Confirmed Speakers

Below is a list of the keynote and panel speakers for SEC Marin 2017.

Tom Steyer

Tom Steyer Headshot.jpg

Tom Steyer is a business leader and philanthropist who believes we have a moral responsibility to give back and help ensure that every family shares the benefits of economic opportunity, education, and a healthy climate. In 2010, Tom and his wife, Kat Taylor, pledged to contribute most of their wealth to charitable causes during their lifetimes. Tom founded a successful California business, which he left to work full-time on non-profit and advocacy efforts. He served as President of NextGen Climate, an organization he founded in 2013 to prevent climate disaster and promote prosperity for all Americans. In 2017 NextGen Climate expanded their progressive fight to include immigration, health care, prosperity, and equality — as NextGen America. Tom’s dedication to public service is greatly inspired by his wife, Kat, the co-CEO of Beneficial State Bank in Oakland. They founded this nonprofit community bank in 2007 to provide loans to people and small businesses shut out by the traditional banking system. Unlike most banks, by statute Beneficial State Bank invests any profits back into the community. Tom and Kat live in San Francisco and have four children.


Dawn Weisz

dawn.jpg

As Chief Executive Officer, Dawn is responsible for the vision, strategy, and leadership of MCE. Dawn began coordinating efforts to explore and launch MCE in 2004. Under her watch, MCE has launched service to more than 250,000 customers in 24 communities and entered into power purchase agreements that have more than doubled the amount of renewable energy procured for customers, exceeded State Renewable Portfolio Standards, and achieved substantial greenhouse gas reductions to help local communities reach State Assembly Bill 32 targets. Dawn has 20 years of experience developing and managing renewable energy and energy efficiency programs and projects while working for leading public agencies in the field. Previously, she was a Principal Planner with the County of Marin, where she managed energy and sustainability initiatives and served as the Executive Director for Sustainable North Bay. Dawn is a highly sought-after speaker at energy-related conferences and has been a guest lecturer for UC Berkeley, the National American Planning Association, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Dawn has also received awards from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the U.S. Department of Energy, and the Power Association of Northern California.


Albert Straus

albert-on-farm-with-tomales-bay.jpg

Founder & CEO of Straus Family Creamery, Albert is an advocate for organic, non-GMO dairy production, environmental stewardship and family farms. The first certified organic dairy west of the Mississippi River, Albert's dairy has led the way for many other dairy farms in California to follow suit and convert to organic. Founded in 1994, Straus Creamery was the first 100% certified organic creamery in the USA. Its mission is to help sustain family farms in Marin and Sonoma Counties by providing high quality, minimally processed organic dairy products, and to support family farming and revitalize rural communities everywhere through advocacy and education. Straus has been a leader in sustainable farming practices, which include a methane digester converting dairy waste into renewable energy; a carbon farming program designed to measure and optimize carbon capture; and an extensive water-reuse system which recycles wastewater from the creamery. In 2005, after detecting GMO contamination in his certified organic feeds, Albert developed and implemented a GMO testing and verification program crucial to preserving the organic integrity of his milk. When the Non-GMO Project emerged in 2010, Straus Family Creamery became the first creamery in the USA to be verified. Every source of feed for cows on the Straus dairy and the eight other local, organic family farms who provide milk to the creamery is tested for GMOs and verified GMO-free.


Greg Dalton

Greg Dalton_1.jpg

Greg Dalton founded Climate One at The Commonwealth Club in 2007, which produces a weekly radio show broadcast on public stations in Marin, Monterey and Sonoma counties. Greg also hosts a monthly TV show broadcast on KRCB TV 22 on Comcast and DirecTV and a monthly Climate One radio show aired on stations around the country. Climate One is the only regular talk show that engages high level leaders from business, policy, advocacy and academic circles in a conversation about building a sustainable economy and stabilizing the Earth’s climate. Past guests include US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, US Secretary of Interior Ken Salazar, US EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson, IPCC Chair Rajendra Pachauri, Google CEO Eric Schmidt and others. Greg previously was a journalist for 12 years covering news in Beijing, Vancouver, New York and San Francisco for the Associated Press, South China Morning Post, McNeil-Lehrer News Hour, and Industry Standard magazine.