CJ Agbannawag is the Local First Arizona SCALE UP Program Manager. CJ graduated from the Sustainable Built Environments program from the University of Arizona’s College of Architecture, Planning, and Landscape Architecture. The SCALE UP Program is a sustainability workshop series for locally owned business, where participants receive education, and then plan for efficiency improvements. Through education and implementation of appropriate sustainability projects, SCALE UP is helping businesses improve their environmental footprint while reducing operating costs.
Michael Peel is the Southern Arizona Director for Local First Arizona. In this role, Peel is responsible for managing LFA operations, membership, and programs in Tucson and the encompassing region. Peel has spent his career developing and facilitating community-based partnerships and collaborations, creating innovative long-lasting programs responsive to community issues lacking needed support, and bringing key partners together to create community and statewide solutions. As Community and Government Relations Liaison at Pima Community College District, Peelwas responsible for building and maintaining partnerships through community outreach, as well as developing legislative advocacy networks to collaborate with state, federal, and local elected officials, governmental and community agencies, business groups and coalitions, faith-based establishments, nonprofit organizations, administrators, staff, students, and the general public. As Development and Jobs Director of Uncommon Good, a grassroots non-profit organization, Peel led the formation of a regional coalition that successfully competed for federal funds of nearly $900,000 for a green jobs program. Peel has also served on a variety of boards, including most recently the Tucson City of Gastronomy, the United States Green Building Council (USGBC), Tucson Emerging 2030 District, and Tucson Clean and Beautiful.
John Eisele is a 38-year resident of Tucson and is passionate about sustainability and environmental issues, particularly as it relates to “green” buildings and homes. After earning a BS Engineering degree from the University of Michigan, John has had a wide-ranging career, including 22+ yrs with IBM, owning several businesses and marketing a variety of environmental products over the years. John was involved in the early stages of the US Green Building Council (USGBC) and helped establish the first local USGBC chapter to Arizona. John is an enthusiastic member of the environmental community and is deeply committed to the establishment and growth of the Tucson 2030 District as the Executive Director. He holds the vision of increasing the number of high efficiency buildings in Tucson, which will lower their energy footprint, leverage a growing economy and ultimately assist in mitigating the effects of climate change.
Peter Dobrovolny is a retired architect and planner now living in Tucson. With a continuing commitment to contribute solutions to the challenges of climate change in the built environment, Peter has helped facilitate creation of a 2030 District in Tucson.
Prior to retirement in February 2014, Peter Dobrovolny was the Seattle 2030 District Liaison, acting as Project Manager for a three year EPA Climate Showcase Communities grant, Activating the Seattle 2030 District, a Public-Private Alliance to Achieve Carbon Reduction. Beginning in 2000, Peter was a part of the City of Seattle’s Green Building Program and worked with the private sector development community to fulfill the mission of the City’s Sustainable Building Policy and other City of Seattle initiatives to accelerate green building in the private sector of Seattle.
Peter has over twenty years of experience as a solar architect, practicing in Basalt, Colorado. He is the recipient of a number of local and national awards for energy efficient design projects. Peter has participated in the American Solar Energy Society, as well as in numerous local community planning and energy issues. Peter has a Bachelor of Architecture from CU and Master of Urban Planning from UW. Between 2002 and 2010 Peter was a board member of the Cascadia Region Green Building Chapter.
About Your Hosts
Sarah McCraren is CEO and President of McCraren Compliance and is a Tucson native with a strong sense of community. Sarah spent many years in the corporate finance world specializing in the operational analysis, measurement and accountability systems, project management and software implementations. However, Sarah wanted to do work which was meaningful and would positively impact her community. She found that saving lives and reducing injuries through comprehensive safety programs fit that bill. Sarah leads the McCraren Compliance team by keeping everyone focused on their primary purpose and balancing the needs of all their stakeholders.
Sarah serves on the Board for the Society for Mining, Metallurgy and Exploration Tucson Chapter, Southwest University of Visual Arts, Conscious Capitalism Arizona and are active with the Arizona Builders Alliance, Arizona Rock Products Association and Arizona Transportation Builders.
Jeremy Neis is an Investment Advisor with Retirement Evolutions and a small business operator fueled by the desire to enrich the life experience. He grew up in the Chicago area and chased the sun to get a degree at the University of Arizona in human and organizational communications. After doing so, he returned to Illinois where over the next 15 years he would find joy in co-launching and growing a technology solutions company and establishing a family. In 2014 he returned to the desert to join his current venture, Retirement Evolutions, where his focuses are: (1) Conduct planning with individuals and families so that they can maximize the likelihood of leading secure and comfortable retirements. (2) Through the business services arm, Resourceful, empower business leaders to care for the people that they will rely upon to be thriving, sustainable organizations.
Jeremy is a proud contributor to the Conscious Capitalism movement as he views it as a powerful vehicle to bring about greater prosperity and reduced suffering for our human family. Over his career he has had the privilege to work closely with hundreds of different enterprises across many markets and industries. A common theme emerges among those firms that he’s seen excel and that is to be great not just with what they are bringing to market, but also with the manner in which they are doing so.