Board of Directors

Angel S. Fernandez-Bou, PhD (President) José Luis Susa Rincon, PhD (Treasurer)
Anna Gurevitz, MA (Secretary) Humberto Flores-Landeros, BE
J. Pablo Ortiz-Partida  
updated on June 2022

Angel S. Fernandez-Bou, PhD (President)

Co-Founder | Ph.D. Environmental Systems | M.Sc. Biosystems Engineering: Water Resources | B.Eng. Agricultural Engineering 

My work orbits around Sustainability (people + nature must be sustainable). Our team develops innovative solutions to preserve the environment, improve economic robustness, promote quality of life in disadvantaged communities, and develop climate solutions. We have multiple publications at all levels (for policymakers, for scientists, for disadvantaged community stakeholders, often bilingual).

Part of my work is to translate science into action. Our team implements projects of to mitigate environmental injustice and to promote health and socioeconomic opportunities. We do bilingual scientific outreach, workshops for children and adults, and communication with policymakers and journalists.


José Luis Susa Rincon, PhD (Treasurer)

Co-Founder | Ph.D. Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

Jose Luis Susa Rincón one day discovered robots and since then decided to spend his life building, programming, and creating more and more of these cool companions. Because college was not enough, he went to France to study more, and because that was still not enough, he went to UC Merced in the US to become a doctor in robotics. After all that study and work for many years, now he is ready to teach you all the tricks he knows about robots and together have the best time building and learning about technology in general.


Anna Gurevitz, MA (Executive Director | Secretary)

Co-Founder | Masters of Arts in Teaching, University of Southern California | M.A. World Cultures, University of California, Merced  

Hailing from Arizona, I began my life in the Central Valley of California as a graduate student at the University of California, Merced where I received a M.A. in World Cultures in 2017. While there, I focused on a field called bioarchaeology – which just means that I studied the skeletal remains of individuals at archaeological sites. I loved what I did, but while studying, I got involved with conducting workshops for middle and high school students about my field, which made me switch career fields. I left the research world of academia and pursued a Masters of Arts in Teaching from the University of Southern California, which I received with a teaching credential in Science in 2020. I currently work for the Strategic Energy Innovations (SEI, an environmental non-profit) as the Associate Contracts Manager, and volunteer for SEEN, where I am working for equity in quality and critical education.


Humberto Flores-Landeros, B. Eng.

B.Eng. Environmental Engineering | Ph.D. student in Environmental Systems | University of California, Merced 



J. Pablo Ortiz-Partida, PhD 

Doctor in Hydrology and Water Resources | University of California, Davis

Pablo Ortiz is Senior Water and Climate Scientist for the Climate & Energy program at the Union of Concerned Scientists. In his role, he takes the lead in identifying and developing analytic and research projects that further his team’s water-related priorities. Dr. Ortiz also works on developing strategies for vulnerable sectors and populations in California to cope and adapt to the current and projected impacts of climate change, particularly related to water impacts.




Core Team

Chantelise Pells, PhD (Community Engagement Program Director | Social Science Lead)

PhD in Geography, University of California, Davis | MA in Geography, University of California, Davis | BA in Geography, University of California, Berkeley 

Chantelise Pells’ work focuses on community-based environmental resource governance, water governance and socio-environmental sustainability. Her current research looks at the climate change impacts on vulnerable rural communities. Chantelise’s dissertation research is a case study of participation dynamics of the local groundwater user association in Northern Baja California, Mexico. Her work specifically focuses on multi-scale power relations impacting local governance and the related socio-environmental effects.

She also works to broaden understanding of human induced environmental problems and to work towards building collaborative and just solutions. She has experience teaching higher education courses that focus on socio-environmental sustainability, environmental policy and design and human geography. 


Some of our wonderful volunteers and collaborators

Alan Cai (Instructor and Scientist)

PhD student in Watershed Science, Colorado State University | MSc in Environmental System, UC Merced | BS in Environmental Science and BA in Atmospheric Sciences, UC Berkeley 

Alan Cai is a PhD student in Watershed Sciences at Colorado State University – Fort Collins. He previously completed a Master’s degree in the Environmental Systems Graduate at UC Merced, where he focused on understanding the priorities, attitudes, and decision-making processes of Western United States hydropower facility operators with regards to environmental flows. In 2018, as an instructor for SEEN, he developed and taught an interactive ecological monitoring workshop to Central Valley high school students. He later converted this workshop into a virtual format during the COVID-19 pandemic period. Alan is fluent in Mandarin and an expert in watershed fieldwork. 

Former Members of the Board of Directors

Ana Simões, MA (2019 – 2022)

Co-Founder | PhD candidate in Quantitative Psychology, University of California, Merced. | M.A. Psychology, American International College

Originally from Brazil, Ana Simoes moved to Massachusetts in 2012 to pursue a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and a Bachelor of Science in Psychology. In 2016, she continued her studies and obtained a Masters of Arts in General Psychology. Ana is currently a PhD candidate in Quantitative Psychology at the University of California Merced where she studies mathematical modeling and statistical analysis applied to the social sciences. 



Elisabet Perez-Coronel, PhD (2019 – 2022)

Co-Founder | Doctor in Environmental Systems | University of California, Merced 

Eli grew up in Mexico and has been passionate about caring for the environment since she was young. She majored in Environmental Engineering and during her studies she learned that little tiny organisms regulate what happens in our water, dirt and even in our bodies. After college she moved to the U.S to pursue a PhD in Environmental Science at UC Merced where she studied microbes that live in lakes and how they can influence climate change. She enjoys teaching Earth and Environmental Science, hiking, dancing, reading, and traveling.


Manuel Cornejo, PhD (2019 – 2022)

Co-Founder | Doctor in Quantitative and Systems Biology.

I grew up in Tijuana, Mexico, and moved to Merced to pursue my Ph.D. degree. Now I work in a Bioengineering company in San Diego. I am interested in diverse topics on biology and chemistry, especially those related to health, such as physiology and pharmacology. As an undergrad I helped graduate students to develop a more efficient medicine for hypertension, and worked with bacteria to develop a vaccine for cows. Nowadays, I work looking at the effect of different treatments on Japanese diabetic rats. I went to Japan during three summers to work with other students in my lab, and tried to pick up the basics of the language (it’s hard!). I like martial arts, and I have a black belt in Taekwondo. 


Jorge A.M. Montiel-Molina, PhD (2019 – 2020)

Picture from UC Merced News

Co-Founder | Doctor in Environmental Systems