Opportunity Green Staff
Chairman of the Board
Bill has been a driving force in taking OG from a great idea to a practical application. His extensive background in finance, entertainment and charitable giving have prepared him to lead an extraordinary team of board members towards a unified goal. His view of Opportunity Green as a long- term investment has created a foundation of sustainability supporting this forum for sustainable business and helped create a working example for other sustainable brands. Bill is also CEO of Earthsong Organics, Inc., makers of the KeVita pro-biotic beverage and is Owner and President of Casa Barranca Retreat Center and Winery in Ojai, the first certified organic winery and vineyard on California's Central Coast. Click Here for more info.
Co-founder and COO
Mike was recently honored as a Notable Alumni of UCLA, where he received his BS in Engineering in 2005 from the Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. Mike embodies the core of today’s young, socially conscious entrepreneur by embracing an open source approach to creating profit and purpose around successful business ventures. As COO, Mike oversees all day-to-day operations, including OG’s web and social media presence, staff and logistics. Mike is an avid surfer, snowboard and TED Conference attendee. Click Here for more info.
Sherry Simpson Dean
Sherry is an Executive Strategist with Opportunity Green. Prior to joining the OG team, Sherry Simpson-Dean spent six years as the Executive Director of the United Nations Association’s largest West Coast Chapter. Simpson-Dean is well known for the development of innovative programs that engage communities locally and globally in achieving the UN Millennium Development Goals. Over the last three years she has led the development and coordination of The Pasadena Green Business Certification Program launching in early 2011. She is also an Emmy Award winning film producer acknowledged for her deep commitment human rights and civil liberties. Her film, “Amandla! A Revolution in Four Part Harmony”, is a multiple award-winner of Robert Redford’s Sundance Film Festival. Sherry is an adjunct professor in the department of Diplomacy and World Affairs at Occidental College in Los Angeles, CA.
Director of Operations and Strategic Partnerships
The corpus callosum between the right and left brains that are Karen Solomon and Mike Flynn, Kevin first interned at Opportunity Green last year as a disillusioned Anthropology/Chinese Senior at UCLA. After stumbling upon the readings of Jared Diamond and E.O. Wilson as well as experiencing OG07, Kevin realized that his passions for innovation, design, communication, and sustainable development aligned with the manifesto and vision of Opportunity Green. Having marketing experience in the fashion industry, communication skills from years of work in customer service and living abroad, and a deep interest in generating collaboration at an international level, his future role at Opportunity Green became clear. After running off to China for the summer to continue studying language, martial arts, and pondering his future and purpose in life, Kevin has returned to the office focused and ready to explore the seemingly endless possibilities at Opportunity Green. The future Kevin envisions include trips around the world with his parents, collaboration with East Asia (especially China) to create a sustainable future, and an electric Jeep Wrangler to carry him wherever he dares to venture.
Director of Strategic Alliances
With over a decade of corporate meeting planning and account management experience, Kristall Lutz, CMP is excited to bring her expertise to Opportunity Green. As the Director of Events for Magazine Publishers of America in New York, she was responsible for more than 50 events a year ranging from intimate luncheons with United States Senators, annual conferences, trade shows, and gala awards shows. She's worked with everyone from President Obama and President Clinton to Jon Stewart and Martha Stewart. Her expertise spans the “A to Z” of event and account management, seamlessly orchestrating superior events from conception to post-event evaluation. Two of her annual events were recognized as Top 5 Media Industry Events and Top 100 Events in New York City by BizBash Magazine all five years of her tenure with MPA. An avid reader and writer, Kristall will also contribute to the OG Social Media team and Opportunity Green Insights blog. She is excited to learn more about sustainable practices that can be applied to all aspects of business and personal life.
After graduating from UCLA in 2010 with a BA in Business Economics, Clayton Du first started at Opportunity Green as an intern who organized business contacts. Recognizing the importance and potential of having an effective organization system that would encompass contacts, events, photos and everything else, Clayton began development on the OG CRM. Because of his passion for efficiency, statistics, and data analysis, he has enjoyed taking Opportunity Green's Customer Relational Management to another level. He has also grown to be passionate about the environment because of his love for efficiency and data analysis, particularly the issues of traffic congestion and waste management. Outside of Opportunity Green, Clayton is an avid follower of politics and sports, and loves to cook.
Co-founder and CEO
In honor of its 70th anniversary, Glamour Magazine featured Karen as one of the 70 women they considered to be environmental leaders and heroes. She was honored in 2009 & 2010 by the Los Angeles Business Journal at the Women Who Mean Business Awards and the 2009 recipient of the International Green Dot Award for Community and Policy. As CEO, Karen serves as a human hub for connecting great minds, nurturing extraordinary talent and promoting the best and the brightest players. Her vast experience and progressive vision have played an instrumental role in the rapid growth that has taken OG from a local green business conference to a global brand.
Business Development Manager
After losing interest in the retail sector, Casey stumbled across Opportunity Green while doing google searches for green business on his iPhone, in which OG ranked near the top. While he was unfamiliar with sustainable business world, Casey quickly realized the importance and potential of it. Armed with a newfound sense of purpose, and having studied Anthropology at UCLA, Casey works tirelessly to engage executives and entrepreneurs in the competitive advantage of being sustainable, and the benefits of attendance at OG. In addition, he has adopted sustainability into his lifestyle through simple changes such as turning off the lights and driving only when necessary. In a classic non-sequitur, Casey is an avid Thai boxing practitioner who intends to one day establish a martial arts academy.
Sustainability Reporting Manager
Jeff is CEO at The Vector Group, a Los Angeles-based business consultancy that helps companies profit from sustainability. The firm provides middle market businesses the expertise, tools and methods to fast-track corporate sustainability programs. Unlike many sustainability consultants Jeff has extensive experience running business teams in more traditional settings. In his free time Jeff writes and plays music, surfs, and is a fan of Edward Tufte, John Singer Sargent, & Gustavo Dudamel.
Director of Marketing
Jessie Babiarz is originally from Middlebury, Vermont. After receiving her BA studying Sociology and Mathematics at Ithaca College, Jessie wanted to get away from the snow. She moved to Los Angeles in 2006 and began working at the UCLA Center for the Study of Women, specializing in conference planning, financial management and awards and grants administration. After fully realizing her passion for the environment, Jessie applied to graduate schools, planning to focus on opportunities in business and sustainability. She is currently studying for an MBA at USC, where she will graduate in 2012. Aside from sustainability, her passions include being active, spending time outdoors, and cooking delicious vegetarian meals at home. She can often be found using one of LA's various forms of public transportation, even though she has a car.
Natacha Arnaud Battandier
Natacha has more than 10 years of experience as an internal or external sustainability and strategic planning consultant for mid size and international companies. She has worked with various companies to define their Corporate Social Responsibility strategy, stimulate responsible innovation and helped them implement their action plan. While she was in France, Natacha also started her own company, creating a fair trade wholesale and retail business. She is very excited to share her experience and help Opportunity Green become one of the top of the class green events. Her goal is to push the company to innovate sustainably and lead by example.
Ann Rebentisch has been an integral part of the OG production team since Year One. She is reprising her role as Head Stage Manager and spearheading the team to keep the conference running on time. Ann is the Events Manager for SolarWorld, the largest and oldest U.S. manufacturer of solar which is based in Camarillo, CA. Ann has also produced conferences for Women in Technology International, GRAMMY Professional Forums and served as an Associate Director of the Democratic National Convention.
After years of traveling the world as a singer/songwriter and entrepreneur, Shaheen Sheik-Sadhal developed her legal career as a business and intellectual property attorney at Spillane Shaeffer Aronoff Bandlow. Recognizing her passion to epitomize the union of profitability, positive social impact, and the lawTM, Shaheen launched a business law practice catering to creative, socially-conscious companies. Shaheen graduated from the University of Virginia School of Law and U.C. Berkeley and is honored to be part of the Opportunity Green team as its General Counsel.