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SEI: Building Leaders for a Resilient World
In This Newsletter:
A Message from SEI's Executive Director
SEI Expands Across the US
Our Impact

SEI Partner, EAH Housing, wins Green Business of the Year Award
Thank You to our Green Careers Webinar Presenters!
Equitable Green Economy Expert, Vien Truong, Shares Career Advice with Emerging Environmental Professionals

A Message from SEI's Executive Director

Dear SEI Community,

I have some exciting news.

When I created Strategic Energy Innovations 23 years ago as a nonprofit consultancy, the focus was on clean energy. I was using schools as models to inspire energy efficiency in communities, and supporting students so they could lead the way. Although this work began in elementary schools, it grew (alongside my children) into high schools and colleges. When the Great Recession hit over a decade ago and cities struggled to meet their sustainability goals, it became clear that our educational pathway needed to include career training as well - and our workforce development program was born.

So here we are today, with a sustainability pathway from kindergarten to career. The name “Strategic Energy Innovations” no longer does justice to the arc of impactful work we do now - from designing sustainability curriculum and training teachers, to using college campuses as living sustainability labs and infusing the workforce with environmentally-conscious leaders. Most of you know us as “SEI,” so we’re keeping that acronym. Our colors have been revitalized to reflect the inspiration, optimism, and forward-thinking that permeates our work and our “why.” We’ve also added a tagline, “Building leaders for a resilient world,” to capture the heart of our organization.

SEI’s logo evolution over the years.

Thanks for being with me on this journey and helping to celebrate SEI’s evolution over time. 

Yours for thriving communities,

Cyane Dandridge
Executive Director, SEI

SEI Expands Across the US

Map of SEI offices: Seattle, SF Bay Area, Los Angeles, San Diego, New York

SEI has expanded to new regions in the country: Washington state and the East Coast! We’ve launched our inaugural Washington State cohort of Climate Corps Fellows with support from Puget Sound Energy. Fellows are placed across sectors at a K-12 school, college, regional bank, municipality and healthcare facility. Our Deputy Director, Stephen Miller, will represent SEI full time in the Greater New York area as we grow our presence on the East Coast. 

Have questions about our expansion, or want to discuss partnership opportunities?

Contact Us

Our Impact

SEI Impact Report Cover Page

Amidst our work to respond to the COVID-19 crisis with distance-adapted curriculum, trainings, webinars, internships, and fellowships, we took a moment to look back on our impact last year. Thank you to everyone who participated, partnered, and advocated for SEI’s programs. See the difference you made and read stories of true sustainability leaders in the 2019 Impact Report.

See Report

SEI Partner, EAH Housing, wins Green Business of the Year Award

Team members in front of waste bins
SEI, EAH, and Marin Sanitary Service representatives launch the Staff Zero Waste Campaign initiative in January 2020.
Zero waste flyer
EAH encourages their staff to continue composting and recycling during shelter in place with this educational flyer. 

SEI is excited to congratulate EAH Housing on receiving the San Rafael Chamber Joe Garbarino Green Business of the Year Award! SEI has worked closely with EAH Housing since 2010, supporting their innovative energy, water, and waste reduction efforts in affordable housing communities. EAH empowers residents and staff to reduce their carbon footprints through conservation campaigns and facility infrastructure greening. Most recently, SEI worked with EAH Housing and Marin Sanitary Service to launch a staff zero waste campaign focused on proper sorting education and composting and recycling systems updates at their headquarters in San Rafael. During the COVID-19 pandemic, SEI continues to support EAH Housing, encouraging staff to compost and recycle at home. 

Thank You to our Green Careers Webinar Presenters!

Green Careers Webinar Series presenter headshots

In 2020, we hosted over 30 presentations from green professionals who shared about their green career pathway with high school students and teachers across the US. Highlights include Kevin Lee, Environmental Impact and Compliance Specialist at Dr. Bronner’s, sharing his sustainable sourcing strategies; Cristina Marquez of the San Diego Electrical Training Institute describing how apprenticeships can be a pathway to "learning while doing" and getting paid a competitive wage; and Kelley Le from the University of California, Irvine giving insight into pursuing an education career in STEM. A high school student who attended Le’s presentation shared afterward, "Listening to Le’s experiences helped me become a bit more aware of myself and what I want to do in my life."

Request access to the Green Careers Webinar Library on our website.
Request Access to Webinar Library

Equitable Green Economy Expert, Vien Truong, Shares Career Advice with Emerging Environmental Professionals

“My goal in life wasn’t really to escape Oakland; it was to understand the tools that I acquired while I was at Berkeley to bring them back home to Oakland and to begin changing the things that were fundamentally unfair and unjust not only for Oakland, but to cities that look like Oakland”
- Vien Truong

Vien Truong, Director of Climate Justice for former presidential candidate Tom Steyer’s political action committee and Principal of her firm, Truong & Associates, began her keynote address at the virtual Climate Corps Fellow orientation on September 1st by telling her story...Truong spoke about her in-depth background in climate justice, advocating for community electric van share programs, no-cost solar installations, and her experience at the United Nations Climate Change Conference. Of the many lessons she’s learned throughout her career, two of the most important are: “Enter the work with humility and listen to organic intellectuals in the community. People who live in working communities are most proximate to the problems and really fundamentally understand the solutions that will and won’t work better than anyone.”

Read more on SEI’s blog


Join the LACCD Climate Action & Justice Speaker Series to hear from 19 different speakers about the work of Southern California organizations within the climate action & justice movement, and to discuss strategies to empower students (and the general public) to bring their own skills to the table to fight the climate crisis.

See the speaker list for the full live schedule and check out LACCD’s YouTube channel to access presentations.

Please email Chloe Ney ( with any questions.

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