Meet Our Team
The Board of Directors
Marissa LaMagna, Founder & Board President
Known by some as the “Queen of Green,'' Marissa is an environmental activist and a passionate educator. Because of her love for the environment, Marissa started Bay Area Green Tours in 2008 to showcase local green changemakers in green businesses and initiatives including agriculture, food, water, green building, alternative transportation, renewable energy, and zero waste. She has led participants on experiential tours and events focused on sustainability, and environmental justice and responsibility ever since. She has served on the Sustainable Business Alliance board and The Berkeley Food Policy Council. She helped launch The Berkeley Climate Action Coalition, The California Food Policy Council, and Slow Money Northern California where she now serves on the Board of Directors. She has also worked as an auditor for the Alameda Green Business Program. She has spoken at UC Davis’ agritourism conferences, The Heirloom Festival, The Sustainable Enterprise Conference, and the Green Festival. She is also a Sonoma County Tourism Ambassador.
Robert Girling, Interim Board Treasurer
Robert Girling is Professor Emeritus in the School of Business and Economics at Sonoma State University. Dr. Girling received his Ph. D. from Stanford University and has taught and consulted in 20 countries. His previous professional experience includes Director of Regional Development for the Government of Jamaica and teaching at the Federal University of Bahia, Brazil, the University of the West Indies, and American University in Washington D.C. Dr. Girling has consulted with the World Bank, the United Nations, the Pan American Health Organization, and the International Center for Research on Women. He serves on the boards of several non-profits including Youth Impact Hub and Bay Area Green Tours. A Fulbright Senior Scholar (2016-2021), he is the author of The Good Company (2012) as well as many articles and monographs. His most recent book The Good Company: Sustainability in Tourism, Wine and Hospitality was published by the Business Expert Press in 2016.
Lindsey Frischer, Board Secretary
Business Development Strategist
Lindsey (she/her) has built a career as an advocate. She was an attorney in New York before moving to Oakland, where she supported early stage development of social enterprise and community organizations focused on sustainability, access to justice, and diversity, equity and inclusion in the workplace. She is currently practicing as a personal development coach, offering her clients guidance through life transitions on their journeys of self-discovery. She enjoys staying active with yoga, soccer, and running, as well as adventuring into nature as often as possible.
Founder – Atomic Strategic Design
Claudia Brenner's work experience combines life sciences, business, technology, and design. She has an MBA in Marketing and International Business, as well as an undergraduate degree in Life Sciences and International Studies. Claudia enjoys creating or improving businesses by leveraging technology, providing easy to use information systems (software, portals, applications and websites), and the necessary infrastructure to successfully run and scale a business. She has worked with start-up, medium-sized, and Fortune 500 businesses, including IBM, Oracle, and Kaiser Permanente. She is currently working on a Global Land Regeneration project with a focus on designing and visualizing [eco]systems to help solve complex global challenges. Claudia started and maintains the Food Adventurers Meet-Up, with a growing membership of over 3,200 folks. You can often spot her at local farmers markets, including CUESA's (Center for Urban Education about Sustainable Agriculture) market at San Francisco’s Ferry Building, where she has been a customer for over 15 years. Claudia is also a gourmet cook and healthy food advocate.
Shima discovered Bay Area Green Tours (BAGT) in 2018 while re-evaluating her career. She fell in love with BAGT’s mission and Marissa’s passion for the causes and joined the team. Since then, Shima has worn many hats: volunteer management, partnership development, tour planning, marketing, Salesforce training, and recently became an Advisory Board Member. Shima has a Masters’ degree in Computer Information Systems from Eastern Michigan University. She has helped mission-driven, Bay Area organizations achieve their goals with technologies for over a decade. Shima also has an Interior Architecture certification from UC Berkeley Extension with an emphasis on sustainable design. She has helped design beautiful and sustainable hotels and restaurants in the United States and Japan. Shima currently works at Kaiser Permanente as a Sr. Consultant, helping the organization make the right decisions with big data. She also participates in Kaiser-sponsored community support programs including the fight against childhood hunger and raising awareness about how mental health will affect you. On a nice day, you will find Shima running around Lake Merritt, cross-country skiing in Tahoe with her husband and dog, Bella, or bartending at one of the BAGT fundraising events.
Tamara L. Diamond, LEED GA
Principal, Green Diamond Consulting
Tamara’s passion for environmental sustainability and wellness compelled her to study Environmental Design (BS at SDSU), Environmental Health, Recycling and Waste Management (Certification from UCLA program), well ahead of the current wave. Her work has included Acterra’s (PCCF) Business Environmental Awards Program, Regional Director for San Francisco Green Festival, and Associate Producer for San Francisco Sustainable Fashion Week International. She has also assisted with Bay Area Green Tours strategy. She is a strategic thinker, connector and bridge-builder, who enjoys meeting people across multiple industries, while growing the green (and socially responsible) economy by educating people about how their purchasing decisions can affect one’s personal health, the planet, and all of its inhabitants. She is currently based in Greater Palm Springs in Southern California, though stays connected with her Bay Area network.
Sari hails from South Jersey (the beautiful part of the Garden State) but loves living in her adopted home of California. In her former life, she was an anthropology professor in Arizona, teaching at community colleges and Arizona State University. She was previously the Program Manager at Bay Area Green Tours. She’s also worked in external affairs at several nonprofits, including a conservancy group (South Yuba River Citizens League) and an edtech organization, DonorsChoose. An alumna of Wellesley College, she has also studied at the Jewish Theological Seminary in NY, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Arizona State University, and the Universidad de Cordoba in Spain. Her sustainability passion is permaculture, and her long term plan is to move to the Sierra Nevada foothills and live in an intentional farming community. Her hobbies are learning languages (Spanish, French, Hebrew), writing fiction, and exploring the outdoors.
Aaron lander, DEVELOPMENT DIRECTOR
Prior to joining the technology sector and starting PopUpsters, Aaron began his career in marketing and communications working on various political campaigns, the state senate and the state treasurer’s office. He soon found a love for sustainability, specifically in the food industry, and began helping local farms with their sales, marketing and distribution models. Earlier this year, Aaron was chosen as a fellow in the “Top 30 Under 30” Next Generation LGBT Leaders. His expertise in sustainability and innovation has been acknowledged by others leading him to be a Global Urban Innovator by the New Cities Foundation, a Westly Young Innovator, and the San Francisco Congressional Delegate at the Slow Food International Congress.
Jane Felice, Interim Executive Director
Jane has been managing Bay Area Green Tours’ programs and communications since 2019. With a background in marketing and business development for food and agriculture startups like Ugly Juice and Granular, and for enterprises like Microsoft and Reuters, Jane has combined her experience and knowledge in farming, food, media, and software to empower organizations to differentiate themselves, drive efficiencies, and make an impact. She freelances with Bombilla, a social impact agency, and has volunteered with nonprofits such as CUESA, Start Small Think Big, and the Oakland Food Policy on event management, business strategy, and urban farm mapping in Oakland. Jane is passionate about helping organizations and businesses succeed by connecting them to donors, customers, and partners, inspiring them to act and advocate. She loves long hikes and little dogs and enjoys yoga, cooking, and gardening.
Kath Delaney founded Madera Group, a San Francisco Bay Area social impact consulting agency in 2004, to advance the causes she feels are critical to social and political change. In her career, she has managed nonprofit organizations, designed and executed mass scale social impact campaigns, raised millions of dollars for progressive organizations and political candidates and has promoted thought leaders and policy initiatives to global audiences. Ms. Delaney has a national reputation as an organizer and leader in progressive social movements and political campaigns. Prior to launching Madera Group, Kath was the Managing Director of the Global Security Institute where the mission was to promote security through the elimination of nuclear weapons. Kath brings to Madera Group an extensive network of mission-minded professional consultants, philanthropists, and a wide range of media relationships. In forming Madera Group, she enlisted best-in-class professionals in organizational development, fundraising, Internet strategy, public relations, social media, web-based programming, video production, and related fields to form the agency’s client service teams.
Anne has a passion for work that brings individuals and communities together to creatively address issues of social justice, personal and community health, and regenerative life practices. She has 30 years combined experience in the non-profit realm working as a program manager, researcher, and educator creating experiential learning opportunities and programs for youth and adults across disciplines from all aspects of personal health, to permaculture and food justice. She is the co-founder and facilitator for Vital Cycles: Creating Personal and Planetary Resilience, which offers a year-long dual certificate in Permaculture Design and Personal Ecology and permaculture design consulting. She holds a Master of Public Health as well as certifications in Permaculture Design, Mental Health First Aid, Diversity and Inclusivity, and Digital Education. These days she is most likely spotted in her garden where she grows an abundance of fruits, vegetables, herbs, and flowers. She is thrilled to be part of the Bay Area Green Tours team!
volunteers & interns
Rachel has held a variety of positions in her native Bay Area, including working at UC Berkeley’s Plant Biology department and in outreach for the local chapter of the Sierra Club. She majored in biology at Oberlin College, and has a strong commitment to creating a greener and more just life for all. Rachel joined the team in March 2011 as an intern and has held the roles of Farm Tour Manager as well as General Administrator, and bookkeeper. In her spare time she enjoys exploring East Bay parks, babysitting her newborn niece, and trying out new recipes.
Human Resources Manager
I have more than 20 years of experience as an event producer, marketer/publicist, writer/editor, and volunteer/project manager for a variety of non-profits tackling societal and environmental issues. I've served for many years as a board member and the events producer of the Sustainable Business Alliance, worked as a legislative aide for Congresswoman Barbara Lee, and spent ten years in the field of citizen diplomacy and economic development for Russia. My husband and I own The Buddy Club Children's Shows - the Bay Area's longest-running shows for families which entertain over 100,000 families a year with more than 100 live performances. We live in West Berkeley, with our amazing daughters, Rose and Talia.
bookkeeping & accounting
I first joined Bay Area Green Tours in 2008 as an intern for a short-term project. Then in 2015 I jumped on an opportunity to help out with on-boarding international interns to work at BAGT here in the US. At that time, I also learned about “the life cycle of a tour” and what happens behind the scenes of tour production. In 2017, I transitioned to bookkeeping and helping with pricing the tours, as well as providing support with the research. I am honored to be a part of this change making organization. My hope is that we can reach a wider audience and provide more of our educational, mind-shifting, eye opening, and FUN tours!
My journey with Bay Area Green Tours started at the beginning of 2020 as a Development intern. Alongside writing grants to support our wonderful tours, I quickly got involved with other projects like tour proposals and board development, and then became a tour manager- all within a couple of months! I received my BA in Sociology from UC Riverside in 2018. My educational background established my mission to be a community builder. BAGT allows me to truly fulfill that goal in impactful and more powerful ways than I could imagine possible.
Born and raised in the Bay Area, I am excited to engage in local sustainability efforts with Bay Area Green Tours. As an intern, I assist in different areas including marketing, research, and tour development. I received my B.S. in Psychology in 2019 from Santa Clara University, where I developed a passion for the health and well-being of people, communities, and the environment. Upon graduation, I led volunteer groups for the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy before joining BAGT. I am continually inspired by BAGT’s wonderful mission and people.
I am a Salesforce Consultant, associated with BAGT for more than six months. My work is mostly related to Salesforce, rolling out solutions to track fundraising and email marketing. In the past, I have worked as a process engineer, designing sustainable energy producing plants that correlate with the BAGT mission. Working for BAGT has always been fascinating and a great pleasure. I am fortunate to be part of a dynamic team. This was my first experience working for a non-profit organization which was challenging. This opportunity not only helped me to gain professional experience, but also gather knowledge on environmental issues.
Bay Area resident and Mom of two amazing kids. I have been part of Bay Area Green Tours from Nov 2019 as Salesforce Administrator. I hold a postgraduate degree in MBA and certifications in Salesforce Administrator and Project Management. My commitment to community, green economy, and sustainability led me to be a part of this organization. It has given me various opportunities to be innovative and creative. At BAGT, I have led efforts for integrations, automations, web to lead, Visualforce pages, lead process, and database management projects.
My volunteer journey at BAGT started in November of 2019 as a Salesforce Admin, where my responsibilities included upgrading the Salesforce system to NPSP, integration system with Google products, and data management. After having cleared three Salesforce certifications, BAGT was a great platform to restart my career while indirectly contributing to the community. It has been an amazing journey with BAGT, and I am grateful that I got an opportunity to work with some wonderful people at BAGT.
Rachelle Padgett is an interior designer and green materials consultant, owner of both Synthesis Interiors & Color and The Green Materialist. Growing up as the daughter of a science teacher and engineer, Rachelle developed a deep appreciation of the natural world and to all things eco-friendly, making her a go-to resource among friends and family! Rachelle teaches Interior Finishes and Materials in the Interior Design and Interior Architecture Department at UC-Berkeley Extension and serves as the Event and Outreach Coordinator for the board of the West Berkeley Design Loop.
GRAPHIC DESIGN INTERN
Sofia Vermeulen is a burgeoning illustrator and graphic designer from Canada. She graduated from UC Santa Cruz with a BA in Anthropology in 2019. Her respect and interest in the natural world has led her to participate in various preservation efforts, including environmental stewardship and joining eco activist organizations. While in university, Sofia discovered that she could use her artistic ability to aid environmental activism, and has since designed books and contributed illustrations that educate about endangered species, bee decline, thermal imaging technology, symbiotic species, joshua tree science, biodiversity endangerment, and more.
DEPARTMENT/ROLE: INTERN (FUNDRAISING & TOUR MANAGEMENT)
DEPARTMENT/ROLE: HR/VOLUNTEER MANAGEMENT, VIRTUAL TOUR PROGRAMMING AND LOGISTICS INTERN
DEPARTMENT/ROLE: MARKETING STRATEGY
DEPARTMENT/ROLE: DIGITAL MARKETING INTERN
DEPARTMENT/ROLE: DIGITAL MARKETING INTERN
DEPARTMENT/ROLE: VIDEO PRODUCER & EDITOR, MARKET RESEARCH
DEPARTMENT/ROLE: STRATEGY, ANALYSIS, WRITING, INTERVIEWING
DEPARTMENT/ROLE: SOCIAL MEDIA INTERN
DEPARTMENT/ROLE: EMAIL MARKETING INTERN
DEPARTMENT/ROLE: TOUR GUIDE, TOUR STRATEGY
DEPARTMENT/ROLE: INTERVIEWING, MARKETING, CUSTOMER SERVICE, SALES, MULTIMEDIA INTERN
DEPARTMENT/ROLE: DIGITAL MARKETING & EXECUTIVE ASSISTANT
DEPARTMENT/ROLE: FUNDRAISING INTERN
DEPARTMENT/ROLE: TOUR DEVELOPMENT, GRANT WRITING, AND RESEARCH INTERN
DEPARTMENT/ROLE: FILMMAKING, VIRTUAL TOURS INTERN
DEPARTMENT/ROLE: FILMMAKING, VIRTUAL TOURS VOLUNTEER
DEPARTMENT/ROLE: TOUR DEVELOPMENT, ADMIN VOLUNTEER
DEPARTMENT/ROLE: FILMMAKING, VIRTUAL TOURS VOLUNTEER
DEPARTMENT/ROLE: FILMMAKING, VIRTUAL TOURS VOLUNTEER
DEPARTMENT/ROLE: DIGITAL MARKETING VOLUNTEER
DEPARTMENT/ROLE: VIRTUAL TOUR DEVELOPMENT, RESEARCH, ADMIN VOLUNTEER
DEPARTMENT/ROLE: RESEARCH, SPONSORSHIP SERVICES, ANIMATION, VIDEOGRAPHY/EDITING
"The tours are lively, upbeat, spirited, information-rich, and inspiring. In a relatively brief period, you get to visit some of the cutting edge sustainability enterprises in the country, and meet and talk with their operators."
- Mark McLeod Executive Director, Sustainable Business Alliance