Coalition for Green Capital Launches Environmental Justice Advisory Board

Sharlene Brown, Raya Salter, and Jesse Glickstein Named as Inaugural Board Members

WASHINGTON, DC— Today, the Coalition for Green Capital (CGC) announced the formation of an Environmental Justice Advisory Board to guide the organization’s work to advance clean energy investments and prioritize a just transition for frontline communities and communities of color. Sharlene Brown, Raya Salter, and Jesse Glickstein were all named as inaugural members of the board.

“We are thrilled to announce the formation of CGC’s Environmental Justice Advisory Board,” said Jeffrey Schub, Executive Director of the Coalition for Green Capital. “The green bank model continues to build momentum as a proven model for catalyzing public and private investments and green banks around our country are generating historic investments for local clean energy projects. Our inaugural board members will provide critically important guidance and support as we continue our work to stand up green bank institutions and spur clean energy projects while prioritizing equity and environmental justice.”

The inaugural board will work directly with CGC’s recently named Chief Consultant of Environmental Justice and Equity, William J. Barber III in identifying strategies to effectively engage with frontline communities. Barber said of the members, “Each of these members bring diverse sets of experience and invaluable expertise in engaging LMI and BIPOC communities. CGC sees a window of opportunity to push the envelope on strategic involvement of communities in a way that yields real, tangible benefits.”

“The green bank model has uniquely emerged as a key tool for bringing clean energy projects to frontline communities and communities of color,” said Jill Bunting, Deputy Director of the Coalition for Green Capital. “The members of our Environmental Justice Advisory Board have strong track records of advancing environmental equity and social justice and their support will be invaluable to our work in the coming years.”

Priorities for the Board include:

  • Investigating alternate underwriting criteria and financial models that allow for enhanced deployment of clean energy tech to frontline communities
  • Identifying new metrics for program deployment that take into account equity considerations such as diversity in clean energy workforce development; alleviating energy burden for households, and expanding access to direct benefits associated with clean tech; 
  • Establishing an internal accountability structure to ensure CGC continues and strengthens its commitments to environmental justice and 
  • Engaging a broad network of organizations with track records of serving LMI/BIPOC/indigneous constituencies in frontline areas

Sharlene Brown is Senior Fellow at Croatan Institute and director of the Institute’s initiative on Racial Equity, Economics, Finance, and Sustainability (REEFS). Ms. Brown was previously the executive director of the Partnership for Responsible Financial Inclusion (PRFI), where she managed the strategic priorities of the member organizations and coordinated its working groups. Prior to that, she served as national director of Oikocredit-USA, where she raised investment capital and provided development education on microfinance and social performance to investors with more than US$35 million in assets. Ms. Brown also worked with the Grameen Foundation, a member of the Partnership for Responsible Financial Inclusion, as a senior program officer for their Social Performance Management Center, where she oversaw projects for microfinance institutions in sub-Saharan Africa and Middle- East/North Africa. She has also worked in the socially responsible investment marketplace as a business development manager for Domini Social Investments, and as research associate for the Social Investment Forum.

Raya Salter is an attorney, activist and clean energy law and policy expert with a focus on energy justice. She is also a member of the New York State Climate Action Council, the body that is developing New York’s climate scoping plan. 

In previous roles, Raya was the Lead Policy Organizer for the NY Renews Climate Justice Coalition, a Senior Attorney at the Natural Resources Defense Council and a Regulatory Attorney for the Environmental Defense Fund. Raya was named one of the “Energy and the Environment Power 100” by City and State New York Magazine in 2020 and 2021. In 2021 she was honored by New York Lawyers for the Public Interest with the Fishman Access to Justice Award. Raya was named a “Climate Hero” by the Human Impacts Institute in 2019. Ms. Salter has a J.D. from Fordham University School of Law and a B.A. in economics from Wesleyan University.

Jesse Glickstein is the Environmental & Human Rights Counsel on the Global, Social, and Environmental Responsibility Team within the Ethics & Compliance Office at Hewlett Packard Enterprise Company.  Jesse advises on a wide range of environmental, energy, conflict minerals, and human rights compliance, supply chain, and legal issues. Previously, Jesse practiced environmental law at an international law firm, O’Melveny & Myers, which included work on renewable energy project finance transactions and M&A deals. Jesse also co-founded Faiths United for Sustainable Energy, a non-profit that educated and mobilized faith-based communities around the intersection of issues related to the environment, climate change, social and economic justice, renewable energy, and religion. He has completed thousands of pro bono hours over the past several years, including work on a legal challenge to an inadequate environmental review process; legal proceedings representing unaccompanied immigrant children; and representation of a cooperative in drafting, analyzing, and negotiating power purchase agreements and regulatory filings in order to install solar systems, aggregate purchasing of electricity, and reduce costs for schools, religious institutions, and other non-profit institutions.

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