Julia Olson - Executive Director & Chief Legal Counsel
Julia Olson graduated from the University of Colorado at Boulder in 1993 with a B.A. in International Affairs and from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law, with a J.D. in 1997. Julia worked for 15 years representing grassroots conservation groups in the West. She helped protect rivers, forests, parks, wilderness, wildlife, organic agriculture and human health. After becoming a mother, and realizing the greatest threat to her children and children everywhere was climate change, she began focusing her work in that field and founded Our Children's Trust. Her work has led her to the intersection of human rights and environmental protection and she is passionate about working for youth. Julia also teaches environmental courses as an adjunct instructor at the University of Oregon School of Law. To rejuvenate, Julia loves being high up in the mountains with her family and her dog or playing tunes on her ukulele with friends.
Lou graduated with a J.D. from Vermont Law School and a B.A. from Boston College. His career spans law practice, legal education, fundraising and non-profit administration. In law practice, Lou represented youth with disabilities from all around the country, relative to their educational needs and also handled a number of environmental and land use matters on behalf of citizens groups. He spent several years in legal education administration and as a staff member, board member and volunteer with a variety of non-profits. At Our Children's Trust, Lou contributes to our legal strategies, organizational and program development, fundraising and marketing. His passion is the outdoors. He has spent countless hours monitoring the flora and fauna on the beaches of Point Reyes, transplanting leatherback turtle eggs, sailing our oceans and gazing at the beauty of our planet wherever he finds himself.
Elizabeth Brown - Staff Attorney, Global Program Manager
Elizabeth Brown has been working with Our Children's Trust since 2011. Elizabeth earned her J.D. from University of Oregon School of Law in 2013, with concentrations in public interest environmental law and international law. From 2008 to 2010, Elizabeth worked on energy policy in Texas as a Clean Energy Advocate for statewide public interest organizations—Public Citizen and Sustainable Energy and Economic Development Coalition. Elizabeth lived in Budapest, Hungary and earned her M.A. in International Public Policy from Central European University in 2008. Elizabeth is a passionate climate justice advocate with particular concern for the human rights issues surrounding climate change, including food security, climate refugees, and natural disasters. Elizabeth enjoys backpacking and exploring the natural wonders of Oregon, getting to know other cultures, and gardening.
Nate Bellinger - Staff Attorney, State Program Manager
Nate Bellinger earned a B.S. in Natural Resource Studies from the University of Massachusetts before moving to Oregon. After spending three years working as a firefighter, a ski instructor, and a rafting guide, Nate returned to school and earned a Master’s degree in Geography from the University of Oregon. His thesis documented the social and environmental impacts of Ecuador’s commercial tuna fishing industry. In 2014 Nate graduated from the University of Oregon School of Law with a concentration in public interest environmental and natural resources law. Nate began volunteering with Our Children’s Trust before law school and was hired as the Climate Law Fellow upon his graduation from law school. In his free time Nate enjoys trail running, backpacking, canoeing, and working in his garden.
Meg Ward - Communications & Youth Engagement Director
Meg Ward graduated from University of Oregon in 2010 with a B.S. in Environmental Studies before joining Our Children's Trust in early 2011. As an undergrad, Meg was involved in the Environmental Leadership Program where she devoted her time to developing and implementing science curriculum in low-income schools across Eugene, Oregon. Before graduating, she spent six months studying environmental planning at the University of Tampere, in Tampere, Finland. At Our Children's Trust, Meg leads the communications team and works closely with the young people behind the legal actions to elevate their important voices within the climate movement and beyond. Always with a book in tow, Meg spends her time away from the screen in the outdoors surrounding San Francisco, and enjoys bringing people together through dinner parties and weekend camping trips.
Matt McRae graduated from the College of Natural Resources at Utah State University with a B.S. in Environmental Studies. Matt spent eight years as a local government Climate and Energy Analyst developing climate action plans, conducting greenhouse gas inventories, evaluating climate policy, and implementing climate actions. Prior to working for local government, Matt worked for the National Park Service for nine years. Matt is the Climate Policy Strategist for Our Children's Trust. His work involves researching and developing the climate actions and policies necessary to achieve a stable climate. In his free time, you’ll find Matt with his family hiking, canoeing, and sailing.
Coreal Riday-White - Staff Attorney, YouCAN Program Manager
Coreal Riday-White received a B.A. in Community Studies from the University of California at Santa Cruz, before going on to work as a mental health counselor and special education instructor for youth group homes in California and Oregon. After backpacking across both South and Central America, Coreal returned to school, earning a J.D. from the City University of New York, School of Law. While at CUNY, he completed the mediation clinic, mediating cases in Queens Civil and Small Claims and the EEOC. After law school Coreal and his wife moved to San Francisco, where Coreal joined a small civil litigation firm, primarily representing cities in connection with environmental claims. Coreal joined the OCT team in the Fall of 2015, primarily to manage the YouCAN program. Now a father of two, and as eager as ever to discover a hidden trail or open ball field, Coreal is thrilled to be back living and working in Eugene.
After graduation from the University of California, Santa Barbara in 1998 and the Arizona State University School of Law in 2001, where she served as co-executive editor of Jurimetrics: The Journal of Law, Science and Technology, she clerked for the Hon. John C. Gemmill on the Arizona Court of Appeals. She has served as an Honors Attorney for the U.S. Department of Transportation, In-House Legal Counsel for the Snoqualmie Indian Tribe, and Staff Attorney for the Western Environmental Law Center. Her environmental law practice focuses on reducing pollution from industrial agricultural operations, protecting and enhancing instream flows for people and fish, and fighting climate change on behalf of young people and future generations. Andrea is licensed to practice law in Washington and Oregon and is admitted to practice in the U.S. District Courts for the Eastern and Western Districts of Washington, Oregon, Montana, and Northern California, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and Tenth Circuit, the Snoqualmie Tribal Court, the Lummi Indian Nation Tribal Court and the Muckleshoot Tribal Court. In 2016, Seattle Met Magazine recognized her legal work representing youth in the Washington Atmospheric Trust Litigation case in King County Superior Court against the Washington Department of Ecology, and named her part of their “Perfect Party,” which includes the “month’s most interesting locals and newsmakers.”
Curtis Morrison earned his J.D. from Whittier Law School, where he also earned a Certificate in International and Comparative Law, and was named the 2016 Outstanding Graduate in Environmental Law. Before that, he received his B.A. in Political Science from the University of Louisville, which may help explain his southern accent. His experience spans journalism, political organizing, and sales. At Our Children’s Trust, Curtis splits his time between supporting staff attorneys and assisting with communications. When not attached to internet, he enjoys running, bicycling, hot yoga, and reading good books.
As a storyteller, climate activist and educator, Morgan Curtis works at the intersection of sustainable community-building and strategic mobilization, striving to understand how stories shape human relationships, resilience and revolutions. Before joining Our Children’s Trust as the Digital Storyteller, Morgan led the SustainUS Youth Delegation to the 2016 UN Climate Talks, working to bring youth-led storytelling, community and ceremony to the heart of political organizing and decision-making. While a student at Dartmouth College Morgan toured the US on the vegetable-oil powered Big Green Bus, worked with the National Biodiesel Board, and studied engineering in a futile search for climate solutions. It was as co-leader of her college’s fossil fuel divestment campaign that she first felt part of an intersectional climate justice movement, reinforced by her storytelling work with county jail inmates and under-resourced high-schoolers. Ever-increasingly seeing climate change as a symptom of deeper cultural crisis, Morgan turned to education as the place where cultural stories are written, teaching Environmental Issues to high school juniors as the Sustainability Fellow at Maine Coast Semester. She then spent 6 months on Climate Journey, bicycling 3500 miles and gathering stories from grassroots climate activists in eleven countries en route to the 2015 UN Climate Talks in Paris. A facilitator of the Work That Reconnects, Morgan is dedicated to decolonization and white anti-racism work, and currently lives in community at Canticle Farm in Oakland, CA. As a 2016-17 Spiritual Ecology Fellow, Morgan is launching Sustaining Our Resistance, a community of practice and workshop series that brings sacred activism to the youth climate justice movement.
Gordon earned his J.D. and M.S. in Conflict and Dispute Resolution from the University of Oregon School of Law in 2016, and his B.A. in Political Science from the University of Oregon Robert D. Clark Honors College in 2012. His Master’s thesis explored strategies that local governments in Oregon could use to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and address climate change. Gordon enjoys backcountry skiing, rock climbing, gardening, and volunteering with a variety of environmental organizations around Oregon.
Before joining Our Children’s Trust, Allison was a senior legal fellow at the Climate Investigations Center where she focused on climate liability and state and federal public records law. Allison was also a litigation fellow at Earthjustice in Washington, D.C. from 2014-2015 working on oceans, clean air, and environmental justice. Prior to earning her J.D. from the George Washington University Law School, Allison worked for three years at Greenpeace in campaign operations. Allison first became interested in environmental advocacy after learning about the links between human rights issues and climate change while working at Amnesty International after college. Allison enjoys nature, playing sports, and film. She made an award-winning documentary with her husband in 2010 which has been screened across the country and in a few international cities. Allison is originally from Pittsburgh, PA and graduated magna cum laude from the University of Florida with a degree in political science.
Andrew Welle graduated from Indiana University in 2008 with a B.A. in philosophy. He earned his J.D. at the University of Oregon School of Law, graduating in 2013 with a concentration in public interest environmental law. Following law school, Andrew worked as an associate in a nationwide law firm for two years before accepting a post-graduate fellowship with the University of Oregon School of Law's Environmental and Natural Resource Center, where his scholarship focused on the intersection of multinational trade agreements, environmental sovereignty, and the Public Trust Doctrine. Following his fellowship, Andrew worked with Eugene-based Blue River Law on Endangered Species Act, NEPA, Clean Water Act, and Freedom of Information suits on behalf of citizen groups, and on additional matters as a sole practitioner, including representing the League of Women Voters of the United States and the League of Women Voters of Oregon as amici in Our Children's Trust's federal case. In his free time, Andrew enjoys multi-day backpacking trips, trail running, exploring Oregon, and playing guitar and piano.
Leading the game-changing, youth-driven, global climate recovery campaign to secure the legal right to a stable climate and healthy atmosphere.