Faith Alliance for Climate Solutions

Registration open for 2021 Virginia Climate Crisis Forum

You are invited to join us online for the Sixth Annual Virginia Climate Crisis Forum: Our Children’s Future, on November 17, at 7 PM EST!

This important live panel discussion about climate solutions needed now to safeguard our families’ futures will feature: Fairfax County Chairman Jeff McKay, who also serves as the President of the Virginia Association of Counties, Arlington County Chairman Matt de Ferranti, Prince William County Chair Ann Wheeler, and guest speakers – including Senior Staff Attorney Nate Bellinger – from Our Children’s Trust, the world’s only non-profit public interest law firm dedicated exclusively to securing the legal rights of youth to a healthy atmosphere and safe climate, based on the best available science, in a conversation moderated by FACS Executive Director Andrea McGimsey. (Read more about the panelists below.)

The Virginia Climate Crisis Forum is open to the public and free of charge. Registration is encouraged: bit.ly/vaclimateforum21.

 

Chairman Jeffrey C. McKay is a lifelong Fairfax County resident, born and raised on the historic Route One Corridor in Lee District. Jeff first served as then-Supervisor Dana Kauffman’s Chief of Staff for more than a decade before running and winning the election as Lee District Supervisor in November 2007. On the Board, Chairman McKay has been a champion in Fairfax County for equity, education, affordable housing, transportation, revitalization, and the environment. Jeff is also a regional leader, twice serving as chairman of the Northern Virginia Transportation Commission. He works with his counterparts on initiatives to better the quality of life for Fairfax County residents, having served on the Northern Virginia Regional Commission and the Board of Directors for the statewide Virginia Association of Counties, of which he is currently President.

County Board Chair Matt de Ferranti’s career, first as a teacher in a low-income community in Houston and later as a lawyer, has been dedicated to helping people build better lives for themselves and their children. As an attorney, Matt worked on land use and economic development issues for local governments. He subsequently served as an advocate for economic and educational equity at Feeding America, Habitat for Humanity, Rebuilding Together, and the Education Trust.

First elected to the Arlington County Board in November 2018, Matt was unanimously elected as Chair of the County Board by his colleagues on January 4, 2021.

Matt began serving on Arlington County’s Housing Commission in 2013. In 2014, he was appointed to the Arlington Public Schools Budget Advisory Council, where he served as Chair in 2017-2018. Matt also has served on the Joint Facilities Advisory Commission, which brings Arlington County, Arlington Public Schools, and the community together to plan for our future.

A 2015 Leadership Arlington graduate, 2016 graduate of the Sorensen Institute for Political Leadership, and 2017 graduate of Arlington Neighborhood College, Matt grew up in neighboring McLean and lives in the Rock Spring neighborhood with his wife, Brooke.

Ann B. Wheeler

Over the past 19 years, Chair Ann B. Wheeler has actively served the people of Prince William County. She spent the last 14 years (2005-2018) as a NOVEC board member and continues to be an active member of the Hylton Performing Arts Center board. She chaired the Prince William Board of Social Services, where she gained invaluable insight into the operations of the county government and budgeting process.

She is a graduate of Prince William County Community Leadership Institute and served a two-year term as President in 2018 of the Prince William Committee of 100, a non-partisan civic organization that provides a forum to raise awareness of county matters. Chair Wheeler has also served on various community and civic boards to include the Shelter Lakes Homeowners Association (2004-2007), the Prince William County School Northern Boundary Committee (2005-2006), the Gainesville District Budget Committee (2005-2007), Board of Social Services (2006-2011) and Stonewall Middle School Advisory Council (2010-2011).

Prior to moving to Prince William County in 2001 with her husband, John, and two daughters, Chair Wheeler spent 15 years working and consulting in the energy industry. She graduated from Tufts University with a degree in Mechanical Engineering and earned an MBA from the University of Chicago, specializing in Finance.

Nate Bellinger earned a B.S. from the University of Massachusetts before moving to Oregon. After spending three years working as a firefighter, ski instructor, and rafting guide, Nate returned to school and earned a Master’s degree in Geography from the University of Oregon. His thesis documented the social and environmental impacts of Ecuador’s commercial tuna fishing industry. Nate then decided to pursue a law degree to develop an additional skill set to fight for solutions to the multitude of injustices in the world, and in 2014, graduated from the University of Oregon School of Law.

As a Senior Staff Attorney at Our Children’s Trust, Nate works to protect the constitutional rights of youth to a stable climate system and advocates for science-based solutions to the climate crisis. Nate’s scholarship has been published in the ABA magazine, Natural Resources & Environment, and the Wake Forest Journal of Law & Policy. When not at work, you can find Nate working in his garden, running in the woods, or exploring the Pacific Northwest’s magnificent lakes and forests with his family.