The Environmental League of Massachusetts Action Fund helps pass laws that protect our environmental legacy, holds our elected officials accountable, and works to build the political power of the environmental community.
Good Policy alone is often not enough. We’re planning our future. The Environmental community needs:
- To create a political strategy that supports public officials who protect the environment.
- To elevate our issues, even on the agenda of those who support our work.
Check out our plan for 2018-2020 to learn more about our legislative priorities.
Who We Are
Executive Director: Joe O’Brien
Joe O’Brien serves as the Executive Director for the ELM-Action Fund. Joe has more than 25 years of experience in government, electoral politics, issue advocacy, and community service.
Early in his career Joe worked for community based organizations in New York City, Boston and Worcester on a wide range of issues, including youth development, community organizing and environmental action. Joe also helped lead the campaign finance reform organization Mass Voters for Clean Elections and later served as the Director of the Commonwealth Coalition.
For the last 15 years Joe has worked as an elected official and government leader. Joe served three terms on the Worcester School Committee and in 2009 became the first elected Mayor of Worcester who had not previously served on the City Council. Following his time as Mayor, he served one term on the Worcester City Council.
Joe has extensive electoral management experience playing a leadership role for more than 20 federal, state and local candidates for public office. Joe was the campaign Manager for Tim Murray’s successful campaign for Lt. Governor of Massachusetts and has helped elect political leaders in Central Massachusetts and San Diego. Other notable efforts include working as a Regional GOTV Lead for the campaigns of Hillary Clinton and President Obama in New Hampshire in 2008 as well as helping to coordinate GOTV efforts for the Senate campaigns of Elizabeth Warren and Ed Markey in Central Massachusetts
Joe also worked as the District Director for U.S. Rep. Jim McGovern, D-Worcester, where he oversaw the Congressman’s three district offices and served as a liaison to city and town officials. Prior to coming to the Action Fund Joe was the Political and Finance Director for Congressman McGovern Re-Election Committee.
Joe earned a bachelor’s degree in Urban Studies from Fordham University in 1991 and a Master’s in Public Administration from the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University in 2000. Joe is also an adjunct professor at Clark University where he teaches in both the undergraduate Political Science and MPA programs.
President: Elizabeth Henry
A proven corporate sustainability leader, she makes the economic case for Massachusetts to lead the nation in environmental quality, innovative policy, and climate change mitigation and adaptation.
Prior to joining ELM, Elizabeth managed climate, energy & environmental programs at the global retailer Adidas. She designed the greenENERGY Fund, investing in energy efficiency, renewables and distributed energy. She also advanced the sustainability of new construction, co-led the team that set Adidas’ industry-leading targets for sustainability, and raised Adidas’ voice on national and global climate policy. Elizabeth was an EDF Climate Corps Fellow in 2010. She also consulted to the US Department of Energy, worked as Sustainability Lead for a Massachusetts-based residential construction firm, and led international travel programs to over 30 countries.
Elizabeth has an MBA and Masters of Environmental Management (MEM) from Yale University and a BA in Environmental Policy and Economics from Colby College. Raised in West Virginia, she now lives in Jamaica Plain with her husband and two children.
Vice President for Policy: Nancy Goodman
Nancy has been with ELM since 1998. She has primary responsibility for developing, prioritizing and advancing ELM’s environmental policy agenda on a wide range of issues, including land use and smart growth, land protection, energy and climate change, water resources, transportation, and funding for environmental programs. Much of ELM’s policy work is accomplished through Nancy’s participation in a number of coalitions, including the Massachusetts Smart Growth Alliance and Transportation for Massachusetts, both of which she chairs, and the Massachusetts Rivers Alliance. Nancy also oversees the development of ELM’s annual Green Budget, which advocates for sufficient funding for Massachusetts environmental agencies.
General Counsel and Director of Energy Policy: Eric Wilkinson
Eric joined ELM in 2016. Prior to joining ELM, Eric served as Senior External Affairs Representative at ISO New England, the entity responsible for managing the wholesale energy grid. Eric’s responsibilities included environmental, climate change and renewable energy issues. Eric served as the lead for External Affairs on both the ISO’s energy-efficiency and distributed generation forecasts. Eric also served as Policy Advisor to the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities, overseeing implementation of the Board’s smart growth main extension rules and providing guidance on smart growth issues. He was Policy Director at New Jersey Future and a senior contributor to their smart growth and sustainable development policy analysis and initiatives. Eric has also worked as director of the EPA’s Voluntary Standards Network, and as a member of the President’s Council on Sustainable Development. Eric holds a Juris Doctorate and a Masters in the Study of Environmental Law, cum laude from the Vermont Law School.
Legislative Director: Casey Bowers
Casey comes to ELM from the American Lung Association of the Northeast. As their Director of Public Policy, she developed and implemented a state legislative and policy agenda including work on renewable energy, lung diseases, and air quality. Casey was previously the Massachusetts Healthy Air Coordinator for the Lung Association serving as the field organizer for the state on a campaign to protect, enforce and strengthen the Clean Air Act. She brings a wealth of policy knowledge, legislative expertise, and organizing skills to her new role at ELM. Prior to joining the Lung Association, Casey was a consultant for five years at M+R Strategic Services where she executed successful policy, advocacy, and fundraising campaigns for clients. She has served on the executive board of Tobacco Free Mass and the Massachusetts Comprehensive Cancer Steering Committee. Casey received her Bachelor’s Degree in economics and history from the College of the Holy Cross.
Development Manager: Anne Meyer
Anne joined the ELM team in the Spring of 2014. She is a 2014 graduate of Boston College, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts in English and completed a minor in Environmental Studies. Previously, Anne enjoyed being an intern with Cape Wind, Woods Hole Research Center, and EnergySage, where she was mainly focused on communications and branding strategies. Anne has a dedicated passion for the environment and hopes for a brighter future for our planet.
Communications Manager: Ellen Tomlinson
Ellen joined ELM as Office Manager in May of 2015 after working as our Communications and Development Intern for four months. She has Bachelors of Science in Political Science and Environmental Studies from Suffolk University. In her time at Suffolk, Ellen interned at the State House and held an on-campus position orchestrating 11 alternative spring break trips, working with Habitat for Humanity as well as other nonprofit organizations.
Office Manager: Katie Burnett
Katie joined ELM as Office Manager in January of 2017. She started working in environmental advocacy as a communications intern for Conservation Voters of South Carolina and previously worked as our Climate Change and Energy Policy Intern. She has Bachelors of Science in Biology and Environmental Studies from Wellesley College. While at Wellesley she was a varsity member of their rowing team and spent time volunteering with Shriners Hospitals for Children.
Accounting and Finance Manager: Randi Soltysiak
Randi began with ELM in March of 2015 and works part time as the organization’s Accounting and Finance Manager. Randi earned her BA in English from Vassar College, and her J.D. from Boston College Law School. She is an active leader in Mothers Out Front, which organizes mothers and grandmothers to call for a swift, complete, and just transition to clean renewable energy, to keep children safe in the face of climate change.