Staff

Craig S. Altemose, Executive Director, (201) 841 7105, craig@betterfutureproject.org

craig2016USE.jpgCraig co-founded Better Future Project in 2011 and has served as its Executive Director since that time. Before starting BFP, he co-founded and led Students for a Just and Stable Future, a statewide student network that engaged students at over fifteen Massachusetts universities on climate policy. Craig holds a B.A. in International Relations from Eckerd College, an M.P.P. from the John F. Kennedy School of Government, and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. A native of Morris Plains, New Jersey, he now lives with his wife, Rouwenna, in Somerville, MA and enjoys playing Settlers of Catan and other strategy board games when not working for a livable future for all.

Alyssa Lee, Director of Divest Ed Campus Programs, alyssa@betterfutureproject.org

Alyssa2016.jpgAlyssa graduated from UCLA with a B.S. in Microbiology, Immunology, and Molecular Genetics. Though originally interested in global health, she quickly fell in love with organizing through co-founding the Student Food Collective, an initiative to form a student-run and owned cooperative grocery, and starting the Fossil Free UCLA divestment campaign. She has also served as the Northern California Regional Organizer of the Divestment Student Network and as the Statewide Divestment Organizer for the California Student Sustainability Coalition. She hails from Modesto, CA in the northern Central Valley, and she considers her hometown a critical frontline community when viewing the narrative of climate change on the West Coast.

Alan Palm, Director of 350 Mass Organizing, (508) 728 5992, alan@betterfutureproject.org

alanpalmstaffpic.jpgBorn and raised in Massachusetts with roots in Nova Scotia, Alan has been working for the past decade to educate and activate the public, especially young people, to fight for climate justice. In 2007, Alan co-founded a sustainability education organization that traveled to 46 states aboard vegetable oil and solar powered school buses, presenting at schools and supporting the youth climate movement. In 2009, Alan joined ACE: Alliance for Climate Education where he led a team that presented to nearly half a million high school students throughout New England, and trained dozens of youth to lead campaigns for issues like Fossil Fuel Divestment and 100% Renewable Energy. After completing Marshall Ganz’s semester long course, “Organizing: People, Power, Change,” Alan joined the BFP team in 2017 as the Director of Organizing for 350 Mass.

Erica Rotman, Director of Development, erica@betterfutureproject.org

ericastaffpic.jpgErica comes to Better Future Project with 10 years of fundraising experience, previously at Bikes Not Bombs (in JP), the Center Against Domestic Violence (in NYC) and Head and Hands (in Montreal). At BFP, Erica manages individual giving and grants programs. Originally from Montreal, Erica holds a B.SC in Neuroscience from McGill and an MPH from NYU. Outside of the office, you can find Erica mountain biking in nearby parks and running an Iraqi cooking pop up with her cousins.


Vignesh Ramachandran, 350 Mass Digital Organizer
, vignesh@betterfutureproject.org

Vignesh is a recent graduate of Middlebury College, where he studied International/Global Studies, and got involved in climate organizing in his first year when he was inspired by the movement at the 2014 People's Climate March. Vignesh previously organized on his campus with Divest Middlebury and nationally with the Fossil Fuel Divestment Student Network, where he also engaged with racial and economic justice through Reinvestment for a Just Transition programs. He has also worked at Generations For Peace, a grassroots peace-building NGO based in Jordan which seeks to resolve conflict through sport and arts. He hopes to connect global issues with local organizing, and build a climate justice movement that prioritizes anti-imperialism and solidarity with oppressed peoples around the world.

Jon Wishnie, 350 Mass Climate Justice Partnerships Organizer,  jwishnie@betterfutureproject.org

Alina Sipp-Alpers

A lifelong Massachusetts dweller, Jon grew up in Newton before attending college Smith College where they studied government, while spending much of their time learning community organizing and radical education at UMass Amherst with the UMass Alliance for Community Transformation (UACT).  After graduating, Jon returned to the Boston area to work in outdoor experiential education at Hale Reservation.  They’ve organized across several different issues and campaigns, most recently coordinating the climate justice work of the incredible youth of the Boston Student Advisory Council/Youth on Board  while completing the JOIN for Justice Jewish Organizing Fellowship. Jon believes that it is impossible to fight climate change without fighting injustice and systemic oppression in all its forms. For Jon, that means following the leadership of communities on the frontlines of the climate crisis. 

Gracie Brett, Divest Ed Campus Organizer

Gracie recently graduated from American University in Washington, DC with a B.A. in Political Science. She became interested in climate justice when she joined her University’s divestment campaign, Fossil Free AU. There, Gracie learned the importance of community and camaraderie in organizing. She views the climate crisis as an opportunity to reshape the global political economy to serve people over profits—seeking prosperity for the people, not the polluters. Her work at Better Future Project seeks not only to fight environmental injustice, but to build a more democratic and equitable society along the way. Outside of organizing, Gracie enjoys contemporary art, free jazz, fitness, and reading. 

 Rachel Schlueter, Divest Ed Campus Organizer, rachel@betterfutureproject.org

Rachel graduated from Boston University with a B.A. in International Relations and Public Health this past May, where she organized with DivestBU. Her work contributed to campaign victories of coal and tar sand divestment in September 2016 and the adoption of a Climate Action Plan that brings BU to carbon neutrality by 2040. Outside of campus organizing, she spent time in Kenya researching institutional development since devolution, worked for a refugee health organization in Boston, and co-founded the student cooperative BU Community Greenhouse. Rachel is especially excited to support the development of reinvestment tactics, and centers building a movement that prioritizes the intersection of racial justice and climate justice in the United States.

Vernon K. Walker, CREW Program Manager, vernon@betterfutureproject.org

Vernon Walker

Rev. Vernon K. Walker is originally born and raised in Philadelphia. Rev. Walker attended Penn State University for college where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree with a major in Organizational Leadership and a minor in Psychology in 2012.

After graduating from Penn State University, Rev. Walker attended Boston University's School of Theology and earned a Master Degree in Theological Studies (M.T.S) in 2016. During this time, Rev. Walker also crossed registered to take courses at Harvard University' Divinity School on non-profit leadership. Rev. Walker also took classes at the School of Social Work at Boston University that focused on social justice and macro social work practice.

Canyon Woodward, Divest Ed Harvard Alumni Organizer, canyon@betterfutureproject.org

Canyon WoodwardCanyon graduated from Harvard College in 2015. As an undergraduate he co-coordinated Divest Harvard, studied the craft of organizing under Professors Marshall Ganz and Timothy P. McCarthy, and wrote about the roots and growth of the U.S. climate movement in his honors thesis, “We Must, Therefore We Can: The Rise of Radical Grassroots Climate rganizing in the U.S.” Canyon hails from the Appalachian Mountain region of North Carolina. He has worked as Regional Field Director for Bernie Sanders 2016, Vice-Chair of the NC District 11 Democratic Party, Campaign Manager for Representative Chloe Maxmin, and Producer of Collapse The Distance. Canyon is also an outdoor educator, avid trail runner, potter, and writer.

Venson Shih, Operations Manager, venson@betterfutureproject.org

Venson ShihVenson spent two decades as the IT Director for non-profit organizations including the American Heart Association and the Appalachian Mountain Club. In recent years, he worked as an independent technology consultant and operations manager for non-profits, businesses and individuals. He spends as much time as possible outdoors, hiking, kayaking or playing in his garden. He is a strong advocate of sustainability, for protecting nature and the environment. Venson is very excited to join BFP and the fight against the climate crisis.

Chloe Maxmin, Divest Ed Harvard Alumni Organizer, chloe@betterfutureproject.org

cmaxminHV6A3861_for_dig_download_resized_2.jpgChloe Maxmin is a graduate of Harvard College Class of 2015. Chloe was raised on her family’s farm in Maine and has been a community organizer for fifteen years. She started the Climate Action Club at her high school and worked with students, teachers, community members, and businesses on local issues. She co-founded Divest Harvard in 2012, building a student movement for climate justice on campus with 70,000 supporters. The day after she graduated from college, Chloe moved back to Maine. She currently serves in the Maine House of Representatives after winning her 2018 race in her hometown District 88,  making her the first Democrat to win the District 88 seat.

Cabell Eames, Legislative Manager, Cabell@betterfutureproject.org 

Cabell EamesCabell originally hails from Richmond, Virginia and is a lifelong advocate for racial, social, and economic justice. Having grown up amidst Big Tobacco and the chemical industry, she knows first-hand the importance of corporate accountability and environmental justice and recently filed a bill for ingredient transparency.  She also supports Medicare for All, a program that would have eased her childhood spent battling for her mother’s care for Multiple Sclerosis and prevented her untimely death. After settling in Massachusetts in 2005, she was inspired by her husband’s cousin’s mayoral run in Haverhill and soon joined the political arena full time as the Campaign Manager for Bob Massie for Governor in 2017. Subsequently, she served as the Advocacy Director for Goss Associates, an immigration law firm. After participating in the Massachusetts Citizens’ Legislative Seminar, Cabell was elected Co-Chair of her hometown’s Democratic Committee and appointed to the Energy Committee. Cabell knows climate justice is our number one priority, as it relates to all issues and is the crisis of our time, and she also chairs the Green Alliance, an organization that works in her local public school sector that successfully banned styrofoam and is starting a composting pilot program at the local middle school this year. Cabell believes the moment for justice and equality is always NOW and is ever ready to take to the streets, the State House, or any forum to inspire legislators to do better for the world and its people.