission is to engage the center/right to accelerate smart U.S. Climate Policy. He also won the 2013 Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year award for the Southeast region.
Brandon Willet, Senior Art Director
Visual Artist. Digital Storyteller. Idealist.
Brandon is a digital-forward creative leader with an insatiable appetite and uncanny knack for crafting visual narratives that elicit meaningful action from audiences across medium.
He has led high performing creative teams within digital agencies and for some of the most well known and innovative companies in the world. He was Digital Design Leader at Belk (champion of ecommerce revenue explosion), Art Director at South Agency (driving force behind Volvo Truck’s social brand identity), and Web Design Leader at Lowe’s Home Improvement (change agent for digital brand transformation).
He credits his design sensibilities and commercial success to a lifelong love of fine art and formal training in illustration.
Jeff Kopman, Managing Editor
Creator. Producer. Connector.
Jeff is a do-it-all digital editor, with nearly 10 years experience creating content, growing brands and engaging audiences.
He spent seven years at The Weather Channel as a Senior Editor for Weather.com. He worked on everything from running the brand’s large social media accounts to editing news videos to conducting user research.
He has contributed to award-winning editorial projects on climate change and loves creating informative and exciting short form content.
Jenifer Smith, Media Supervisor
Media Guru. Advertising Strategist. Research Junkie.
Jenifer is no stranger to the global media landscape, tearing through its clutter and nuance for more than 20 years as a planner/buyer across industries, markets, and channels.
She was the Director of Media for both Pace Communications and SFW , VP of Research and Media for Corder Philips, and Media Planner for Carat. She has crafted digital media strategies for brands ranging from startups to category brand leaders, including Kimberly-Clark, Lyft, and TIAA to name a few.
She is driven by outsmarting, not outspending, the opposition using data-driven insights and audience learning to inform decision making, and plans to bring this same perspective to climate policy adoption.
Calvin Cupini, Program Manager
Human Geographer. Citizen-Science Conspirator. Impact Whisperer.
Calvin is a community level applied science expert, driven by the resolve of people tackling challenges with what they have, right where they are.
He is a founder of the AirKeepers, a large scale air monitoring network uniting communities, researchers, and officials to reach common goals in health outcomes. He was elected to the board of the Citizen Science Association, the foremost society for participatory and crowdsourced research. He is also a member of the World Economic Forum’s Global Shapers, a young professional global impact entity.
He is best known for storytelling with maps, restoring old bikes, and singing with his champion barbershop quartet.
Jonah Driggers, Strategy and Insights Lead
Jack-of-all-trades strategist. Flood Wonk.
Jonah is a strategist of strategists with experience across industries and a consistent focus on helping to prepare communities and businesses for future challenges.
He spent three years as a consultant at McKinsey & Company, working to upgrade service operations at utilities and manufacturers, spur growth in both state economies and company product lines, and improve the way that governments handle flooding and other natural disasters. Additionally, Jonah spent a year as Chief of Staff to McKinsey’s Crisis Management Function, helping McKinsey build capability to handle incidents ranging from COVID-19 to cyber threats.
Prior to coming to McKinsey, Jonah worked in environmental and climate resilience policy, and attended the University of Georgia, where he was a Udall Scholar and Foundation Fellow.
Scott Noorthhoek, Data Director
Data Hound. Digital Marketing Operative. Innovator.
Data and analytics have been a leading passion for Scott throughout his 20 years as a professional. Spending the first half of his career in financial markets as a derivatives trader, he pivoted to data analytics after completing his Masters in Computational Finance. For the past eight years he has focused on data driven business intelligence and innovating solutions to achieve success in the digital marketing space for leading agencies such as Rise Interactive, Arc Worldwide (Leo Burnett) and iProspect (Dentsu Aegis). He has led data focused programs for several elite Fortune 500 brands such as Bank of America, Merck Pharmaceutical, and Altria among many others across digital channels.His knack for decoding data relationships, assessing the qualitative and quantitative, and telling data stories to uncover opportunities, ultimately translating those strategic recommendations into consistently successful outcomes is where he excels. He brings this acumen for analysis and digital marketing to his passion for climate policy change with the intent to lead efforts in pursuit of these objectives.
Mary Caroline Owen, Marketing Coordinator
Curious Learner. Participant, Never a Spectator.
Mary Caroline is an enthusiastic and driven recent graduate of Clemson University where she developed a passion for social and climate issues, logging over 3,500 hours of community service.
With a Bachelors of Arts in Communication and a minor in Political Science, she has found the perfect intersection of passion and education at Trendline. Her role will focus on the tactical execution of digital marketing initiatives and project management across internal teams and special projects.
She is passionate about shaping and influencing public opinion on climate change after experiencing repeated flooding events in her home state of South Carolina.
Haylee Love, Graphic Designer
Visual Artist. Digital Storyteller. Idealist.
Haylee is a passionate Graphic Designer with an affinity for storytelling. Her authentic approach to life and design leads her to create work that resonates emotionally to inspire change.
She demonstrates an intense competitive drive borne from her collegiate athletic career where she won Academic All-American honors in cross country. She has applied that same passion and commitment to front end web development and human-centered design within the financial services and technology industries.
Haylee lives to learn, thrives under pressure, and is proud to have turned her attention to challenge of driving smart climate policy.
John Marshall, Advisor
Advisor – Marketing Executive
John is a marketing leader, strategist, professor and climate entrepreneur unlocking the power of creativity
He divides his time between leading client relationships at Lippincott (a global creative consultancy) and his startup Potential Energy – a major industry-wide effort tapping the best talent in the marketing industry to motivate urgent, collective action on climate change
His 30 years of experience advising the leaders of Fortune 500 companies spans strategy, branding, marketing, innovation and digital transformation
He’s a Professor of Marketing at Dartmouth and writes frequently for leading journals (Harvard Business Review, Forbes, The New York Times, Wired, and Fast Company)
Scott Tranter, Advisor
To beat the odds, you must play them.
Scott is a data scientist, tech entrepreneur and professor.
He is the co-founder of Øptimus (a data and technology company) and the former Director of Data Science for Marco Rubio for President.
He advises political campaigns, non-profits and businesses by managing and analyzing diverse data streams to yield actionable insight. His portfolio of work includes TV targeting platforms, agile vote modeling processes and conducting in-cycle experiment informed programs.
Kelly Wanser, Advisor
Strategist, advocate and innovator focused on near-term climate risk.
Kelly is a climate leader, strategist, tech entrepreneur and innovator with over 20 patents to her name.
She is the executive director at SilverLining, driving policy and innovation to ensure a safe climate within a decade. She was the director of the Marine Cloud Brightening Project (reflecting sunlight to reduce heat in climate). She helps study and invent global-scale technological interventions that could save humanity from the worst effects of climate change. She focuses on near-term climate risk and advancing fast-acting climate interventions.
She has also served as Senior Advisor to Ocean Conservancy on climate-ocean risk and to Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory on industry strategy for fusion energy.
Ryan Costello, Advisor
Found, Advisor, ex-Congressman, Attorney.
Ryan is the founder of RCS (a government affairs firm), a political commentator on various cable television outlets, and was the elected member to the U.S. House of Representatives for Pennsylvania (2015 to 2019) where he served on the Committee on Energy & Commerce and Transportation & Infrastructure Committee
He’s been recognised with numerous awards, including Legislator of the Year from organizations as diverse as the Humane Society, Medical Imaging and Technology Alliance, and National MS Society.
Other recognitions include: U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Spirit of Enterprise Award, NFIB’s Guardian of Small Business Award, National Association of Manufacturing’s Manufacturing Legislative Excellence Award, BIO Innovator in Biotechnology, Advanced Energy Leadership Award.
Rich Powell, Advisor
Accelerating conservative clean energy solutions
Rich leads ClearPath and ClearPath Action, the DC-based organizations developing and advancing conservative policies that accelerate clean energy innovation
He educates policymakers on investing wisely in energy innovation, removing roadblocks to building and exporting American clean energy technology, and maintaining and promoting our flexible clean energy resources. Rich also leads ClearPath’s external advocacy and research partnerships with private sector, non-profits, and academia
Rich serves as a member of the 2019 Advisory Committee to the Export Import Bank of the United States.
Previously, Rich was with McKinsey & Company in the Energy and Sustainability practices. He focused on corporate clean energy strategy, government low carbon growth strategy, and clean tech market entry.
Melissa Roberts, Advisor
Founder and Executive Director of American Flood Coalition.
Melissa is the founder and executive director of the American Flood Coalition (AFC), a non-partisan group of political, military, business, and local leaders that work together to drive adaptation to the reality of flooding and sea level rise.
She supports the coalition membership, leads policy development, and guides strategy for the coalition’s mission of advocating for national solutions to flooding and sea level rise. Membership includes Members of Congress, elected officials, military leaders, cities, towns and counties, businesses, and civic and educational organizations from across the country.
Previously, she was a manager at McKinsey & Company where she specialized in infrastructure finance and planning. She was a lead author on the publication Financing Change: How to Mobilize Private Sector Financing for Sustainable Infrastructure.
Rich Thau, Advisor
President and Co-Founder of Engagious
As president and Co-Founder of Engagious, Rich has spearheaded groundbreaking research in public policy, corporate messaging and sales communications. Rich regularly advises leaders in Congress and their staffs, presidential campaigns, and corporate executives on how to improve their messaging. His recommendations have shaped the national debate over Social Security, Medicare, and tax reform. His policy messaging projects have focused on climate change, immigration, foreign policy, welfare, energy, government spending, healthcare, labor/management issues, and international trade.
Rich testified before the U.S. Senate Budget Committee’s Social Security Task Force and the U.S. House Social Security Subcommittee. He has also spoken at Harvard, Georgetown, the House GOP Member retreats, and was invited by the Clinton Administration to speak at the White House Summit on Social Security.