NESSE Elections

The 2018 executive board election process is now underway! 

NESSE is run by an Executive Board of eight dedicated volunteers. Half of the Board is elected each year for a two year term starting at the beginning of September. Now is your chance to vote for your new board members! Please read the following information on this year’s candidates and follow THIS LINK to vote.

Voting will be remain open until Friday 3rd August, 11:59pm EST

Election 2018

Candidates for 2018

Natalie J. O’Neil – Executive Director

Current Career Status: Assistant Professor of Chemistry
Institution Name: Utica College
Location: Utica, NY USAN_ONeil

Brief biosketch: I’ve been teaching at UC since 2015 however, I now have a tenure track position. I am currently in the process of setting up my research program. My research interest is in mixing Green and Inorganic & Organometallic Chemistry to explore material science and energy storage chemistries. Doing work (if you can even call it that) for NESSE is also a large part of my life and keeps me empowered . In my free time I enjoy time with my dog and husband, hiking, cooking, Pilates or yoga and traveling.

Statement of interest: I have been serving on the NESSE Executive Board of Directors since 2015, first as the Communications and Marketing Director then I transitioned to the Executive Director role in 2016. During that time I finished my PhD, registered NESSE as a nonprofit under Empowerment Works, traveled to London and France for workshops funded by Future Earth to collaborate with the Early Career Researchers Network of Networks (ECR NoN), I could go on! My reason for running for another term is I think we can take NESSE to the next level and I want to see it through. The growth of NESSE over the past 3 years has been amazing to watch and I know over time we are learning more about how to support our members and provide them with valuable information.

Erika Daley – Director of Sustainable Science Groups

Current Career Status: Programme Manager
Institution Name: My Green Lab (501c3 non-profit)
Location: San Diego, CA USAScreen Shot 2018-07-24 at 11.04.27

Brief biosketch: My undergraduate and graduate research interests were in main group inorganic chemistry. In graduate school I was introduced to green chemistry and served as co-chair of the Green Chemistry Initiative at the University of Toronto. From the experience gained in this position, I was offered full-time employment with My Green Lab, a California-based 501c3 non-profit that focuses on making scientific research and laboratories more sustainable. Outside of work, my happy place is in the wilderness hiking, camping, and rock-climbing. I also enjoy travelling, scuba diving, snorkelling, and being at the beach. I volunteer with I Love A Clean San Diego – a non-profit to help keep San Diego’s beaches and ocean trash-free, and Outdoor Outreach – a non-profit that brings underprivileged children and youth on outdoor adventures including hiking, climbing, kayaking, and more.

Statement of interest: I am running for the position of Director of Sustainable Science Groups because I believe my experience as co-chair of the Green Chemistry Initiative at the University of Toronto, and in my current role with My Green Lab, would serve this position very well. I really enjoy meeting new people, bringing people with common interests and motivations together, and seeing those relationships grow, especially within the scientific community. I think we can all agree that collaboration is key to most successful projects, particularly in the world of sustainability, and it would be an absolute honour to facilitate sustainability-focused scientists coming together to lead into successful collaborative groups and efforts.   

Samson Alayande – Director of Finance & Fundraising

Current Career Status: Research Fellow
Institution Name: Centre for Energy Research and Development, Obafemi Awolowo University
Location: NigeriaScreen Shot 2018-07-24 at 11.03.53

Brief biosketch: I received my doctoral degree in Chemistry from Federal University of Agriculture, Nigeria, where I worked on sustainable management of crude oil spillage. My research theme is “Materials for Energy and Environmental Sustainability”. I have worked extensively on developing re-use for polymer waste, nanostructuring of agricultural wastes into valuable materials, green synthesis of advance materials and sustainable chemistry.

Statement of interest: With more than seven  years’ experience as Researcher,  I am well skilled in Sustainable Science, project design, collaboration, project evaluation, grant application, proposal development and technical report writing. Besides, I have the emotional and intellectual intelligence required for the position. As researcher, my duty has afforded me essential skills relevant to the position. These skills include effective communication, leadership, collaborating and presentation skills. Also, my educational background and enthusiasm for science will enhance my success on the position.  

Catherine Tran – Executive Board Support 

Current Career Status: Entry-Level Position
Institution Name: Intel
Location: Oregon, USA


Brief biosketch: Currently I assist with product development and manufacturing operations for my team at Intel and have only recently joined the company. I am looking into career growth in technical development and/or CSR where possible in the future. Within the sustainable development realm, I’m interested in learning more about supply chain, recycling and social complexities of technological development, but have an affinity to be enthusiastic about anything materials science-related and/or sustainability-related. I also have a passing interest in linguistics and history (particularly in archives and museum objects), and enjoy taking photos wherever I explore.

Statement of interest: I chose this particular position that’s available which I believe would enable me to provide my best support to the team and organization given my time bandwidth due to my job and wishes to take courses part-time in the future. I also do have much previous experience in my university clubs redirecting question-askers to the right people on the team, pointing to resources where possible and talking about my own group where general information was needed – all of which would be an asset for someone on Executive Board Support, especially when they are meant to be the first point of contact for NESSE.

Details for the Executive Board Elections 2018

How does the Executive Board operate?

The NESSE Executive Board is responsible for setting out the vision and priorities of the organisation, developing new projects and  working closely with our partners to help all of our members.

The Board is distributed globally so we work together online via skype calls and using an online organisational tool (Asana) to manage projects and activities between meetings.

Our general requirements, regardless of position, are:

  • You need to be a current NESSE early-career member. You can join for FREE here.
  • You need to be passionate about sustainability, and agree with our mission, vision, and values.
  • You need to be able to commit time to the organisation. To be effective, most positions require 5-10hrs/week on average.
  • Self-motivation is important for the digital environment that we work in.

The key roles and responsibilities of the Executive Board are:

  • Taking joint responsibility for managing the financial and legal responsibilities of NESSE
  • Maintaining active communication with the rest of the Board, external stakeholders and volunteers including checking and using our online project management system 3-4 times per week (Asana)
  • Attending 1-2h Executive Board meetings every month and twice yearly half day online strategy planning sessions
  • Developing the strategy and activities of your particular area of responsibility and leading the activities
  • Recruiting and managing a team of members responsible for specific tasks related to your area of work
  • Bringing to the Board new strategies and proposals
  • Writing detailed handover notes and give full in person handover to new Director
  • Communicating any periods of absence or reductions in workload to Executive Director


Election process

All members will be informed of the election at least one month prior to the election opening. Information about people standing for election will be posted prior to the election opening. All elections are to be carried out via a suitable electronic system. The voting period shall open on the 24th July and close by 11:59pm EST on 3rd August. In the event of a system failure, the election period shall be extended by a maximum of seven days.

During this two week elections period an online meeting, twitter discussion, or some other means of online communication, will be held to enable members to learn more about the people standing for positions and to ask questions of them. The webinar will involve NESSE members or previous Board members talking about different positions, what they do, what they think they need rather than a combative hustings. A twitter/facebook/webinar discussion may be run for all candidates.

All registered early-career members of NESSE can vote for one candidate within each position up for election. The voting system will be the Condorcet voting system. In the event of a mathematical tie, a runoff election between the two candidates must occur the following week.

Frequently asked questions

How many members does the NESSE Executive Board have?

The Executive Board consists of 8 members.

Who is eligible to run for the NESSE Executive Board?

Any self-defining early-career member of NESSE can stand for election to the Executive Board. Past Executive Board members are eligible to run for up to three two year terms in total as long as they fit the other eligibility criteria.

Who elects the Executive Board?

The Executive Board is elected by the early-career members of NESSE.

How long is a term on the Executive Board?

Exex Board Directors are elected for two years from September 1 to August 31st two years later.

How does the Executive Board conduct meetings?

The Executive Board usually meets once or twice a month online via Skype. In between, the Executive Board Directors are in regular contact using our online management tool, Asana, and via email. In the future we would like to schedule one in-person meeting at the beginning of the term, to help all outgoing and incoming Executive Board to get to know each other and develop strategy, but this will depend on Board member availabilities and funding. We also try to arrange meetings with Executive Board Directors at larger conferences that we know a few of us will attend.

If you have any questions about the Executive Board positions or the elections please contact