Below are the slate of nominees for the San Mateo County Chapter executive committee, to be confirmed by vote at the Chapter meeting on July 20, 2017.
Chair nominee: John Claussen
John is a resident of El Granada near Half Moon Bay, California on the San Mateo Coast. While still a relatively new “Coastsider” John is increasingly interested in engaging on issues that matter to the local community, especially advancing ocean health and water quality, public coastal access, and taking action to ensure that science, evidence and truth are the basis for policy decisions in today’s post-truth environment.
In his day job, John is a Program Officer with the Packard Foundation’s Conservation and Science team. He leads the Foundation’s marine and ocean programs in Indonesia and a number of Pacific Island countries. He has particular expertise in program management, strategy development, policy reform and communications, and enterprise accounting and finance.
As a resident of Indonesia from 2004 to 2012, John developed deep experience in Southeast Asia on Ocean issues. He co-founded an Indonesia-based consultancy (Starling Resources) and actively managed a practice supporting NGOs and companies on the design and development of effective environmental strategies. Earlier in his career John was a senior associate at California Environmental Associates in San Francisco focusing on water and coastal issues, environmental and regulatory compliance, and on the design of innovative, performance-based business models. In all of his work John has focused on linking economic needs with healthy ecosystems and on developing practical, long term solutions leading to sustained management of our natural resources.
John holds a bachelor of science in biology from Valparaiso University in Indiana. He serves on the board of directors for the Trust for Conservation Innovation in Oakland, CA and has been a board member and advisor to East Bali Cashews and their community-oriented enterprises. In his free time John enjoys hiking and camping across California, biking and swimming with his daughters, scuba diving, body surfing (and also the occasional tumble on a long board), and binge-watching British mystery serials with his wife. He also enjoys reading and various diversions in the garden – planting heirloom tomatoes or cobbling stone walls together – when he can find additional free moments.
Vice Chair nominee: Kari Mueller
Kari lives in Portola Valley with her husband and two teenage daughters. Despite not living coast-side, she and her family enjoy the beach as often as possible. Kari and her husband are paddle boarders, and her daughters are surfers. Having grown up on the Yaquina Bay in Oregon, Kari has learned the importance of clean, healthy beaches and oceans. As a kid she regularly went tide-pooling with her family, and became keenly aware of the relationship between clean water and healthy sea life.
Kari recently left New Energy Risk, a company focused on the promotion of renewable energy projects, and is currently concentrating on volunteer work. Kari has been with Surfrider since 2016, focusing her efforts on beach clean ups. She is also a tutor at Menlo-Atherton High School helping non-English speaking students learn English. Kari is an active blood donor, and is one donation shy of 10 gallons.
Kari holds a bachelor of arts in English from Stanford University. She serves on the board of directors for the Ladera Community Association in Portola Valley, CA. In her free time Kari enjoys hiking, gardening and cooking, reading, paddle boarding, and making wine with her husband.
Secretary nominee: Kimberly Williams
Kimberly became involved in the San Mateo County Chapter of Surfrider Foundation in June 2016, to join local volunteers working to raise awareness around the needs and protection of our local beaches and ocean environment. As a local resident and an avid sea kayaker, she is particularly concerned about the increase in trash left behind by visitors to the coastside, pollution and development that impact water quality and beach access, and seeking solutions for how to address these issues to keep our beaches and waters clean, healthy and beautiful for all to enjoy.
Professionally, Kimberly works for a non-profit organization based in San Francisco. Relevant areas of experience and expertise include nonprofit organizational development, public policy, volunteer development and management, strategic planning, grant-making and grants management, and environmental campaigns.
Kimberly has been a coastside resident for over 10 years and a resident of San Mateo County for 18 years. You will often find her kayaking, mtn. biking, hiking, or running along the coastside. She also attempts surfing occasionally. She enjoys local farmers markets and is a strong supporter of local organic farms.
Treasurer nominee: Colby Schrauth
Colby lives in Half Moon Bay with his soon-to-be wife Carly (July 20, 2018), and two crazy Golden Retrievers (Timber and Kygo). Colby, Timber and Kygo absolutely love the ocean and spend as much time as possible in it. Carly also loves the ocean, but sharks make ocean activities a little tough to want to do all the time. However, a brand-new wetsuit was a very recent purchase and that fear is fading fast.
Professionally, Colby is at his best when working at the crossroads of large datasets, interesting problems and deeply curious teammates. Colby is currently a member of the Analytics and Data Science Team at Weebly, helping the company elevate its understanding of the business and customers through insightful analysis.
Colby is also a Lead Instructor of Data Analytics classes at General Assembly in San Francisco, and a part-time Associate at Columbia University in NY for their MS in Applied Analytics program. Colby would love to be Treasurer for Surfrider of San Mateo County, and get as involved with Blue Water Task Force as possible.
Colby grew up in a small town outside of Buffalo, NY and attended Florida Atlantic University where he graduated with a BA in Finance.
Volunteer Coordinator nominee: Michelle Villanueva
At-Large Member nominee: Mark Knox