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.
Mark Carlson, Lutherans Restoring Creation
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 since 1984 and was the head of Lutheran Office of Public Policy. He focuses on poverty, human rights, and care for creation issues for the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and is now active with Lutheran Restoring Creation. 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.
Rev. Dr. Ambrose Carroll, Sr., Founder, Executive Director, Green the Church
Rev. Dr. Ambrose F. Carroll Sr. is one of the nation’s premiere Practical Theologians. A 1987 graduate of Oakland High School, Ambrose now holds a B.S. in Clinical/Community Psychology from Florida Memorial University; Miami Fl. A Master’s of Divinity from Morehouse School of Religion; Atlanta GA, a Doctor of Divinity from United Theological Seminary; Dayton Ohio, and a Masters of Business Administration from Golden Gate University’s Ageno School of Business; San Francisco, CA
Dr. Carroll serves as the Senior Pastor of The Church by The Side of the Road which was founded as a Community Church in Berkeley, CA in 1956, Dr. Carroll is the Vice President at Large of the California State Baptist Convention, which is the largest body of Black Baptists in the state of California. Dr. Carroll is the founder of Green the Church, which is a National organization that exists to be a repository and a catalyst for sustainable practices at the intersection of the Environmental Movement and the Black Church!
Rabbi Marvin Goodman
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. From 2007-2017 he was the Rabbi in Residence at the San Francisco based Jewish Community Federation and the Executive Director of the Northern CA Board of Rabbis. Since retiring in 2017, he has been actively involved in a variety of Social Justice volunteer efforts.
His recent involvement includes being on the Steering Committee of CA Interfaith Power & Light, serving on the Board of Faith in Action Bay Area and serving on the San Mateo County Civil Grand Jury from 2019-2020. He became a San Mateo/SF County Master Gardener in the spring of 2018 and has expanded his home garden while helping the Master Gardeners to focus more on those in our society who are hungry for enough healthy food.
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.
In 2015, he was invited to be part of Emerging Leaders Multi- Faith Convergence on Climate Change in Rome. He was part of the group that marched to St. Peter’s Square in support of Pope Francis’ focus on climate change and social justice in his recent encyclical.
Rev. Susan Hendershot, President, National Interfaith Power & Light & CIPL
Prior to becoming President of California Interfaith Power & Light, as well as the National IPL, Susan served as the Executive Director at Iowa Interfaith Power & Light for seven years. She is ordained in the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) with an M. Div. from Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia, a B.A. from Bethany College in Bethany, West Virginia, and a certificate in Spiritual Direction. Prior to Iowa IPL, Susan served as a pastor in both Disciples of Christ and United Methodist congregations, focusing on social justice ministries. She also served as the first Heartland Field Organizer for the ONE Campaign on global poverty. Currently Susan serves as co-chair of the Executive Committee for the RE-AMP Steering Committee, a network of over 170 climate, energy, and environmental organizations throughout the Midwest. Susan believes that climate change is a moral issue, disproportionately impacting those who are most vulnerable in our world. She gets her motivation and inspiration from her two sons.
Katelyn Roedner-Sutter, California State Director, EDF
Katelyn Roedner Sutter is Senior Manager for U.S. Climate at Environmental Defense Fund, where she leads EDF’s climate work in California, as well as regulatory and legislative initiatives on climate across the Western United States. Katelyn’s focus is on advancing policies that establish and implement long-term greenhouse gas emission reductions and improve local air quality. Prior to joining EDF, Katelyn led the Diocese of Stockton’s environmental justice program where she worked with local and faith communities on climate, air quality, and land use issues.
Ector Olivares, Environmental Justice Program Manager, Catholic Charities – Catholic Diocese of Stockton
Ector grew up in Stockton but currently lives in Lodi. After high school, he served 6 years in the US Army where he was stationed in Missouri and South Korea. After his service, he attended San Joaquin Delta College where he received his AA in Criminal Justice. From there, he attended CSU Sacramento where he received his BS in Criminal Justice. He had worked for the San Joaquin County District Attorney’s office as a Victim Advocate for 10 years. Later, he worked at the Women’s Center- Youth and Family Services as the manager of the Safety Net program.
Throughout his career, Ector has had a strong passion to help those in our community who have been victimized, disenfranchised, and marginalized. During time off, he enjoys his family time and coaching youth baseball.
William Morris, Faith Organizer, GreenFaith
William is a climate activist located near a refinery in Torrance. He holds his degree in environmental science with an emphasis on ecological restoration and a minor in watershed management from Humboldt State University. William is a Faith Organizer with GreenFaith working on the People vs. Fossil Fuels campaign. He also works with Young Evangelicals for Climate Action (YECA) serving first as a field organizer and is now co-chair of the steering committee. He is founder and chair of the Creation Care Committee at Faith United Methodist Church, is part of the leadership team with Faiths4Future, and a member of the board at Circle Faith Future. William also has worked with faith organizations abroad spending time in Kenya, Chad and Mexico. He spends his time engaging with faith communities, schools, universities, and organizations around the topics of faith-based climate justice and education. His work has been featured in Rolling Stone Magazine, ABC News and BBC.