After a rigorous national search and interview process, the Snake River Alliance Board of Directors has hired Kelsey Jae Nunez as the Alliance’s new Executive Director. Nunez, who will assume her leadership of the Alliance in her new capacity on August 11, replaces Liz Woodruff, who left the Alliance this month to pursue other opportunities and challenges in the Idaho nonprofit sector.
“The Alliance has been excited about the level of interest in this position and about the impressive quality of all candidates,” Alliance Board President Beth Jacob said. “Kelsey’s deep roots in Idaho and her long-standing work on many of the Alliance’s core issues and her passion for nuclear and energy advocacy makes her an ideal choice as the next leader of the Alliance.”
Nunez has managed her own legal practice in Boise since August 2012, focusing on land use, sustainable small business and nonprofit counseling, community building and education. Prior to launching her solo practice, she practiced law at Givens Pursely LLP from 2008 to 2012 with an emphasis on environment and natural resources, real estate and land use, business, and litigation. She has extensive experience in energy policy development and social justice advocacy and is the first attorney to take the helm of the Alliance. Her educational background will provide valued depth to the Alliance. She earned her Juris Doctor cum laude and Master of Public Policy from Pepperdine University Schools of Law and Public Policy in California in 2007. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Biology with a minor in Political Science from the University of Idaho in 2003.
Nunez was honored by the business and service community as one of the Idaho Business Review’s Women of the Year in 2011 and as a Tribute to Women in Industry (TWIN) Honoree in 2012. She has been the program director of the Idaho Green Fest since 2012, orchestrating a community celebration of the growth and development of our sustainable economy. Her civic engagement includes serving as an ambassador-volunteer at the Women’s and Children’s Alliance; at-large officer of the Idaho State Bar’s Environmental and Natural Resources Section; board member of Sustainable Community Connections of Idaho; chair of the Advocacy and Public Policy Committee at the U.S. Green Building Council’s Idaho Chapter; member of the Biogas Task Force at the Idaho Office of Energy Resource’s Idaho Strategic Energy Alliance; and membership in the Snake River Alliance-led Idaho Energy Collaborative. She enjoys contributing to community education through speaking engagements and writing, and has been published in law reviews and journals on topics dealing with renewable energy transmission policy, social entrepreneurship in business, and legal barriers to sustainability.
“I am thrilled to join the Snake River Alliance as Executive Director,” Nunez said. “For many years I have looked to this organization for knowledge and inspiration in nuclear and energy policy, and the impacts and progress made by the board, staff, and former EDs provide a strong foundation to build upon. I look forward to the Alliance’s next chapter and feel incredibly honored and energized by this new challenge.”
Nunez can be reached for media interviews on or after August 13, 2014, at the Alliance’s office at 208-344-9161.
In addition to serving as Idaho’s nuclear watchdog, over the last several years the Alliance has developed a substantial clean energy program. On the clean energy front, current issues being addressed by the organization include the promotion of renewable energy and energy efficiency with local and state government entities and utilities. The Alliance’s nuclear work includes monitoring initiatives designed to expand the nuclear mission at the Idaho National Laboratory, state action regarding the importation of irradiated spent fuel into Idaho, and continuing efforts to cleanup radioactive waste at INL.
The Snake River Alliance works for responsible solutions to nuclear waste and a nuclear-free future. It seeks to strengthen Idaho’s economy and communities through the implementation of renewable energy resources in Idaho and the promotion of energy efficiency and conservation. This year marks its 35th Anniversary as Idaho’s nuclear watchdog and advocate for clean energy.