2016 Winter Conference – Speakers
Contact Information and Biographies
RI DEM Division of Forest Environment
260 Arcadia Road
Hope Valley, RI 02832
Tom Abbott’s duties as Supervising Forester include overseeing the Forest Health Program, Stewardship Program and the Urban and Community Forest Program. As Rhode Island’s Forest Resource Program Committee member, he is presently involved with the review and update to Rhode Island’s Forest Action Plan. Tom’s previous duties included Stewardship Program Coordinator and Rhode Island’s Service Forester. Tom holds a Bachelor’s degree in Forestry from the University of Montana and an active member of the Society of American Foresters.
Senior Licensing and Permitting Specialist
Eversource Energy, Inc.
56 Prospect Street
Hartford, CT 06103
Justin has worked for Eversource since 2009 in the Environmental Affairs Department. He has planned and permitted numerous capital projects in Connecticut and Massachusetts. Before Eversource, he worked for MIT in the Environmental, Health and Safety Office. He has Bachelor of Science from the University of Wisconsin – Madison and a Masters in Civil and Environmental Engineering from Tufts University.
Andrea (Dré) Agostino
Lead Environmental Scientist
40 Sylvan Road E-687
Waltham, MA 02451
Dré Agostino currently works for National Grid as a Lead Environmental Scientist in the New England Environmental Department. She is responsible for environmental permitting and compliance for projects in central and western Massachusetts and southern Vermont. Prior to joining National Grid, Dré worked as a wetlands scientist and environmental consultant for 12 years. She is a former Conservation Commissioner for the town of Ayer. Dré has a master’s degree in Resource Management and Administration from Antioch New England Graduate School and a B.S. from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst in Environmental Policy and Resource Economics.
1290 Park Street
Palmer, MA 01069
Senior Environmental Scientist \ Forester \ ES&P
Burns & McDonnell
108 Leigus Road, Building A, Suite 1100
Wallingford, CT 06492
Mr. Degnan serves Burns & McDonnell as a LEED certified, environmental and forestry project manager for the Environmental Siting & Permitting division. He has over 24 years of experience in the New England region working with utility companies, municipalities, conservation groups, and private landowners on environmental conservation and compliance during construction and forest management projects. Mr. Degnan is responsible for working with project offices on land planning, site preparation, restoration and environmental compliance issues.
Senior Project Manager
100 John L. Dietsch Square
N. Attleboro, MA 02763
Jamie Durand is a project manager and environmental scientist at POWER Engineers, Inc., with extensive experience in the energy and facilities fields. Mr. Durand is experienced with natural resource field surveys, environmental impact assessments and environmental permitting and licensing. He brings experience in routing evaluations, environmental feasibility studies and fatal flaw analyses to the industry. He is responsible for managing complex, multidisciplinary and multi-state projects, conducting constructability reviews, managing field studies, writing environmental reports, preparing permit applications at the federal, state, and local levels, and representing clients at agency meetings and hearings. Mr. Durand brings knowledge of the permitting and licensing requirements for electrical transmission lines, natural gas pipelines (FERC 7(c) filings), and facilities ancillary to these energy projects. He has completed projects sited onshore and offshore, including impact assessments on freshwater and coastal/ marine resources. His scientific expertise encompasses wetland ecology, soil science, and wildlife biology. He has experience with development projects in New England and the Northeast.
Project Manager/Wetland Scientist
33 Waldo Street
Worcester, MA 01608
Melissa Kaplan is a Project Manager and Professional Wetland Scientist in BSC Group’s Worcester office. She regularly leads BSC project teams in local, state, and federal permitting efforts, wetland delineations, threatened and endangered species surveys, feasibility studies, and environmental monitoring of construction activities for large-scale utility companies, municipal projects, and others. Ms. Kaplan holds an MS in Marine Biology, a BS in Zoology, several professional certifications, and she has twelve years of professional environmental and biological consulting experience. She routinely leads BSC project teams in providing environmental consulting services from the early coordination phase to permitting phase to the final construction monitoring phase for numerous projects throughout Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and New Hampshire.
US Army Corps of Engineers
696 Virginia Road
Concord, MA 01742
Environmental Scientist/Project Manager with the Army Corps of Engineers-New England District (September 2014-Present)
Previously worked at the Cold Regions and Research Engineering Laboratory (ERDC-CRREL) as a Physical Scientist. Worked on research projects that supported the Wetland Regulatory Assistance Program including large scale delineations, the National Wetland Plant List, Ordinary High Water Mark, and vegetation sampling methodologies. (May 2006-September 2014)
BS Conservation Biology from the State University of New York State College Environmental Science and Forestry (SUNY-ESF) (2002-2006)
CT DEEP Forestry Division
79 Elm Street
Hartford, CT 06106
Chris Martin has been Connecticut’s State Forester and Forestry Director for the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) since 2008. DEEP Forestry administers numerous USDA Forest Service’s Cooperative Forestry Assistance Act programs addressing identified needs within Connecticut’s Forest Action Plan and is charged with sustainably managing over 170,000 acres of State Forests held by the Agency in public trust. Chris also currently serves as chair for the National Association of State Foresters Forest Science and Health Committee and is active in many national forest policy matters including Wildfire Disaster Funding Act and a multi-federal agency strategic plan to combat invasive forest pests.
Chris is a certified and licensed forester in Connecticut and Maine, and the Society of American Foresters. Prior to serving in Connecticut. Chris was a Senior Planner and Water Resource Forester for the Maine Forest Service where he coordinated statewide monitoring of timber harvests and helped develop protocols to analyze forest practice effects on water quality, biodiversity, and residual forest stand quality.
Project Manager/Sr Environmental Scientist
1 Cedar Street, Suite 400
Providence, RI 02903
I have a BS in Soil and Water Resources Science and a MS in Natural Resources Science both from the University of Rhode Island. I am a Certified Professional in Erosion and Sediment Control, a Professional Soil Scientist, an RI Licensed Soil Evaluator and RI Certified Invasive Species Manager. I have 16 years of professional experience in wetland delineation, assessment, mitigation, soil interpretation and classification, environmental documentation and permit preparation for electric utility, land development, and transportation projects and construction monitoring of numerous National Grid utility projects. I enjoy spending my free time outdoors gardening and hiking with my wife and two young girls as well as volunteering as a URI Master Gardner working on a produce donation project at the Roger Williams Park Community Garden.
Principal Environmental Scientist
Tighe & Bond, Inc.
53 Southampton Road
Westfield, MA 01085
Daniel is manager of the Wetlands and Ecological Services Group; he also serves as T&B’s Environmental Technical Practice Group leader, and Power Utilities Market Champion. Dan is a Registered Professional Soil Scientist, a Professional Wetland Scientist and a NH Certified Wetland Scientist. He has more than 20 years of experience in wetland delineation, environmental and energy permitting, regulatory negotiations and construction observation. He is an expert in linear permitting efforts, and has successfully completed several projects which have required expedited or emergency permitting due to failing infrastructure. Dan regularly leads the environmental permitting efforts for municipal, commercial and public utility projects throughout the Northeast.
Technical Consultant and Service Provider
16 Parkwood Drive
Kingston RI 02881
Technical consultant to public and private sector on agricultural and natural resource issues, erosion and sediment control planning; and providing education of erosion and sediment control to practitioners and others. Also currently a certified Technical Service Provider to agricultural producers on comprehensive nutrient management plans, nutrient management plans and grazing management plans for USDA program participation. Twenty-five years with NRCS; then State Resource Conservationist and Assistant State Conservationist for Field Operations, Warwick, Rhode Island. B.S in Agronomy and Masters in Public Administration. Past President of SWCS Southern New England Chapter. Registered Soil Scientist; CPESC #359; CPSWQ # 8; CESSWI #7; Certified Professional Soil Scientist, ARCPAC, American Society of Agronomy.
Comm. of MA Dept of Conservation & Recreation
PO Box 484/40 Cold Storage Dr.
Amherst, MA 01004
Alison Wright-Hunter, who graduated from UMass Amherst with a BS in Forest Management, has worked in the field of forestry for over 20 years in Maine, California and Massachusetts. Her work at MA DCR began as a Forest Health Specialist. For the last 14 years she has worked as a Service Forester at the MA DCR. Her work in this field draws from all aspects of forestry to help landowner better steward the woods of Massachusetts. She has also served on the Shutesbury Conservation Commission.
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