Our Staff

David Meshoulam, PhD

Co-Founder & Executive Director

David (pronounced Dah-veed) is a life-long environmentalist and science educator. In his earlier work as an educator, he focused on having youth and adults better understand the connections between science, culture, and history. Over the past decade he has created innovative interdisciplinary courses in science: in Watertown he developed and led Trees for Watertown's Teens for Trees program, at Newton North he co-developed Science in Society, and at Boston University he redeveloped and taught a course on Science, History, and Philosophy.  He holds a PhD in Curriculum & Instruction from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and is a Senior Fellow at the Environmental Leadership Program. When he's not tending to trees or his 3 backyard chickens, you can reach him at david@sfttbos.org

Olivia Gomez

Program Associate

Olivia grew up outside of Boston, in Newton, Massachusetts, and has been venturing into the city, walking its streets, for 22 years. She graduated Bates College in 2019 where she majored in English and Spanish but maintained a strong interest in the natural world and spent much of her free time adventuring through the school’s Outing Club. She gained additional consciousness and appreciation for plants through her summer work on a vegetable farm in Weston, MA and a ranch in Montana. Most recently, she became acquainted with the flora of Southern France and Northern Spain through World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms (WWOOFing) on two organic farms. Olivia is researching and writing grants and reports, organizing new projects, and managing volunteer initiatives. She’s looking forward to helping the organization raise awareness about the importance of urban trees.

Elizabeth Lohr

Community Engagement Coordinator, TerraCorps Member

Elizabeth is originally from the Philadelphia area but has called Worcester, Massachusetts home for the last 6 years while studying at Clark University. She was introduced to the idea of urban forestry through the HERO (Human-Environment Regional Observatory) fellowship, where she researched the Greening the Gateway Cities program and the effect juvenile urban trees have on their environment and the residents who steward them. After graduating from Clark in December 2019 with a degree in biology and geography, she decided to join TerraCorps as a chance to pursue a conservation career in the Boston area. Working with Speak for the Trees is her dream job, and she is very excited to continue her work in urban forestry as a Community Engagement Coordinator. She hopes to help expand the organization through her passion for all things tree-related during her service year! 

Natalie Merline

Community Engagement / Youth Educator Coordinator, TerraCorps Member

Natalie grew up in Eureka, Missouri outside of St. Louis, where she often explored the parks and natural areas around her. She is a recent graduate from the University of Dayton where she majored in Environmental Biology. In her undergraduate years, Natalie realized her interest in environmental justice and the importance of strong community involvement in environmental issues through her involvement in the River Stewards program, where she co-created a children’s book about the Great Miami River Watershed. Her enthusiasm for urban trees and forests grew through her work on a project looking into how various socioeconomic factors play a role in tree canopy cover in urban Montgomery County, Ohio. Natalie is excited to help the organization’s efforts in growing their youth education programming and curriculum.  

Executive Board

Dr. S. Atyia Martin, CEM

Board Chair

Dr. Martin is CEO & Founder of All Aces, Inc. and former Chief Resilience Officer for the City of Boston.

Amanda Rich

Co-Founder & Board Member

Amanda is an independent sustainability consultant with a Master’s in Sustainability and Environmental Management from Harvard University.

Andrew Droste, Member &

Chair of Nominating and Governance Committee

Andrew is an Environmental, Social, and corporate Governance (ESG) expert at Russell Reynolds Associates (RRA).

Melinda Vega

Board Member

Melinda is the Community Engagement Coordinator at the Neighborhood of Affordable Housing (NOAH) and City Councilor in Chelsea, MA.

Joseph Stein, Treasurer

& Chair of Finance and Audit Committee

Joseph is an investment professional and currently serves as the Director of Quantitative Research at Natixis Advisors.

Advisory Board

Bob Chabot, Chief Operating Officer, Zoo New England

Sonja Duempelmann, Associate Professor at University of Pennsylvania Stuart Weitzman School of Design 

Stephanie Kruel, ENV SP, Senior Environmental Planner, VHB

Charlie Lord, Principal, Renew Energy Partners, founder and former Executive Director of Urban Ecology Institute

Deanna Moran, AICP, Director of Environmental Planning, Conservation Law Foundation
Hannah Saltman, Manager, Governance Program, Ceres ​

Jeff Speck, Speck & Associates, AICP  CNU-A  LEED-AP Hon. ASLA

Renata von Tscharner, founder and former president of the Charles River Conservancy

Katherine Walsh, Sustainability and Environmental Resources Manager, Boston Public Schools

We are actively growing our executive and advisory board. Interested in learning more or joining? Feel free to reach out.

Speak for the Trees works in partnership with:

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Support comes from: