Nicole Capretz, Founder and Executive Director
Nicole Capretz is an environmental attorney with 20 years of experience as an energy, equity, and climate justice policy advisor for local governments and the nonprofit sector.
Nicole was the primary author of the City of San Diego’s groundbreaking, legally binding 100% clean energy Climate Action Plan adopted in late 2015. Nicole has since played a pivotal role in helping other cities in the region adopt similar 100% clean energy climate plans, and is a prominent advocate for Community Choice Energy in Southern California.
Nicole was appointed to the California Strategic Growth Council, effective August 22, 2018.
She was named a New York Times Top 10 Californian of 2016.
She is a board member of Trees 100 and Mid-City Community Advocacy Network, and is a member of the Sierra Club. Ms. Capretz received a Bachelor of Arts in in Law and Society from the University of California, Santa Barbara, and a Master of Arts in Environmental Law, and a Juris Doctorate from Vermont Law School. She currently resides in City Heights.
Previously, Nicole served as the Associate Director for Green Energy/Green Jobs at Environmental Health Coalition, an environmental equity and justice organization in National City. She has also worked as an environmental and energy policy advisor for the San Diego City Council. Nicole’s duties as Founder and Executive Director of CAC include overall strategic and operational responsibility for the organization’s staff, programs, expansion and execution of its mission.
Nicole’s pioneering work on climate policy has earned her numerous accolades:
- “Special Recognition Award for Climate Advocacy” by Citizens Coordinate for Century 3 (2018)
- Sullivan Solar Power - Solar Advocate of the Year (2017)
- New York Times Top 10 Californians of the Year (2016)
- “Voice of the Year” - Voice of San Diego (2016)
- “Voice of the Year” - Voice of San Diego (2015)
- “Best People of San Diego” - San Diego CityBeat (2016)
- “Bike Advocate of the Year” - San Diego County Bike Coalition (2016)
- “Leadership Award” - San Diego County Democratic Party (2016)
- Finalist for San Diego Magazine’s 2016 San Diego Woman of the Year (2016)
- Finalist for San Diego Business Journal’s 2016 “Women Who Mean Business” Awards (2016)
- Newsmaker of the Year - East County Magazine (2015)
- Sierra Club San Diego “FEAT Award” (2015)
- First San Diego County Democrats for Environmental Action “Making a Difference Award (2015)
Sophie Wolfram, Director of Programs
Sophie@climateactioncampaign.org - @SCWolfram
As Director of Programs for Climate Action Campaign, Sophie tracks, analyzes, comments on, and organizes allies around policies related to our five fights. She also shares Climate Action Campaign’s vision with San Diego organizations and businesses and expands our network of allies to include a diverse cross-section of leaders across the region.
Sophie’s experience fighting for environmental protection spans nine years and includes outreach, policy research, writing, and organizing in roles including Director of an Office of Sustainability student liaison program at Yale, Research Fellow at the Sustainable Endowments Institute, and Intern at Californians for Pesticide Reform and Missoula’s Community Food and Agriculture Coalition. Before returning to school in 2015, Sophie taught middle school math in the Mississippi Delta through Teach For America and at a charter school in Brooklyn, New York.
Sophie earned an M.S. in Environmental Studies from the University of Montana in May 2017. Her thesis research addressed environmental justice in Southeast San Francisco and the Imperial Valley. She earned her B.A. in History from Yale University in 2010.
Tom Smith, Director of Operations
As the Director of Operations for Climate Action Campaign, Tom supports day-to-day operations - providing executive assistance, general administrative support to the staff, and assisting with developing and monitoring the annual budget and finances.
Tom Smith was born and raised in San Diego. He received a Master of Art in International Affairs from the University of California, San Diego Graduate School of Global Policy and Strategy, with a concentration in international politics and China. He has considerable knowledge of business concepts and methods including research, policy and data analysis, economics, statistics, and finance. He also holds a Bachelor of Art in International Relations from the University of California, San Diego and studied business administration and economics at the Copenhagen Business School.
Before joining Climate Action Campaign, Tom gained experience in operations and project management in a commercial cybersecurity setting where he was responsible for supporting day-to-day operations including client support, finances, marketing, and managing the training department.
Robin Ganahl, Clean Energy Advocate & Organizer
Robin's mission is to stop climate change to protect today's young people, including her two young daughters.
As Clean Energy Advocate & Organizer for Orange County, Robin leads a coalition of community members, businesses and elected leaders to bring cleaner, cheaper energy to Orange County.
With degrees in civil engineering and IT systems management, Robin has worked to preserve historic buildings in New York City, prepared environmental impact statements and feasibility studies, served as web content manager for Dean & DeLuca in Napa Valley, and managed complex IT projects for the U.S. Department of Treasury in Washington, D.C..
A native of Kansas City, she moved to Orange County in 2013. She started the first California chapter of Mothers Out Front - mobilizing for a livable climate in 2016. She has served as Legislative Representative for the PTA at her daughters’ school and is also a Daisy Troop leader.
Living in Southern California with her young family inspired her to take up camping (because no rain!) and she tries to get out to beautiful campsites in Southern California with her family as often as possible and practice photography while she's out there.
Please reach out to Robin if you would like to learn how you can help Orange County transition to clean energy.
Maleeka Marsden, Climate Justice Advocate and Organizer
Maleeka is passionate about amplifying the voices of those most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, and believes the democratization of power is the key to achieving that end.
As a Climate Justice Advocate and Organizer, Maleeka advocates for policies that help San Diego become a more bike-able, walkable, transit-friendly city that meets its 100% renewable energy target by 2035, while also mobilizing community support and engagement.
Prior to CAC, Maleeka helped organize grassroots campaigns, tutored refugees at the California Conservation Corps, and taught English at a public high school in Surat Thani, Thailand. All of this work has been driven by and reinforced Maleeka's core value of social equity.
Maleeka spends her free time surfing, painting, camping with her husband, and searching out the best Thai food in town.
Maleeka has a B.A. in studio art with a minor in Spanish from Colorado College.
Matthew Vasilakis, Climate Justice Advocate and Organizer
Matthew Vasilakis is a proven advocate and leader, bringing a broad range of experience including work with various state, local and national non-profits and educational institutions, businesses and corporations, and elected officials. He is dedicated to ensuring all communities are uplifted by meaningful policies that address our climate crisis, such as Community Choice Energy, sustainable infill development, and multi-modal transportation.
The son of Greek and Mexican immigrants who steadfastly encouraged education, Matthew earned both his B.A. and M.A. degrees in history at San Diego State University. His B.A. focused on LGBTQ Studies, while his M.A. focused on San Diego economic and development history. Teaching and education are important to him, and post-graduation, Matthew continues to use knowledge-based strategies to help foster a more just and knowledgeable society as an adjunct history professor at San Diego City College.
Matthew currently sits on the boards of Lambda Archives – San Diego’s LGBTQ historical society, and the YIMBY Democrats of San Diego County – a progressive, pro-housing Democratic club. Matthew is also an alumnus of the San Diego Leadership Alliance Institute, 2018 cohort, and the San Diego and Imperial County Community College Association, 2014 cohort.