Ann Nichols, Chair
Bruce Lisman, Vice Chair
Rod DeArment, Treasurer
Scott Steen, President & CEO (ex officio)


Charles J. Betlach II
Zim Boulos
Rob Bourdon
Donna Dabney
Erin Fuller
Richard Kabat
Steve Marshall
Elisa Rapaport
Jonathan Silver


Ann Nichols

Ann Nichols

Ann Nichols is a fundraising executive and consultant who has worked in global conservation since 1993, first at World Wildlife Fund and then at the National Wildlife Federation. From 2000 until her retirement in 2008, she was vice president of development at Conservation International (CI). She played a key role in designing and launching CI’s Chairman’s Council, as well as the Women’s Conservation Forum in Washington, D.C. Her work has taken her to numerous conservation sites in Africa and Central/Latin America.

Ann is a member of a community-based foundation which supports needy families in the Bethesda area and is also an avid reader, golfer, gardener and cook. A graduate of Vassar College and Columbia University, Ann is married to Wes Nichols; they have one son and live in Chevy Chase, Maryland.

Bruce Lisman

Bruce Lisman
Vice Chair

Bruce Lisman is the founder of the Campaign for Vermont, an organization dedicated to creating a vibrant and prosperous Vermont economy. The organization advocates for practical and non-partisan solutions that result in greater government transparency and accountability, a stronger economy with more and better-paying jobs and an unwavering commitment to social responsibility and environmental stewardship.

He previously served as co-head of global equities at Bear Stearns Companies, a position he held for 20 years. In 2009 he retired from JP Morgan Chase & Co as Chairman of their Global Equities Division. Bruce has been a staunch supporter and board member of many Vermont institutions, such as the Shelburne Museum, Vermont Symphony Orchestra, National Life and Merchant Bancshares Corporation.

A long-time environmentalist, Bruce is currently involved in a joint effort with Preservation Trust of Vermont to replenish the tree canopy in Vermont’s communities and previously served on the board of American Forests.

Roderick “Rod” DeArment

Rod DeArment is a partner in Covington & Burling LLP, an international law firm based in Washington, D.C. Among Rod’s longtime clients is the Land Trust Alliance, and he has considerable experience with tax legislation dealing with conservation easements.

Rod has served in government as the deputy secretary of labor in the Bush-Quayle administration, as chief of staff to senate majority leader and chief counsel and staff director of the Senate Finance Committee.

Rod received a bachelor’s degree with honors from Trinity College and a law degree from the University of Virginia Law School, where he served on the editorial board of the Virginia Law Review.

Scott Steen
CEO (ex officio)

Scott Steen was appointed chief executive officer of American Forests in December 2010. He leads the organization in its mission to protect and restore forests. Since coming to American Forests, Scott has focused on developing a stronger scientific foundation for our forest restoration and public policy work, expanding public understanding of the importance of forests for human life and building an emphasis on stewardship and transparency. During his tenure, the organization has planted nearly 10 million trees in approximately 100 restoration projects, has re-launched its Urban Forest program, introduced the Endangered Western Forest initiative, expanded the board of directors and created a Science Advisory Board, engaging some of the most respected researchers in the forest conservation field.

Prior to joining American Forests, Scott was executive director of the American Ceramic Society (ACerS), a technical society whose members work at the frontiers of science in environmental technologies, alternative energy, space exploration and biomaterials. Founded in 1898, ACerS advances the study, understanding and use of ceramic materials and technologies.

Previously, Scott was chief knowledge and strategy officer at the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE), an international organization with 22,000 association and nonprofit leader members. He is a Certified Association Executive, a fellow of ASAE and is the founding editor of the Journal of Association Leadership.

Charles J. Betlach II

Charles J. Betlach II was born in Santa Barbara, Calif., and has two children and three grandchildren. Charles is a pharmaceutical scientist with a Masters Degree in Cellular Biology from the University of California, Santa Barbara and a PharmD degree in Pharmacy as well as a PhD in Pharmaceutical Chemistry from the University of California, San Francisco. He is the co-founder of a pharmaceutical company — Sano Corporation — that was sold in 1998. He is presently actively working with a small dermatological company, Brickell Biotech.

In 1999, Charles founded the Betlach Family Foundation. The mission of the foundation is to help promote and support notable contemporary art and important environmental issues. The foundation has funded projects in West Africa, Palmyra, Eastern tropical Pacific seascape, Sea of Cortez and the Tahoe Rim Trail. Charles was on the Conservation International Chairman’s Council from 2001 until 2006. From 2012 to present, Charles is a director and Vice-Chair of the Board for Oceanic Society.

Charles is a strong advocate of the use of education to help enlighten the public about environmental issues — especially concerning oceans and forests. Maintaining the dynamic interaction between the forests and oceans is needed for a healthy planet.

E. Zimmermann “Zim” Boulos

Zim Boulos is the owner of Office Environments and Services (OES), a provider of business furniture since 1981. OES is a $15 million business with 27 employees, based in Jacksonville, Fla. Zim is also a past chairman of the City of Jacksonville Economic Development Council.

Zim is a board member of Greenscape of Jacksonville, a nonprofit tree planting organization. More than 25 years ago, he founded the annual flowering tree sale, a spring event that sells thousands of small trees at huge discounts to the public. He was the force behind the renovation of San Marco Square, a neighborhood business district near downtown Jacksonville that has become a crown jewel in the rebirth of an aging neighborhood.

Zim is a retired International FIFA soccer official, having refereed in the preliminary rounds of the 1994 and 1998 World Cups and 1996 Olympics. He graduated from Jacksonville University with a bachelor’s degree in marketing. Zim is married and has one daughter.

 Rob Bourdon ©Photo by James Minchin

Rob Bourdon

Rob Bourdon is the drummer of modern alternative rock band Linkin Park. Rob began playing drums at age 11 and later met band mates Brad Delson and Mike Shinoda through a high school friend. Linkin Park has sold more than 50 million albums worldwide. On the most recent touring cycle, the band played to more than one million people in 73 shows on five continents.

In the band’s early days, Rob was instrumental in defining creative marketing strategies, which led to the establishment of Machine Shop Marketing (MSM) in 2001, where he is a partner. Today, MSM exists as a bridge connecting fans with brands, film, music and interactive media via innovative marketing techniques.

In 2005, along with his Linkin Park band mates, Rob founded the nonprofit organization Music for Relief and currently serves on the board. He is passionate about improving the environment and making the world a better place.

Donna Dabney, member of American Forests' Board of Directors

Donna Dabney

Donna Dabney joined The Conference Board as executive director of the Governance Center in August 2012. In her current position, Donna leads the efforts of The Conference Board in the area of corporate governance.

Prior to joining The Conference Board, Donna was vice president, corporate secretary and corporate governance counsel of Alcoa Inc. She has extensive experience in corporate governance matters, having served as a member of management for more than 15 years on the boards of Alcoa and Reynolds Metals Company. She is a recognized expert on governance issues related to executive compensation. At Reynolds she was a member of the senior management team with oversight responsibility for the global operations of the company and served as chief mergers and acquisitions counsel and secretary to the board of directors. When Alcoa acquired Reynolds in 2000, she joined Alcoa as its secretary, assistant general counsel and group counsel of the Consumer, Packaging, Distribution and Construction Group, where she was part of a three-member team with oversight management responsibility for this business. As part of her work with the Alcoa board of directors, Donna has gained substantial experience with sustainable development in the Amazon region of Brazil.

Before joining Reynolds, she practiced law with the Richmond, Va., firm of McGuireWoods LLP and served on the faculty of Old Dominion University. She is a 1980 graduate of the University of Virginia School of Law and a member of the Order of the Coif legal honorary society. She is also a member of the New York advisory board of the Society of Corporate Secretaries and Governance Professionals and a member of the faculty of the Citadel Directors Institute and of the Practicing Law Institute. She is also a former member of the Stockholder Relations Society of New York.

Erin Fuller

Erin Fuller is president of the Alliance for Women in Media, a 10,000-member organization that works to advance women in all forms of electronic media. She is a recognized expert on women’s empowerment and has been featured on MSNBC, “ABC Nightly News” and local affiliates for NBC, ABC and Fox, as well as the BBC and NPR, and has been quoted in publications including The New York Times, The Washington Post, Fortune, Money and Fast Company.

Erin also serves as group president of Coulter, a company that transforms high-potential, socially principled nonprofit organizations and corporations from good to great. She is a fellow of the American Society of Association Executives, where she is a frequent writer and speaker, and has served as the chief staff executive for organizations including Tysons Tomorrow, the National Association of Women Business Owners and the Community Associations Institute Research Foundation.

She is the president of American University’s Alumni Association, where she received her undergraduate and graduate degrees, and lives in Arlington, Va., with her two sons.

Richard Kabat

Richard is a shopping center developer and investor who has developed over 8 million square feet of retail projects ranging from super-regional shopping and entertainment centers to supermarket anchored neighborhood centers. Prior to his development career, while serving as General Counsel and VP of Real Estate for a regional retail chain, Richard was a principal in founding subsidiary businesses Crown Books and Trak Auto. Both became national retailers and independent public companies.

The issues surrounding preservation and development of forested areas and wetlands are matters Richard has dealt with throughout his career. His considerable experience in satisfactorily balancing stakeholder concerns in the context of entitlement processes has given Richard a full appreciation of the vital role forests and tree cover play in defining the quality of our lives.

Richard earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Vermont and a Juris Doctor degree from the Georgetown University Law Center. He lives in Potomac, Md., with his wife Rhonda; they have three grown children. He is an avid golfer, gardener, outdoorsman and classic car restorer.

Steve Marshall

Steve Marshall

Steve Marshall is executive vice president/operations for The Davey Tree Expert Company and is responsible for eastern utility operations for The Davey Tree Surgery Company, The Davey Tree Expert Company of Canada, LTD., Wolf Tree and the operations support group. He began his Davey career in 1977 as a sales and service technician in residential services at the Akron, Ohio, office.

Steve also serves on the board of directors of The Davey Tree Surgery Company, The Davey Tree Expert Company of Canada, LTD., and Wolf Tree. He has served on the ANSI A300 Committee and the Utility Arborist Association Board.

A graduate of Kent State University with a bachelor of fine arts, Steve is a member of the International Society of Arboriculture, the Utility Arborist Association and the Tree Care Industry Association. He is a past member of Davey’s President’s Council.

Elisa Rapaport headshot

Elisa Rapaport

Elisa Rapaport is an Associate Professor of Philosophy at Molloy College, Long Island, N.Y., where she serves as the Chair of the Philosophy Department and Director of the Center for Social and Ethical Concerns. Her primary area of research is applied ethics, including bioethics and the environment. She is especially interested in how emotions affect ethical decision-making and the challenges of balancing individual rights against those of the global community.

Elisa serves on a variety of nonprofit boards, including the Walt Whitman Birthplace Association and South Nassau Communities Hospital. She is a national council member of the Tiffany Circle Society, a group of women leaders and philanthropists acting on behalf of the American Red Cross, and she chairs the Diversity Initiatives Committee for the Greater New York region. Elisa and her husband, Peter, were the 2013 recipients of the Spirit of Anne Frank Humanitarian Award with the Anne Frank Center USA. A trustee with the Rapaport Family Charitable Trust, Elisa is a passionate supporter of the national parks.

Elisa received her Ph.D. as the George F. Hourani Fellow in Ethics at the University at Buffalo, SUNY. She enjoys spending time in Bucks County, Pa., with her husband and two young children.

Jonathan Silver

Jonathan Silver

Jonathan Silver is currently a Visiting Distinguished Senior Fellow at Third Way, where his work focuses on energy policy and energy finance.

Prior to joining Third Way, Jonathan held a senior presidential appointment at the U.S. Department of Energy, where he led the largest single-purpose investment fund in the world, the federal U.S. government’s $50 billion dollar investment program in alternative energy. Under his leadership, the federal government made investments in a wide range of wind, solar and geothermal biofuels and battery technologies. In 2010, Jonathan was named one of the country’s top 10 “influencers” in the green tech industry.

Jonathan was previously co-founder of Core Capital Partners, a top-tier venture capital firm, and was managing director and chief operating officer at Tiger Management, one of the country’s largest hedge funds.

Jonathan’s other prior philanthropic activity includes service on the boards of the Federal City Council, WETA and Arena Stage and a stint as special advisor to the chancellor of the D.C. public schools. He is also a former chair of American Forests’ board.