State News

VCRD welcomes fourth class of Climate Catalysts

The Vermont Council on Rural Development (VCRD) announced Feb. 9 a group of 16 new participants to the 2023 Climate Catalysts Leadership Program from a strong pool of applicants. The 16 participants come from across the state and will focus their time on implementing projects addressing topics such as developing town climate actions; expanding outreach regarding weatherization programs; producing an educational series on local manufacturing; and making local food more equitable, affordable and accessible.

The Climate Catalysts Leadership Program allows participants to take their transformative, community-scale climate economy related projects and work toward developing their concepts into reality while building peer connections, strengthening leadership skills, and receiving project development support. 

The fourth class of the Climate Catalysts Leadership Program includes:

  • Lindsey Berk, Brandon
  • Marcey Carver, Bradford 
  • Rowland Davis, Shelburne 
  • Parker Eversoll, Winooski 
  • Lena Greenberg, Burlington 
  • Beth Johnson, Marlboro 
  • Hannah Kornfeld, Essex 
  • Matthew LeFluer, Alburgh 
  • Lizah Makombore, Burlington 
  • William Marlier, Greensboro 
  • Jared Reynolds, Lyndon 
  • Mike Roy, Middlebury 
  • Melinda Scott, Williston
  • Robert Small, Stannard 
  • Gabriella Stevens, Middlebury 
  • Jean Terwilliger, Cornwall 

“Each participant will gain new lenses and tools to progress their projects, connect to others across disciplines, and ignite common threads needed to develop equitable climate actions,” said Laura Cavin Bailey, the climate economy program manager. “The breadth of project work speaks to the multi-faceted approach necessary to develop climate economy solutions that are co-produced within small communities with local champions.”  

With the fourth cohort, there are now 60 Climate Catalysts throughout the state working to progress community led projects within the Climate Economy.

VCRD is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the support of the locally-defined progress of Vermont’s rural communities. Actively non-partisan with an established reputation for community-based facilitation, VCRD coordinates collaborative efforts. The organization has completed over 86 community visits, resulting in locally defined projects like new childcare centers, wastewater infrastructure, and downtown redevelopments. For more info visit:

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