Current Board of Directors
EMILY STEELE, President. Emily Steele is the Client Relationship Manager for Think Digital, a digital marketing company. Her work stretches beyond the office into community transformation on many levels, from launching POP UP YOGA DSM to overseeing FemCity Des Moines. Originally from Pella and a Drake graduate, she is interested in bringing various sectors together to make significant impact. Emily is passionate about the power of effective communication and bringing people together to generate ideas and work through challenging processes.
AMY LUEBBERT, Vice President. Amy is an Outreach Associate with CLEAResult, an energy efficiency consulting firm hired by utility companies across the US and Canada to implement efficiency programs. Amy's primary role is with MidAmerican Energy's Small Business Lighting program which helps small businesses afford energy efficient lighting upgrades. Amy has a Geography degree from the University of Iowa and has served with AmeriCorps through the EnergyCorps program where she worked with homeowners on improving energy efficiency in their homes. Amy has a passion for veganism, cooking/baking, dancing, organizing for change and spending time with her cats.
CIJI MITRISIN, Treasurer. Ciji is the Chief Recycling Officer and Founder of RecycleMe Iowa. She was raised in Oskaloosa, Iowa from a long line of small business owners and graduated from the University of Northern Iowa (UNI). Landing in Des Moines after an eye opening living experience in New Zealand, her interest in health, wellness, simple pleasures, and an overall culture of environmentalism pushed her to start a recycling business and connect with Urban Ambassadors (UA). Instead of waiting for change, she wanted to be a part of finding sustainable solutions for Des Moines as it continues to grow and joined the UA Board in 2015. She has helped co-produce Recycle Revolution, travelled with New Belgium Brewery to execute zero-waste events in North Carolina and consulted for events including 80/35, Des Moines Arts Festival and Hinterland. With many passions, she also divides her time as a member of Junior League of Des Moines, a focus on volunteerism, improving the community and women's empowerment.
CHELSEA KRIST, Secretary. Chelsea is the Fellow for FoodCorps Iowa, a nonprofit organization that connects kids to real food to help them grow up healthy. Before becoming fellow, Chelsea was a FoodCorps service member with Des Moines Public Schools for two years. There, she spent time in school gardens, classrooms, demo kitchens and cafeterias, learning alongside students about the importance of fresh food and growing opportunities to access it through farm to school initiatives. An Iowa native and a University of Iowa graduate, Chelsea has deep love for the city and people of Des Moines. She believes in the power of community, language, story and collective action to grow sustainable cities and systems of equity.
STEPHANIE MOTT. Stephanie was born and raised in Waterloo, Iowa and spent summers on family fishing trips in Northern Minnesota. Stephanie moved to the Des Moines area in 2006 and has since fallen in love with all the outdoor recreational opportunities and resources available in the community. As an avid trail-user and landscape photographer, Stephanie spends a great deal of time outdoors here in the metro and is passionate about being a part of an advocate group that empowers the community to make sustainable choices that benefit our natural resources. When she's not out and about exploring all the beauty the Des Moines area has to offer, she can also be found wandering with her husband all over the rest of Iowa and beyond. Stephanie is a full-time self-employed business owner, providing care for the youth and future of our community. Her hobbies include camping, photography, reading, running, yogaand choreographing dance routines. A mother of three and cat-mom to two, she also loves nothing more than to be at home surrounded by her family. She's currently training for the Des Moines Women's Half Marathon and hopes to finish 2 halves and a full marathon again this year.
JEREMY MOORE. Jeremy is originally from Ames, Iowa with stints in Colorado, West Virginia and Florida. He moved to West Des Moines in 2007 and is currently a Massage Therapist in Clive. Jeremy graduated from DMACC in 2011 with an A.A. in Environmental Science and from Drake University in 2015 with a B.S in Environmental Science. In 2012, he became a "Master River Steward" and Iowater Certified Citizen Monitor. He is also involved with the Iowa Food Cooperative as a member and volunteer. Jeremy loves spending his free time hiking, camping, cycling and stand-up paddle boarding with his son.
ZACK VALIGOSKY. Zack is originally from Toledo, Ohio and moved to Des Moines in June of 2016, after accepting a position as an Energy Engineer with CLEAResult. He attended the University of Dayton where he received a Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering degree. During his time in Dayton, his passion for sustainability was created and developed as a member of the Rivers Institute. Housed within the Fitz Center for Leadership in Community, the Rivers Institute is a three-year program aimed at connecting the University and community partners to utilize rivers as a strategic natural resource. To address sustainability through the lens of engineering, Zack continued his education in Dayton and became a Master of Science in Renewable and Clean Energy. Zack works on a daily basis to save energy and reduce his footprint though his work, cycling, and other practices.
SAM COLLISON. Sam was born and raised in small town Iowa. As a child and teenager, Sam enjoyed exploring the beauty and wonders of rural Iowa. A Drake graduate and Des Moines resident for over a decade, Sam has found a passion for connecting young children to science and nature. As the Education Community Program Manager at Blank Park Zoo, Sam has dedicated her career to inspiring a love of animals and wildlife in people of all ages. She travels the state of Iowa with her message and believes education is at the heart of conservation. Sam thrives to be a role model in her everyday life and an inspiration to the next generation of sustainability heroes.