Working together for a sustainable future

The Office of Sustainability Initiatives team works with leaders and representatives to integrate sustainability into both the operational and academic functions of the entire Emory enterprise, including all academic locations and health care facilities across the state.

Ciannat Howett

Director of Sustainability Initiatives

Howett became Emory's first Director of Sustainability Initiatives in 2006, managing a University-wide effort to ensure that Emory's actions and policies support environmental, social, and economic systems that provide a healthy, productive, and meaningful life for current and future generations. She is also an Adjunct Professor at Emory's Rollins School of Public Health.
Howettt networks with and facilitates internal and external resources to the goals of Emory OSI. She leads the development, implementation and evaluation of sustainability initiatives across the University while also building partnerships with surrounding communities and key Atlanta institutions.
Howett attended Emory University as an undergraduate, receiving her B.A. in 1987. She then worked in fundraising at Emory until 1989, and then earned a law degree from the University of Virginia. She practiced environmental law with Kilpatrick Stockton and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and served as Director of the Southern Environmental Law Center's Georgia and Alabama office. She is a frequent regional and national speaker on sustainability issues and serves on many community leadership boards and commissions.

Kelly O'Day Weisinger

Assistant Director

An Atlanta native, O'Day Weisinger joined Emory in 2012 as Sustainability Program Coordinator, and as the goals and programs of the office grew, was named Assistant Director in 2015. She conducts faculty and staff outreach and engagement and works with all of Emory's university and healthcare departments to improve operations, reduce environmental impact and create dialogue around sustainability issues. She works to green the supply chain across the University including ensuring sustainability is factored into supplier contracts and analyzes Emory'/s carbon footprint to implement strategies toward climate action goals.

Previously, O'Day Weisinger spent two years working in transportation and sustainability with the Midtown Alliance in Atlanta. She earned a Master in Environmental Law and Policy from Vermont Law School in 2009 while working full-time as Assistant Director of Admissions for the Law School. She earned a bachelor of arts in environmental studies and anthropology from Connecticut College, and serves on The Lovett School Sustainability Advisory Board, the College Heights Early Childhood Learning Center Advisory Board, and the City Schools of Decatur Operations Advisory Committee.

Taylor Spicer

Programs Manager

Spicer joined Emory University's Office of Sustainability Initiatives in 2015. She works directly with students and others to increase their knowledge about sustainability issues, engage them in action and support them in behavior change. She works closely with Emory Dining to support their efforts to source more food locally and sustainably and to co-manage the weekly Emory Farmers Market. She also runs the WaterHub student docent program, the OSI intern program, and the Zero Waste Ambassadors outreach group.

Before she was the Programs Manager, Spicer worked as a graduate intern for the OSI for two years, running a behavior change program in residence halls. During that time, she was also completing her Master's in Development Practice (MDP) degree at Emory. Spicer has conducted research in Rwanda, Brazil, Kenya, Ghana and Vietnam, giving her a broad and interdisciplinary context to champion behavior change and community engagement.

Peggy F. Barlett

Faculty Liaison to the Office of Sustainability Initiatives

Peggy F. Barlett is Faculty Liaison to the Office of Sustainability Initiatives and Goodrich C. White Professor of Anthropology. She works mainly in the areas of food and curriculum, though also contributes to other aspects of culture change and sustainability at Emory. As Chair of the Sustainable Food Committee, she works with Emory Dining to support a comprehensive purchasing commitment and tracking system for the campus. The committee also oversees the weekly Farmers Market, the Educational Garden Project, and the annual Sustainable Food Fair. Emory’s initiative to expand sustainability education is called the Piedmont Project, and faculty and graduate student workshops have become models for other universities around the country. In addition to workshops, Peggy also works with the Sustainability Minor offered by the College. In 2014-15, she co-chaired the Vision Committee with Matthew Early, Vice President for Campus Services, to develop a new ten-year strategic plan for sustainability.

She is co-editor of Sustainability in Higher Education: Stories and Strategies for Transformation with Geoffrey W. Chase (MIT Press, 2013) as well as the earlier volume Sustainability on Campus: Stories and Strategies for Change, 2004. Inspired by the Emory faculty's response to woods walks at Emory, she also edited Urban Place: Reconnecting with the Natural World (MIT Press, 2005).

Akelia Hypolite

Administrative Assistant

Hypolite joined the Office of Sustainability Initiatives team in 2015. In this role, She maintains office operations and supports event coordination. Before Emory, she worked at Pruitthealth-Brookhaven as a receptionist and admissions administrative assistant. Hypolite earned her BA in Speech Communications from Georgia State University in 2010. While attending GA State, she volunteered with the SpeakLife Organization as a speech consultant.

Lauren Ladov

Educational Garden Project Coordinator

Lauren joined the Office of Sustainability in Fall 2017 as the Educational Garden Project Coordinator. In this role, she supports community volunteers to maintain edible gardens throughout the Emory campus in an effort not only to provide food, but also mindful spaces of education and natural beauty. Lauren earned her BA in Philosophy and Media Studies at Emory University and has since been working with businesses, nonprofits and schools to help cultivate more vibrant and resilient local food systems. She recently completed a Fulbright fellowship as a National Geographic Storyteller focused on community seed conservation and stewardship in India, allowing her to work alongside farmers - young and old - to learn indigenous seed saving techniques, which she is excited to practice with every growing season. Lauren spends personal time gardening, foraging, cooking and making art.

Mindy Goldstein

Faculty Fellow

Clinical Professor Mindy Goldstein is director of the Turner Environmental Law Clinic and director of the Environmental and Natural Resources Law Program at Emory Law School. Her work focuses on matters related to sustainable energy and climate change, land use and conservation, sustainable agriculture and urban farming, protection of natural resources, and access to information.

Eri Saikawa

Faculty Fellow

Eri Saikawa is an Associate Professor in Environmental Sciences at Emory University. She conducts interdisciplinary research on the environment, and her main research questions are related to the source and the magnitude of emissions linked to air pollution, ozone depletion and global warming, as well as the impacts of these emissions on humans and on society.

Kimberly Wallace-Sanders

Faculty Fellow

Kimberly Wallace-Sanders is an Associate Professor of American and African-American Studies at Emory University. Her most recent publications include “Nannies, Mammies and Love Slaves: Portraits of Black Women with White Children,” and she is currently working on portraits that reveal a complex intra-racial and inter-generational intimacy between family members and servants, offering insights into American family life.