I have been privileged to work for the Institute for Environmental Negotiation (IEN) since 1990, and have been its Director since 2000. As a mediator and facilitator, I seek to help individuals and groups address complex public problems and conflicts in ways that strengthen communities rather than tear them apart. Each year I work on average on a dozen or so projects involving environment and land use, contaminated sites, community development, education, and health. I have also facilitated many difficult community conversations on topics ranging from faith and homosexuality, to education, to reparations for slavery. Learn more about my backstory here. You can find my resume here. Email Frank.
My work as a mediator, writer and teacher are expressions of my core fascination with people and the world we inhabit. There is little that doesn't interest me. I am very averse to conflict, which is why, paradoxically, I feel so rewarded by helping others resolve it. Since 1997 my work at IEN has included process design, facilitation, research and training - from small group mediation to formal regulatory advisory panels; organizational strategic planning to community visioning; focus groups to large stakeholder summits; community research to community planning; university courses on community food systems to professional training on conflict resolution and collaborative problem-solving. I’ve worked on most aspects of our natural and built environment: land use, water (watershed planning, stormwater, onsite septic, sea level rise), forests, transportation, agriculture and food, health, and more. Learn more about my backstory here. You can find my resume here. Email Tanya.
My education in urban and environmental planning has taught me the importance of engaging in projects that assess the unique environmental, sociopolitical, and cultural characteristics of a place while integrating the public vision. As program manager of the Virginia Natural Resources Leadership Institute, I have the chance to expose others to a wide range of collaborative stakeholder processes. Prior to this position, I worked at IEN as a graduate associate and project manager for two Virginia Sea Grant projects. My responsibilities have included managing communication with partners, research, outreach to stakeholders, facilitating and recording group discussions, and designing project reports and webpages. You can find my resume here. Email Melissa.
As the Supervisory Grants and Office Manager for IEN, I oversee the financial accounting and accountability for the office, manage most aspects of our grants and contracts, supervise our student interns, and coordinate various other business and administrative operations of the office. My background is in customer service, marketing, voluntarism, and as an entrepreneur. My education includes a BS in business management and an MS in Nonprofit Management and Philanthropy. Prior to IEN, I worked at UVa’s Office of Engagement for six years. I enjoy traveling, quilting, cycling, and reading. You can find my resume here. Email Ellen.
My role at IEN is part-time Administrative Assistant. I provide general administrative support to the IEN staff, but the majority of my time is spent working on the Virginia Natural Resource Leadership Institute (VNRLI). I came to IEN in September of 2008 after being a stay-at-home mom for over 10 years. I am originally from Littleton, Colorado where I worked for the University of Colorado for 12 years. In 1999, my husband was transferred to Pittsburgh, PA where we lived for 6 years. In 2005, his company brought us to Charlottesville. We have two wonderful boys that keep us very busy and active. Email Tammy.
My interest in environmental dispute resolution stems from a love for the outdoors and experiences locally and internationally observing people interacting with their communities and ecosystems. With an educational background in ecology, journalism, policy analysis, and law, I have a systems perspective that informs my work at IEN in process design, facilitation, and mediation. My experience in the private, nonprofit, and public sectors has led me to believe that participatory and collaborative problem solving is one of the most promising paths to vibrant communities, strong economies, and a clean environment. You can find my resume here. Email Kelly.