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Navigating the future: RSB Board of Directors grows leadership to guide a sustainable bioeconomy

RSB’s Board of Directors – who provide crucial strategic guidance and oversight of RSB on its mission to advance the just and sustainable transition to a bio-based and circular economy – has been strengthened with the addition of Nancy Young, who joins in an observer role as Legal Liaison, and Jayant Sarnaik, who was elected for a third term at this year’s RSB Formal Assembly of Delegates, representing Chamber 4 (Environmental Organisations).

Led by the new Chair Adam Klauber and Vice Chair Valentina Vecchio, the RSB Board of Directors plays a crucial role in guiding the strategic direction and taking all necessary measures to achieve the organisation’s vision of advancing the just and sustainable transition to a biocircular economy. RSB is currently recruiting three more Board positions: Director for Sustainable Finance, Director for Fundraising and Director for the Materials Sector.

Nancy Young is Gevo’s Chief Sustainability Officer – a highly experienced veteran of the aviation industry, with deep expertise in developing environmental and sustainability policy, and regulatory programmes, as well as in commercial deployment of low carbon fuels and technologies. She is an accomplished attorney and strategist in the fields of environmental and sustainability law and policy, with a wealth of expertise in areas such as climate change, aviation sustainability, and sustainable fuels. In her role as RSB Legal Liaison Board Observer, she will leverage her expertise to support the Board of Directors and Executive Director to evaluate and manage legal risks.

Having engaged with the RSB since its founding, I have seen the tremendous benefits this organisation and its standards and initiatives have brought to our planet, with much more to come,” said Nancy Young. “It is a true honour to have this opportunity to support RSB in its critical mission.

Based in Pune, India, Jayant Sarnaik is the founding member and joint director of the Applied Environmental Research Foundation (AERF) – an NGO that applies the principles of community-based conservation and natural resource management models to actively involve local communities in the cause of forest protection. Having joined the RSB Board in 2019, his expertise in conservation and familiarity with civil society organisations have been instrumental in shaping RSB’s approach to environmental justice, and will continue to be of value as RSB expands its reach throughout Asia.

I feel honoured to represent the constituency of conservation organisations,” said Jayant Sarnaik. “These are truly exciting and challenging times with regards to our quest to find workable solutions to mitigate climate change at scale. Through its various initiatives, RSB is creating opportunities at scale to promote nature-based solutions that would benefit biodiversity conservation and local communities across continents while reducing GHG emissions. It will be my pleasure to contribute in my fullest capacity to mainstream biodiversity in complex and technologically advanced domains as a Board Member.”

Elena Schmidt, RSB‘s Executive Director, had this to say:

It gives me great pleasure to see the RSB Board of Directors – an essential part of this organisation’s governance – go from strength to strength. We genuinely welcome the exceptional expertise and commitment brought by Nancy’s addition to this important new function, providing legal support, and Jayant’s ongoing commitment and leadership in his role. I am also excited to continue to recruit capable and dedicated individuals to join them and our whole Board in providing essential guidance and strategic direction as RSB enters its next exciting phase of sustainability impact creation.”

In addition, this year’s RSB Formal Assembly of Delegates also marked the end of Maiju Helin and Laurel Harmon’s tenures on the RSB Board of Directors.  Earlier this year, it was announced that Adam Klauber and Valentina Vecchio had taken over their respective leadership roles, but that Maiju Helin and Laurel Harmon would continue to serve on the board for the remainder of their terms, which have now concluded.

If you are interested in taking a leadership role by applying for one of the available positions on the RSB Board of Directors (Director for Sustainable Finance, Director for Fundraising and Director for the Materials Sector), you can contact us here.

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