Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances

The Social Discovery of a Class of Emerging Contaminants

Speaker Bios

Laurene Allenimage1.jpeg

Laurene Allen is a Social Worker who has lived in Merrimack, NH since 1985 where the well based water municipality consistently received awards of excellence for water quality. In 2016 residents discovered that St Gobain had been utilizing chemicals including PFOA and had contaminated groundwater via air emissions. Laurene was appalled at the lack of protective laws and support for residents with health concerns and became a founding member of Merrimack Citizens for Clean Water, a community advocacy and education group.

Andrea Amicoamico_head_shot.jpg

Andrea Amico is a co-founder of the Testing for Pease community action group. She started advocating for more answers and action for the Pease community impacted by PFC/PFAS water contamination at the former Pease Air Force Base in Portsmouth, NH in 2014 after learning her husband and two small children were impacted by highly contaminated drinking water. She is passionate about raising awareness of PFAS water contamination, providing education to impacted communities, lowering standards for PFASs in drinking water, and collaborating with others from all aspects of PFASs (communities, physicians, legislators, researchers, government agencies, etc) to achieve a common goal of reducing PFAS exposure through water.

Kyle BagenstoseBagenstose-headshot

Kyle Bagenstose is an environmental and investigative reporter with The Intelligencer newspaper in suburban Philadelphia. In 2016, he broke the news that tens of thousands of residents in southeastern Pennsylvania were being exposed to high amounts of perfluorinated compounds in their drinking water. Following the initial story, he and colleague Jenny Wagner have investigated the issue further, as well as the actions taken by the local, state, and federal governments. They’ve written more than 150 stories on the issue to date.

Robert BilottBilott_Robert_hires

Robert A. Bilott is on the Board of Less Cancer and  is a partner with the law firm of Taft Stettinius & Hollister LLP, where he has practiced since 1990 in the firm’s environmental, litigation, mass tort/class action, and personal injury/product liability practice groups.  For well over a decade, Rob has represented tens of thousands of  individuals in communities across the country in litigation and related regulatory and scientific issues involving perfluorochemical contamination of drinking water supplies.  To date, Rob has helped secure relief and compensation valued at over $1 Billion for those impacted by PFC drinking water contamination.

Linda Birnbaumbirnbaum-yellow-dress_1.jpg

Linda S. Birnbaum, Ph.D., D.A.B.T., A.T.S., is the Director of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and the National Toxicology Program (NTP). A board certified toxicologist, she has served as a federal scientist for over 37 years. Dr. Birnbaum is a former president of the Society of Toxicology, the largest professional organization of toxicologists in the world. She is the author of more than 800 peer-reviewed publications, book chapters, and reports, and is an adjunct professor at several universities, including Duke University and University of North Carolina. A native of New Jersey, Dr. Birnbaum received her M.S. and Ph.D. in microbiology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She is married and has three children.


Mariah BlakeMother Jones staff headshots

Mariah Blake is an award-winning investigative journalist and the 2016 Murrey Marder Nieman Fellow in Watchdog Journalism at Harvard University. Her writing has appeared in the Atlantic, the Columbia Journalism Review, Christian Science Monitor, Foreign Policy, Huffington Post Highline, Mother Jones, and the New Republic, among other publications. She’s currently working on a book about plastics, focusing largely on Teflon and PFOA.

Frank Boveheadshot

Frank Bove has been a senior epidemiologist at ATSDR since 1991.  He has conducted epidemiological studies at USMC Base Camp Lejeune, where the drinking water was contaminated with trichloroethylene and perchloroethylene from the early  1950s through 1985. He has also completed a feasibility assessment for epidemiological studies at the Pease International Tradeport, Portsmouth NH, where drinking water has been contaminated with PFAS.  Dr. Bove is also on the board of ECO-Action, an environmental justice organization headquartered in Atlanta.

Phil Brownphil_brown

Phil Brown is University Distinguished Professor of Sociology and Health Science at Northeastern University, where he directs the Social Science Environmental Health Research Institute. He is the author of No Safe Place: Toxic Waste, Leukemia, and Community Action, and Toxic Exposures: Contested Illnesses and the Environmental Health Movement, and co-editor of Contested Illnesses: Citizens, Science and Health Social Movements. He co-directs an NIEHS T-32 training program, “Transdisciplinary Training at the Intersection of Environmental Health and Social Science.” He is part of Northeastern’s Children’s Environmental Health Center (CRECE) and Superfund Research Program (PROTECT). He is also a member of the NIEHS National Advisory Environmental Health Sciences Council.

Sylvia Broude

Sylvia Broude is Executive Director of Toxics Action Center, a non-profit that organizes with communities on the frontlines of local environmental and health threats. She oversees Toxics Action Center’s six New England offices and supervises a team of eleven staff that assists more than 100 communities each year. In recent years, she has played a critical role in grassroots efforts to transition away from coal-fired power plants in New England and build support for zero waste policies across the region. Sylvia serves on Advisory Boards to the Clean Water Network, the Administrative Council for the Mass. Toxics Use Reduction Act and the New England Consortium and is a senior fellow with the Environmental Leadership Program. She lives in Boston and joined the Toxics Action Center team in 2006.

Christina BushChris Bush

Christina Bush has been part of the Toxicology and Response Section within Michigan’s Department of Health and Human Services for 15 years and has been working on PFAS-related issues for about seven of those years.  Her work focuses on sites of environmental contamination and concern, where she determines whether potentially harmful exposures may be occurring to communities.  She obtained her BS and MS from Michigan State University, obtaining a dual degree in Animal Science and Environmental Toxicology.  Originally from the state of New York, Christina moved to Michigan in the mid-1970s and loves “the Mitten State”!

Tracy Carlucciotracy head shot

Tracy Carluccio is Deputy Director of the Delaware Riverkeeper Network (DRN), where she has been an environmental advocate since 1989, working throughout the Delaware River Watershed in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, and Delaware. Carluccio works on many advocacy issues including water quality and supply, watershed and habitat protection, stormwater management, flooding and flood damage prevention, energy, confronting natural gas development and fracking, municipal planning, community and habitat health, and stream and water resource protection. Carluccio serves as a board member for her municipality and local environmental organization and is a government-appointed member of the New Jersey Highlands Water Protection and Planning Council which protects over half of New Jersey’s water supplies.

Brian Campion94BED3C9-00F1-42A7-9C27-D5064D565A98

Vermont State Senator Brian Campion was first elected to the Senate in 2013. He serves as the Vice-Chair of the Senate Committee on Natural Resources and Energy and is a member of the Senate Committee on Finance. Prior to the Senate, Campion served two terms in the Vermont House of Representatives. Over the past three years Campion and his committee have passed legislation on clean water, renewable energy, and toxic-use reform. Since PFOA was discovered in Campion‘s district in 2016 he has helped author several bills to protect people and the environment from toxics.

Courtney CarignanCarignan Headshot

Dr. Carignan is a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Environmental Health at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. She is an environmental epidemiologist and exposure scientist whose work focuses on human exposure to emerging contaminants among and effects on reproductive and child health. She has been working closely with the Pease community in their response to PFAS drinking water contamination over the past three years and serves as scientific advisor for ATSDR’s Community Assistance Panel.

Richard Clappclapp

Richard Clapp has an MPH and a doctoral degree in public health. He taught at B.U. School of Public Health in the Department of Environmental Health; he retired in 2010 and is now Professor Emeritus. He is also on the Adjunct Faculty at the U. of Massachusetts – Lowell.

Dr. Clapp has done research and taught courses in epidemiology and environmental health for over thirty years. He has been on the Pease Community Assistance Panel for the past year.

Ken Cookken-cook_pic-1.jpg

Ken Cook, president and co-founder of the Environmental Working Group, is widely recognized as one of the environmental community’s most prominent and influential critics of industrial agriculture, U.S. food and farm policy and the nation’s broken approach to protecting families and children from toxic substances. Under Cook’s leadership, EWG has pioneered the use of digital technologies to empower American families with easy-to-use, data-driven tools to help reduce their exposure to potentially harmful ingredients in foods, drinking water, cosmetics and other household products. Capitol Hill’s closely read newspaper, The Hill, regularly lists Cook in its annual roster of Washington’ stop lobbyists. In 2013 it said Cook’s “influence spans the country” and called EWG “the tip of the green movement’s spear when it comes to agriculture and food policy.”

Alissa Cordnercordner-photo-2015-1.jpg

Alissa Cordner is an Assistant Professor of Sociology at Whitman College, where she teaches Sociology and Environmental Studies courses. Her research interests include environmental sociology, environmental health and justice, risk and disasters, science and knowledge, social movements, and policy and participation, with current projects on the social and scientific discovery of PFAS compounds, wildland fire risk management, and environmental risks for wheat and vineyard farmers. Her 2016 book Toxic Safety: Flame Retardants, Scientific Controversies, and Environmental Health (Columbia University Press) examined the sociological aspects of risk assessment in industry, regulation, research, and activism around flame retardant chemicals.

Emily Corwinemily

New Hampshire Public Radio’s Emily Corwin covers news in Southern New Hampshire, and reports on the state’s criminal justice system. She’s also one of eight dedicated reporters with the New England News Collaborative, a consortium of public media newsrooms across New England. Her continuing coverage of water contamination in Southern New Hampshire received a 2016 regional Edward R. Murrow award.

Michelle DaltonMD headshot (1)

Michelle Dalton is a co-founder of Testing for Pease, a community action group dedicated to advocating on behalf of the Pease Tradeport community in Portsmouth, NH who was affected by the PFAS water contamination. Michelle serves on the Community Assistance Panel (CAP) formed by the Agency for Toxic Substance and Disease Registry (ATSDR) to address and voice the concerns of the Pease community and their families, and to provide input for health studies and research. Michelle is also a co-founding member of the New Hampshire Safe Water Alliance advocacy group whose mission is to advocate for clean and safe water across New Hampshire. Michelle graduated from Northeastern University and immediately entered into the legal field where she worked for law firms in both MA and NH. She received a Marketing Strategy Certificate from Cornell University’s School of Business and currently works on Pease Tradeport for a non-profit organization as a Marketing Manager. Michelle grew up in the Boston metro area and currently lives in New Hampshire with her husband and 3 children.

Alayna DavisAlayna_Davis

Alayna Davis is a NH resident whose family has been impacted by a PFAS water contamination on the Pease Tradeport where she worked for several years and where her young son attended daycare. Alayna has a passion for educating others about reducing their exposures to environmental toxins, so she was seriously concerned when she learned about the contamination at Pease. Being an advocate and educating exposed community members about how these chemicals may impact their families and communities has been a priority for her ever since. Alayna is a co-founder of the community group Testing for Pease and serves as a member of the Pease Community Assistance Panel (CAP) run by ATSDR.

Gary DavisIMG_7864_300x450_acf_cropped

Gary Davis is an environmental attorney with 40 years of experience in environmental law, policy, and technology. His firm litigates complex environmental damages cases, citizen suits, and permit challenges throughout the U.S. and focuses on class and mass tort actions involving major environmental releases, such as the BP oil spill and PFAS contamination of water supplies. Davis earned his J.D. from the University of Tennessee and a B.S. in chemical engineering from the University of Cincinnati.

Carol DiPirro

Carol DiPirro is currently a Software Trainer and Systems Analyst who has lived in Merrimack, NH since 1997. Carol’s Bachelor’s degree is in Dietetics which reflects her interest in health. Carol became an activist while fighting the NED pipeline from coming through her town’s water supply. Shortly after learning that pipeline project was suspended, the town of Merrimack learned that St Gobain had been releasing chemicals including PFOAs into the air for years that led to contaminated groundwater. She is worried about the children in her town and the lack of action taken to protect the citizens.  After hearing the news, Carol helped form Merrimack Citizens for Clean Water, a community advocacy and education group. 

Alan Ducatmanphoto-of-me-ducatman-large-dr-alan-5x7-jpg.jpeg

Alan Ducatman is a professor in the West Virginia University School of Public Health and the School of Medicine. He received the MD degree from Wayne State and completed his residencies Internal Medicine and in Occupational Medicine at Mayo Clinic. His research focuses on environmental disease and disease prevention, including health communications to affected populations. He has published actively concerning clinical population aspects of exposure to perflouroalkyl substances. Dr. Ducatman’s public service has included work with industry, nonprofits, and government such as Chair of an external science advising committee to the National Center for Environmental Health and the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry of the Centers for Disease Control.

Mark Ells

Mark S. Ells has been a resident of Centerville for the last 24 year. He is married to Christina and has 4 daughters and 2 sons. Mark is currently the Town Manager in Barnstable, MA and has worked for the Town for 28 years. Mark has been teaching college as an adjunct faculty member at the Cape Cod Community College for 15 years in their Business Administration Program. Mark serves on several regional and state wide committees ranging from environmental, human services, education, and transportation issues. His education includes a Bachelor Degree in Engineering from Norwich University, and a MBA and a MPA from Western New England University. Mark worked in private consulting prior to joining the Town of Barnstable.

Edward Emmettemmett.png

Edward Emmett MD, MS, a physician and toxicologist, is Professor in Occupational and Environmental Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine. Previous positions have included Director of the Center for Occupational and Environmental Health at Johns Hopkins University and Chief Executive of the National Occupational Health and Safety Commission (Worksafe) Australia. Dr Emmett led the landmark studies of sources and effects of PFOA around Little Hocking Ohio which led to the provision of bottled water to the community and received the Community-Campus Partnerships for Health Award for 2008. This study used innovative ‘Community-First’ methodology to communicate results.

Tony FletcherFletcher

Tony Fletcher, PhD, is an Environmental Epidemiologist, Associate Professor at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) and also part-time at Public Health England (PHE). During 2006 to 2013, he was one of the C8 Science Panel responsible for designing and implementing studies of health effects of drinking water exposure contamination by Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA or C8), in West Virginia and Ohio, USA. Other research has included cancer from arsenic in drinking water and various occupational exposures. He was President of the International Society for Environmental Epidemiology (ISEE) and has an honorary appointment in Boston as Adjunct Research Professor in Environmental Health in the School of Public Health, Boston University.

Jason Galloway

Jason Galloway has a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Ohio State University, and has returned to work on a degree in Molecular Genetics. Having grown up in an Appalachian Ohio community on the Ohio River, he became interested in PFAS after reading articles by Mariah Blake and Sharon Lerner concerning the DuPont fluoropolymer plant in Parkersburg, WV. With the help of Dr. Andrew Lindstrom of the EPA’s National Exposure Research Laboratory, and Dr. Linda Weavers of Ohio State University, Galloway organized several trips to investigate PFAS contamination in the region surrounding the Parkersburg plant, leading to some interesting discoveries yet to be published.

Susan GordonP1020018

After receiving an MSW with an emphasis in community organizing, Susan chose to pursue a career in organic farming, allowing her integrate work and home while pursuing her passion for cultivating and connecting healthy plants, people, and planet. The work on the 190 acre community farm she and her husband manage in Colorado Springs, CO came to a halt last summer when high levels of PFCs from firefighting foam used at nearby Peterson Air Force Base were detected in the aquifer that feeds the farm’s wells. Susan, her husband, and their two daughters have lived and worked on the farm, drinking well water and eating food grown with the irrigation water, for the past ten years.

Hope GrossehopeG

Hope Grosse grew up directly across the street from Warminster Naval Base (born) 1964-1989 and also worked 1986-1991. Hopes entire family grew up watching the firefighting activities from their front porch. They gathered weekly and watched the fires in the evening and then the next afternoon would play in the rubble. Her father died of brain tumor in 1990 at 52 and she was diagnosed with Stage 4 Melanoma Skin cancer at age 25 that quickly spread to her lymph system. Other unexplained tumors have also been removed from her body over the years. After learning that the Navel base was named a superfund national priority site, she began to get involved in environmental advocacy and was committed to bringing awareness to others in her community. Although she is concerned about PFOA/PFOS she is most concerned with the combined and cumulative effects of the 75 other harmful chemicals she was exposed to, many of which and were found at dangerous levels in the water, soil and air. Hope is looking forward to bringing Warminster back to a clean and healthful environment where we can learn from our past mistakes so that our children have a safer place to live.

Kevin Hannon

Kevin Hannon is the founder of the Hannon Law Firm, LLC. He has represented plaintiffs in environmental damage cases in multiple states for nearly 30 years. In 1993, Kevin Hannon and his co-counsel in Escamilla, et al. v. Asarco, an environmental class action, received the 1993 “Trial Lawyer of the Year” award given by The Trial Lawyers for Public Justice Foundation. In 1996, Kevin Hannon received the Outstanding Young Trial Lawyer award from the Colorado Trial Lawyers Association (CTLA). In 2000, Hannon received the “Case of the Year” award from CTLA for its work in NWIS, et al. v. Public Service Co. of Colorado, which involved property damage claims due to natural gas migration. Hannon and its co-counsel received the “Case of the Year” award from Colorado Trial Lawyers Association a second time in 2014 for their work in Doyle v. Fluor Corp., an 18- year property damage class action for airborne lead-contamination of a residential community. He is currently working with residents of Merrimack, Litchfield, and Bedford fighting PFAS contamination.


Greg Howardhowardg

Greg Howard is an environmental public health scientist with a broad background in epidemiology and toxicology, holding doctoral and MPH degrees from Boston University School of Public Health. He is especially interested in how we can use scientific information to create more effective and protective chemicals policies. He has been a AAAS Science & Technology Policy Fellow, and has extensive experience with US and European chemicals policy. Greg has taught at Dickinson College, the Boston University SPH, and Brown University. He lives in Providence.

Shaina Kaspertac.skasper14 (2)

Shaina Kasper is Toxics Action Center’s Vermont State Director and also works as a community organizer in New Hampshire. She grew up in Vermont, and is a graduate of the United World College in New Mexico, the International Honors Program, and Macalester College. Her organizing experience includes fossil fuel divestment, housing and economic justice issues, promoting good governance, international public water organizing, and the JOIN for Justice Jewish organizing fellowship. At Toxics Action Center, Shaina works out of the Montpelier, Vermont office to assist community groups to clean up and prevent pollution issues in their neighborhoods — everything from cleaning up hazardous waste sites, curbing pesticide pollution, unregulated contaminants in drinking water, stopping landfill leaching and promoting zero waste, and shutting down dirty fossil fuel infrastructure — by providing information, networking, and side-by-side community organizing assistance.

Brandon Kernen

Brandon Kernen is the Manager of the Hydrology and Conservation Program at the Department of Environmental Services. His responsibilities include oversight of programs associated with groundwater withdrawals, groundwater discharges, water use reporting, water conservation, water well construction and well driller licensing. He also has coordinated Department initiatives associated with the occurrence of emerging contaminants such as perchlorate, 1,4-dioxane, unregulated pesticides in drinking water at schools and daycares and PFAS. He has a graduate degree in Civil and Environmental Engineering from Tufts University and an undergraduate degree in Hydrology and Water Resources from the University of Arizona.

Joe KigerIMG_0990

Joe is a graduate of West Liberty University. He has worked in the construction field for 28 years as a general foreman and safety representative. He spent four years as Administrator of the Labors Training and Trust Fund of the West Virginia and was field coordinator for the West Virginia AFL-CIO drug and alcohol abuse program for 21 years He presently teaches in the Wood County school system. He is married to Darlene Kiger and has five children and six grandchildren.

Arnie LericheA Leriche photo

Arnie Leriche is a retired Environmental/Civil Engineer with over 30 years’ experience in program management and enforcement at US EPA now living in the former Wurtsmith Air Force Base area of Oscoda, MI.   He is a community action group leader in several NGO’s or non-profits in the Iosco County, e.g., Rotary Club of Oscoda, Pine River/Van Etten Lake Watershed Coalition, Develop Iosco, AuSable Valley Audubon chapter, etc. He recognized that residents and the community service organizations would be adversely affected by the ongoing developments of the contamination scenarios being discussed by officials and not. He started advocating publicly for more answers, more involvement by local township officials and more involvement/action by citizens of the Oscoda-AuSable community. He lobbied in four public forums that the Air Force, MDEQ and municipal officials to establish regular and open dialogue of issues by re-establishing the Restoration Advisory Board which was ultimately approved by the USAF in September 2016, however, not yet implemented. He continues to lobby for a more transparent and timely dialogue between the community and remediation/health decision makers.

Sharon Lernerbioshot-1

Sharon Lerner is an environmental reporter for The Intercept and a reporting fellow at the Investigative Fund. Her work focuses on the way corporate pollution impacts ordinary Americans and failures of the environmental regulatory process. Her 11-part series, The Teflon Toxin, tracks per fluorinated chemicals throughout the US and the world.

Andrew LindstromLindstrom

Andy has been working as a research scientist for the United States Environmental Protection Agency’s (USEPA) National Exposure Research Laboratory (NERL) for the past 27 years. He is currently conducting method development research for the Internal Exposure Indicators Branch where his areas of expertise include measurement of trace-level contaminants in environmental and biological matrices and human exposure assessment.


Callie Lyons

Callie Lyons is an award-winning journalist and author living in the Mid Ohio Valley. Her first book, Stain-Resistant, Nonstick, Waterproof and Lethal: The Hidden Dangers of C8, chronicles the public’s discovery of PFOA contamination in consumer water supplies neighboring DuPont’s Washington Works near Parkersburg, West Virginia – and eventually in every mile of the Ohio River. Known as a “warrior for public health”, Lyons’ environmental investigations have been featured internationally in print media and related documentaries.

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Sue Manente is a health educator with the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Toxicology and Response Section. She has been working on the former Wurtsmith Air Force Base site since 2012. She is also the health educator for the Michigan Environmental Public Health Tracking program, and is assigned to community engagement for vapor intrusion sites. She received her Master of Arts in Organizational Development degree from Spring Arbor University.

Mindi Messmerhead shot cropped
District 24 – Rye and New Castle

Mindi has a background in environmental work and combines her expertise in environmental contaminants with an understanding of the health effects of toxins. Mindi was elected to the New Hampshire State House and served on NH Governor Maggie Hassan’s Task Force to investigate the rhabdomyosarcoma cancer cluster that she identified in 2014. Mindi has sponsored 4 bills seeking to protect our drinking water across the state since being elected. The bills seek to implement more protective state criteria for exposure to perfluorinated chemicals (PFCs) in drinking water, develop a Seacoast regional drinking water planning commission and a commission to create an environmental exposure chronic disease dashboard for the DHHS.

Fardin Oliaeiimg_7863.jpg

Fardin is an environmental scientist with 25 year experience in creating solutions to challenging environmental issues related to toxic exposure and health impacts. She holds a PhD in Environmental Science and an MPA degree from Kennedy School at Harvard University focusing on global environmental health Issues, public health policy analysis and sustainable development. She worked with the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) as the head of their “Emerging Contaminants” program. Since leaving the MPCA, she has remained focused on advocacy to protect the public from environmental contaminant risks, working with the Women’s Environmental Institute and DST Health Solutions.

Silvia Potter

Silvia Potter is originally from Germany, spent many years around the US, and settled in Hoosick Falls in 2009. She works as a counselor and is a mom. When the news hit about their water contamination, she was shocked and worried about the health impacts. She began organizing on Facebook, then meeting with other concerned residents, delivering bottled water daily to those who could not collect it themselves with the Hoosick Falls Water Angles. She has been organizing with the group @NYWaterProject in town to get clean water, political change, and health damages ever since.

Lauren RichterLaurenR_Switzer

Lauren Richter is a doctoral candidate in Sociology and Anthropology at Northeastern University and a member of the Social Science Environmental Health Research Institute. She is a research assistant on Dr. Phil Brown and Dr. Alissa Cordner’s NSF grant “Per- and Polyfluorinated Chemicals: The Social Discovery of a Class of Emerging Contaminants.” Prior to pursuing her Ph.D. she worked at the Center on Race, Poverty & the Environment in California from 2009-2013. She completed an M.A. in Sociology from Washington State University in 2008. She is on the board of directors of the Boston-based environmental justice organization Alternatives for Community and Environment (ACE). In 2015 she received the graduate department’s “Outstanding Public and Applied Research Award,” and in 2017 she was selected as a Switzer Environmental Fellow. Her dissertation research examines scientific knowledge production and translation in the case of emerging per-and polyfluorinated compounds.

Kenneth Rumelt

Kenneth Rumelt is a Senior Attorney and Professor of Law at Vermont Law School’s Environmental and Natural Resources Law Clinic (ENRLC).  Mr. Rumelt began his legal career helping represent children and homeowners in toxic tort litigation.  At the ENRLC, Mr. Rumelt works on matters involving climate change, energy infrastructure, and toxic pollution.  In 2016, Mr. Rumelt served on statewide Working Group established by the Vermont Legislature to recommend improvements to the existing legal regime for toxic substances.

Laurel SchaiderLaurelSchaider
Dr. Schaider is a Research Scientist at Silent Spring Institute with expertise in environmental chemistry, environmental engineering, and exposure assessment.  She leads the Institute’s Cape Cod water quality research on PFASs and other contaminants of emerging concern.  Before joining Silent Spring, she was a research associate at the Harvard School of Public Health, where she studied heavy metal fate, transport, and exposure. Dr. Schaider earned her master’s and Ph.D. in Environmental Engineering at the University of California, Berkeley, and a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Engineering Science from MIT.


Alyssa Schuren

Alyssa Schuren is a goal-driven leader and manager with more than fifteen years of government and non-profit experience who is currently a partner with The Management Center. Before joining The Management Center, she served as the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner, where she led the implementation of a major Lake Champlain cleanup plan, spearheaded a nationally-recognized response to chemical contamination impacting drinking water wells, increased recycling, decreased disposal rates, and increased food donations to the Vermont Food Bank by 40%. Alyssa also worked as Environment America’s Development Director and as Executive Director at Toxics Action Center.

Joanne StantonJoanne Stanton Warminster 1

Joanne Stanton has a Bachelor of Science degree in Public Health from Temple University. She has fifteen years of experience working in the pharmaceutical industry as both a senior scientific communications writer and senior medical writer.  Joanne grew up in Warminster near the Warminster Naval Air Base where decades of military activities contaminated the water, air, and soil.  Following her son’s cancerous brain tumor diagnosis she became involved in community and political activism surrounding children’s environmental health issues and has co-authored a current events book on the topic.  The book is being published by Morgan James later this year and is titled: Behind Closed Doors:  The Practices Harming our Children’s Health and What We Can Do About it.  She hopes that the book brings mothers’ voices to table and galvanizes the strongest and most influential voice for change American children will ever have.

Elsie Sunderland


Elsie Sunderland is the Thomas D. Cabot Associate Professor of Environmental Science and Engineering at the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applies Sciences and the Department of Environmental Health in the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. Recent work of the the Sunderland Group at Harvard has included geospatial analysis using the UCMR3 data to evaluate the relationships between PFAS levels in public water supplies and proximity to major sources, and statistical clustering methods to identify PFAS sources in surface waters in the Northeast.

Lizzie Tisher

Lizzie Tisher is a Staff Attorney and LLM Fellow with the Environmental and Natural Resources Law Clinic. Lizzie earned her JD magna cum laude from Vermont Law School in 2014. During her final semester of law school, she worked as a student clinician on two cases involving Act 250 litigation. Lizzie previously clerked for Justice John A. Dooley at the Vermont Supreme Court and worked as an Assistant Attorney General at the Vermont Office of the Attorney General, where she focused primarily on appellate litigation. She also interned with Cultural Heritage Partners, PLLC, a boutique cultural heritage law firm in Washington, D.C. Prior to attending law school, Lizzie worked as an architectural historian and historic preservation specialist in Vermont, Virginia, and Ohio.

Jenny Wagner

Jenny Wagner is a health and investigative reporter with The Intelligencer and Calkins Media’s two other newspapers in suburban Philadelphia. She’s been covering communities in Pennsylvania and New Jersey for more than six years, focusing on issues related to aging, behavioral health and substance use, and most recently the environment in Unwell Water.

Aaron Weedaaron-portrait-suit-500

Aaron Weed served 22 years in the Air Force. He was elected as board trustee in 2012 and then as Township Supervisor in 2016. After learning about the contamination at Wurtsmith, he pushed for the township to take a stand and speak out for its residents. He is seeking for the Air Force and Michigan to get clean water to the residents by extending the municipal water mains, and for MDEQ and Air Force to develop a comprehensive remediation plan.

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