Meet Our Green Business Partners Forum Speakers

The event will be open to all Fairfax County businesses, both those that would like to learn more about adopting sustainable business practices as well as existing green business leaders.


Mike Batt
Vice President, Talent, Fairfax County Economic Development Authority

As Vice President of FCEDA’s Talent Program, Mike is responsible for developing programs and delivering solutions to solve the talent management attraction challenge at scale, aimed at retention, retraining, growth, and attraction. Mike also oversees market intelligence functions for the organization. Mike joined FCEDA in 2019 after a 30-year career in technology sales and channel management, most of that time working for Microsoft.He holds a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Marymount University and resides in Reston, Virginia with his wife and two children.

Mark Carrier
President, B. F. Saul Company Hospitality Group

Mark G. Carrier is the President of the B. F. Saul Company Hospitality Group.  The B. F. Saul Company is a privately held diversified real estate and banking concern based in the Washington DC area. The Hospitality Group owns and operates a portfolio of 20 business class hotels, which are affiliated with Hilton, Marriott, Intercontinental Hotels Group, and The Hay-Adams one of the nation’s finest hotels. B. F. Saul Company hotels are consistent award winners in the areas of guest satisfaction, team member development, renovation excellence and environmental stewardship.  His hotels have achieved Torchbearer and Quality Excellence awards with IHG, Platinum Status with Marriott and Wall of Fame with Hilton.  The Hay Adams is ranked as one of the one hundred best hotels in the world by Conde Nast and recently received the first Eco Award by Leading Hotels of the World.  Carrier has also accepted the Spirit to Preserve Award by Marriott.

Mariano D'Aguiar
Founder and Master Cacao Roaster, River-Sea Chocolates

Through direct hands-on experience, he is knowledgeable about every aspect of cacao farming, import/trade, and chocolate production. He also serves as an advisor to the US State Department’s Sustainable Cacao Supply Chain task force. He also advocates for cleaner shipping in the US by enabling River-Sea Chocolates to source its main material in the most environmentally beneficial way: Sail powered cargo shipping.

Ellen Dickson
Outreach and Business Development, Virginia PACE Authority

Ellen works in outreach and business development at the Virginia PACE Authority, where she
leads organizational strategy development and manages client relationships with building
owners, developers, and clean energy contractors. She excels in strategic thinking, research
and planning, and managing projects through fulfillment. Ellen has an MBA from Marymount
University and an MA in International Journalism from Baylor University.

Sarah Frey
Director, PFM Financial Advisors LLC

Sarah Frey is a director in PFM’s Arlington, Virginia office. Since 2002, she provides financial advisory services to clients throughout Virginia. She assists many local governments and water and/or sewer utilities in financial planning and the execution of bond transactions. Sarah is also a member of team at PFM focused on helping clients optimize federal funding opportunities. Her responsibilities include the identification and evaluation of financing alternatives and restructuring opportunities, management of debt transactions, preparation of disclosure documents, development of credit presentations, and the development of debt policies.  She has provided analytical and technical support for debt issuances totaling over $16 billion, with a variety of credit structures. Sarah teaches classes through the Virginia Government Finance Officers Association on Debt Management in Virginia. Sarah is also the Founder and former President of the Women in Public Finance, Virginia Chapter.

Rachel Goldstein
North America Policy Director, Mars, Incorporated

Rachel is the North America Public Policy Director for Mars, Incorporated.  Rachel leads advocacy on a variety of policy issues, relating to our Sustainable in a Generation Plan, including Extended Producer Responsibility. In her 10 years with Mars, she has held roles on the central sustainability team, specifically covering plastic packaging issues and led sustainability for Scientific and Regulatory Affairs. Rachel led the development of the Mars Global Protocol for Sustainability Claims, advising the business on communicating complex sustainability topics to consumers. She has experience with external sustainability reporting work across a range of platforms and disclosures such as DJSI, CDP, customer scorecards, and the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s Global Commitment. She has led external engagement in key partnerships, such as the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, U.S. Plastics Pact, the Sustainable Packaging Coalition and the Sustainability Consortium. Rachel is on the Board of Directors for Green Blue. Prior to Mars, Rachel was the Team Leader of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Landfill Methane Outreach Program (LMOP), a voluntary climate change program that encourages methane emissions reductions through the capture and beneficial use of landfill gas.  She was also the lead for this work in India, China and Southeast Asia under the Global Methane Initiative. Rachel was in the health, safety and environmental field before joining EPA. Rachel has an MBA with an Environmental Management Concentration from The George Washington University, and a B.S. Human Factors Engineering from Tufts University

David Heyman
President, Smart City Works

Thought leader, strategist, software engineer, and recognized expert in national security and international affairs with two decades of executive experience in government, and 15 years in the private sector. David has served in senior positions at the White House, US Department of Energy, and US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and founded two ventures in the private sector. Most recently, he was Assistant Secretary for Policy at DHS, where he designed and led global efforts and Presidential initiatives in counterterrorism, cybersecurity, building community resilience, and critical-infrastructure protection. David will lead the Regional Innovation Leadership Council, the Business Acceleration Program, and the Living Labs Program.

Kendra Javenski
SPHR, SHRM-SCP, Director of Human Resources, Vault Consulting

​Kendra’s varied background in non-profit organizations, associations and consulting is the perfect fit to lead Vault’s HR strategy, organizational development, and personnel investment initiatives. She drives
creative process improvement for internal systems, designs forward-thinking policies and programs, and executes plans for long-term growth. A true collaborator, Kendra leads bold change that aligns people
practices with corporate culture. Kendra develops award-winning workplace structures and supports
modern practices through HR community engagement. She serves as a subject matter expert for HR credentialing organizations.

Prior to joining Vault, Kendra was a consultant working with small and mid-sized organizations on full scope HR services. She delivered policy guidance, compensation studies and strategy, implemented leadership and culture change initiatives, developed and executed engaging management level and firm-wide training in areas of workforce skill development, leadership development, conflict resolution and
performance management.

When Kendra is not innovating at work, she mentors young women in Girls Scouts to learn leadership skills, runs local elections as a precinct Chief Officer in the City of Alexandria, and executes community
development projects. She also enjoys hiking any trail in front of her – no matter how challenging.

Neely Law
Community Specialist, Fairfax County Office of Environmental and Energy Coordination

Neely Law, PhD, has worked in the environmental field for more than 20 years focusing on urban and watershed planning, stormwater management, stream restoration, climate and sustainability. Neely has diverse work experience to include program development and implementation, project management, workforce development, data collection monitoring and analysis and leading report and peer-review publications. She has worked collaboratively with local, state and federal partners to find innovative solutions that address economic, environmental and social of urban ecological systems.

Jeffrey McKay
Chairman, Fairfax County Board of Supervisors

Chairman Jeffrey C. McKay is a lifelong Fairfax County resident, born and raised on the historic Route One Corridor in Franconia District. From kindergarten to eighth grade, he attended two of Fairfax County’s world-class public schools, Woodlawn Elementary School and Walt Whitman Middle School, before graduating from Bishop Ireton High School. Jeff also graduated with a B.S. in Public Administration and Political Science from James Madison University and is a graduate of the University of Virginia’s Sorensen Institute for Political Leadership. Jeff has more than 20 years of experience working on behalf of the residents of Fairfax County. First serving for 12 years as then-Supervisor Dana Kauffman’s chief of staff before running and winning the election as Franconia District Supervisor in November 2007. He was elected Chairman in 2019.

Jeff Merritt
Market Vice President, Cox Communications

Jeff Merritt serves as Market Vice President for Cox Communications’ Roanoke, Virginia operation. In this role, Jeff is responsible for leading employees and the day-to-day operations across the Roanoke market.   Jeff joined Cox in 2000 as a leader in the sales organization and has been in his current roles since 2015.  A longtime community advocate in the communities in which he has lived, Jeff currently holds leadership roles in a variety of organizations in Virginia.  Jeff has a deep passion for conservation and environmental sustainability and serves as the executive sponsor of Virginia’s Cox Conserves Council.   Jeff served for 6 years as Cox’s Incident Commander for Business Continuity and currently serves on multiple advisory committees focused on climate adaptation while supporting Cox and community efforts related to climate mitigation and resiliency efforts. A native of Chesapeake, Virginia, Jeff holds a BS in Psychology from Old Dominion University and Master of Natural Resources and Global Sustainability from Virginia Tech.   Jeff and his wife, Wendy, currently reside in Roanoke and have two children, Kaleigh and Reid and their rescue dog Millie

John Morrill
Acting Director, Fairfax County Office of Environmental and Energy Coordination

John Morrill is Acting Director of the Office of Environmental and Energy Coordination with Fairfax County. John has been with Fairfax County 2 ½ years. Prior to joining Fairfax, he led Arlington County’s climate action program and worked on energy management there for twenty years. Before entering public service John held a variety of research and management positions over 17 years with the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy in Washington DC. Morrill is currently Chair of the Virginia Energy Efficiency Council, a statewide 501c3 membership organization based in Richmond.

Nancy Prowda
Senior Director, ESG B2B and Head of Meet with Purpose globally, Hilton

Nancy has over 30 years in the hospitality industry experience, including 16 years with Hilton. She is currently the  Senior Director of B2B ESG.  Nancy is responsible for strengthening Hilton’s Travel With Purpose impact and overseeing Hilton’s B2B relationships based on shared values and priorities in the ESG space. In Nancy’s previous role at Hilton, she lead the global contract and preferred agreement effort.   She enjoys talking about environmental and social impact initiatives much more that contract terms! Nancy lives in Scottsdale, Arizona with her husband and two children.

Deb Roepke
Interim Executive Director, Alexandria Seaport Foundation

Deb Roepke has focused on new technologies and the adoption of new technologies for more than 25 years. A career that started in IT led her to work in academia (Grinnell College) and later with the Marine Corps (Center for Naval Analyses). These unique experiences prompted her to found and lead a non- profit, and 21 years later, Computer CORE continues to provide IT workforce training and career development services to low-income adults. About a decade ago, she transitioned to working with electric co-ops (via the National Rural Electric Cooperatives Association) as they explored and implemented their first solar PV deployments. Today, she heads up her own consulting company, which focuses on clean energy and community engagement. She recently completed a pilot initiative to weatherize and electrify low-income homes in partnership with utilities across the country. She currently serves as the Interim Executive Director for the Alexandria Seaport Foundation, which serves youth (ages 17-24) who have struggled with traditional education, especially during COVID, but are successfully pursuing their GEDs and new career pathways through the organization's boatbuilding program. Ms. Roepke has a BS in Biology from Macalester College, a MA in Science Technology and Public Policy from George Washington University, and a Masters Certificate in Six Sigma from Villanova University. Deb and her husband, John, have two daughters, Sophia (16) and Charissa (12).

Dan Storck
Supervisor, Mount Vernon District, Fairfax County Board of Supervisors

Dan Storck, Mount Vernon District Supervisor, began his first term on the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors on January 1, 2016 and is now in his second term. During his first term and continuing into his second term, Supervisor Storck leads the Fairfax Green Initiatives; Embark and revitalization of Richmond Highway; Strategic Economic Development Taskforce; Tourism Taskforce; renovation of Original Mount Vernon High School; approval of the new Lorton Community Center and South County Police and Animal Shelter, along with the Lorton Library renovations. He chairs the Board’s Environment Committee, Audit Committee, vice-chairs the Economic Advisory Commission; serves on the Joint Board/School Board Environmental Task Force (JET), the Alexandria, District of Columbia, Fort Belvoir and Prince William interjurisdictional committees; and the Council of Government (COG) Chesapeake Bay and Water Resources Policy Committee, Virginia Association of Counties (VACo) Board of Directors and the VACo Energy Subcommittee.Previously, Supervisor Storck served on the Fairfax County School Board from January 2004 through December 2015, including three terms as School Board chairman, and co-chair of two joint School Board/Board of Supervisor committees.

Nisha Thirumurthy
Founder and CEO, Vybe Energy

Ms. Nisha Thirumurthy, Founder and CEO of Vybe Energy has over two decades of international and domestic work experience in energy use benchmarking, energy technology deployment, renewable energy project development and strategic planning around energy programs and projects. Vybe Energy specializes in life-cycle cost modeling and techno-commercial analysis; optimization of various energy technologies and systems; and, impact of different policies on the overall project returns. Vybe’s flagship product empowers commercial and multi-family buildings, hotels, manufacturers, and resort owners to optimize energy cost savings and load management, meet Electric Vehicle charging demand and reduce Greenhouse Gases (GHG) utilizing renewable energy generation, energy storage systems and components, net metering opportunities and integration with the electric grid. Nisha worked for more than a decade at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory. Her work focused on accelerating the commercialization and deployment of renewable energy technologies, which included building microgrids at US Federal Agencies, the Army, Navy and Air Force and abroad. Nisha served as the lead for NREL’s support to the Department of Energy Federal Energy Management Program’s (FEMP). In this role she was responsible for the development, testing and implementation of the Federal Greenhouse Gas Accounting and Reporting guidance and GHG mitigation framework to help Federal Agencies meet their GHG reduction targets. Nisha led several Caribbean island nations to develop their GHG reduction targets for presentation at the UNFCCC COP21 summit in Paris in December 2015. Previously, Nisha served as the Director of Transportation with the Clinton Foundation’s Climate Initiative. In that role, she led the worldwide commercialization of hybrid-electric and alternative fuel buses in large cities.