CIPL is governed by a Steering Committee that is composed of individuals representing faith-based organizations throughout California. The Steering Committee provides general oversight and guidance to the staff and helps deliver CIPL’s mission of environmental stewardship throughout the state.
The Rev. Canon Sally G. Bingham, President, The Regeneration Project & CIPL
The Reverend Canon Sally Grover Bingham, an Episcopal priest and Canon for the Environment in the Diocese of California has been active in the environmental community for twenty-five years. She is also founder and president of The Regeneration Project, which is focused on its Interfaith Power & Light (IPL) campaign, a religious response to global warming. The IPL campaign includes a national network of over 10,000 congregations with affiliated programs in 38 states. She has brought widespread recognition to the link between faith and the environment, and as one of the first faith leaders to fully recognize global warming as a moral issue, she has mobilized thousands of religious people to put their faith into action through energy stewardship and advocacy.
The Rev. Bingham recently joined President Obama’s Advisory Council on Faith-Based and
Neighborhood Partnerships and is a member of the Forum on Children and Nature. She serves on the board of directors of the Environmental Defense Fund, the Environmental Working Group, and the U.S. Climate Action Network as well as the national advisory board for the Union of Concerned
Reverend Dr. Christopher Breedlove, Senior Pastor of Community United Church of Christ, Fresno
Rev. Dr. Breedlove joined CIPL’s Steering Committee in 2014. As pastor at Community UCC he and his congregation have been strong environmental justice advocates and have also made water conservation improvements to their house of worship. Community UCC’s website says, “Chris loves just about anything that has to do with peace and justice. He believes that grace often comes from unusual collaborations which is why some of his best friends come from diverse families of faith. A lover of all things outdoors, Chris’s passion for hiking and exploring has taken him to strange and interesting places.” Pastor Breedlove is also a member of the Board of Directors of Faith In Community a Fresno coalition of local faith institutions working towards a more just, compassionate, equitable and thriving city.
The Rev. Dr. Ambrose Carroll, Sr., Senior Pastor of The Church by the Side of the Road, Berkeley
The Reverend Doctor Ambrose Carroll, Sr. is one of the nation’s premiere Practical Theologians. After graduating from Oakland High School in 1987, Ambrose went on to do his undergraduate work at Florida Memorial College in Miami, Fl and received a Master’s of Divinity from Morehouse School of Religion in Atlanta GA, a Doctor of Divinity from United Theological Seminary in Dayton Ohio, and a Master’s of Business Administration from Golden Gate University in San Francisco, CA.
Dr. Carroll combines theology with ecology and challenges the church universal to embrace its mantle of creation care. At present Dr. Carroll and his family are expanding their work to the Bay Area and creating a national campaign to “Green the Church”. His non-profit, Renewal, is poised to educate the Black Church and lead in the creation of sustainable programs to under-gird the work of creating green and efficient Church buildings.
Katelyn Roedner Sutter, Environmental Justice Program Director, Catholic Charities – Diocese of Stockton
Katelyn is the new leader of the nine-year-old Environmental Justice Project in the Stockton Diocese. She is focusing on clean air and water, as well as sustainable and equitable growth and development in the San Joaquin Valley. The Project also works to educate parishioners and the wider community about caring for Creation. Katelyn is a Maine native and a lifelong member of the United Church of Christ. She graduated from George Washington University in Washington, DC with a BA in international affairs with an economic focus, and a minor in religion. She also spent time in Europe, working and studying the European Union economy. Katelyn then taught high school in New Orleans with Teach for America before moving to California. She received her MA in ethics from the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley where she wrote about human flourishing and sustainable international development. Katelyn believes that all these aspects of social justice – economy, education, environment, and more – are inherently linked, and one cannot do justice without considering each of them. Katelyn now lives in Ripon with her husband and two greyhounds. She enjoys cooking, gardening, traveling, and volunteering with elders living with dementia. Katelyn serves on the Board of Global Ministries of the United Church of Christ and Disciples of Christ, as well as the Board of the Save Downtown Stockton Foundation.
Mark Carlson, Director, Lutheran Office of Public Policy
Mark Carlson is a native of Idaho and attended public schools is Yakima, WA and Fremont, CA. As a toddler, he was imprinted with the Snake River, and several national parks and forests. As a five-year-old, he was exposed to the consequences of “progress” when his father took their family to the spectacular Native America salmon fishing grounds at Celilo Falls, shortly before it was flooded by The Dalles Dam. Mark graduated from Bethany College, Kansas, with a degree in history and political science, studied Swedish environmental politics and policy for a year in Stockholm, received a Master of Science degree in Environmental Studies from the University of Montana, and worked as an organizer and consultant in opposition to a new coal and a new nuclear power plant in Kansas.
Mark has been in Sacramento with the Lutheran Office of Public Policy – California since 1984, where he works on a variety of poverty, human rights, and care for creation issues for the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. Part of his work has included ballot proposition campaigns where care for creation values are at stake. In another life, Mark worked 29 seasons as a firefighter with the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, offering a different perspective on forest policy and practice.
Mohammad Hoda, Energy Advisor, Shura Council of Southern California
Mohammad has a degree in Mechanical Engineering with focus on Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. He works as an Energy Engineer where he develops energy efficiency, renewable energy and sustainability projects in greater Los Angeles region. Mohammad is also involved with the youth at the Islamic Center of San Gabriel Valley, advises Islamic Shura Council of Southern California on energy initiatives for mosques and Islamic Centers and volunteers with Alzheimer’s Association.
Born in India, Mohammad has firsthand experience of what it is like to live in a society with scarce resources. He has seen major changes in the nature when over used and not protected/replenished. Apart from the strong technical understanding of energy and sustainability issues, he believes that preservation and sustainability work is an imperative religious duty. Mohammad is married to Mariam and has one son, Zachariah (Zach).
Recently, back from Rome, where he was invited to be part of Emerging Leaders Multi- Faith Convergence on Climate Change. He was part of the group that marched to St. Peter’s Square in support of Pope Frances focus on climate change and social justice in his recent encyclical.
Barbara Bisel, Commission for the Environment, Episcopal Diocese of California
Barbara is a lifelong Episcopalian, and a member of St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church in Orinda. After starting and chairing a Caring for Creation team at her church, Barbara was asked to co-chair the Commission for the Environment for the Diocese of California, in partnership with Rev. Canon Sally Bingham. At the request of Bishop Marc Andrus, and with help from the members of the Commission, they developed a network that includes Liaisons from over 70 churches in the diocese – supporting education, action, and legislative advocacy to reduce our carbon footprint and live more sustainably. Barbara was an Alternate Deputy to the General Convention of the Episcopal Church, during which time she wrote and testified for two resolutions which were passed at the Convention: Government Policies for Environmental Stewardship; and Scientific Integrity and Environmental Policy.
Barbara holds a BA in Human Biology from Stanford University, where she focused on Policy Analysis in Health Care Organizations. She has sat on the Board of St. Dorothy’s Rest diocesan camp and retreat center, and has served on church vestry. Additional philanthropies include National Charity League; Cantare Con Vivo Education and Outreach in Oakland; and PTA.
Rev. Peter Rood, Pastor, Holy Nativity Church, Westchester, California
The Reverend Peter H. Rood, co-founder of the Environmental Change-Makers, is the rector of Holy Nativity Episcopal Church in Los Angeles, an energetic and diverse community of faith. Central to Peter’s ministry is his commitment to creating a broader community where people live in harmony, peace, and justice. His work encourages raising awareness about environmental concerns and cultivating a community committed to caring for God’s creation. During his nine-year tenure at Holy Nativity, Peter has encouraged an environment where the church is a central meeting place for members of the community at large to gather for social and educational purposes. The church hosts a variety of music and art events, cooking classes, drumming workshops, and educational and community outreach programs. The church is also the location for the World Community of Christian Meditation Center of Southern California.
A native Californian, Peter is a graduate of Pacific Oaks College in Pasadena and received his Master’s of Divinity from the Episcopal Theological Seminary of the Southwest, Austin, Texas. Before his ordination to the priesthood, Peter had a career as an investment advisor. Peter is involved in various social activism projects, including the Century Corridor Project. He is also a member of a Hindu/Episcopal dialog group and is also a participant in a Buddhist/Catholic dialog group. His interests include gardening, cooking, reading, yoga, and running.
Rabbi Marvin Goodman, Executive Director, Northern California Board of Rabbis
Marvin Goodman was ordained as a rabbi by the Jewish Theological of America in 1975. He studied at the seminary after having earned his BA from Indiana University in 1970. From 1975-1988 he was the Executive Director of the Northern California Region of the United Synagogue of America as well as the Regional United Synagogue Youth Director. During that time, he was very instrumental in the development of Camp Arazim. From 1988-2007, he was the rabbi of Peninsula Sinai Congregation, a Conservative Congregation in Foster City, California. Since 2007 he has been the Rabbi in Residence at the San Francisco based Jewish Community Federation and the Executive Director of the Northern CA Board of Rabbis. Marvin is married to Deborah Kelman and has two daughters, Rena and Naomi.
Rev. Earl Koteen, Consulting Minister for Climate Justice, Unitarian Universalist Legislative Ministry California
Rev. Earl W. Koteen is the Consulting Minister for Climate Justice, Unitarian Universalist (UU) Legislative Ministry California. He serves on the board of UU Ministry for Earth, and is currently community minister at the Berkeley Fellowship of UUs. Before attending training at Starr King School for the Ministry in Berkeley, Earl had a 30-year career in strategic planning, organizational development, and human resources. He has two adult daughters.
Fr. John Coleman, S.J., Associate Pastor, St. Ignatius Parish, USF
John A. Coleman S.J. is associate pastor at Saint Ignatius Church, San Francisco. He holds his PhD in sociology from the University of California, Berkeley. He was the Charles Casassa Professor of Social Values at Loyola Marymount University from 1997 to 2009.. From 1974-1997 he was a professor at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkely. Among his most recent books are: John Coleman and William Ryan, eds., Globalization and Catholic Social Thought ( Orbis Press, 2005) and Christian Political Ethics ( Princeton University Press, 2007).
For the past several years, Coleman has been lecturing and writing on environmental topics. He keeps a blog at the popular national Catholic magazine “America.”
In the 1990’s, Hodge worked in business and community development, helping to open a Kmart store in Compton, California. where he interviewed and hired 70 people. After the Rodney King verdict, which rendered severe civil unrest throughout the immediate area, Hodge’s relationship with the community provided the security and personnel to operate during the crisis. This deliberate act of mitigating the disaster by maintaining store operations, promoting a sense of normalcy, and being a consistent resource of goods and services to the community before, during and after the crisis, was successfully achieved. Under the management of G. L. Hodge, the fully operational Compton Kmart became the National Guard’s Compton Command Headquarters 48 hours after the verdict.
G.L. serves on the Boards of The San Francisco Foundation FAITHS Program, The San Francisco Interfaith Council, The United Way FEMA, and the A Philip Randolph Institute Board. G. L. was a BRMA Community Member in 2010-2011. Today, Hodge consults with non-profits on facilities capabilities and disaster preparedness, as they fulfill the needs of the surrounding community and neighbors.
Juana Torres, Associate Director, Advancement Department, Sierra Club; Volunteer Coordinator, Pastoral Juvenil, Los Angeles Catholic Archdiocese
Juana Torres has been a part of the Sierra Club team since 2005. For over seven years she led the Club’s work on the San Gabriel Mountains Forever Campaign, a diverse coalition partnership working to preserve Southern California’s most scenic and valuable natural resource: the San Gabriel Mountains. In 2013, Juana transitioned into the organization’s Advancement Department as an Associate Director. In this role, she has raised crucial funds for the Sierra Club’s national programs with an emphasis on fundraising for clean energy work.
During her 11 years in the environmental field, Torres has focused on increasing the diversity of the Sierra Club and the environmental movement. In her volunteer work she has dedicated much of her time to building relationships with the faith communities of the greater Los Angeles area. She currently serves as a Pastoral Juvenil volunteer coordinator at the Los Angeles Catholic Archdiocese where she teaches the Faith and Ecology formation courses to Latino Young Adults. She is also a former youth coordinator at her parish St. Catherine of Siena in Reseda. She holds an MA in Public Policy and a BS and BA in Environmental Science and Political Science, all from California Lutheran University. In her spare time, Torres loves traveling, hiking, spending time with her 5-year old nephew and exploring the diverse restaurants and cuisines of Los Angeles.