Mohammed Abu-Nimer is Professor of International Peace and Conflict Resolution at the School of International Service of American University and Senior Advisor at KAICIID, International Center for Intercultural and Interreligious Dialogue. He has worked on linking religious institutions and policy makers in governmental and intergovernmental agencies, such as the UN and EU, to promote peace and reconciliation. He also founded and directed the Center for Peacebuilding and Development (2001-2013), while working for decades in peacebuilding in the Middle East and conflict resolution models in Muslim communities. Prof. Abu-Nimer has conducted numerous peace education programs with Muslim and Christian leaders in Niger and Chad, while conducting training workshops in conflict zones in Sri Lanka, Mindanao-Philippines, Palestine, Egypt, Northern Ireland, Bosnia, Kurdistan-Iraq, as well as the United States and Europe. Prof. Abu-Nimer is founder of Salam Institute for Peace and Justice and co-founder/co-editor of the Journal of Peacebuilding and Development. He holds a Ph.D. in Conflict Analysis and Resolution from George Mason University. His publications include Making Peace with Faith: The Challenges of Religion and Peacebuilding, with Michelle Gerrard (Rowman & Little Field, 2018), Post-Conflict Power-Sharing Agreements: Options for Syria. (eds) Imad Salamey, Mohammed Abu-Nimer, and Elie Abouaoun (Palgrave Macmillan, 2017), Peace-Building By, Between and Beyond Muslims and Evangelical Christians, (eds) Abu-Nimer and Augsburger (Lexington, 2009), Unity in Diversity: Interfaith Dialogue in the Middle East (eds) Abu-Nimer, Khoury, and Welty (United States Institute of Peace, 2007), and (ed.) Reconciliation, Coexistence, and Justice: Theory and Practice (Rowman & Little Field, 2001).
At the International Dialogue Centre, Fahad Abualnasr serves as Director General, in charge of proposing, developing and implementing new programs and projects with the guidance of the Secretary General. He oversees the day-to-day operations of the Centre, and also oversees the strategic alignment and coordination of the organization in order to optimize impact. To this end, Mr. Abualnasr led the organization through its first comprehensive strategic exercise to define its strategy for 2016-2019 and is responsible for ensuring its effective implementation. He has been closely involved in the conceptualization and implementation of the Centre’s flagship initiative “United against Violence in the Name of Religion”. Together with the Secretary General and the Deputy Secretary General, Mr. Abualnasr represents the organization externally in meetings with policymakers, religious leaders and at conferences. Throughout his professional career, Mr. Abualnasr has extensively studied and worked on the issues of dialogue as a tool for building bridges and the role of young people in development. He chaired the founding committee and successfully established the Al-AgharGroup, an independent think tank in Saudi Arabia. He is on the Board of Directors of the i2Institute, established to support entrepreneurship and social innovation for scientists, technologists and engineers in the Middle East and beyond. He managed the project titled “Building Saudi Arabia´s National Innovation Ecosystem Framework”, in close cooperation with KACST, the King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology.
Angelos Alexopoulos studied International and European Economics at the Athens University of Economics and Business followed by a Masters and PhD in Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management at Cardiff University and Dublin City University respectively. He joined CERN in 2012 as Research Associate and then as Fellow, managing EU projects on science education, including PATHWAY and Discover the Cosmos. Since 2016, Angelos is an Education and Outreach Officer of the CMS Experiment (CERN). His responsibilities include management of EU funded projects, coordination of outreach programs, attraction of external funding for new activities, support and development of school and teacher communities locally, nationally and internationally, as well as promotion of particle physics through public outreach and engagement. Angelos has a strong interest in supporting science education in Greek schools, especially those in underprivileged and remote communities to ensure that all students have equal opportunities, engaging effectively in science, discovery and innovation.
Panos Anagnostopoulos is a digital marketer and an entrepreneur with particular interest in fundraising for start-up companies who primarily focus on sustainability and environmental projects. He co-founded an equity-crowdfunding platform and remains active on the alternative finance sector by providing mentoring on technology, digital marketing and regulatory compliance to early stage start-up companies. Born in Halki, Istanbul, he attended Ampleforth College in Yorkshire England, receiving his Bachelor’s degree in Physics from London University. He started his professional career at Eastman Kodak’s IT department in London and later as Archival Systems Engineer in Kodak’s Labs at Rochester US. His most recent appointment was Compliance Officer for Evalue Ltd on their robo-advice projects. He is currently CEO of Aspendos Solutions Ltd, a company specialising in digital marketing with particular emphasis on SEO and Google My Business functionality and CEO of Bedbug Studio Ltd, a company specialising in gamification software for applications.
Mitry Anderson is a sophomore studying Mechanical Engineering at Washington University in St. Louis. While in college, he hopes to take classes in environmental engineering to learn more about how engineering principles can be applied to solve real problems facing the environment. After graduation, he is interested in working in the clean energy industry. Currently, he is a member of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers at Wash U and, as such, has worked on a team to design a solution to a power transmission problem for the St. Louis Arch. He is also a founding member of the Orthodox Christian Fellowship at Wash U.
The Right Reverend Marc Andrus is the 8th Episcopal Bishop of the Diocese of California. Marc holds a Bachelor of Science in plant and soil science (University of Tennessee), a Master’s in urban and regional planning (Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University), a Master of Divinity (Virginia Theological Seminary); he is a doctoral candidate at the California Institute of Integral Studies. Prior to his election as Bishop of California (2006), Marc served as the Bishop Suffragan (Diocese of Alabama), establishing its environmental commission and working on racial reconciliation. He served on the legislative committee on environment for the General Convention of the Episcopal Church (2015, 2017). He is founding bishop co-chair of the Episcopal Church’s Advisory Council on the Stewardship of Creation, leading the Presiding Bishop’s delegation to the UN Climate Summits. Married to ecological entomologist and global public health manager, Sheila Andrus, Marc has two grown daughters, Pilar and Chloé.
Sheila Moore Andrus is an environmental scientist, science manager and educator with a focus on global health, climate change and sustainable development. While leading research for the USDA Forest Service (1987-2002), Dr. Andrus also led agency international collaboration, facilitating international partnerships to address nonnative invasive species, transboundary environmental problems, and ecosystem management practices. Sheila carried her deepening appreciation of the principles for sustainable development into global and environmental health research and capacity building (2002-2011) at the University of Alabama at Birmingham’s Sparkman Center for Global Health and the University of California San Francisco’s Global Health Program. She serves as an active lay person in the Episcopal Church, organizing conferences on climate change and participating as an Episcopal Church delegate to the UN Conference of Parties on Climate Change (2015-2017). She currently facilitates development of a web-based tool for carbon tracking, promoting climate change education, advocacy and action within faith communities.
Michael Angelidis is Professor of Environmental Chemistry at the Department of Environment, University of the Aegean, Greece. He has also served as Director of the Marine Environmental Studies Laboratory (Monaco) of the International Atomic Energy Agency and as Programme Officer responsible for marine pollution monitoring and assessment of the United Nations Environment – Mediterranean Action Plan. He has provided expert consulting on marine pollution monitoring and assessment for several international organisations (UNDP, UNEP, FAO, IOC-UNESCO, GEF) and the European Commission. He has also provided technical assistance to several countries for the development of marine pollution monitoring programmes and the establishment of specialised marine pollution laboratories. Prof. Angelidis has published more than 140 research papers in international scientific journals, books and conference proceedings and was principal investigator for 18 research projects on marine pollution. As a professional consultant, he has completed more than 60 Environmental Impact Assessment Studies and Environment Reports for public authorities and private companies.
Jim Antal is an activist and public theologian, leading the 360 churches of the Massachusetts Conference United Church of Christ since 2006. An environmental activist from the first Earth Day in 1970, in 2017 Antal authored a resolution declaring a new moral era in opposition to President Trump’s withdrawal from the Paris Climate Accord. In 2013 Antal drafted the UCC’s resolution to divest from fossil fuel companies, the first of its kind in the USA. In 2010 he founded NEREM (New England Regional Environmental Ministries). In the mid-80’s he served as Executive Director of the Fellowship of Reconciliation (USA), an interfaith pacifist organization. He is a graduate of Princeton University, Andover Newton Theological School, and Yale Divinity School, where he was Henri Nouwen‘s teaching assistant. In 2017, Yale Divinity School honored him with the William Sloane Coffin Award for Peace and Justice. His most recent book is entitled Climate Church, Climate World.
A Chicago native, Nicholas Anton earned a BA from Hellenic College, M.Div. from Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology, and MA in Pastoral Ministry (Conflict Transformation) from Boston College STM. He was recently appointed Interim Director of the Depratment of Inter-Orthodox, Ecumenical and Interfaith Relations of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America. He represents the Archdiocese on the board of Creation Justice Ministries, the Secretariat of the Assembly of Bishops USA, and as a delegate to the National Council of Churches and Church World Service. He is an elected member of the Steering Committee of the NGO Committee to Stop Trafficking in Persons at the United Nations and Chairs the sub-committee on the Human Right to Water and Sanitation for the NGO Mining Working Group at the UN. While serving the Ecumenical Patriarchate, Nicholas realized the need for cross-sector collaboration towards achieving a peaceful and sustainable world. Inspired by Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew’s ability to bridge these demographics, he has dedicated his life to faith-based diplomacy and advocacy.
Nicholas Askounes-Ashford is Professor of Technology & Policy at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He holds a Ph.D. in Chemistry and a Law Degree from the University of Chicago, where he received graduate education in Economics. He is a visiting scientist at the Harvard School of Public Health and teaches courses at Cambridge University and Cyprus University of Technology. He has co-authored two textbooks/readers: Technology, Globalization, and Sustainable Development: Transforming the Industrial State (2011) and Environmental Law, Policy and Economics: Reclaiming the Environmental Agenda (2008). He served as chairman of the National Advisory Committee on Occupational Safety & Health, the EPA Science Advisory Board, and the EPA Committee on Technology Innovation & Economics. He is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and was advisor to the United Nations Environment Programme. He also co-chaired the US-Greece Council for the Initiative on Technology Cooperation with the Balkans.
Nikolaos Asproulis is Deputy Director of the Volos Academy for Theological Studies (Greece) and Lecturer at the graduate Program on Eastern Orthodox Studies at the Hellenic Open University. He studied theology at the University of Athens (1993-1997), earning his master degree from the Hellenic Open University (2007). His doctoral thesis, on “Creation, History, Eschata in Modern Orthodox Theological Hermeneutics in the work of Georges Florovsky and John Zizioulas,” will appear in Greek (St. Sebastian Orthodox Press, 2018). Since 2014, Dr. Asproulis coordinates the Network of Ecumenical Learning in Central and Eastern Europe, while participating in international conferences and authoring numerous articles on contemporary Orthodox theology and its role in the world. He is co-editor of the Orthodox Handbook for Ecumenism. Recourses for theological education (Volos Academy Publications, WCC Publications and Regnum Books International, 2014) and Theology as Doxology and Science. The Essential Writings of Nikos Nissiotis, (Lexington, forthcoming, 2019).
His Eminence Metropolitan Athenagoras of Belgium and Exarch of the Netherlands and Luxemburg was born in Ghent (Belgium). He first studied Law at the University of Ghent, then Theology at Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, and continued his studies at the Ecumenical Institute of Bossey (University of Geneva). In 1989 he was ordained a deacon and in 1996 a priest. He served as an episcopal vicar of the Metropolis of Belgium and created parishes in Bruges, Ostend and Hasselt. In 2003 he was elected by the Holy and Sacred Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate assistant bishop of the Metropolitan of Belgium with the title of ‘Bishop of Sinope’. In 2013 he was elected Metropolitan of Belgium and Exarch of the Netherlands and Luxemburg. Since then he represents the whole of the Orthodox Church in Belgium and Luxemburg. He is the president of the Orthodox Bishops Conference of the Benelux and the co-chair of the international dialogue between the Anglican Communion and the Orthodox Church. He takes part in delegations and representations of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople.
Dr Margaret Barker is a biblical scholar, and was a member of the RSE Symposium from 1997. HAH Bartholomew wrote the Preface to her book Creation. A Biblical Vision for the Environment [London: T&T Clark, 2010] which set the Symposium’s characteristic approach to creation theology within the broader field of biblical studies and traditions rooted in the Jerusalem Temple. Many members of RSE contributed to the book, which was dedicated to Maria Becket. She is a former President of the Society for Old Testament Study, the co-founder of the Temple Studies Group, and in 2008 was made a Lambeth Doctor of Divinity by the Archbishop of Canterbury. Her publications include 18 books and numerous articles and reviews.
Maude Barlow is the Honorary Chairperson of the Council of Canadians and chairs the board of Washington-based Food and Water Watch. She serves on the executive of the Global Alliance for the Rights of Nature and is a Councillor with the Hamburg-based World Future Council. Maude is the recipient of fourteen honorary doctorates as well as many awards, including the 2005 Right Livelihood Award (known as the “Alternative Nobel”), the 2005 Lannan Foundation Cultural Freedom Fellowship Award, the Citation of Lifetime Achievement at the 2008 Canadian Environment Awards, the 2009 Earth Day Canada Outstanding Environmental Achievement Award, the 2009 Planet in Focus Eco Hero Award, and the 2011 EarthCare Award, the highest international honour of the Sierra Club (US). In 2008/2009, she served as Senior Advisor on Water to the 63rd President of the United Nations General Assembly and was a leader in the campaign to have water recognized as a human right by the UN. She is also the author of dozens of reports, as well as eighteen books, including her latest, Blue Future: Protecting Water For People And The Planet Forever and Boiling Point: Government Neglect, Corporate Abuse, and Canada’s Water Crisis.
Terence Baz, D. Min., is a native Australian, who studied theology in Sydney and completed a Doctor of Ministry degree from Pittsburgh Theological Seminary in conjunction with the Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese St. Stephens’ Course of Studies. His dissertation was entitled An Orthodox Christian Ecology and Theology of Creation. He has continued to research the relation between theology and ecology, serving as member of the Eco-Justice Working Group of the National Council of Churches, the New York State Interfaith Power & Light, the Forum on Religion and Ecology, and the Fellowship of the Transfiguration, an inter-Orthodox body concerned about the environment. Father Terry is Rector of Assumption of the Holy Virgin Orthodox Church (OCA) in Clifton NJ. He has given numerous talks at public meetings on an Orthodox Ecology as well as to university students. He has also developed a program for summer camps for school students.
Daphne Becket is an award-winning architect working in the UK, USA and Greece. She has taught design and lectured at Cambridge and Kingston Universities among others. A recent project of note was the restoration of three 16th century windmills on the sacred island of Patmos (Europa Nostra award 2012 and the Best in Heritage 2013). She has worked as set decorator in feature films as well as produced documentaries. She is currently completing her work on the archives of her mother, Maria Becket, the force behind the creation of “Religion, Science and the Environment” and the tireless coordinator of the eight original RSE Environmental Symposia (1995-2009).
The Reverend Protopresbyter Christopher H. Bender, Dean of St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Cathedral in Pittsburgh, PA, graduated from Yale University (B.A., 1976) and Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology in Brookline, MA (M.Div., 1981). He studied Orthodox Ethics at the University of Thessaloniki. After ordination (1984), he served parishes in Lowell MA, East Pittsburgh PA, Morgantown WV, and Aliquippa PA. A strong advocate for the ecumenical movement, he represented his national church in the areas of environmental ministry and social justice at the National Council of Churches of Christ in the U.S.A. (1997-2013) and was a member of its Eco-Justice Working Group (1997-2010), serving as chair of the NCC Justice and Advocacy Commission (2009-2013). He has chaired the Steering Committee of the Orthodox Fellowship of the Transfiguration, a Pan-Orthodox national ministry in creation care, from its inception in 2002. He is a member of the Orthodox Theological Society of America.
Sofia Bennett has recently graduated from high school and is currently on a gap year. She has been working in New York City as a research assistant to Professor Anya Schiffrin, director of Technology, Media, and Communications at Columbia University. Furthering her interest in media, Sofia has been studying photography at New York’s International Center of Photography. Her photography has been shown in galleries in Athens. She also has experience in film and casting. In the fall, she will be headed to university to study sociology and psychology. Her interests combine gender studies, food safety and the environment. Having attended most of the prior symposia, she is looking forward to participating in this symposium and honoring the memory of her grandmother, Maria Becket.
Claudia Carydis Benopoulou is Vice President of Public Affairs at The American College of Greece (ACG) since 2012, engaging in lobbying efforts and cultivating relations with key stakeholders in the private and public sectors. She also supervises the work of three separate ACG entities: The Center of Excellence for Sustainability, the Institute of Public Health and the Institute of Diplomacy & Global Affairs. Under her leadership, in 2017, ACG was awarded the Silver STARS rating by the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education. Prior to joining ACG in 2005 as head of Alumni Relations & College Events, Claudia worked in private companies as a marketing and communications executive. She also worked for the Greek Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Department of European Affairs (1988-1992). Claudia holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from DEREE-The American College of Greece and a Master’s degree in International Relations & Communication from Boston University.
Konstantina E. Botsiou is Associate Professor of Modern History and International Politics at the University of the Peloponnese, where she was Vice Rector (2012-2015). She is General Director of the Konstantinos Karamanlis Institute for Democracy and Foreign Policy Adviser to the President of the New Democracy Party. She studied at the University of Athens and received her Ph.D. at the University of Tübingen. She taught at the University of Athens (1999-2008) and was Deputy Director of the Jean Monnet Centre of Excellence. She was board member of the National Library of Greece and member of the Academic Councils of the Hellenic Parliament Foundation, the Diplomatic Academy of the Hellenic Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the Martenscentre for European Studies. Her publications include Greece’s Path to Europe, 1947-1961 (1999, in German); Europe between the EEC and NATO, 1949-1957 (2002, in Greek); The Balkans in the Cold War (2017, with S. Rajak et al.)
Patricia Fann Bouteneff (D.Phil.Oxon.), a former academic and corporate chief-of-staff, is a strategic communications consultant. Baptized at a metochion of Simonopetra in Thessaloniki, she has been active in church communities in Greece, England, Switzerland, and the USA, and at present is president of the council of Holy Trinity Orthodox Church in Yonkers, NY, USA.
Peter Bouteneff is Professor of Systematic Theology at St Vladimir’s Orthodox Seminary. After a degree in music (1983), he lived in Japan, traveling widely in Asia and Greece. He has a doctorate from Oxford University and worked for many years in theological dialogue as Executive Secretary for Faith and Order at the World Council of Churches. He conceived of and edits the "Foundations" series for SVS Press, to which he has contributed a volume called Sweeter than Honey: Orthodox Thinking on Dogma and Truth. In 2008 he authored a study of how early Christians read the Genesis creation accounts, called Beginnings: Ancient Christian Readings of the Biblical Creation Narratives. He directs the Arvo Pärt Project, and his book Arvo Pärt: Out of Silence has been hailed as "a triumph" and "a must-read for any listener or performer of Pärt's music." As of 2016 he also directs the seminary’s Sacred Arts Initiative.
Rev. Panagiotis Boznos has been the parish priest at Saints Peter and Paul Greek Orthodox Church in Glenview, IL for the last four years. Fr. Panagiotis attended the University of Oklahoma for his undergraduate degree in Classical Greek and Religious Studies (2008) and received his MDiv from Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology (2013). Under his leadership, Saints Peter and Paul has embraced the environmental mission of the Ecumenical Patriarchate through the annual celebration celebration of a Vespers for the Care of Creation in conjunction with the Catholic Archdiocese of Chicago. Additionally, Fr. Panagiotis has worked to render parish facilities more environmentally friendly and sustainable through an LED lighting project and is currently exploring the installation of solar and geothermal projects to reduce energy consumption.
Lino Breda was born in Schio (Vicenza) in 1958. He was educated at the University of Padua, where he received a Doctorate of Pharmacy with a dissertation on Unity in the Biological World: itinerary from simple to complex, from small to big, and viceversa. During the same period, he attended the Advanced School of Art History under the direction of Rodolfo Pallucchini. In 1983 he entered the monastic ecumenical community of Bose in northern Italy, whose founder is Fr. Enzo Bianchi. In 1988, Fr. Lino completed a post-graduate diploma in Oriental Biblical Studies and Archaeology at the Pontifical University Antonianum of Rome, returning to the Monastery of Bose to make his monastic profession in 1991 and serve the community as novice master and guestmaster for several years. At the moment, he is secretary of the community and member of the Scientific Committee of the International Ecumenical Conferences on Orthodox Spirituality.
The Rev. Dr. Margaret Bullitt-Jonas serves as Missioner for Creation Care in Episcopal Diocese of Western Massachusetts and Mass. Conference, United Church of Christ. An Episcopal priest, author, retreat leader, and climate activist, she has organized many Christian and interfaith events about care for Earth, and she leads spiritual retreats in the U.S.A. and Canada on spiritual resilience and resistance in the midst of the climate crisis. Her latest book, Joy of Heaven, To Earth Come Down, is a collection of daily Advent-Christmas meditations on the sacredness of the natural world. One of the first to engage in civil disobedience to draw attention to climate change, Margaret was arrested in 2001 with 21 other religious activists outside the U.S. Department of Energy in Washington, D.C. Since then she has participated in other interfaith acts of civil disobedience to stop construction of new fossil fuel infrastructure. Her Website is RevivingCreation.org.
Maxine Burkett is a Professor of Law at the William S. Richardson School of Law, University of Hawai‘i, and a Global Fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. At Richardson, she teaches Climate Change Law and Policy, Ocean and Coastal Law, Torts, and International Law. An expert in the law and policy of climate change, she has presented her work on diverse areas of climate law throughout the United States and in West Africa, Asia, Europe, and the Caribbean. Her work has been cited in numerous news and policy outlets. From 2009-2012, Professor Burkett also served as the inaugural Director of the Center for Island Climate Adaptation and Policy. Burkett is a member scholar of the Center for Progressive Reform, and is a member of the Global Greengrants Fund Board of Directors. She was a member of the recently disbanded Federal Advisory Committee for the Sustained National Climate Assessment. Professor Burkett attended Williams College, which awarded her the Bicentennial Medal for Distinguished Achievement in 2016. She also attended Exeter College, Oxford University, and received her law degree from the University of California, Berkeley. She served as a law clerk for The Honorable Susan Illston of the United States District Court, Northern District of California. She first taught at the University of Colorado Law School She was a White House Intern, an Omidyar Fellow, a 2016 recipient of Pacific Business News’ 40 Under 40 award, and a 2017 awardee of Hawaii Business Magazine’s 20 for the Next 20.
Librettist, essayist, translator, and author of eight poetry collections, Scott Cairns is Curators’ Distinguished Professor of English at University of Missouri, and Director of the Low-Residency MFA Program at Seattle Pacific University. His poems and essays have appeared in Poetry, Image, Paris Review, The Atlantic Monthly, The New Republic, etc., and both have been anthologized in multiple editions of Best American Spiritual Writing. He blogs for the Religion Section of The Huffington Post. His recent books include Slow Pilgrim: The Collected Poems (2015), Idiot Psalms (2014), Short Trip to the Edge (spiritual memoir, 2016), Endless Life (translations and adaptations of Christian mystics, 2014), and a book-length essay, The End of Suffering (2009). He received a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2006, and the Denise Levertov Award in 2014. His new projects include Descent to the Heart, verse adaptations of selections from the writings of Saint Isaak of Syria, and a new poetry collection, Anaphora.
Thomas Carr is the Pastor of the Second Baptist Church of Suffield, Connecticut, an ordained American Baptist Churches, USA minister, and a certified Spiritual Director. For thirty years he has been involved in issues of ecology and environmental justice with local congregations, ecumenically and on an interfaith basis. Rev. Carr is the co-founder of the Interreligious Eco-Justice Network, and the American Baptist Churches, USA, Creation Justice Network. He is also part of the National Religious Coalition on Creation Care and the New England Region Environmental Ministries. He is an activist for local, state and national environmental concerns. He also assists religious communities to understand the spiritual basis for caring for Earth and all of God’s creation through preaching and offering workshops related to eco-justice. In the summer of 2015, he traveled with others to Istanbul to present His All-Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew with the Steward of God’s Creation award from the NRCCC.
Costa Carras, born in London in 1938, studied philosophy and ancient history at Oxford. He then studied economics at Harvard and worked for many years in shipping in London. He now lives in Athens. Together with his wife Lydia, a documentary film producer, he founded Elliniki Etairia (Society for the Environment and Cultural Heritage) in 1972. He has served twice (1972-1975, 2001-2008) as its President. He is Vice President since 1976 of the federation of European conservation organizations, Europa Nostra. An Archon of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, in 1988 he organized the ground-breaking Patmos meeting on religion and the environment – the prelude to the Ecumenical Patriarchate’s role in the field. He has published a book of environmental essays in Greek, Imiteles Topio. His essay “Environment and Security: Towards a Systemic Crisis of Humanity?” appeared in Toward an Ecology of Transfiguration, edited by John Chryssavgis and Bruce Foltz (Fordham University Press 2013).
Lydia Potamianou-Carras studied Sociology (Sorbonne), Ιnternational Relations (University College London), and postgraduate studies in Byzantine civilization (with Professor R. Browning). In 1972, she co-founded with Costa Carras, the Hellenic Society for Environment and Cultural Heritage. As president of the Hellenic Cultural Center (1992-94), in London, she organized the celebration of 2500 years since the birth of democracy in collaboration with British Parliament, when the Trireme sailed the Thames. She has directed fifteen documentary films, including “Sinai God Trodden Mountain” (which financed the restoration of its medieval refectory), “Sir Steven Runciman: Bridge to the East” (Chicago Film Festival award), “Beyond the Βarbed Wires” (European Union award), and “Voice of the Aegean” (best film for Nature, European Heritage). In 2009, Lydia received an Academy of Athens award for Film, Heritage and Environment. Ιn 2017, she was elected President of the Hellenic Society for Environment and Cultural Heritage, its first woman president.
Kevin Cawley, a Catholic Christian Brother, ministered 17 years in secondary education and 21 years in university teaching and administration. In the last 10 years, he has been connected to Iona College and represented his religious Congregation at the United Nations (New York) as Main Representative of Edmund Rice International (ERI), a non-governmental organization working in 30 countries for young people and Care of the Earth. He earned his Ph.D. in Literacy Education from Fordham University. Kevin is a 2009 GreenFaith Fellow, an interfaith coalition for religious environmental leadership, Executive Director of the Thomas Berry Forum for Ecological Dialogue at Iona College, and editor of The Carbon Rangers/Ecozoic Times. Kevin is a member of the United Nations NGO Mining Working Group, which engages on the Human Right to Water. He is also on the Steering Committee and Secretary to the United Nations NGO Committee to Stop Trafficking in Persons.
Pratap Chatterjee is an investigative journalist and executive director of CorpWatch, based in Berkeley CA. He serves on the board of the Corporate Europe Observatory (Brussels) and Corruption Watch (London). Since the War on Terror began in 2001, Pratap has traveled extensively throughout Central Asia and the Middle East to report on waste, fraud and abuse by military contractors as well as on labor conditions for contract workers. He testified on his experiences before the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights and the Commission on Wartime Contracting in Iraq and Afghanistan in the U.S. Congress. He has written four books: Verax: The True History of Whistleblowers, Drone Warfare, and Mass Surveillance (Macmillan, 2017); Halliburton’s Army: How a Well-Connected Texas Oil Company Revolutionized the Way America Makes War (Nation Books, 2009); Iraq, Inc.: A Profitable Occupation (Seven Stories Press, 2004), and co-authored The Earth Brokers (Routledge, 1994), a book on global environmental policy. Pratap has won many awards from the International Consortium for Investigative Journalists, the Investigative Reporters and Editors, and others. He has been recognized for his activism with a Lannan Cultural Freedom Award, the Focus on Turtle Island Award from the Marin American Indian Alliance, and an award from American Muslims Intent On Learning and Activism. Pratap worked for Inter Press Service and as a visiting fellow at the Center for American Progress in Washington DC. He also served on the board of Amnesty International USA and on the Environmental Advisory Commission for the city of Berkeley, California.
Rev. Eleftherios Chrisochoos is Protopresbyter of the Ecumenical Throne. Born on the sacred island of Patmos (1969), he is married to Aikaterini Pagonis, a French language teacher, with whom he has two children. He graduated from the Higher Ecclesiastical School as well as the Theological School at the University of Athens. He completed postgraduate studies in the field of Church History at Heythrop College (University of London), receiving a Master of Philosophy (M.Phil). He has served as Secretary of the Official Delegation of the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Athens since its establishment (2000). He is parish priest at the Church of St. George in Penteli, Athens (a subsidiary of the Monastery of Patmos). He has participated in conferences and consultations, accompanying the Ecumenical Patriarch or representing the Ecumenical Patriarchate, in Greece and abroad. He has authored and edited a number of books and articles, while contributing widely to journals and newspapers.
Rev. Dr. John Chryssavgis, Archdeacon of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, was born in Australia, studied theology in Athens, and completed his doctorate in Oxford. After several months in silent retreat on Mount Athos, he co-founded St Andrew’s Theological College in Sydney. He taught theology for many years in Sydney and Boston. He serves as theological advisor to the Ecumenical Office of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America and ecological advisor to the Ecumenical Patriarch. His publications include Light Through Darkness: the Orthodox tradition (Orbis Books), In the Heart of the Desert: The Spirituality of the Desert Fathers and Mothers (World Wisdom), three volumes containing select writings of the Ecumenical Patriarch, the third of which is entitled On Earth as in Heaven: Ecological Initiatives of Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew (Fordham University), and the official biography of the Ecumenical Patriarch, Bartholomew (HarperCollins). His book Creation as Sacrament is forthcoming (Bloomsbury). He lives in Maine.
Bruce Clark is the online religion editor of the Economist, and the main author of the Economist's commentaries on religion and society published under the pen name Erasmus. His previous jobs have included: international news editor for the Economist, diplomatic correspondent for the Financial Times, and Moscow correspondent for The Times. His first journalist postings were in Paris and Athens, as a correspondent for Reuters. He is the author of books on post-Soviet transition and on the Greek-Turkish population exchange. He was born in Northern Ireland in 1958. He has been a member of the Orthodox Church since 1996, and he has lectured on the history of the Ecumenical Patriarchate.
Savannah Clawson is a recent graduate of Brigham Young University, where she received a bachelors degree in Interdisciplinary Humanities with an Environmental Humanities emphasis. She spent her senior year working at the Maxwell Institute of Religious Scholarship as a research assistant and will spend a summer term at Hebrew University this June/July to pursue Biblical Hebrew. Before switching her major to Environmental Humanities, Savannah studied studio art; ahe loves to paint, draw, and work with clay. Savannah is deeply interested in the faiths of the world and was the co-founder and president of BYU’s Interfaith Club. She grew up in Clearwater Florida and is the third of seven daughters. She enjoys reading, writing, painting, gardening, and being in the mountains.
Arnaud Czaja holds a PhD from the University of Paris VI, where he worked under the supervision of Prof Claude Frankignoul on seasonal climate predictability and the theory of the oceanic thermocline. He then moved to Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he worked for six years with Prof John Marshall on the impact of the ocean circulation on North Atlantic storms on timescales of decades. Since 2005, he has been a member of the Physics Department at Imperial College, first as a Lecturer and, since September 2009, as a Reader in Physical Oceanography. The main research interest of Dr Czaja is in understanding the role of the extra-tropical oceans in shaping the mean climate and its variability.
Protopresbyter Akindynos Dardanos was born in Hydra in 1966. He studied theology at the Higher Ecclesiastical Academy of Athens and at the Theological Faculty of the University of Athens, where he completed his degree in 1992. He was ordained to the diaconate in 1991 and to the priesthood in 1996, serving since then as pastor and parish priest at the Holy Cathedral of the Dormition of the Theotokos on the island of Hydra. He also serves as the Chancellor of the Metropolis of Hydra. Over the years, he has edited numerous publications of the diocese, including books as well as occasional volumes, while also organizing a series of cathedral events entitled "Theomitorika" since 2001. He has authored various articles and contributions to books, along with other theological studies on pastoral subjects. A married clergyman, Fr. Akindynos has five children.
Kathleen Deignan, a sister of the Congregation of Notre Dame, teaches in the Departments of Religious and Environmental Studies at Iona College, holding masters and doctoral degrees from Fordham University. She founded the Iona Peace and Justice Studies Program and the Iona Peace Institute in Ireland and is founding director of the Iona Spirituality Institute. In 2009, she convened The Thomas Berry Forum for Ecological Dialogue at Iona. Sister Deignan is an active GreenFaith Fellow and past president of the International Thomas Merton Society. She sits on the Board of The American Teilhard Association and is currently working on a Book of Hours based on Teilhard’s writings. A sacred psalmist, Sister Kathleen has composed over 200 sacred songs published in a dozen CDs by Schola Ministries. She is the author of Christ Spirit: The Eschatology of Shaker Christianity (Scarecrow Press 1992) and Thomas Merton: A Book of Hours (Sorin 2009).
Konstantinos Delikostantis was born in 1948 on the island of Imbros. He holds degrees from the Theological School of Halki, the University of Tübingen (Ph.D.) and the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (Master in Pedagogy and Education). He is a Professor Emeritus of Philosophy and Systematic Theology at the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, a Professor at the Institut d’études supérieures en théologie orthodoxe à Chambésy-Geneva in Switzerland, and a Visiting Professor at the Nicosia University of Cyprus. He is the Director of the First Patriarchal Office and an Archon of the Ecumenical Patriarchate. Additionally, he serves on several committees for ecumenical and intercultural dialogue. He has published numerous books and articles in many languages focusing on a range of topics such as philosophical and theological anthropology, social ethics, philosophy of freedom, religious education, human rights, and Martin Luther’s theology.
Konstantinos Dimopoulos was born in Patras (1964) and, since 2011, serves as Director of the General Secretariat for the Development and Protection of Forests and Agro-Environment for the Ministry of Environment and Energy, with special responsibility for the protected area of Parnitha. He studied Forestry and Natural Environment at the Aristotelian University of Thessaloniki and holds a degree from the National School of Public Administration of Greece as well as from the Open University of Patras in environmental planning of cities and buildings. He began his career in the forest service of Aigion (Greece) and later served on the Revisionary Board of Forest Property on the Supreme Court of Justice. From various positions in the General Secretariat of Forests and Natural Environment, he has worked community programs, implementation of European Union Regulations, especially the new Regulation for the Integrated Development of Rural Areas (1257/99), and forest policy-making in Greece.
A born-and-bred Washingtonian, Juliet Eilperin graduated in 1992 magna cum laude from Princeton University, where she received a bachelor’s in Politics with a certificate in Latin American Studies. She has worked on The Washington Post’s national desk for 20 years, covering the White House, Congress, the environment and a host of domestic and international policy matters. Ms. Eilperin now serves the Post’s senior national affairs correspondent, focusing on the environment and other domestic issues that shed light on how President Trump is transforming the federal government and many policies enacted under former President Obama.
Previously, Ms. Eilperin served as the Post’s White House bureau chief, and before covering Obama’s second term in office and the 2008 presidential election she spent nine years as the Post’s national environmental reporter. She began her career as the Post’s House of Representatives reporter, where she covered the impeachment of Bill Clinton, lobbying, legislation, and congressional campaigns.
In the spring of 2006 Rowman & Littlefield published her first book, “Fight Club Politics: How Partisanship is Poisoning the House of Representatives, which has been featured on NPR’s “Fresh Air with Terry Gross” and Comedy Central’s “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart.” In June 2011 Pantheon published Ms. Eilperin’s second book, “Demon Fish: Travels Through the Hidden World of Sharks,” which has been featured in Smithsonian, Popular Science and People magazines. She is the 2011 recipient of the Peter Benchley Ocean Award for Media, and in the spring of 2005 she served as the youngest-ever McGraw Professor of Journalism at Princeton University.
Peter Ellard is the Dean of Student Success at Merrimack College in Andover Massachusetts, where his courses focus on science and religion, environmental ethics, and religion and the environment. He earned his Ph.D. at Fordham University and his scholarship spans a wide breadth of topics. His book, The Sacred Cosmos: Theological, Philosophical, and Scientific Conversations in the Twelfth Century School of Chartres (2007), is used widely by medieval scholars. His other published works include a comparative essay in The International Journal of Environmental Studies on Thomas Berry, Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew and Pope Benedict, noting the various shades of green in their respective thought. He has completed his first novel and is currently writing on the content of the Thomas Berry archives. He resides in New Hampshire with his wife Amy and their children Olivia and Holden.
Tom English is the Creation Care Educator for the Presbyterian Church’s Synod of Southern California and Hawaii. He lectures on Environmental Issues to university, civic, industrial, and church groups. He has given eight White House presentations and presented a three-day environmental management seminar in Moscow. He led the effort for the Presbyterian Church’s General Assembly’s new policy “On Preserving Biodiversity and Halting Mass Extinction.” He received the “Steward of God's Creation” award (National Religious Coalition on Creation Care, 2012). Dr. English advised the US Government and the Government of Sweden on high-level nuclear waste disposal. He received a Presidential Award for fixing the F-111 fighter/bomber after the wings fell off the aircraft. His improvements to the California Clean Air Act resulted in savings of several billion dollars. He has a postdoctoral MS in environmental engineering, a Ph.D. and a MS in electrical engineering, and a BS in physics.
His Eminence Metropolitan Ephraim (Stenakis) of Hydra, Spetsai and Aigina was born in Kypseli (on the island of Aigina) in 1948. He graduated from the Ecclesiastical School of Corinth and the Theological School (magna cum laude) at the University of Athens. Ordained to the diaconate in 1973 and the priesthood (as Archimandrite) in 1979, he served as Chancellor of the Metropolis of Hydra, Spetsai and Aigina as well as Middle School educator for vocational studies, Director of the “St. Nektarios” Leouseion Institute of Aegina, Chairman of the “St. Dionysios” Church Hospital in Aigina, and Abbot of the Holy Monastery of the Life-Giving Source on the island of Poros. He was ordained to the episcopate as Metropolitan of Hydra in January 2001.
Patricia Espinosa Cantellano is the Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. She served as Ambassador of Mexico to Germany since 2012 as well as from 2001 to 2002, while Ms. Espinosa was Minister of Foreign Affairs of Mexico from 2006 to 2012, bringing over thirty years of experience at highest levels in international relations. As Chair of the Third Committee of the UNGA (1996), she played a key role in the adoption of the Beijing Platform for Action. Ms. Espinosa has also served as Ambassador of Mexico to Austria, Slovakia, Slovenia and the UN in Vienna (2002-2006), Chief of Staff to the Undersecretary of Foreign Affairs (1989-1991) and responsible for economic issues at the Permanent Mission to the UN in Geneva (1982-1988).
Christiana Figueres is a world authority on global climate change and was the Executive Secretary of the UNFCCC from 2010-2016. Ms. Figueres is currently Vice-Chair of the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy, ClimateWorks Board Member, World Bank Climate Leader, Senior Fellow for Conservation International, ACCIONA Board Member, The B Team Leader, WRI Board Member, Economic Council member for the Rockefeller Foundation Economic Council on Planetary Health, Leadership Council Member for The Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves, and Mission2020 Convenor. During her tenure at the UNFCCC Ms. Figueres brought together national and sub-national governments, corporations and activists, financial institutions and communities of faith, think tanks and technology providers, NGOs and parliamentarians, to jointly deliver the historic Paris Agreement on climate change, in which 195 sovereign nations agreed on a collaborative path forward to limit future global warming to below 2C. The agreement entered into force in less than a year, breaking the record of the UN. For this achievement Ms. Figueres has been credited with forging a new brand of collaborative diplomacy. In addition to her remarkable diplomatic achievements over the past 20 years, she served as Director of Renewable Energy in the Americas (REIA) and in 1995 founded the non-profit Center for Sustainable Development of the Americas (CSDA), which she directed for eight years.
Jim Forest is the author of biographies of Dorothy Day, Thomas Merton and Daniel Berrigan as well as books on pilgrimage, the basic teachings of Jesus, religious imagery, and overcoming enmity. A co-worker of Dorothy Day, he was a managing editor of The Catholic Worker. Earlier in his life, before joining the Catholic Worker staff in New York, he worked as a meteorologist with a Navy unit at the US Weather Bureau; he was given an early discharge from the military as a conscientious objector. Protesting the war in Vietnam, in 1969-70 he spent a year in prison after participating in the destruction of draft files in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. In 1977 he was appointed General Secretary of the International Fellowship of Reconciliation (in Holland). In 1988, he became a communicant in the Orthodox Church and has since been ordained a Reader. He is international secretary of the Orthodox Peace Fellowship.
Nancy Forest is a Dutch-English literary translator. American by birth, she has been living in the Netherlands since 1982 along with her husband, Jim Forest. The couple have six children and ten grandchildren. In 1988 they became communicants in the Orthodox Church and are members of the Church of St. Nicholas of Myra parish in Amsterdam, which is under the Moscow Patriarchate. Most of the books she translates are fiction and non-fiction, although she has also done a great deal of translation work for the Anne Frank House in Amsterdam, where the young Anne Frank spent two years in hiding with her family during the Nazi occupation of the country. She has also translated art catalogues for various Dutch museums, including two for the Kröller-Müller Museum on the paintings and drawings of Vincent van Gogh.
Spyridoula Fotinis will be a senior in the Fall at the City College of New York. She is studying International Studies and Sociology with a minor in French. She is the assistant secretary for the Green Attica Sympoisum in addition to interning for the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese at the UN office. She serves as the Public Relations Student Leader on the Orthodox Christian Fellowship Student Leadership Board and served as the Northeast Regional Student Leader last year. Spyridoula is involved in the sacramental life of the church and church community in NYC as a co-organizer of Orthodoxy on Tap – NYC for young adults.
Metropolitan Gabriel of New Ionia and Philadelphia was born in Athens, Greece, in 1976 and baptized with the lay name of George Papanicolaou. He was tonsured a monk, in 1995, and received the name Gabriel. In 1996, He was ordained to the diaconate and in 2002 to the priesthood. In 2009, His Eminence became Vicar of the Archdiocese of Athens, pioneering in the modernization of Church administration and the creation of social programs throughout the greater Athens area; this social network of aid and help would become what is known today as “MISSION,” the Non-Profit organization of the Archdiocese of Athens. In 2012, His Eminence was elected to the Episcopacy of Diavleia and appointed Archsecretary to the Holy Synod of the Church of Greece. In 2014, His Eminence was elected and raised to his current role as Metropolitan of New Ionia and Philadelphia (in Greece). His Eminence holds a Bachelors Degree from the Theological Faculty of the Kapodistrian University of Athens, a Masters Degree from University of Freiburg (Switzerland), a Ph.D. from the WTC in Geneva, and is currently a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Athens. He is fluent in French, English, Italian, and Greek.
Brandon Gallaher (DPhil, Oxford) is Lecturer of Systematic and Comparative Theology at the Department of Theology and Religion, University of Exeter and former British Academy postdoctoral fellow in the Faculty of Theology and Religion (University of Oxford). He has written on modern Orthodox theology and dogmatic theology, including, Trinitarian theology, Christology and the Doctrine of Creation, with focus on the ecological crisis. His publications include Freedom and Necessity in Modern Trinitarian Theology (2016) and The Patristic Witness of Georges Florovsky: Essential Theological Writings (forthcoming). Since 2013, he has served on the Eastern Orthodox-Roman Catholic Pastoral Consultation in England and is Orthodox Co-Chair on the Eastern-Orthodox-Pentecostal International Academic Dialogue. He served in June 2016 in Crete at the Holy and Great Council as a Theological Subject Expert in the Ecumenical Patriarchate Press Office. For the last five years, he has been engaged in interreligious dialogue, especially with Islam and Japanese religion.
Maria Ganoti is president of ANIMA, a volunteer non-profit organization providing medical care and rehabilitation to injured wild animals. A graduate of the Department of Classics at Athens University, Maria has been involved in the environmental movement for over 35 years, is a member of the editorial board of the first ecological periodical published in Greece (New Ecology) and one of the founding associates of the first centre for rehabilitation of wild life since its establishment in 1984. She has been a fellow of the Greek Ornithological Society and a member of its managerial board since the early eighties. In 2005, Maria and a group of experienced wildlife caretakers founded ANIMA. As a result of ANIMA’s fruitful cooperation with vets and biologists, thousands of wild animals are treated and rehabilitated annually. Maria also offers seminars to volunteers and staff of environmental organizations, while coordinating educational programs to raise environmental awareness.
R. Ruard Ganzevoort is a public theologian and active politician. He is professor of practical theology and dean of the Faculty of Religion and Theology at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. The author of over 120 articles or chapters and over 20 books, he focuses on issues like religion and trauma, sexuality and spiritual care. He is president of the International Society for Empirical Research in Theology and past president of the International Academy for Practical Theology. He is founding editor of the Palgrave Studies in Lived Religion and Societal Challenges. He is also senator in the Dutch Parliament and chair of the Senate’s standing committee for the Caribbean part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. In his political career with the ecological party GroenLinks, he advocates for religious freedom, minority rights and ecological justice. Combining his political and academic interests, he recently founded the Amsterdam Centre for Religion and Sustainable Development.
Gary Gardner is a researcher, writer, and speaker on global sustainability issues, and a hands-on program director. Gary spent more than two decades as a sustainability researcher and Director of Research at the Worldwatch Institute, where he authored books, papers, chapters, magazine articles, and blogs on a broad variety of environmental, economic, and social sustainability issues, including the nexus between faith and sustainability. Gary is the author of Inspiring Progress: Religions’ Contributions to Sustainable Development and has represented Worldwatch before a broad range of global entities, including the Parliament of the World's Religions and the Pontifical Council on the Family. He lives in Washington DC with his wife and daughter.
Paul L. Gavrilyuk holds the Aquinas Chair in Theology and Philosophy at the University of St. Thomas, St. Paul, Minnesota, USA. An Orthodox theologian and historian, he is the author of several books, including The Suffering of the Impassible God: The Dialectics of Patristic Thought (Oxford, 2004), and Georges Florovsky and the Russian Religious Renaissance (Oxford, 2013). He served as an External Correspondent of the Ecumenical Patriarchate’s Press Office at the Great and Holy Council of Crete (2016), and is the Founding President of the International Orthodox Theological Association (IOTA).
Anne Glynn-Mackoul is an Orthodox Christian who represents the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Antioch on the central committee of the World Council of Churches since 1998 and on its executive governing body since 2018. The WCC has been active in ecumenical efforts on climate and sustainable development throughout its history, inspired by the leadership of Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew and with the participation of the Orthodox churches. Mrs. Mackoul is a member of the board of directors of International Orthodox Christian Charities and chairs its program committee. She served on the advisory committee to the Orthodox Fellowship of the Transfiguration and is an adviser to several committees of the US Assembly of Bishops. Anne earned a B.A. from the University of Tennessee and a J.D. from the University of Cincinnati College of Law. She is a lawyer who lives in Princeton, New Jersey in the United States.
David Goa was Founding Director of the Chester Ronning Centre for the Study of Religion and Public Life, Augustana Campus, University of Alberta (2005-2016). He is on the teaching faculty of The King’s University and Saint Stephen’s College in Edmonton. From 1973-2004, David developed the program for the study of culture at the Royal Alberta Museum through research in the religious communities of Alberta (Hindu, Buddhist, Sikh, Jewish, Muslim and Christian). He is author of over twenty books and numerous articles on religion and modern culture, religious dialogue, art and religion. His recent book The Christian Responsibility to Muslims is the fruit of his work in Muslim communities. Mantra, Hearing the Divine in India and America (Columbia University Press, 2004, with Harold Coward) remains a standard university text. A collection of his essays on the spiritual life and modern culture, A Regard for Creation (Synaxis Presss, 2008) was translated into several languages.
Mirele B. Goldsmith is an environmental psychologist, educator, and activist. She directed the Jewish Greening Fellowship, a network of fifty-five community-based organizations committed to sustainability. She attended the UN Summit on Climate Change in Copenhagen, was a leader in the Jewish mobilization for the People’s Climate March, and co-founded Jewish Climate Action Network NYC. Mirele holds a doctorate and her writings on Judaism and sustainability have been published in the Jerusalem Report, Jewish Week, Forward, Shma, and Huffington Post.
Karenna Gore is the founding director of the Center for Earth Ethics (CEE) at Union Theological Seminary. The Center for Earth Ethics bridges the worlds of religion, academia, politics and culture as we discern and pursue the changes that are necessary to stop ecological destruction and create a society that values life. Before founding CEE, Ms. Gore worked as the director of Union Forum at Union Theological Seminary. Ms. Gore’s previous experience includes work as a lawyer at Simpson Thacher & Bartlett and in the legal center of Sanctuary for Families, as well as serving as director of Community Affairs for the Association to Benefit Children (ABC). She has also worked as a writer and is the author of Lighting the Way: Nine Women Who Changed Modern America. Ms. Gore is a graduate of Harvard College, Columbia Law School and Union Theological Seminary. She lives in New York City with her three children and serves on the boards of the Association to Benefit Children (ABC) and Riverkeeper.
Tamara Grdzelidze, D.Phil. (University of Oxford), Ph.D. (Tbilisi State University), Doctor honoris causa (University of Bern), serves as Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Georgia to the Holy See and the Sovereign Order of Malta. Until becoming Ambassador to the Holy See (2014) and the Sovereign Order of Malta (2014), Tamara worked as Orthodox theologian at the World Council of Churches in Geneva (2001-2013) at the Secretariat on Faith and Order Commission for promotion of Christian unity. In Georgia she performed research in Georgian Hagiography at the Shota Rustaveli Institute of Georgian Literature and taught Georgian language and literature at school. She has published widely on Georgian hagiography and church history, inter-confessional dialogue, ecclesiology, hermeneutics, orthodoxy and the contemporary world. She has taught and written on Christian unity, Climate Change, Gender, War, Human Rights. She also runs a blog in the Georgian language on current matters of the Holy See.
John Grim is Senior Lecturer and Research Scholar at Yale University School of Forestry and Environmental Studies and Yale Divinity School. He is co-founder and co-director of the Forum on Religion and Ecology at Yale with his wife, Mary Evelyn Tucker. With Tucker, Grim directed a 10 conference series and book project at Harvard on “World Religions and Ecology.” Grim is the author of The Shaman: Patterns of Religious Healing Among the Ojibway Indians (University of Oklahoma Press, 1983). Grim edited Indigenous Traditions and Ecology: The Interbeing of Cosmology and Community (Harvard, 2001). Publications of Grim and Tucker include Ecology and Religion (Island Press, 2014), Worldviews and Ecology (Orbis, 1994); Religion and Ecology: Can the Climate Change? (Daedalus, 2001); and Living Cosmology: Christian Responses to Journey of the Universe (Orbis, 2016). John is the co-executive producer of the Emmy award winning film, Journey of the Universe. He is President of the American Teilhard Association.
Rev. James Haddix, Ph.D. is convener and moderator of the Bangor ME Pastor-Theologian Program (2004-present). A member of the continuing Old Testament faculty of Grace Evangelical Seminary in Bangor, he was adjunct professor of Old Testament at Bangor Theological Seminary (1991-2013), pastor of the Congregational Church of Temple, New Hampshire (1969-90) and All Souls Church, Bangor, ME (1990-2016), President of The Pastor’s Study Conference, on the Council for Theological Education in New England. He lectured for the NH Council of Churches and was President of the Congregational Christian Historical Society. Haddix was Pastor-Theologian in Residence at The Center of Theological Inquiry, Princeton NJ (2006), member of its Pastor Theologian Program (2001-2004) and its Research Group, which published The Power to Comprehend With All the Saints: The Formation and Practice of a Pastor-Theologian (Eerdmans, 2009). Recently, Haddix was the Protestant respondent to Seaton Hall scholar Fr. Thomas Guarino at St. Joseph College, Maine.
Father Kaleeg Hainsworth is an Orthodox priest and poet with an honours BA in literature (University of British Columbia) and a masters in divinity (St. Vladimir’s Theological Seminary). He founded an Orthodox parish in Victoria BC, establishing a youth camp and an outreach center for the poor while serving as chaplain at the University of Victoria. His academic interests include spiritual ecology, family systems, addiction therapy, the philosophy and practice of non-violence, and letterpress printing and bookbinding, as well as surfing and skateboarding. Fr Hainsworth is the author of An Altar in the Wilderness (RMB, 2014), and numerous articles. He runs a national publishing company (Bright Wing Books) and is the editor of the Saint Katherine Literary Review (California). As an avid naturalist and ecological educator, Father Hainsworth has led numerous guided trips into the BC wilderness, teaching spiritual ecology and survival to youth and adults.
John Maxwell Halley is originally from Waterford, Ireland. He trained in Dublin (UCD) as an electrical engineer and got his PhD from University College London in 1989 in laser optics. He changed his focus to the environmental sciences in 1990, moved to Greece in 1990 and became Professor of Ecology at Ioannina University in 2007. His research interests focus on the application of mathematics to ecology. He has a special interest in the native orchids of Greece. His recent work focuses on the biodiversity crisis and how to predict the extent of extinctions caused by deforestation and habitat loss. He is responsible for the University of Ioannina Field Station in Ano Pedina, Zagori. For many years he has been interested in the relationship between science, faith and conservation. Between 2012 and 2015 he was responsible for the THALIS-SAGE program, examining the biodiversity benefits of the Church protected forests in Epirus.
A Professor of Interdisciplinary Humanities at Brigham Young University, George B. Handley’s creative writing, literary criticism, and civic engagement focus on the intersection between religion, literature, and the environment. A literary scholar and ecocritic whose work is characterized by its comparative reach across the cultures and landscapes of Latin America, the Caribbean, and the United States and by its engagement with ecotheology, he is also known for creative writing that blends nature writing, theology, and family history. His books include New World Poetics: Nature and the Adamic Imagination of Whitman, Neruda, and Walcottand the memoir Home Waters: A Year of Recompenses on the Provo River. His novel, American Fork, explores themes of immigration, climate change, and theology and was recently published by Roundfire Books. In additional to his service on several non-profit environmental organizations, he was also recently elected to the City Council in his hometown of Provo, Utah.
Fletcher Harper, an Episcopal priest, is Executive Director of GreenFaith, an international interfaith environmental organization. He has developed a range of innovative programs to make GreenFaith a global leader in the religious-environmental movement. In the past four years, he coordinated the 2015 OurVoices campaign, which mobilized religious support globally for COP 21, led organizing of faith communities for the People’s Climate Marches in NYC and Washington DC, helped lead the faith-based fossil fuel divestment movement, supported the launch of the global Interfaith Rainforest Initiative, and co-founded Shine, a faith-philanthropy-NGO campaign to end energy poverty with renewable energy by 2030. He helps lead GreenFaith’s new organizing initiative, creating multi-faith GreenFaith Circles in local communities globally. Fletcher accepted GreenFaith’s Many Faith’s, One Earth Award from UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon in 2009 and was named an Ashoka Fellow in 2011. He authored GreenFaith: Mobilizing God’s People to Protect the Earth (Abingdon, 2015).
Grove Harris is an eco-justice and religious diversity advocate who brings grassroots perspectives to an international agenda. She serves as Representative to the United Nations for the Temple of Understanding, where she has developed multiple justice initiatives in the context of the U.N.’s Sustainable Development Goals for 2030. She works with the Women’s Major Group and the Mining Working Group. Grove was Consulting Producer for the short film Roots of Change: Women, Food Sovereignty, and Eco-Justice (2016) in which she is featured along with leading activists from India and El Salvador. She was Program Director for the 2009 Parliament of the World's Religions in Melbourne, Australia, and Managing Director for the Pluralism Project at Harvard University. She earned her Master of Divinity degree from Harvard Divinity School in 1996 and is a certified permaculture designer.
Jan Jorrit Hasselaar (The Netherlands, 1978) is an economist and theologian. Jan Jorrit coordinates the Centre for religion and sustainable development at the Free University (Amsterdam). He is also a research staff member of the Theological Research Centre of the Dutch Dominicans. Currently, he is finishing his PhD on radical uncertainty in the context of climate change. Jan Jorrit chairs the working group “Sustainable Development” of the Dutch Council of Churches. Jan Jorrit developed a sustainable business program in which he still teaches ethics and greening of the economy. In 2016 he participated in the first program on “Governance, Economics and Management” of the World Council of Churches (Hong Kong). Jan Jorrit was policy advisor of the National Federation of Christian Trade Unions. In that position he was a member of the committee on sustainability of the Social and Economic Council of the Netherlands.
British photographer Sean T. Hawkey has worked in the ecumenical movement for over twenty years. As a young professional he served in Latin America for twelve years, working on post-war reconstruction and indigenous rights using visual communications in advocacy strategies. He edited an ecumenical magazine in London for five years and ran communications for an ecumenical alliance of aid agencies in Geneva for five years before going freelance. With extensive communications work in the ecumenical movement in more than fifty countries, his photographs have been syndicated by newswires and published in over 2,000 publications, being used by UN bodies, churches and non-government organizations, including the New York Times, The Guardian, BBC, The Economist, Science Magazine, Deutsche Welle, NPR, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Tass and Sputnik. He has also supplied footage television networks, such as Univisión. Exhibitions of his photography have been held in European and Latin American countries.
The Rt Revd Nicholas Holtam is Bishop of Salisbury and the Church of England’s lead bishop on the environment. He Chairs the Church of England’s Environmental Working Group with its remit for engaging the Church, “to strive to safeguard the integrity of creation, and sustain and renew the life of the earth”. He is a member of the UK Parliament sitting as a Lord Spiritual in the House of Lords. Before training for ordination Bishop Nicholas studied Geography at Durham University. He studied Theology at King’s College London and trained for ordination at Westcott House Cambridge. He has an MA in Christian ethics from Durham University who awarded him an Honouree Doctorate in Civil Law. He is a fellow of King’s College London. When the vicar of St Martin-in-the-Fields (1995-2011), he broadcast regularly on the BBC. He writes mostly in the fields of Christian Ethics, Ministry and Mission. He has published two books: A Room with a View (SPCK 2008) and the Art of Worship (National Gallery, London, 2011).
Anna Andreevna Ilyasova is a second-year undergraduate Morehead-Cain student at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She is majoring in biology and pursuing minors in business and medical anthropology while on the pre-medical track. Anna’s interests in public health and human rights have allowed her to be on the leadership team of the American Mock World Health Organization, where she was the Secretary and is now the Co-Director of Internal Logistics, and to be involved with the Chapel Hill Community Empowerment Fund, where she is an advocate, supporting CEF members in their goals to find employment and housing or to access available resources in the community. Anna has a curiosity for traveling and learning more about other cultures, which was sparked by her travels to rural Ukraine and Moscow to visit family, as well as her experience as a Rotary Club Short Term Exchange student to France.
His Eminence Elder Metropolitan John (Zizioulas) of Pergamon was born in Kozani, Greece. He was educated at the University of Athens and at Harvard University, also serving as a fellow at Dumbarton Oaks Center for Byzantine Studies. After receiving his doctorate from the University of Athens, he taught at the University of Edinburgh, later moving to the University of Glasgow where he was professor of systematic theology for fourteen years. He subsequently taught at King’s College and the University of Thessaloniki. Metropolitan John has been visiting professor at the University of Geneva and the Gregorian University in Rome. Metropolitan John is theological spokesman for the Ecumenical Patriarchate on environmental issues, serving as Chairman of the Religion, Science and Environment Committee from its inception in 1995 to 2009, afterward chairing the Halki Summits at the Ecumenical Patriarchate. He is a key figure in ecumenical discussions, formerly chairing the Orthodox/Anglican dialogue and the international Orthodox/Roman Catholic theological dialogue. In 1993 he was elected fellow of the Athens Academy of Arts and Sciences, serving as president from 2002. His publications have focused upon the twin themes of ecclesiology and theological ontology. In addition to numerous articles published in various languages in theological journals, he is the author of over a dozen books, including Being as Communion (St. Vladimir’s Seminary Press, 1985), Eucharist, Bishop, Church (Holy Cross Press, 2001) and Communion and Otherness (T&T Clark/Continuum, 2006). Two forthcoming volumes will address the significance of eschatology as well as the relationship between theology and ecology.
Robert A. Jonas, M.T.S., Ed.D., is founder and director of The Empty Bell, a sanctuary for interfaith dialogue (emptybell.org). Trained as a psychotherapist, Dr. Jonas is now a retreat leader, video artist, musician, environmental activist and author. He is a biographer of Henri Nouwen, and has served on the Henri Nouwen Society Board (henrinouwen.org). He is currently a Trustee of the Kestrel Land Trust in Amherst, MA (kestreltrust.org) and a member of the National Religious Coalition for Creation Care. Dr. Jonas is a student of Sui-Zen, the Japanese bamboo flute (shakuhachi). He has played in many secular and spiritual contexts and has played at three Buddhist-Christian retreats with the Dalai Lama, including a performance under the Bodhi Tree in India. His CD's include Blowing Bamboo (available on iTunes), New Life from Ruins and Many Paths, One Joy.
Pantelis Kalaitzidis studied Theology in Thessaloniki and Philosophy in Paris. He has published many books and over ninety papers in sixteen languages on the eschatological dimension of Christianity, the dialogue between Orthodoxy and modernity, theology and literature, religious nationalism, issues of renewal and reformation in Eastern Orthodoxy, political theology, ecumenical and inter-religious dialogue, and post-modern hermeneutics of Patristics. Dr. Kalaitzidis is editor of the series “Doxa & Praxis: Exploring Orthodox Theology” (WCC Publications). He was Research Fellow at Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology, Princeton Theological Seminary, Princeton University, DePaul University, and KU Leuven. Since 2000, he has been the Director of the Volos Academy, a research center dealing with contemporary issues for Orthodoxy. He taught Systematic Theology at the Hellenic Open University and at St Sergius Institute of Orthodox Theology in Paris. Dr. Kalaitzidis is a member of the Executive Committee of the European Academy of Religion (Bologna).
Sophia Kalantzakos is Global Distinguished Professor in Environmental Studies and Public Policy at New York University and currently an affiliate at NYU Abu Dhabi. Her most recent publications include China and the Geopolitics of Rare Earths (Oxford University Press, 2018), The EU, US, and China Tackling Climate Change: Policies and Alliances for the Anthropocene (Routledge, 2017). Calling on her prior experience as a member of the Hellenic Parliament and Government Minister with substantial international experience in EU policies, her work focuses on transformations of environment and society in the Anthropocene, in particular population movements, resource competition and environmental governance. Kalantzakos directs the eARThumanities research initiative at NYUAD. She is also currently a Fellow at the Rachel Carson Center at the Ludwig Maximilian University (LMU) in Munich, Germany.
Harry D. Kambezidis holds a BSc in Physics (University of Thessaloniki), a Diploma in Computer Programming (Commercial College of Athens), a MSc in Microwave Communications Engineering (University of Leeds), a MPhil in Microwave Communications Engineering (University of Leeds), and a PhD in atmospheric physics (University of Athens). Currently, he is Director of Research, Institute of Environmental Research & Sustainable Development (IERSD) and the National Observatory of Athens (NOA). Research interests include solar radiation, daylight, atmospheric physics, meteorology, climatology, climate change. He has authored 171 papers in scientific journals, 194 presentations in scientific conferences, 18 monographs/book chapters, and served as Guest Editor in six international scientific journals. He served on the Editorial Board of ten international scientific journals and reviewed for 73 international scientific journals. He is President of Hellenic Physicists Union (1999-2000), President of Hellenic Illumination Committee (2003-2006, 2007-2010), President of Schinias-Marathon National Park Administrative Board (2011-today) and Acting Director of IERSD/NOA (2012-2013).
Sergei M. Kapral was born 1948 in Warren, Ohio, and graduated from St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Seminary. An ordained Protodeacon in the Orthodox Church in America, he has a lifetime involvement in ecumenical relations: NY inter-seminary movement; post-graduate student at the Ecumenical Institute (Bossey, Switzerland); and Manager at Cass Lake Episcopal Camp (Minnesota). He has represented the Orthodox Church in America at the: USA National Council of Churches Executive and Governing Board; World Council of Churches; and the U.S. ecumenical body called Christian Churches Together. He is a founding and steering committee member of the Orthodox Fellowship of the Transfiguration, a national environmental fellowship that seeks to relate the teachings of Orthodox Christian tradition to current environmental concerns. He was the first Orthodox member (currently vice-president) of USA National Council of Churches Eco-Justice Working Group Creation Justice Ministries, and is a member of the USA National Religious Coalition on Creation Care.
Matushka Victoria Kapral was born in Warren OH, a member of Braceville Christian Church, Disciples of Christ. She converted to Orthodox Christianity (1977), serving as Church School teacher and choir member. She holds a BS in Social Work (Bemidji State University, MN) with an internship in child protective services. She was Special Student at the Ecumenical Institute (Bossey, Switzerland), and held an internship at an old people’s home in London, co-operated by Baptist, Reformed and Anglican parishes. Mrs. Kapral worked as a geriatric intensive care manager at the Bureau for the Aging in Wilkes-Barre, PA, for 20 years and is currently working as a Disability Claims Adjudicator for the Social Security Administration. She founded a Tourette syndrome support group and served on an advisory board to the Superintendent of Schools. She is a member of the Holy Resurrection Cathedral in Wilkes-Barre PA, a parish of the Orthodox Church in America.
Minnie Karra, born 1960, is a mother of four children. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Education (University of Athens) and a joint MA in Education and Human Rights (University of Athens & UCL, Institute of Education). She is currently a PhD candidate in Sociology of Education (University of Athens). Minnie has been co-directing the innovative educational programs of Hill Primary School since 1992, participating in numerous collaborative and exchange projects with other educational institutions. One of the recent exchange programs was successfully held between Hill School and the Project of Education of the Muslim Minority Children in Thrace, northern Greece. Minnie is founding member of EXEREVNISEIS, a non-profit organization implementing alternative educational projects for children. In 2017 EXEREVNISEIS undertook a teacher-training program thanks to the generous sponsorship of Stavros Niarchos Foundation. ‘Playing with Protons’ took place at CERN and addressed primary school teachers from schools in disadvantaged areas.
Guillermo Kerber teaches at the Atelier Oecuménique de Théologie and collaborates with the Formation Service of the Roman Catholic Church in Geneva, Switzerland. Since the late 1980s he has worked on ecology and theology issues, first in his home country, Uruguay, where he coordinated the Latin-American Eco-Theological Network and was Professor of Social Ethics at the National and Catholic Universities. In 2001, he joined the World Council of Churches in Geneva, where from 2006 to 2016 he coordinated the programme and UN advocacy work on Caring for Creation and Climate Justice. His books and articles have appeared in several languages. He is a member of the European Society for Ecumenical Research and the Swiss Society of Sciences of Religions and sits on the board of the Global Call for Climate Action. Married, with three children, Guillermo holds degrees in philosophy (ITUMS, Montevideo) and theology (PUG, Rome) and a doctorate in Sciences of Religion (UMESP, São Paulo, Brazil).
Olga Kikou is Head of Compassion in World Farming EU, an international organization working on farm animal welfare and sustainable food and farming, aiming to move away from industrialized animal agriculture. Born and raised in Athens, Olga lived in the U.S. for a number of years where she became involved in animal advocacy. She did her graduate work in Sociology at the University of Massachusetts and worked in international organizations in the non-profit sector and in research and planning. She managed the Volunteer Programme for the Athens 2004 Olympic and Paralympic Games and was involved in raising awareness on the importance of citizen participation. Olga is currently based in Brussels and where she lobbies and influences the EU Institutions at high level on key EU interests concerning the interlinked areas of: the welfare of farm animals on farm, during live transport and export, and at slaughter; food and farming; the environment; agriculture; related legislation; trade agreements; and the labelling of animal products as to method of production. She has been instrumental in raising the profile of these issues on the policy making agenda and keeping them there. She also leads on engagement with civil society organizations and other stakeholders, exploring synergies and developing joint strategies to influence policy in the above areas. She was president of the Green Institute in Greece and currently serves on the board of the Green European Foundation.
Sophie Kivlehan is a first-year student at Dickinson College in Pennsylvania, and intends to major in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology with a minor in Spanish and Cello Performance. Growing up with my grandfather, climate scientist James Hansen, I have enjoyed a childhood exposed to numerous conversations about global warming and vital knowledge which many young people need to hear and understand. My goal is to spread this awareness to my generation and have my peers realize that they are perfectly capable of – and responsible for – advocating for their future in the face of government and corporations.
Jeanne (Ioanna) Knights is a Theologian with interest in the Primacy of Living Holiness as a Theological Source. She studied theology at Lancaster and Cambridge and has worked significantly in the Orthodox tradition. Currently, under the spiritual leadership of His All-Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, and working with Metropolitan Kallistos of Diokleia, she is directing The Holy Gardens of Patmos Project, developing a series of Holy Gardens that bear witness to the way we relate our lives to the earth, a witness to the healing of our planet and each other. The project aims to contribute to the global conditions in which ecological regeneration and environmental sustainability flourish, by developing a program of sustainability education, learning, training and research centred on Patmos Island, Greece. This inspirational learning environment, for people of all ages to explore ‘living lightly on the earth’, will magnify the global community of people passionate about protecting our earth.
His Eminence Kurt Cardinal Koch has been President of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity since 2010. Born in Emmenbrücke (Switzerland), he studied theology at the University of Munich and at the University of Lucerne (1975). He was ordained priest in 1982, serving the parish of St. Marien in Bern until 1985, as well as lecturer in fundamental theology at the Faculty of Fribourg. In 1987, he completed his doctorate in theology; and in 1989, he became professor of dogmatic theology and liturgy at the University of Lucerne, eventually becoming rector of the faculty of theology in 1995. In 1995, he was appointed Bishop of Basel, serving as vice-president (1998-2006) and president (2007-2009) of the Swiss Bishops’ Conference. In 2010, Pope Benedict XVI entrusted him with the role of Principal-Relator to the Ratzinger Schülkreis, a group of the Pope’s former students meeting annually at Castel Gandolfo. He was proclaimed Cardinal by Pope Benedict in 2010, participating in the conclave of 2013 that elected Pope Francis. He is also a member of the Congregations for the Doctrine of the Faith, for the Oriental Churches, for the Causes of Saints, for Bishops, for Catholic Education, and of the Pontifical Council for Inter-religious Dialogue.
Maria Kokkinou is a publisher. She has grown up around books. Since the age of sixteen, she participated in a family run publishing house, AKRITAS, renowned for books in Orthodox Christian spirituality. She started working there when she finished her M.A. at King's College (London). After a break of eight years, she worked as a journalist (Attikes Ekdoseis-DOL-Kathimerini) and marketing manager (Ellinika Grammata-Terzopoulos Publications), only to return and join forces in the firms' administration with her father and brother. After AKRITAS was sold, Maria continued as head of the old firm under the new regime. On December 12, 2012, the first book in a series directed by her was published. It was Porphyra series. Today she runs the independent Publishing House under the same name, PORPHYRA, publishing books relevant to the Orthodox Christian viewpoint on life, art, history as well as plenty of children books. For Porphyra's books visit: www.porphyrabooks.gr
Christina Kontaxi is the Managing Director of the MEDITERRANEAN SOS Network (MedSOS), a Greek national NGO, and Vice-President of the European Environmental Bureau (EEB), the Europe’s largest network of environmental citizens' organisations. MedSOS’ primary field of interventions is water and has been active in networks with NGOs and public agencies at local, national, regional and European – Mediterranean level since 1990. Christina is a marine scientist (Univ. Aegean) and holds a MSc in Water Resources Science & Technology (N.T.U.A.), a Master in EU studies (C.I.F.E.) and a Certificate of Pedagogical & Teaching Competence (School of Pedagogical and Technological Education). She lives and works in Athens.
Phoebe Koundouri holds a PhD (2000), MSc (1996) and MPhil (1995) in Economics from the University of Cambridge (UK). She is Professor in Economic Theory and Econometrics (with emphasis on Natural Resources, Energy and the Environment) at the School of Economics, Athens University of Economics and Business, where she is also Founder and Scientific Director of the Research Laboratory on Socio-Economic and Environmental. Since 2013 she is also Visiting Senior Research Fellow at the Center for Climate Change Economics and Policy, London School of Economics (UK). Prof. Koundouri is the Founder and Research Director of the non-for-profit ICRE8 (International Center for Research on the Environment and the Economy), which hosts the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network (UNSDSN)-Greece. Phoebe Koundouri has published fifteen edited books, and more than 250 articles in academic journals. She is a highly cited academic author ranked in the top 1% of all female economists in the world. She is co-editor of the official journal of the European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists and editorial board member in 25 academic journals, as well as coordinated over 100 research projects. She was elected Vice President of the European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists (2014-2015). She has lectured internationally and taught at the University of Cambridge, University College London, University of Reading, and many visiting positions around the world. She has served as lead advisor, consultant and research evaluator for the European Commission, World Bank, OECD, UN, NATO, WHO, as well as various Foundations and Governments.
Frederick Krueger serves as executive director of the Orthodox Fellowship of the Transfiguration (OFT), as executive coordinator for the National Religious Coalition on Creation Care (NRCCC), and as board chairman of World Stewardship Institute. The NRCCC sponsors the National Prayer Breakfast for Creation Care during its annual “Washington Week” program, which brings religious leaders to Capitol Hill for formal environmental declarations of religious institutions. The OFT is endorsed by the Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops of the United States and proclaims the Ecological Mission of the Orthodox Church as “the Reconciliation of all Things in Christ.” Krueger has previously served as a linguist and Russian intelligence analyst for the National Security Agency, as a political campaign manager, author, editor, and wilderness guide. He has written over a dozen books and was commissioned by HarperCollins Publishers to develop The Green Bible. He attends Saint Seraphim of Sarov (OCA) parish in Santa Rosa, California.
Yannis Ktistakis is senior partner in Ktistakis & Associates Law Firm, Assistant Professor of Public International Law (University of Thrace, Greece) and Boğaziçi University (Turkey). Previously, he was Legal Consultant to the Greek National Commission for Human Rights and the Marangopoulos Foundation for Human Rights. Former memberships included: Executive Board of EUMC, Greek Equal Treatment Committee, National Commission for Human Rights and Secretary General of the Greek League for Human Rights. He has over 35 publications on issues related to immigration law, environmental law, religious freedom, Islamic Law, protection of human rights and the jurisprudence of the ECHR and ESC. He has successfully defended 53 cases before the European Court of Human Rights against Greece and Turkey. He also successfully defended a collective complaint before the European Committee of Social Rights concerning the pollution of Asopos River (Greece) and many other environmental cases before the Greek Council of State.
Catalina Lamadrid is the founder and principal of Inova Energy Group, a Chicago-based management consulting firm focused on energy and sustainability. Originally from Mexico, and with over ten years of experience as a sustainability consultant for the private and public sectors, her expertise focuses on strategic planning, policy development, stakeholder engagement, and program management. Past project work has led her to develop comprehensive energy strategies for U.S. states, assist in the design and implementation of energy efficiency programs, investigate and propose methods for engagement of underserved communities in energy conservation efforts, and develop climate action and mitigation plans for communities of all sizes. Ms. Lamadrid is greatly passionate about societies and cultures, having visited over 60 countries and learning to speak multiple languages. In her free time, Ms. Lamadrid volunteers with several educational, entrepreneurship, and community-advancement nonprofits.
Gary Lawless and Beth Leonard own Gulf of Maine Bookstore and Blackberry Books publishing, in Brunswick, Maine, USA, Gary is a poet, Beth is a photographer, and together they spent a month in Venice Italy in 2017 as artists in residence at the Emily Harvey Foundation. Gary was awarded the 2017 Constance Carlson Public Humanities prize by the Maine Humanities Council. They live on a farm with their two cats and two donkeys.
Miltiades Lazoglou was born in 1986 in Ptolemaida (Greece). He obtained a diploma in Town-Country Planning from the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. He holds a Master’s Degree in Spatial Planning from the same University and a second Master’s Degree in Environment and Development from the National Technical University of Athens. He holds a PhD in Decision-Making in Spatial Planning using Artificial Intelligence Techniques from the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. He has published more than 31 peer-reviewed papers in scientific journals and/or conferences. His research interests include spatial planning and sustainable development. He has received scholarships from the State Scholarships Foundation and the Bodossaki Foundation for postgraduate studies. He works with the ELLINIKI ETAIRIA (Society for the Environment and Cultural Heritage) and is a member of the Greek ENtopia Project Steering Committee. He represents environmental NGOs as a member of the National Council for Adaptation to Climate Change.
Philippe Leclerc is the Representative of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Greece since December 2015. He has been working for UNHCR since 1990 in various positions throughout the world. He has been responsible for protection of refugees in Cameroon (1990-1992), in Bosnia-Herzegovina and in Serbia (1993), in Slovenia (1994-1995), in Brussels (1996). He has served as the Head of the Liaison Office for Switzerland and Liechtenstein (1996-2000) in Geneva UNHCR Headquarters, then he was in charge of the organization of the first Ministerial Meeting of State Parties to the UN Convention on the Status of Refugees (2001). He has served as Assistant Chief of Mission in Kabul, Afghanistan (2002-2003), Head of the Statelessness Unit within the Division of International Protection at UNHCR HQs in Geneva (2004-2008), and Deputy-Representative in Damascus, Syria (2008-2010). He also participated in many emergency missions to the field. He was the Representative of UNHCR in France and Monaco from November 2010 to November 2015.
Tatiana Lehocky is a second-year Nutrition and Dietetics student at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Her passion for nutrition extends beyond education to food production sustainability, the health of our planet and its population, as well as access to good health through diet and lifestyle for people everywhere. Upon completion of her studies and dietetic internship, she hopes to work in a hospital setting as a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist specializing in eating disorders. Tatiana’s enthusiasm for the environment arose from her decision to adopt a plant-based lifestyle upon learning of the agricultural impact that factory farming imposes on our ecosystem. She is a board member for the Food Recovery Network (Chicago), co-president for her church’s college youth group, and parliamentarian officer of the Alpha Sigma Tau sorority (UIC). She co-founded Tampa Spartans for Animals at the University of Tampa and is past member of University of Tampa’s environmental club.
Samuel Loposky is a rising Sophomore at West Chester University of Pennsylvania (West Chester, PA). He is a Voice Performance major with a particular interest in Orthodox Sacred Music. From an early age, Samuel has had a passion for beauty in the form of art. Samuel’s father is an Orthodox Priest, and from the age of eight Samuel has been a cantor in his parishes. In his later high school years he was published by the American Library of Poetry, given a research award by Thiel College for a research project on music therapy, and participated in domestic and international tours with the Thiel College Choir. Currently at West Chester University, Samuel is heavily involved in the school, participating in multiple ensembles. For his Sophomore year at West Chester, Samuel will hold the lead bass role in the School of Music’s presentation of Aaron Copland’s opera, “The Tender Land.”
Jane Lubchenco is a marine ecologist focused on interactions between the environment and human well-being, including people’s responsibility for stewardship of the ocean and the planet. At President Obama’s invitation, she served for four years as the chief of the U.S. agency that oversees U.S. science and policy of the ocean and the atmosphere (including fisheries, marine protection, climate change, weather forecasting and more). She was the U.S. Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and the Administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and part of the President’s Science Team (2009-2013). Subsequently, she served as the first U.S. Science Envoy for the Ocean with the State Department (2014-2016). She is one of the “most highly cited” ecologists in the world with eight publications as “Science Citation Classics.” She studied and taught at Harvard before moving to Oregon State University in 1978. She has received numerous awards, including twenty honorary doctorates and the highest honor given by the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, the Public Welfare Medal. Beginning in 1994 she helped organize a series of international symposia entitled ‘Religion, Science and the Environment’ under the patronage of Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew. She participated in two workshops of Pontifical Academy of Sciences and the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences to provide scientific input on the environment, including for Pope Francis’ encyclical Laudato Si. She co-founded three organizations that train scientists to be better communicators and engage more effectively with the public, faith leaders, policy makers, media and industry.
Patricia Lynott has merged a successful teaching career with innovative academic leadership in her almost thirty years in higher education. After graduating magna cum laude from Trinity College, she completed an M.A. in Communication (Northern Illinois University) and a Ph.D. in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies (Loyola University Chicago). She began her academic career as a communication professor, later serving as Dean of Graduate and Continuing Education at Elmhurst College, where she was founding Director of Elmhurst Partners, the college’s corporate training arm, providing cutting-edge training initiatives to Chicago-area Fortune 500 companies. Appointed President of University College at Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU) in 2017, Lynott began at SNHU as Vice President of Academic Affairs (2007). She advanced in her roles becoming the Provost and Senior VPAA (2010) and Executive Vice President and Provost (2015). Lynott also served as the Chief Academic Officer of the University for over four years.
Nikos Manginas is a journalist and photographer. He was born and raised in Istanbul as a member of the Greek Community. The themes with which he is most concerned are the life and ministries of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, both at the headquarters in Istanbul and around the globe, the Orthodox Churches throughout the world, and the life of the Greek minority in Turkey. A sample of his daily work may be found on the website Amen.gr.
Athan Manuel is the director of the Lands Protection Program for the Sierra Club, where he overseas legislative efforts to protect and designate public lands such as national parks, wildlife refuges, the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, and national forests; defend endangered species and the Endangered Species Act; and stop any new oil and gas drilling on our public lands. Prior to working for the Sierra Club, Manuel worked for the Public Interest Research Groups. From 2004 to 2006, Manuel was director of Preservation Programs for U.S. PIRG, and ran campaigns to protect the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and other public lands, our national forests, oceans, and the Endangered Species Act. He has testified numerous times in front of House and Senate committees on oil and gas drilling and public lands issues. He chairs the Creation Care Committee at St. Sophia Greek Orthodox Cathedral and serves on the DC committee for the International Orthodox Christian Charities.
Ariadne Manuel is a third year student at New York University, where she is studying studio art and art history. She is Greek American and her work is heavily influenced by Greek history and culture, including classical marble sculpture as well as Byzantine architecture and iconography. She currently works as a gallery assistant at New York University where she helps hang and transport art to the two art galleries on the NYU Campus. Her grandfather is a retired Greek Orthodox priest, and she and her family are members of Saint Sophia Greek Orthodox Cathedral in Washington, DC. Ariadne has always been passionate about the environment and the arts. She is very excited to have the opportunity to join this symposium.
Richard Marker is an internationally known expert in philanthropy. He teaches philanthropists and foundation leaders at the University of Pennsylvania, New York University, and the Wise Philanthropy Institute. He also advises philanthropists through the Wise Philanthropy advisory firm. Marker has had previous academic appointments at Brown, Loyola of Chicago, and Hofstra universities. His writings on philanthropy are widely read and his methods are used by many practitioners in the field. Rabbi Marker has also been a leading volunteer in the interfaith world for many years, having served as chair of the Elijah Board of World Religious Leaders, of IJCIC- the International Jewish Committee for Interreligious Consultations, as well as trustee positions with many other organizations. A popular speaker, Marker has lectured in 39 countries on 5 continents. He is married to a fellow participant, Mirele Goldsmith, PhD
Emily Markides’ areas of special interest include the creation of sustainable, eco-peace communities, as well as spirituality and permaculture. Emily completed her doctoral dissertation on Complementary Energetic Practices: An Exploration into the World of Maine Women Healers.. She has written articles on “Creating a Stable World Peace,” “From Poetry to Community Building,” and “Energetic Healing and its Correspondence to Eastern Orthodox Spirituality.” The ideals inspiring her work include the ideals of civic society and democratic participation, which she has pursued in her divided island, Cyprus, by becoming the co-founder of a Women’s Studies/Peace Center and the International Eco.peace Village. She has also helped launch a new program in Peace Studies at the University of Maine, serving as its first Interim Director. Since 2004, she has founded ESTIA, The International EcoPeace Community and the first Edible Forest in Philani, a Detoxification Center in Famagusta, Cyprus (www.ecocityproject.com).
Kyriacos C. Markides is Professor of Sociology at the University of Maine and author of nine books published by leading publishers in the United States and the UK. Six of his books, including “The Mountain of Silence,” “Gifts of the Desert” and his latest “Inner River: A Pilgrimage to the Heart of Christian Spirituality,” are on Christian mystics spiritual guides and elders of Eastern Christianity and are published by Random House/ Image Books. His books have been translated into twelve languages. He lectures around the United States, Canada and overseas, appearing on television and radio programs. Professor Markides is the recipient in 2002 of the best professor award in Arts and Sciences at the University of Maine, where he was awarded the 2006 Presidential Research and Creative Achievement Award. He lives in Stillwater, Maine, with his wife Emily J. Markides, Adjunct Assistant Professor of Peace and Reconciliation Studies at the University of Maine.
Teresa Martins was born in Lisbon (Portugal) in 1957 and holds a master’s degree in Germanic Philology. She came to know the spirituality of the Focolare Movement at the age of twelve, engaging in the national and international youth activities promoted by the Movement. She continued her theological-cultural formation as an internal member of the Focolare. Since 1984, she has worked at the Centre of the Focolare Movement, whose headquarters are in Rome. Until 2008 she served in the Secretariat of Chiara Lubich, foundress of the Movement, accompanying her globally as secretary and interpreter. Since 2008, she has been personal secretary to Dr. Maria Voce, who was elected President that same year, following the death of Chiara Lubich. To date, she has also prepared Maria Voce’s visits to the communities of the Movement in the five continents, accompanying and participating with her in numerous events and international meetings.
His Eminence Metropolitan Maximos (Vgenopoulos) of Selyvria (which is in Eastern Thrace) is a native of Patras, Greece. He studied theology in Athens and Belgrade, completing his doctoral studies in systematic theology at the University of London (Heythrop College, 2008). He is currently the co-secretary of the Joint International Commission for Theological Dialogue between the Roman Catholic and the Orthodox Churches. In addition to serving the Ecumenical Patriarchate as Grand Archdeacon (2008-2014), he has participated in numerous ecumenical meetings and academic conferences, while also lecturing on Orthodox ecclesiology at the Patriarchal Academy of Crete. Metropolitan Maximos is the author of Primacy in the Church from Vatican I to Vatican II: An Orthodox Perspective (Northern Illinois University Press, 2013). He has published several studies in English and Greek on Orthodox ecclesiology and now serves as co-chair of Ecumenical Studies at the Sophia University Institute in Loppiano, Italy.
Anne McCabe works on Byzantine manuscripts and inscriptions at the Centre for the Study of Ancient Documents, Faculty of Classics, University of Oxford. She has excavated at the Athenian Agora with the American School of Classical Studies at Athens and at the Byzantine city of Al Andarin in Syria. Her first degree was from Harvard University, and she has an M. Phil and D. Phil from Oxford. Her thesis on the transmission of Greek texts on horse care, veterinary medicine, and agriculture A Byzantine Encyclopaedia of Horse Medicine (OUP, 2007). She is a founder of the not-for-profit organization Patmos Habitats, and has started ‘Love Patmos, Save Water’ and ‘Love Patmos, No Plastic’ campaigns on the island, while organizing an exhibition of contemporary art entitled NEPO/WATER to support volunteer cleanup of beaches and under the sea. She is urrently working on the protection of an area of traditional agricultural landscapes in Patmos.
Bill McKibben is a founder of the grassroots climate campaign 350.org and the Schumann Distinguished Professor in Residence at Middlebury College in Vermont. He is a 2014 recipient of the Right Livelihood Prize, sometimes called the ‘alternative Nobel’ and is a founding fellow of the Sanders Institute. He has written a dozen books about the environment, including his first, The End of Nature, published 25 years ago, and his most recent, Radio Free Vermont. Foreign Policy named him to their inaugural list of the world’s 100 most important global thinkers, and the Boston Globe said he was “probably America’s most important environmentalist.” A former staff writer for the New Yorker, he writes frequently for a wide variety of publications around the world, including the New York Review of Books, National Geographic, and Rolling Stone. He lives in the mountains above Lake Champlain with his wife, the writer Sue Halpern, where he spends as much time as possible outdoors.
Sister Nectaria McLees is an Orthodox Christian nun and the editor of Road to Emmaus: A Journal of Orthodox Faith and Culture. She earned her M.Div. from Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology in Brookline, Massachusetts in 2013, and for the past two decades has been traveling to Christian sites and pilgrimage places throughout Europe, Russia, Asia Minor, and the Middle East to explore the historic and contemporary contexts of these holy places, and to interview on-site scholars and caretakers. These often include first-millenium churches and archeological sites that all Christians share as part of our common early tradition. Her journalistic work also includes reporting on inspiring Orthodox Christian social initiatives that aid the homeless, refugees, orphans, and those suffering from mental illness. Sister Nectaria resides with a small skete of Serbian Orthodox nuns in Indianapolis, Indiana.
Richard W. Miller (Ph.D. Boston College) is associate professor of systematic theology and associate professor of sustainability studies at Creighton University. He has published in the most prestigious English speaking journals of theology and is a contributor to and editor of seven books including God, Creation, and Climate Change: A Catholic Response to the Environmental Crisis (Orbis, 2010), which won a 2011 Catholic Press Association of the United States and Canada book award in the faith and science category and has been republished in an Asian and African edition (Pauline Publications of India, 2012). His article “Deep Responsibility for the Deep Future,” in the prestigious journal Theological Studies (Theological Studies (2016), Vol. 77, no. 2, pp. 436-465) made an important contribution to providing theological foundations for an ethic of the deep future.
Alexandra Mitsotaki completed her German Abitur (secondary diploma) in Athens, earning her university degree in Political Science at the Institute of Political Studies in Paris. She holds a Masters Degree in Development Law from the University of Paris She has worked at OECD in Paris, first at the Education Directorate and then at the Development Center. Driven by concern for the problems of acute poverty and child labor, in 1988 she founded ActionAid Hellas (http://www.actionaid.gr/), the Greek affiliate of the international antipoverty NGO (http://actionaid.org/). She chaired ActionAid Hellas until 2017 and served as board member of ActionAid International from 2003 to 2015. Realizing the importance of helping Greece’s increasingly vulnerable population since the emergence of her country’s own severe crisis, in 2014 Alexandra and ActionAid Hellas, working in partnership with the French NGO Adie France, created Greece’s first micro-credit institution: Action Finance Initiative (AFI) (http://www.afi.org.gr/). She chairs and directs the Greek Cultural Centre in Paris and teaches an annual seminar with American Economist Charles Oman on the Political Economy of International Development at Sciences Po in Paris. In 2016, Alexandra began working on the creation of the World Human Forum, a think and do tank (http://worldhumanforum.earth), promoting citizens’ initiatives and creating the conditions for adoption by the broader political and economic system. Alexandra is also the Vice-President of the Constantine Mitsotakis Foundation. She lives in Paris and is fluent in English, French, German and Greek.
Faisal Bin Abdulrahman Bin Muaammar was appointed Secretary-General of the Vienna-based King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz International Centre for Interreligious and Intercultural Dialogue (KAICIID) in October 2012. Prior to this appointment, he held a number of senior positions in the Saudi Arabian administration and various nonprofit organizations. Among the highlights of a distinguished career, which has encompassed major roles in state government and international organizations, the Secretary-General has served as Vice Minister of Education of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Advisor to the Royal Court of the then Crown Prince Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, and Deputy of the National Guard for Cultural & Educational Affairs. The Secretary General was instrumental in the foundation of the King Abdulaziz Public Library in 1987, and the King Abdulaziz Center for National Dialogue in Riyadh (KACND) in 2003. He continues to work as Supervisor-General of both these organizations, as well as Advisor to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud.
Very Rev. Archimandrite Grigorios Nanakoudis was born in Greece in 1976 and raised in Piraeus. He completed theological studies at the University of Athens. He spent two years in St. Petersburg (2014-2016), where he received a degree in Russian Language from the State University, while at the same time attending classes at the Theological Academy of St. Petersburg. He is currently completing his Masters in Theology at the "Neapolis" University of Cyprus. Ordained to the diaconate in 2001 and to the priesthood in 2005, he serves as parish priest at the Metropolitan Church of Spetses and appointed preacher of the Metropolis of Hydra. He is the author of several articles on themes related to the saints of the church, which have appeared in various books and journals.
Theodota Nantsou is Head of Policy at WWF Greece. She studied philosophy in Athens (Greece) and holds a Master’s degree in environmental ethics from the University of Lancaster (UK). Actively involved in the Greek environmental movement since 1990, she has volunteered for many organizations in hands-on conservation activities. Her current focus at WWF Greece is on environmental law and governance, green economy and nature conservation policy. She has also studied the vital role of religion in raising environmental awareness and engaging societies in environmental action, collaborating with the Ecumenical Patriarchate on these issues since 1994. She has co-authored and prefaced a number of books on environmental policy and ethics, as well as published many articles in the Greek and international press regarding the need for green reform at all policy levels.
Tina Nantsou received her BSc in Physics from the University of Athens. Since 1993 she has worked as a physics teacher at the Hill School, the oldest school operating in Greece since 1831. She is the coordinator responsible in Greece for the educational program of the CMS experiment at CERN «Playing with Protons» and collaborates with the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center in science educational programs specifically for children. In the past, she was responsible for the script, educational content and presentation of the TV program “Inventors in action” of ERT. Her articles have appeared in Eleftherotypia and Huffington Post. She also collaborates with educational section of WWF Hellas. She has been a collaborator IAASARS and the National Observatory of Athens since 2016, providing expertise on a number of educational issues, the most of important of which is the organization of astronomy experiments for elementary and high school students.
George P. Nassos (left) spent 31 years in the corporate world working for International Minerals & Chemical Corp for 16 years and 15 years for Chemical Waste Management. He taught for 14 years as Industry Associate Professor and the Director of the M.S. in Environmental Management and Sustainability program at Illinois Institute of Technology’s business school. He subsequently focused on consulting in renewable energy and environmental sustainability as well as marketing a new waste-to-energy technology. Last year, Nassos was appointed to the new Director of the MS in Sustainable Management program and Executive-in-Residence at DePaul University Driehaus College of Business. He was recently elected as a founding member of the Advisory Circle of the Encyclical Working Group of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Chicago focusing on implementing Laudato Si’. He earned a B.S. in Chemical Engineering (U of Illinois), M.S. and Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering (Northwestern U.) and an MBA from Northwestern-Kellogg. Pat Nassos (right), a graduate of DePaul University with a B.S. degree in Education, worked as a high school teacher and continues to raise awareness among young people on environment and service.
His Eminence John Cardinal Olorunfemi Onaiyekan is a Nigerian prelate of the Roman Catholic Church, who has been Archbishop of Abuja since 1994 and as Cardinal since 2012. He served as President of the Christian Association of Nigeria and the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Nigeria. He completed theology in Rome, later earning a Licentiate of Sacred Scripture and doctorate. In 1980, Pope John Paul II named Onaiyekan to a five-year term on the International Theological Commission, whereupon he joined the International Catholic-Methodist Dialogue Commission. Onaiyekan was consecrated bishop in 1983 by Pope John Paul II and was elected Vice-President of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Nigeria in 1994, becoming its President in 2000. During the administration of Nigerian President Obasanjo, Onaiyekan spoke out against the regime for its corruption and failure to support democratic principles. He is credited with saving Nigeria from dictatorship and was named Pax Christi International’s 2012 Peace Laureate. In 2012, Pope Benedict XVI named Onaiyekan one of the Synod Fathers for the October 2012 Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops on the New Evangelization, appointing him as Cardinal in 2012 as well as member of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and member of the Presidential Committee of the Pontifical Council for the Family. He participated in the papal conclave that elected Pope Francis, who appointed him member of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments in October 2016.
Nikolaos Ouzounoglou was born in 1951 in Chalcedon (Constantinople) and graduated from Istanbul Technical University, obtaining his Ph.D. from the University of Essex and a D.Sc. from the National Technical University of Athens, where he is Professor since 1984. He served as Chairman of its School of Electrical and Computer Engineering and founding director of its Institute of Communication and Computer Systems. He published 350 scientific articles and ten books in engineering. He experienced the difficult times in Turkey during the period of 1955-1974, witnessing the Greek Orthodox community dwindle from 130.000 to a few thousand today. From 1991-2005, he implemented numerous projects of the European Commission related to supporting universities in countries of social and economic depression in Eastern Europe and Caucasus. In 2006, he established the Ecumenical Federation of Constantinopolitans. In 2011, Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew conferred on him the office of Archon of the Great Church of Christ.
Owen Owens is a Christian minister with a B.A. (Beloit College), B.D. (Union Theological Seminary), M.A. (Northwestern University), and a Ph.D. in Sociology of Religion (University of California, Berkeley). In 1969, he joined Rev. Jitsuo Morikawa's strategic planning staff in the American Baptist Home Mission Societies, preparing the 1972 mission goal of structural change of institutions toward ecological wholeness and social justice. Active in stream conservation for over forty years, he co-founded the Valley Forge Chapter of Trout Unlimited, chaired the Eco-Justice Work Group of the National Council of Churches of Christ, and co-chairs the Religious Campaign for Creation Care. He served the American Baptist Home Mission Societies in evangelism, church renewal, and ecology and racial justice (1968-2000). His publications include Healing the Coyote in Me: The Navajo Coyoteway Blessing Ceremony, Spritual Help in Hard Times: The Bible's Hope for Life on Earth, and Living Waters: How to Save Your Local Stream.
Nikos Papachristou is a religious affairs journalist, who manages the Greek website Amen.gr, which he created in 2009. In 2017, he was appointed Director of Press and Communications at the Ecumenical Patriarchate. He studied in Great Britain and Italy. From 1994, he worked for Greek radio and television (SKY), focusing on church matters from 1999.
Alexandros K. Papaderos is co-founder (with Metropolitan Irineos of Kisamos and Selinon) of the Orthodox Academy of Crete (OAC, inauguration 1968) and was its first General Director until 2008. He attended the Priest’s School in Crete (1946-52) and received his Master in Theology from the University of Thessaloniki (1956). In 1958-63, he studied in the University of Mainz, where he worked as a research assistant, specializing in cultural sciences, completing his Ph. D. (1962). In 1965-67 and 1974-99 he was Member of the Pedagogical Institute in Athens, responsible for religious education throughout Greece. From 1974-2003 he was an elected Member of the Central Committee of the Conference of European Churches (CEC). In 1989, he was guest lecturer at the McCormick Theological Seminary, Chicago. He has published widely in Greek and other languages. Papaderos is an Archon of the Ecumenical Patriarchate and a member of the European Academy of Sciences and Arts.
Alexis Papahelas was born in Athens in 1961, studied History and Economics at Bard College, and received a Masters in International Affairs and Journalism at Columbia University. Until 1998, he served as U.S. correspondent for various newspapers, television and radio networks. He returned to Greece in 1998 and co-anchored the news magazine "Mavro Kouti" at MEGA Channel, working as senior editor for To Vima newspaper. From 2000-2014, Papahelas was lead presenter of "The Files" on SKAI TV, interviewing U.S. Presidents George Bush Sr., Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, former U.S. Secretaries of State Hillary Clinton, Colin Powell and Madeleine Albright, the late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat, Turkey’s Prime Minister Erdogan, George Soros, and Bill Gates. He is now Editor-in-Chief of Kathimerini newspaper and presenter of the “Stories” television news program. He is also the Secretary General of the Hellenic Foundation for European and Foreign Policy. Named by POLITICO as one of the most influential Europeans in 2015, Mr. Papahelas is the author of The Rape of Greek Democracy and November 17.
Rev. George Parsenios (PhD, Yale University) is Associate Professor of New Testament at Princeton Theological Seminary, where he teaches courses in Greek, New Testament and the interaction of early Christianity with the classical world. He is also Sessional Associate Professor at St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary and has taught at the St. Athanasius Coptic Theological College (Australia). He sits on the Editorial Board of the journal Phronema (St. Andrew’s Greek Orthodox Theological College in Australia). He has authored several articles and three books on New Testament themes: Departure and Consolation (Brill, 2005); Rhetoric and Drama in the Johannine Lawsuit Motif (Mohr Siebeck, 2010) and 1, 2, 3 John (Baker Academic, 2014). He is currently writing an Introduction to the New Testament and a commentary on the Gospel of John, and serves St. Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church in Perth Amboy NJ. He resides in Princeton NJ, with Presbytera Maureen and their three children.
Raj Patel is a bestselling writer and award-winning activist. He is a Research Professor in the Lyndon B Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas, Austin and a Senior Research Associate at the Unit for the Humanities at the university currently known as Rhodes University (UHURU), South Africa.He has degrees from the University of Oxford, the London School of Economics and Cornell University, has worked for the World Bank and WTO, protested against them around the world. He has advised the EU, US and UK governments against their current development policies and his disagreements with the government and private sector have rendered him unwelcome in a number of countries. His has scholarly publications in economics, philosophy, politics and public health journals, he regularly writes for the press, is author of books including Stuffed and Starved:The Hidden Battle for the World Food System and, most recently, co-author with Jason W. Moore of A History of the World in Seven Cheap Things. He is currently completing a ground-breaking documentary project about the global food system with legendary director Steve James.
Ioannis-Georgios Peristeridis is an archimandrite of Metropolis Neapolis & Stavroupolis and Presiding Priest of St. Nikolas Church in Xirokrini, Thessaloniki. Born in Thessaloniki (1975), his studies include a degree in Social Theology (University of Athens), a diploma in Chemical Engineering, with specialization in Environmental Engineering (Aristotle University of Thessaloniki), and a Master of Science in Spatial Analysis and Environmental Management, specializing in churches and parishes (University of Thessaly). He is currently a PhD candidate and his thesis is entitled: “Geographical analysis networks, infrastructure, actions for the discovery of urban spatial poverty patterns” (National Technical University of Athens). For the last fifteen years, Fr. Peristeridis has been involved in projects for young people and environmental education, while his areas of research include Environmental Engineering, Toxicology of Wastewater, Environmental Education, Spatial Analysis, Geoinformatics, Geography of Religion, Cartography, webGIS, Spatial dimension of Circular Economy, Urban & Regional Development.
Dr. Paul Perkins received a BA from Harvard College (1971) and an MD from Tufts School of Medicine (1975). By 1979, he had become increasingly concerned about environmental degradation and made a career switch to pursue a livelihood building solar homes in Maine, built his own home off the grid, and became active in the environmental community. At age 45, Dr. Perkins returned to medicine, trained as a psychiatrist, and eventually opened a private practice in Bath, Maine (2000). He has been actively engaged in climate work, serving as a member of several initiatives dedicated to mitigating climate change. He has been involved in local work with the Sierra Club, encouraging towns to adopt climate action plans; with Physicians for Social Responsibility, educating the public about the health risks of climate change; and with Citizens Climate Lobby, whose aim is to persuade the US Congress to adopt a carbon tax.
After growing up in London, Clare Priest took a degree in plant science at St Andrews University in Scotland, where she specialised on the relatively new subject of ecology. In particular, she has always been amazed at the beauty, complexity and diversity of the natural world and has been filled with a sense of responsibility to respect and care for it. She was trained as a biology teacher and taught for several years before she became primarily a home maker for Eric and their four children (including twins). At home, Clare developed a ministry of hospitality, opening their home to many visitors from across the world, learning from and respecting members of different denominations, faiths and cultures. Later, she trained in counselling and became a person-centred therapist working as a volunteer working with deprived communities in Dundee. Like Eric, she is a member of the local Anglican church (called the Scottish Episcopal Church) and retains a keen interest in matters of science and faith and in environmental issues.
Eric Priest is an Applied Mathematician from St Andrews University, Scotland, where he is an emeritus professor. His research has involved building theoretical models for the interaction of magnetic fields on the Sun and in other astrophysical objects. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society with 20 books and over 470 research papers. Eric Priest also has long-standing interests in matters of science and religion, and sits on the board of trustees of the John Templeton Foundation, the board of the Faraday Institute in Cambridge, and the Doctrine Committee of the Scottish Episcopal Church. Since 2007, he has organised an annual series of public lectures on science and faith in St Andrews. He has also edited Reason and Wonder: Why Science and Faith Need Each Other (2016), in which twelve contributors including Keith Ward, Eleonore Stump, David Wilkinson, David Myers, John Wyatt and Tom Wright discuss issues from philosophy, theology, astronomy, biology, psychology, medicine and physics.
Patrick Quinn is the planning director and all format news editor for The Associated Press in the Middle East, based in Beirut, with responsibility over 19 countries in the broader region. From 2010 to 2014, he was news director for Afghanistan and Pakistan and oversaw coverage for the news cooperative in the two countries from Kabul. He has in the past served as the Deputy Middle East Regional Editor based in Cairo and rotating Chief Editor in Baghdad during the conflict in Iraq. Quinn has also served as chief of Southeast Europe and Athens Chief of Bureau based in Greece. He joined the AP in 1986 and has reported extensively from the Middle East as well as Central Asia. Moreover, he covered the breakup of the former Yugoslavia and the Balkan wars of the 1990s, mostly from Sarajevo. He has also reported extensively on the Orthodox Christian Churches.
Kalliopi Radoglou heads the Department of Forestry and Management of Environment and Natural Resources Democritus University of Thrace. She became Professor in Forest Ecophysiology in 2012 and has long experience as senior researcher at Forest Research Institute-DIMITRA in Thessaloniki on the impacts of climate change on Mediterranean tree species and ecosystems. She works on the restoration and rehabilitation of ecosystems and on the parameters controlling the quality and field performance of woody plant material. Currently she is scientific responsible of LIFE FORESMIT (LIFE14/IT/000905) project. She has been scientific responsible for several European research projects. She was coordinator of VERENIKE “LIFE09 NAT/GR/000326” project. She was member of the Domain Committee of COS-Forest Products and Services. She acts as member of Cost Actions of E21, E38, FP703, FP803, CAPABAL TN1401 (2014-2018), CLIMO CA15226 (2016-2020). She is a member of SCAR (Standing Committee on Agricultural Research) and vice chair of SCAR FOREST since 2016.
Evangelos Raftopoulos is Professor of International Law and International Environmental Law, Panteion University of Athens, Greece and the Founding Director of MEPIELAN Centre (Mediterranean Program for International Environmental Law and Negotiation/Panteion University of Athens). He is Director of the Postgraduate Program Studies at the Department of International, European and Area Studies, Panteion University of Athens. He is a Visiting Scholar at Downing College, University of Cambridge and a Fellow at the Cambridge Centre for Environment, Energy and Natural Resource Governance, University of Cambridge. A Lawyer at the Athens Bar Association (1976-2012), he has served, for more than two decades, as a special Legal Adviser to the Mediterranean Action Plan/United Nations Environment Program (1987-2010) and as an International Legal Adviser to the Greek Minister of Housing, Public Works and the Environment (1983-1985). He served as Educational Counselor at the Institute of Continual Training, National Centre of Public Administration (1985-1993). An experienced international negotiation expert, he has actively participated in more than 70 international environmental conferences and meetings since 1983 and has drafted a number of international legal instruments and expert reports and papers. Professor Raftopoulos holds a Doctor of Philosophy Degree in International Law from Cambridge University, a Master Degree in International Law from Cambridge University, and a Law Degree (First Class) from Athens University. He was Ford Foundation Southern European Fellow of International Law at Yale Law School (1980-82) and published 12 books and numerous articles on theory, methodology and philosophy of international law, as well as international environmental law and governance.
Shantha Ready Alonso has, since 2015, served as Executive Director of Creation Justice Ministries of the National Council of Churches USA, an ecumenical Christian organization that educates, equips, and mobilizes faith communities to protect, restore, and more rightly share God’s creation. Creation Justice Ministries is led by representatives of 38 member communions and denominations from Orthodox, Mainline Protestant, Baptist, Historically Black Church, and Peace traditions. Based on the priorities of its members, with a particular concern for the vulnerable and marginalized, Creation Justice Ministries provides collaborative opportunities to build ecumenical community, guides people of faith and faith communities towards eco-justice transformations, and raises a collective witness in the public arena echoing Christ’s call for just relationships among all of Creation. Shantha has a passion for the global ecumenical movement. She interned for the National Council of Churches USA (2008-2013) and served as officer in the World Student Christian Federation (2009-2015).
Alan Riding is a Brazilian-born British journalist and writer whose career took him first to New York, then to Mexico for The Financial Times and The Economist. In 1978, he joined The New York Times and went on to cover Mexico and Central America. In 1984, he moved to Brazil, and worked throughout South America. Returning to Europe in l989, he became The New York Times's bureau chief in Paris, and subsequently European Cultural Correspondent. Among his books are Distant Neighbors: A Portrait of the Mexicans; Essential Shakespeare Handbook and a book on Opera. His most recent book is And The Show Went On: Cultural Life in Nazi-Occupied Paris. Since his retirement from the newspaper, he often appears as a speaker on cultural affairs, refugees, migration, Brexit and other topics. He also participates in NGO cultural projects in West Africa. He is now writing principally for the theatre.
Jeffrey D. Sachs is a world-renowned professor of economics, leader in sustainable development, senior UN advisor, bestselling author, and syndicated columnist whose monthly newspaper columns appear in more than 100 countries. He is the co-recipient of the 2015 Blue Planet Prize, the leading global prize for environmental leadership. He has twice been named among Time Magazine’s 100 most influential world leaders. He was called by the New York Times, “probably the most important economist in the world,” and by Time Magazine “the world’s best known economist.” A recent survey by The Economist Magazine ranked Professor Sachs as among the world’s three most influential living economists of the past decade. Professor Sachs served as the Director of the Earth Institute from 2002 to 2016. He was appointed University Professor at Columbia University in 2016, and also serves as Quetelet Professor of Sustainable Development, and Professor of Health Policy and Management at Columbia University. He is Special Advisor to United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres on the Sustainable Development Goals, and previously advised both UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon Sustainable Development Goals and Millennium Development Goals and UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan on the Millennium Development Goals. He is a Distinguished Fellow of the International Institute of Applied Systems Analysis in Laxenburg, Austria. Sachs is Director of both the Center for Sustainable Development, and the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network under the auspices of UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. Sachs spent over twenty years as a professor at Harvard University, most recently as the Galen L. Stone Professor of International Trade.
Sonia Ehrlich Sachs, MD, MPH is a pediatrician, an endocrinologist and public health specialist. She holds a BA (Harvard University), an MD (University of Maryland Medical School), and an MPH (Harvard School of Public Health). Dr. Sachs practiced medicine for over twenty years, fourteen of these at the Harvard University Health Services (Cambridge, Massachusetts). Since 2005 she leads the effort at the Earth Institute, Columbia University, to design and implement low-cost primary health systems in low-income rural Africa and India. Sachs coordinated the health sector of the Millennium Villages Project, an integrated rural development initiative in ten countries in sub-Saharan Africa, helping poor rural communities accelerate reaching the Millennium Development Goals. Dr. Sachs was involved. She is also the Director of the One Million CHW Campaign advocating for professionalized Community Health Workers. She currently advises the government of Ghana on the national scale up of Community Health Workers and Telemedicine.
Jimmy Samartzis is a visionary and pragmatic leader who has made a lifelong commitment to work at the intersection of the private and public sectors as a catalyst to create meaningful, positive change and impact in our global community. As a senior executive, Jimmy enjoys developing high-performing teams and capability to lead market- and industry-shaping strategy. He has helped pioneer “firsts” across many industries, from alternative energy, to customer experience innovation, to national cyber security initiatives, to a United Nations-adopted global CO2 emissions agreement. Jimmy currently serves as a Director on the Board of Directors managing for the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, the global leader in particle physics and mega-science. He previously served as a senior executive with United Airlines. Jimmy served in the administration of U.S. President Clinton. He is on the Council of Saints Peter and Paul Greek Orthodox Church (Glenview, IL) and studied at Oxford, John Hopkins, and Chicago Universities.
Athanasios Savvakis is President of the Federation of Industries of Northern Greece and Executive Director of BioSolids (soil improvement products). He is Shareholder of National Can Hellas, Member of the Managing Committee of the Athens Stock Exchange, Deputy Chairman of the Foundation for Economic & Industrial Research, and Vice-President of the Board of Directors of the Business and Cultural Development Centre. He is also on the Board of Directors of the General Council of the Bank of Greece, the Thessaloniki Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Museum of the Macedonian Struggle Foundation, Junior Achievement Greece, the Business and Cultural Development Centre, the Greek-Chinese Economic Council, the Greek International Business Association, and the Association of Chief Executives for Credit Risk Management. He holds an ΜΒΑ (University of Stirling), a BSc in Business Studies & Economics (University of Surrey) and is a Certified Lead Assessor for BSEN ISO systems from the Scottish Quality Management Center (University of Stirling).
Hans Joachim Schellnhuber has been Director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) since he founded the institute in 1992. He is Professor for Theoretical Physics at the University of Potsdam, Senior Research Fellow at the Stockholm Resilience Centre, and Senior Advisor at the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies (IASS) in Potsdam. Schellnhuber is currently member of the German Advisory Council on Global Change (WBGU), Chief Scientific Advisor of the Climate-KIC and Chair of the High-Level Panel of the European Decarbonisation Pathways Initiative of the European Commission. He is an elected member of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, the German Academy of Sciences (Leopoldina), the Academia Europaea, the US National Academy of Sciences, the Max Planck Society and several other academies. He received, inter alia, the German Environment Prize (2007), the Volvo Environment Prize (2011) and in 2017, the Blue Planet Prize from the Japanese Asahi Glass Foundation. Schellnhuber was awarded a CBE (Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire) by Queen Elizabeth II (2004), the Order of Merit of the State of Brandenburg (2008) and the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany (2011). He holds honorary doctorates from the University of Copenhagen (2011) and Technische Universität Berlin (2012). Schellnhuber has authored, co-authored or edited almost 350 articles and more than 60 books in the fields of condensed matter physics, complex systems dynamics, climate change research, Earth System analysis, and sustainability science.
Vandana Shiva is trained as a Physicist and completed her Ph.D. on “Hidden Variables and Non-locality in Quantum Theory” at the University of Western Ontario (Canada). She later shifted to inter-disciplinary research in science, technology and environmental policy, which she carried out at the Indian Institute of Science and the Indian Institute of Management in Bangalore. In 1982, she founded an independent institute, the Research Foundation for Science, Technology and Ecology in Dehra Dun dedicated to high quality, independent research addressing the most significant ecological and social issues of our time in partnership with local communities and social movements. In 1991, she founded Navdanya, a national movement to protect the diversity and integrity of living resources, especially native seed, in the promotion of organic farming and fair trade. In 2004, she started Bija Vidyapeeth, an international college for sustainable living in Doon Valley in collaboration with Schumacher College (UK). Time Magazine identified Dr. Shiva as an environmental “hero” in 2003, and Asia Week has called her one of the five most powerful communicators of Asia. In November 2010, Forbes Magazine identified Dr. Shiva as one of the Seven Most Powerful Women on the Globe. Dr. Shiva has received numerous honorary doctorates and her awards include the Alternative Nobel Prize (Right Livelihood Award, 1993), Order of the Golden Ark, Global 500 Award of UN, Earth Day International Award, the Lennon ONO grant for peace award by Yoko Ono in 2009, the Sydney Peace Prize, The MIDORI Prize for Biodiversity, and many others.
Marlise Simons is a correspondent for The New York Times based in Paris. She is currently writing about international courts and tribunals dealing with large-scale human rights abuses and war crimes. She joined The New York Times in 1982, first based in Mexico and Brazil and later in Italy and France. In Latin America, she reported on the impact of change in the Amazon rainforest in Brazil. From Eastern Europe, she wrote on the fallout of industrial pollution under Soviet rule. Other assignments ranged from industrial overfishing to contamination from depleted uranium weapons. In Africa, she accompanied scientists studying the impact of desert erosion on the atmosphere and the rainforest canopy near the equator in pursuit of new species for food and medicine. She has published three non-fiction books: Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Conversations with the Author; The Smoking Mirror, On Life in Latin America; and The Prosecutor and the Judge (co-author).
Charissa Skoutelas will be a junior at the Pennsylvania State University in the fall. She is majoring in Classics and Ancient Mediterranean Studies and Global and International Studies with minors in Ancient Greek, Geography, and Religious Studies. In her first fall at Penn State, she served as an intern for the Climate Reality Project, advocating for the objective of switching to renewable energy on campus. Her experiences include being the Service Chair of Penn State's Orthodox Christian Fellowship, the Vice President of the Penn State Hellenic Student Association, and playing the piccolo as a member of the Pride of the Lions Pep Band. She enjoys having an active role her church communities, both at school and at home, and hopes to attend graduate school for Classical Studies after graduation.
Rabbi Awraham Soetendorp is an award-winning human rights advocate, lecturer, writer, environmental activist and champion of civil society worldwide. Born in 1943 in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, he was saved by a righteous couple. He received his ordination from Leo Baeck College (London) in 1967 and was instrumental in the reestablishment of Jewish communities in The Netherlands. Rabbi Soetendorp is the founder and president of the Jacob Soetendorp Institute for Human Values in the Netherlands, a founding member of Green Cross International, and the founder of the Day of Respect Foundation. He serves as Earth Charter Commissioner and Millennium Development Ambassador, and is a founding member of the Islam and the West dialogue group of the World Economic Forum. He has received the Peacebuilders Award from The Alliance for International Conflict Prevention and Resolution, and the “Peace Through Dialogue”, Interfaith Gold Medallion from the International Council of Christian and Jews.
Michael Spanos is Founder and Managing Director of Global Sustain, an Expert Advisor to the European Commission on the Sustainable Development Goals, an AHC Group Senior Associate (USA), a member of the secretariat of the United Nations Global Compact Network and of the Advisory Board of the CEO Clubs in Greece, and a member of the Stakeholder Advisory Council of FMC Corp (USA). He lectures and publishes widely on responsible investments, sustainable leadership and innovation, collaborating with organizations such as the UN Principles for Responsible Investment, Global Compact, GRI, European Commission and Parliament. He has held senior positions in a venture capital firm, an investment fund and in ICAP Group in South-East Europe. Michael is also a visiting lecturer at the International MBA program of the Athens University of Economics and Business and the Cyprus International Institute of Management. He holds an MBA and a diploma in Production Engineering and Management.
Theo Spanos Dunfey, with 30 years of global experience in non-profits, higher education and international affairs, is President of Global Citizens Circle. Throughout her career, her focus has been on global education and civic engagement, and has included producing programs and leading delegations to Hong Kong, Moscow, St. Petersburg, Lake Baikal, Prince William Sound, Havana, Belfast, Cape Town and Dominica. Prior to assuming leadership of Global Citizens Circle, she served in various educational and administrative capacities including at the University of New England, where she taught global citizenship and directed community programs; program director, World Affairs Council of Maine; and special projects coordinator, The WorldPaper, a publication whose writers and editors were from over 25 different countries. Now in partnership with Southern New Hampshire University and a Belfast-based global nonprofit, Social Change Initiative, she is revitalizing Global Citizens Circle and inaugurated their joint programming in South Africa, November 2017, with an intergenerational program Activism That Works: Starting Young and Staying at It, at which she presented the Global Citizens award to Archbishop Emeritus Desmond and Leah Tutu. In April 2018 she hosted a Circle at SNHU’s campus, where GCC now is located, featuring Hala Aldosari, a Saudi women’s rights activist and recent recipient of Human Rights Watch Award for Extraordinary Activism. The program was Social Media, Solidarity & Safety. Spanos-Dunfey received her M.A. in law and diplomacy at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University and her B.A. in international relations and French civilization at Brown University.
Chrysostomos Stamoulis was born in Aphytos (Halkidiki) in 1964. He is Professor of Dogmatic and Symbolic Theology at the University of Thessaloniki. He has taught at Balamand University (Lebanon) and Holy Cross School of Theology (Boston). He studied theology at the Universities of Thessaloniki (Greece), Belgrade (Serbia) and Durham (UK). His publications include Sacred Beauty. An Introduction to the Philocalic Aesthetics of Orthodoxy (Akritas), As if I Were a Stranger and a Wanderer, Or, Incarnation: The migration of Love (Akritas), and What is the Fox seeking in the Fair? Essays on the dialogue of Orthodoxy with the City, Politics and Culture (Armos). He has served as Head of the Department of Theology (2011-2015). He also undertook musical studies at the Macedonian and State Conservatories in Thessaloniki, producing five CDs. Since 1991, he is principal conductor of the St. John Chrysostom Youth Choir and Orchestra, collaborating with international composers and singers.
Kalliopi Stara works as a researcher in the Biological Applications and Technologies Department at the University of Ioannina, where she has taught Cultural Ecology since 2016. She holds a degree in Psychology (Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, 1992), a master's degree in Ecology (University of Wales, Bangor, 2001) and a PhD in Folk Studies (University of Ioannina, 2009). Her doctoral dissertation is about the sacred woods and groves in the Vikos-Aoos National Park. Her research is focused on the study of Sacred Natural Areas, Ethno-botany, Ethno-ornithology, Non Timber Forest Products, and Environmental Education. She is part of the interdisciplinary research team of the THALIS – SAGE project "Conservation through religion. The sacred groves of Epirus" and is responsible for the educational package "Ancient trees, their values and importance for biodiversity conservation" (2015, in Greek).
Yanis G. Stavrou was born in Thessaloniki in 1959. He studied Economic and Social Management at the University of Lyon II and continued his postgraduate studies in European Integration Issues at the College of Europe in Bruges and the London School of Economics and Political Science. He taught at the College of Europe teaching European Policy and Management courses. In 2003, he was elected as Executive Vice President of the Federation of Industries of Northern Greece. He has served as Director of the European Information Centre for Enterprises (1987-1999), Executive Director of the Federation of Industries of Northern Greece (2001-2003), General Manager of the Northern Greek Agency for the Development of Private Infrastructure (1997-2003), and, Vice President of the IMESE Business School (2001-2003). He is on the Board of Directors for Thessaloniki International Fair, Logismos Information Systems, Ch. & D. Orphanides SA, Whale Graphics SA, and National System for Quality Infrastructure (ESYP)
Akkan Suver was appointed Turkish Honorary Consul General of Montenegro in 2008 and heads the President of Turkey’s most prestigious NGO, the Marmara Group Foundation. He founded the Eurasian Economic Summit, an annual economic assembly since 1998. He has received numerous awards for his service to journalism and civil society, as well as state medals from Azerbaijan, the Vatican, Mongolia, Moldova, Albania and Austria. He holds honorary doctorates from Azerbaijan University (2001) and Romania Constanza Maritime University (2013), as well as an honorary professorship from Kyrgyzstan Bishkek University (2010). In November 2017, Dr. Suver was presented with the Strategic Partner of the Year award by the Vienna Economic Forum for his contribution to the regional common understanding and his work in intercultural dialogue and cooperation. Dr. A member of the Academic Committee of Istinye University, Dr. Suver is a well-known author and journalist in Turkey, currently writing for the Gözlem Newspaper in Izmir.
Dr Athena Christina Syrakoy is a freelance architect and researcher. She holds a PhD from Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, an MPhil from the University of Cambridge, and a Postgraduate Diploma in International Studies in Vernacular Architecture, a Grad.Dip. Arch and a BA Hons Arch from Oxford Brookes University. Her research interests focus on architecture and urban design and planning pertaining to notions of health and environment as well as on the history and philosophy of architecture and urban planning and design in relation to cultural and cross-cultural issues of notions of health. She has taught at the Technical University of Crete and the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki and is currently an external collaborating tutor and researcher of the Postgraduate Program on Environmental Architectural Design, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. She has produced more than 60 papers in scientific publications and conferences. She is also Co-Editor-in-Chief of the Montreal Architectural Review (McGill University).
Lily Talmers is entering her fourth year of undergraduate studies at the University of Michigan, where she majors in philosophy and comparative literature in English, Modern Greek, and Portuguese. She also carries a deep interest in theology and is involved in the Orthodox Christian Fellowship on a regional and national level. In 2016, she gave a Tedx talk at Kalamazoo College entitled “Finding the Last Universal Common Ancestor of Christianity,” in which she used the biological concept of phylogenic mapping to relate eastern Orthodoxy to its Christian relatives. Perhaps her greatest environmental contribution took place at age 11, with the creation of her very first email address ([email protected]) and again at age 13 (with [email protected]). Though she has since adopted a new address, she remains a fervent environmentalist. In the future, she hopes to go to graduate school and teach in some capacity.
Luke Tassopoulos is a second year Master of Public Policy student at the Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy at the University of Virginia, focusing on environmental policy. He graduated with a B.A. in History from the University of Virginia (2018) and a minor in Religious Studies. An Atlanta native, his home parish is Holy Transfiguration Greek Orthodox Church in Marietta, Georgia. Luke has a passion for service through understanding the complex interplay between the built world, the environment, and people. This summer, he is interning at The Trust for Public Land’s Atlanta office, preparing community outreach for a master plan of the Chattahoochee River corridor throughout and beyond the Atlanta metro area, serving as an ambassador and advocate for the river. Previously, Luke worked for non-profits, consulting firms and developers to gain a holistic understanding of how humanity and the built environment interact throughout the urban reality.
Elizabeth Theokritoff earned a doctorate in liturgical theology at Oxford University under the supervision of Metropolitan Kallistos (Ware) of Diokleia and is an independent scholar and theological translator from Modern Greek. She is a research associate and lecturer at the Institute for Orthodox Christian Studies in Cambridge, where she now lives. She is also co-chairwoman of the ‘Religion and Science’ group in the newly-formed International Orthodox Theological Association. Elizabeth Theokritoff has had a particular interest in 'theological ecology' since 1988-9, when she served as visiting Orthodox Tutor at the Ecumenical Institute, Bossey, Switzerland, for the Graduate School on 'Justice, peace and the integrity of creation'. Since then, she has given numerous invited lectures or papers on ecological themes at events in several countries. She is co-editor of The Cambridge Companion to Orthodox Christian Theology and author of Ecosystem and Human Dominion (in Greek) (Athens: Maistros, 2003) and Living in God’s Creation: Orthodox Perspectives on Ecology (St Vladimir's Seminary Press, 2009), as well as numerous articles and book chapters.
Photini Tomai-Constantopoulou, archaeologist, author and senior state officer holds today an Ambassadorial rank. She joined the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 1985. In 1993 she was appointed Director of the Service of Diplomatic Archives, and in 2013 Special Envoy for Holocaust Issues. Among many other state publications about WWII, Marshall Plan, Greece’s participation in the EU, she also wrote a number of archaeological articles, literature and fairy tales. In 1998 she co-edited the volume Records on the History of the Greek Jews and since then she has been assigned with the documentation of the Holocaust through state sources. She authored Greeks in Auschwitz-Birkenau, The Greek Righteous Among the Nations and was the first recipient of the Metropolitan Chrysostomos of Zakynthos Award (Washinghton D.C., 2011) for her efforts in combating Anti-semitism. She served as Deputy Head and Head of the Greek Delegation in IHRA (2005-2017) , ESLI and ITS-Bad-Arolsen.
Isaiah Kipyegon Toroitich is a humanitarian and sustainable development advocate currently serving as the Global Advocacy Lead for ACT Alliance in Geneva, Switzerland, where he is responsible for climate justice initiatives, which include a dedicated engagement with the UNFCCC and ecumenical mobilization for climate and ecological justice. He has co-authored, edited or otherwise contributed to several publications including Diakonia, sustainability and climate change, Making Paris work for vulnerable populations, The Paris Climate Agreement, towards a climate-friendly future, and the recently launched Towards the ambitious implementation of the Paris Agreement, a toolkit for national level advocacy Isaiah is originally from Kenya and holds Executive Masters in Advocacy in International Affairs, Master of Arts degree in Development Communications, and Bachelor of Education degrees.
Constantine M. Triantafilou has been leading International Orthodox Christian Charities (IOCC) for over two decades. As Executive Director and CEO, he manages all facets of IOCC’s relief and development programs, including its international headquarters in Baltimore, Maryland, and 10 field offices in Africa, Europe, the Middle East, and the US. Triantafilou began his career in humanitarian assistance in the early 1990s with community-development projects for the Orthodox Church, working in Kenya and Tanzania. In 1993, he joined IOCC as Commodities Manager in the former Yugoslavia. He became the organization’s Balkans Representative in 1995 and Director of Programs in 1997, before taking the helm in 1998. Under his leadership, IOCC has distributed over $625 million in emergency assistance and development aid to families and communities in more than 60 countries across four continents. The international and ecumenical experience Triantafilou brings to the table has earned the respect of numerous government and private organizations, as well as recognition for IOCC. In 2006, he was elevated to the office of Archon, Orphanotrophos, by His All-Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople. Triantafilou is a graduate of Texas A&M University, where he earned his bachelor’s degree in history. He and his family live in Greater Baltimore.
Kanaris Tsinganos is Professor of theoretical astrophysics at the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens. He holds a Ph.D. in Physics from the University of Chicago. The author of over 250 scientific publications cited in over 3800 citations. He has lectured at Chicago University, Harvard University, Katholieke Universiteit of Leuven, St. Andrews University and the University of Porto. Currently, he is a visitor for collaborative research at the Observatoire de Paris, the Universite de Paris VII and the Osservatorio Astronomico di Torino. He has organized several international conferences, including Protostellar Jets in Context (2008), as well as participated in several international research collaborations, national and EC funded research grants, and networks in astrophysics, space physics, environmental physics and geophysics, including the Marie Curie European postdoctoral fellowships, continuously since 2005. He was elected Secretary and President of the Hellenic Astronomical Society (2002-2010) and served as Director of the National Observatory of Athens (2011-2016).
Mary Evelyn Tucker is co-director of the Forum on Religion and Ecology at Yale where she teaches in an MA program between the School of Forestry & Environmental Studies and the Divinity School. With John Grim she organized 10 conferences on World Religions and Ecology at Harvard. They are series editors for the 10 resulting volumes from Harvard. She co-edited Confucianism and Ecology, Buddhism and Ecology, and Hinduism and Ecology. She has authored with John Grim, Ecology and Religion (Island Press, 2014). They also edited Thomas Berry’s books including Selected Writings (Orbis, 2014). With Brian Swimme she wrote Journey of the Universe (Yale, 2011) and is the executive director of the Emmy award winning Journey film that aired on PBS. She served on the International Earth Charter Drafting Committee and was a member of the Earth Charter International Council.
His Eminence Peter Cardinal Turkson is a Ghanaian cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church, who served as President of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace (2009-2017) and was named by Pope Francis as the first Prefect of the Dicastery for the Promotion of Integral Human Development in January 2017. He attended St. Teresa’s Seminary in Amisano (1962-1969) and St. Peter’s Regional Seminary in Pedu (1969-1971), continuing his studies in Rome at the Pontifical Biblical Institute (1976-1980) and completing his doctorate in 1992. He also holds master degrees from St. Anthony-on-Hudson Franciscan Seminary (New York). He has been a Chancellor of the Catholic University College of Ghana since 2003. In 1992, he was appointed Archbishop of Cape Coast and served as president of the Ghana Catholic Bishops’ Conference (1997-2004). He served as treasurer of the Symposium of Episcopal Conferences of Africa and Madagascar (2007-2009) and president of the Regional Episcopal Conference of West Africa (2007-2010). He was also Chairman of the Ghana Chapter of the Conference of Religions for Peace (2003-2007) and Ghana National Peace Council (2006-2010). He was proclaimed Cardinal by the blessed John Paul II (2003). He has been awarded numerous honorary degrees and speaks six languages (Fante, English, French, Italian, German and Hebrew). He has served as a member of the Congregations for the Doctrine of the Faith, for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, as well as for the Evangelization of Peoples and for Catholic Education, along with the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity.
Olav Fykse Tveit has been general secretary of the World Council of Churches since January 2010. Previously, Dr. Tveit was general secretary of the Church of Norway Council on Ecumenical and International Relations (2002-09), serving the WCC as a member of the Faith and Order Plenary Commission and co-chair of the Palestine Israel Ecumenical Forum core group. Tveit is an ordained pastor in the Church of Norway, where he served as a parish priest. He has also served as a member of the board of directors and executive committee of the Christian Council of Norway, moderator of the Church of Norway -- Islamic Council of Norway contact group and the same for the Jewish Congregation contact group. He also was a member of the Inter-Faith Council of Norway and a member of the board of trustees of Norwegian Church Aid. Tveit holds a doctorate in theology from the Norwegian School of Theology/Menighetsfakultetet in Oslo for his dissertation on Mutual Accountability as Ecumenical Attitude, which formed the basis for his book, The Truth We Owe Each Other: Mutual Accountability in the Ecumenical Movement (WCC Publications, 2016). He also wrote Christian Solidarity in the Cross of Christ (WCC Publications, 2012). Tveit is recognized internationally for his vision of unity, justice and peace, as well as his work on interreligious dialogue. He accepted an invitation from the Global Partnership to End Violence Against Children to serve on the organization’s board of directors and he also serves as a co-president of Religions for Peace.
Nicholas Tzoitis, a trained physicist and scholar, holds two Masters Degree in Physics and in Philosophy from the University of Rome, La Sapienza. Along with being a prolific writer in the area of science and philosophy, Tzoitis has extensive experience in communications and diplomacy. In 1995, Tzoitis began his service at the Embassy of Greece in Rome, and from 2005-2009 served as a member of the Greek Consulate in Istanbul. Among other major projects, Tzoitis was an integral member of Pope Benedict XVI’s official visit to the Ecumenical Patriarchate in 2006. From this time, Tzoitis has enhanced the communications between the Orthodox and Catholic Churches through his cooperation with the Catholic Mass Media Channels, especially Asianews.it, La città nova, RAI, and others. He speaks Greek, English, Turkish, and Italian.
Mohammad Vahedi was born in Tehran, Iran. Due to his father’s political disputes with the government, he was forced to leave home at the age of fifteen. After three dangerous attempts, he finally managed to cross the sea and reach Greece in 2000, alone. At that time, there were no accommodation centers or organizations to support unaccompanied minors or refugees in Greece. However, after a certain period of time, he managed to go to school and receive a high school diploma while simultaneously working on various jobs. It took him approximately ten years to secure an interview for his asylum request and, after an extremely difficult process, he was finally recognized as a refugee in Greece. Further interested in counselling and psychotherapy studies, he is currently pursuing postgraduate studies in the field of person-centered psychotherapy at the University of Strathclyde. For more than ten years, he has been working with various non-governmental organizations and agencies dealing with refugees and human rights issues. Over the past two years, he has been working for the SOS Children's Villages Greece as a Shelter Coordinator hosting unaccompanied children, as part of the Emergency Response Program of SOS Children’s Villages International.
Alison Van Dyk earned two MAs from John F. Kennedy University and has been a Family and Child Psychotherapist in private practice for thirty years. She worked as Play Therapist in a pre-school in the South Bronx, New York, for twenty years. Since 2002, she has been the Chair and Executive Director of the Temple of Understanding (TOU), an Interfaith Educational Organization founded in 1960 by Juliet Hollister. She has launched numerous interfaith programs and Hollister Award Ceremonies, including an award to Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew in 2010. Through her leadership, the TOU runs a Summer Youth Internship Program that focuses on the United Nations and its peacekeeping mission for ages 18 to 21. She has Executive Produced two films about Sandplay Therapy, The Legacy of Margaret Lowenfeld and Playing to Learn and three about the work of the TOU: We Are One, Journeys for Peace and recently, Roots of Change.
Lise Van Susteren, a practicing general and forensic psychiatrist in Washington DC, is an expert on the physical and mental health effects of climate change. She co-authored “The Psychological Effects of Climate Warming on the US” (2011), while serving as Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at Georgetown University and consultant to the Executive Branch of the US Government profiling world leaders. After her medical degree (University of Paris), she practiced medicine in West Africa, at community health centers and homeless shelters in Washington DC. Dr. Van Susteren serves on the Advisory Boards of the Center for Health and the Global Environment at Harvard T.H Chan School of Public Health and of Earth Day Network; she co-founded Climate Psychiatry Alliance and the Interfaith Moral Action on Climate. A frequent contributor on television, radio and in the print media, in 2006 she sought the Democratic nomination for the US Senate from Maryland.
William Vendley is the Secretary General of Religions for Peace (RfP), the world’s largest multi-religious coalition advancing common action for Peace. He is a member of its World Council, which consists of 60 senior religious leaders from all continents. He coordinates the activities of RfP in 90 national and 5 regional councils. William is a pioneer in advancing multi-religious conflict resolution and reconciliation in many countries, including Bosnia-Herzegovina, Sierra Leone, Sri Lanka, Iraq. With the Chancellor of the Vatican’s Pontifical Academies of Sciences and Social Sciences, the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network and Notre Dame University, William led RfP in co-sponsoring Ethics in Action (EIA), a multi-religious initiative that focuses on the ethical challenges of sustainable development and the contributions from religions to respond to them. William serves on the Leadership Councils of the UN SDSN and the UN Alliance of Civilizations. He is a recipient of the UNICEF Lifetime Achievement Award.
Lakis Vingas is an entrepreneur managing an export-import business since 1983. As a member of the Greek Minority of Istanbul, he founded cultural organizations, been a member of administrative boards of Community Foundations, and served as president of the Zographeion High School Alumni Association for 10 years. He was a member of the Advisory Committee of the 2010 Istanbul Cultural Capital of Europe Agency. In December of 2008, he was the first member to be elected to the General Assembly of the General Directorate of Foundations (GDF) in Ankara, representing all 165 Minority Foundations of Turkey. During his term, he has gotten many longstanding issues that concern Minority Foundations a place on the agenda of the GDF. In 2010 he was among the founders of the Association for the support of Greek Foundations (RUMVADER), where he serves as president. He lives in Istanbul with his wife and three children.
Maria Voce was elected president of the Focolare Movement in 2008 after its foundress, Chiara Lubich, passed away. In 2014, she was reelected for a second term. Born in Cosenza, Italy, while studying law in Rome, she came to know the spirit of unity of the Focolare Movement. At the age of 26, as first woman lawyer at Cosenza’s Court, she left a very promising career to join the Focolare in Sicily and then in Rome (International Centre of the Movement at Rocca di Papa). She also spent 10 years in Istanbul, where she maintained and intensified the relationship between the Focolare and the Patriarchate of Constantinople. During these years, she established direct contact with the Islamic world. Through her trips to Focolare Communities throughout the world and through conventions organized by the Focolare Movement, President Maria Voce enjoys close collaboration with high-level representatives in ecclesial, ecumenical, interreligious and civil fields.
Zoi Vrontisi is the Chairwoman of the National Center for the Environment and Sustainable Development of Greece. She has more than ten years of professional and academic experience in energy and climate policy assessment and has worked as an expert for the European Commission, the Greek Ministry of Development and the private sector. She is currently a member of the Board of Directors of the Independent Power Transmission Operator of Greece and continues her research work in a spin-off company from the National Technical University of Athens. She contributes on several EU funded research projects focusing on the interlinkages between sustainable development and climate policy with the application of sophisticated modelling tools. Zoi holds an Electrical and Computer Engineering 5-year degree from the National Technical University of Athens and a M.Sc. in Environmental Technology and Energy Policy from Imperial College.
Gayle E. Woloschak is Professor of Radiation Oncology, Radiology, and Cell and Molecular Biology in the Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University. Gayle received her B.S. in Biological Sciences, from Youngstown State University and a Ph.D. in Medical Sciences from the University of Toledo (Medical College of Ohio). She did her postdoctoral training at the Mayo Clinic, and then moved to Argonne National Laboratory until 2001. Her scientific interests are predominantly in the areas of Molecular Biology. Radiation Biology, and Nanotechnology studies, and she has authored over 200 papers. She is editor-in-chief for the International Journal of Radiation Biology, is past-President of the Radiation Research Society, is a member of the Board of the National Council of Radiation Protection and Measurements, is a member of Committee-1 for the International Commission on Radiation Protection and serves on several committees that oversee NASA’s space radiation program. She also received a DMin degree from Pittsburgh Theological Seminary in Eastern Christian Studies having worked in bioethical questions and science and religion studies. She is Adjunct Professor of Religion and Science at Lutheran School of Theology Chicago and Sessional Professor of Bioethics at St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary. Her research interests there include environmental issues, bioethical questions, and evolution.
Ben Worobey is a recent graduate from Rutgers University, New Brunswick, where he studied cell biology and neuroscience. Throughout his time at Rutgers, Ben conducted research on the intersection of genetic and social influences on alcoholism. Additionally, Ben spent time in Peru, where he served children in a school for those with disabilities; he hopes to continue this work in the future. Finally, he has developed a deep respect and love for the environment, and he spends as much time as possible hiking the many beautiful mountains across the United States. Using his knowledge of neuroscience and motivation to serve others, Ben aspires to create more comfortable and sustainable environments that meet the needs of others.
Alexander E. Zagoreos is a retired Lazard Freres investment partner. His interest in conservation started in the 1960’s with the campaign to clean New York City’s air, followed by an interest in restoring and preserving the Hudson River serving as treasurer and director of the Hudson Riverkeepers and as chairman of Scenic Hudson. He is active in the Audubon Society, having chaired the New York Audubon and served on the National Board. Alex received a BA from Columbia College and two masters degrees in business and International Affairs from Columbia, after serving two years in the US Navy. He is currently Chairman of the American School of Classical Studies at Athens and an Overseer of the Gennadius Library. He lives with his wife Marine on a farm in upstate New York where he raises beef, and is active in farmland preservation and programs promoting grassland birds in decline in the USA.
Christos Zerefos heads the Research Center for Atmospheric Physics and Climatology at the Academy of Athens. He is President-elect of the General Assembly of the Hellenic Foundation for Research and Innovation and Professor of Atmospheric and Environmental Physics at the Universities of Athens and Thessaloniki. He has been known for his research in ozone, UV, ozone-climate interactions and climate extreme events. His research led to important international agreements such as the Montreal Protocol. Member, Academy of Athens, Academia Europaea, Norwegian Academy of Sciences and Letters, European Academy of Sciences, Russian Academy of Natural Sciences and others. He is UNESCO Chair Holder on Natural Hazards, receiving the UNEP Global Ozone Award and distinctions from WMO/UNEP and scientific societies, including the Blaise Pascal Medal of the European Academy of Sciences. He received an Award Certificate and Letter from UNEP and IPCC for substantial contribution to the reports of IPCC, which shared the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize with the former Vice President of USA, Al Gore (December 2007). He has supervised numerous doctoral dissertations and created the Research Centre for Atmospheric Physics and Climatology, Academy of Athens; the Laboratory of Atmospheric Physics at Aristotle University of Thessaloniki; the WMO Northern Hemisphere Ozone Mapping Centre; the Graduate Program on Environmental Physics at Aristotle University of Thessaloniki; the Laboratory of Atmospheric Environment, Biomedical Research Foundation at the Academy of Athens; the UNESCO Chair on Natural Hazards in the Geosphere, the Hydrosphere and the Atmosphere; the Geoastrophysics Museum at the National Observatory of Athens; and the Navarino Environmental Observatory in Messinia.
Konstantinos Zormpas was born in 1959, in Larisa. He holds degrees in Political Sciences (Strasbourg, 1981), Sociology (Catholic Institute and Sorbonne, 1987) and Theology (Theological Institute of Saint Serge, 1987). He completed postgraduate studies in the Sociology of Christianity and Pastoral Sociology and at the Theological School of Thessaloniki in the Department of Ethics and Sociology, where he received his doctorate (1996). He worked as scientific associate of the Orthodox Academy of Crete (1988-1999), actively participating in the European Union through committees of the Council of European Churches and the Council of Europe. He served on the permanent Greek delegation to the European Union (Brussels) for educational and ecclesiastical affairs. His publications include The Human Value in Social Utopias, Politics and Religion, and Ecological Crisis and Education. He is currently General Director of the Orthodox Academy of Crete, where the Holy and Great Council of the Orthodox Church convened (2016).