State-City Collaboration on Clean Energy Transformations, takes place from May 29–30 in Vancouver, British Columbia, and will feature a wide range of international speakers, experts and other content providers. This page will be updated as new participants are added. See the draft agenda. Receive the latest conference news by subscribing to Renewable Cities’ mailing list.

Ken Alex

Director, Project Climate at UC Berkeley, and former Director of the California Governor’s Office of Planning and Research

Ken Alex will be the director of Project Climate at UC Berkeley starting this summer, focusing on the most promising climate solutions and moving them more quickly to policy and scale. From 2011 to 2018, Ken was a Senior Policy Advisor to Governor Jerry Brown, the Director of the Governor’s Office of Planning and Research, and the Chair of the Strategic Growth Council, focusing on climate, energy, environment, and land use issues.

Before joining the Governor’s Office, Ken was the Senior Assistant Attorney General heading the environment section of the California Attorney General’s Office, and the co-head of the Office’s global warming unit. From 2000 to 2006, Ken led the California Attorney General’s energy task force, investigating price and supply issues related to California’s energy crisis.

Ken is a graduate of Harvard Law School and holds a B.A. in political theory from the University of California at Santa Cruz.

Taylor Bachrach

Mayor of Smithers, B.C. and Chair of the BC Municipal Climate Leadership Council

Taylor Bachrach was elected Mayor of Smithers in 2011 and is currently serving his third term. An advocate for strong climate action at the local level, Taylor also serves as a member of the BC government’s Climate Solutions and Clean Growth Advisory Council and chair of the BC Municipal Climate Leadership Council.

In 2018, he was selected as one of four Federation of Canadian Municipalities Climate Champions. Taylor is a director of the Northern Development Initiative Trust and President of Go By Bike BC.

Kim Ellis, AICP Principal Transportation Planner | Portland Metro

Kim Ellis

Principal Transportation Planner, Portland Metro

Kim Ellis is a Principal Transportation Planner and project manager with Metro, the directly elected regional government for the Portland, Oregon metropolitan area. Since 1996, Kim has worked in the Regional Planning Division, which is responsible for the region’s long-range transportation planning. Kim served as project manager for development of the region’s 2014 Climate Smart Strategy – which focused on reducing passenger vehicle emissions through land use and transportation policies and investments. The Portland region was the first of Oregon’s eight metropolitan areas to embark on this work. From 2015 to 2018, Kim oversaw a major update to the transportation plan for the region. Most notably, the effort brought together community and business leaders, transportation officials and elected officials and jurisdictional staff from 24 cities and three counties to advance implementation of the Climate Smart Strategy and establish new regional policy for improving transportation for marginalized communities – and safe streets for all residents.

Kim holds a master’s degree in Urban and Environmental Planning from the University of Virginia (1995) and a Bachelor of Science degree in Anthropology with a Minor in Environmental Studies from James Madison University (1990). She is member of the American Institute of Certified Planners (2000) and an active member of the Women’s Transportation Seminar.

Jack Kitowski

Division Chief, Mobile Source Control Division, California Air Resources Board

In his role as Mobile Source Control Division Chief at California’s Air Resources Board (CARB), Kitowski currently oversees a staff of 150 employees. He is responsible for most of the incentive programs that work through the Air Resources Board including: The Carl Moyer Fund, Air Quality Improvement Program (AQIP), Low Carbon Transportation and California Climate Investments. He is also responsible for the implementation of existing heavy duty truck, bus and off-road regulations, as well as the development of new regulations including the Advanced Clean Transit Rule.

Kitowski is particularly interested in linking up CARB’s initiatives to maximize the synergies between CARB and the MSRC so that they can be complementary and not competitive. He noted that there’s a significant opportunity to link new technology that CARB primarily is funding with getting technology adoption through MSRC funding. He is also looking forward to learning more about alternative transportation projects including transit funding initiatives to foster trip reduction and active transportation initiatives that CARB doesn’t typically fund.

Mike McKeever

Senior Advisor to Sacramento, CA Mayor Darrell Steinberg

Mike McKeever was the Chief of Staff to Sacramento’s Mayor Steinberg and currently serves as a senior advisor. Prior to that he was the CEO of the Sacramento Area Council of Governments after leading their groundbreaking Blueprint planning program for 3 years.

McKeever has dedicated his nearly 40-year career to promoting collaborative action between communities and organizations, promoting economic and environmental sustainability, and helping to develop and apply innovative planning software that allows professional planners and thousands of residents access to high quality information to help understand how neighborhoods, cities and regions function. His first major planning role in the Sacramento region was as a senior planner with Parsons Brinckerhoff, where his responsibilities included project management of the Transit for Livable Communities program for Sacramento Regional Transit. Developed by working with the city and county of Sacramento and multiple stakeholders, that project created land use plans for all of the light rail stops in the system.

McKeever was a key player, working with then California Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, in writing Senate Bill 375, a groundbreaking bill linking regional transportation, land use, housing and climate change planning. After Governor Schwarzenegger signed the bill into law in 2008, the California Air Resources Board appointed McKeever to chair a statewide advisory panel to advise the Board how best to proceed with implementation of the law.

David Miller

North America Regional Director, C40 and former Mayor of Toronto

David Miller is the North American Director, C40 Climate Leadership Group, and Global Ambassador of inclusive climate action. He served as Chair of C40 Cities from 2008 until 2010. Prior to joining the C40, Mr. Miller served as President and CEO of World Wildlife Fund-Canada, Canada’s foremost conservation organization. The WWF creates solutions to the most serious conservation challenges facing our planet, helping people and nature thrive.

Mr. Miller was Mayor of Toronto from 2003 to 2010. Under his leadership, Toronto became widely admired internationally for its environmental leadership, economic strength and social integration. He is a leading advocate for the creation of sustainable urban economies, and a strong and forceful champion for the next generation of jobs through sustainability. Mr. Miller has held a variety of public and private positions and served as Future of Cities Global Fellow at Polytechnic Institute of New York University from 2011 to 2014. David Miller is a Harvard trained economist and professionally a lawyer. He and his wife, lawyer Jill Arthur, are the parents of two children.

Sonja Munnix

Senior Advisor, Netherlands Enterprise Agency

Sonja Munnix works as a senior advisor at Netherlands Enterprise Agency (Rijksdienst voor Ondernemend Nederland). She stimulates e-mobility in the Netherlands. Sonja is the secretary-general of a Dutch steering committee on the internationalisation of electric mobility, working towards facilitating Dutch companies in their international activities. She is active as the Dutch representative in international networks such as the Electric Vehicle Initiative of the Clean Energy Ministerial (CEM-EVI) and the Hybrid and Electric Vehicle Technology Collaboration Programme of the International Energy Agency (IEA HEV-TCP).

Next to her work on e-mobility, Sonja has been involved in (electric) car sharing, the monitoring of sustainable mobility and the promotion of energy efficient driving behaviour (eco-driving). She is also educated as an internal coach on Technological Innovation Systems.


Visit the State-City Collaboration on Clean Energy Transformations webpage for more information on the conference. Subscribe to Renewable Cities’ mailing list for event news.

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