Board of Directors

Leadership & Board of Directors
The GSNN Board of Directors represents leadership in public education from elementary through university, environmental education and healthy schools experts along with green student activists groups. 


Jim McGrath, President/CEO

McGrath Associates

STEM Education Consultant


JIM MCGRATHJim is the President/Executive Director for Green Schools National Network and Executive Producer for www.greenschoolsnationalconference.org.

Jim was the founding principal of Oakwood Environmental Education Charter School and EAA STEM Aerospace Charter School. As the Dissemination Coordinator for both charter schools he has worked with Green Environment Focused Schools and STEM Schools across America and developed “How To Become A Green School” online graduate course.

He was awarded the Wisconsin Environmental Education Administrator in 2004. He holds a B.S. in Environmental Education; M. S. in Health & Physical Education; M.S. Educational Administration; Specialist Certification in Education Leadership.

Jennifer Seydel, PhD, COO/CFO

School Designer -- Expeditionary Learning Schools


JENNIFER SEYDELJennifer Seydel, Ph.D. is a School Designer with Expeditionary Learning, www.elschools.org. Expeditionary Learning is a national EL school reform model contributing to positive results at scale across urban, rural, and suburban schools, both district and public charter. She has a B.A. in Education, an M.S. in Environmental Education, and holds her Ph.D. in Environmental Studies from Antioch Graduate School of New England. Prior to her role with EL, Jennifer was on the faculty at Springfield College in Springfield, Massachusetts and was thedirector the S.A.G.E. Project, an education reform collaboration among local, state and national organizations.

Susan Gottfried, PhD, Chief Communications Officer

Executive Director. Evergreen Community Charter School


SUSAN GOTFRIEDSusan Gottfried, Executive Director, Evergreen Community Charter School in North Carolina, www.evergreenccs.org Evergreen has received the designation of honor school of excellence. She has a B.S. degree in Special Education; M.Ed. in Special Education, Ph.D. in Curriculum & Instruction from the University of NC-Greensboro. Susan has worked as a School Improvement Consultant with the Southern Regional Education Board providing consultation, coaching and professional development to schools across the country implementing the school reform model, High Schools That Work/Making Middle Grades Work. Susan strives to create structures and processes within which her highly skilled and passionate faculty and staff can create magical learning opportunities for children.


Tim Cole, Sustainability Officer

Virginia Beach City Public Schools 


Tim Cole is the Sustainability Officer for Virginia Beach City Public Schools www.vbschools.com/sustainableschools. Tim was instrumental in the promotion and development of the first LEED certified elementary School in Virginia -- Hermitage Elementary-- as well as the first K-12 LEED Platinum Transportation and Maintenance Facility in the country. Under Tim’s leadership, Virginia Beach City Public Schools has constructed over 1.6 million square feet of LEED building space and was selected as the “Best Green School District” in the United States by the U.S. Green Building Council in 2012. Tim is an ex-Navy SEAL and holds a Bachelors of Architecture from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. 

Shawn G. Hayes, PhD, HealthCorps, Inc.

Chief Academic Officer/Director of Research & Education


Shawn is the Chief Academic and Research Officer for HealthCorps www.healthcorps.net   where he is charged with curriculum development, program implementation, and research. Dr. Hayes received his PhD in integrative physiology from the University of California, Davis.  Before HealthCorps, Dr Hayes worked in healthcare and academia. Dr Hayes was a professor at Penn State Medical Center and UC Davis. He founded Neotropical Grassland Conservancy and the Peer Mentor Program at UC Davis.

Al Stenstrup, Director of Education Programs

American Forest Foundation/Project Learning Tree 


Al Stenstrup is the Director of Education Programs for the American Forest Foundation and Project Learning Tree.  www.forestfoundation.org  He has worked in education for nearly 40 years – including teaching at both the middle school and university level, directing a nature center, and now serves as the director of a national environmental education program. Al has been an advocate for Green Schools at the state, national and global levels.

Alison Suffet-Diaz, PhD, Founder/Executive Director

Environmental Charter School “Inspire, Equip, Empower”


Alison Suffet Diaz, Founder and Executive Director of Environmental Charter Schools, Lawndale, CA  www.echsonline.org  and www.ecmsonline.org  She is responsible for driving strategic development, as well as fundraising, fiscal/capital budget management and oversight of administrative operations. ECS has also developed the Green Ambassador Training Institute to support educators and organizations to replicate the best practices demonstrated at its school. ECHS in Lawndale, California has become an award-winning high school, recognized nationally for its innovative programs. Alison earned her teaching credential from Cal State Dominguez Hills, B.S. in Business from State University of New York, Albany and Juris Doctorate from Temple University Law School.

Susan Toth, PhD, Director of Education, Pine Jog Environmental Education Center

Director of Education, Pine Jog Environmental Education Center,

Florida Atlantic University/College of Education 


Susan is the Director of Education at the Pine Jog Environmental Education Center www.pinejog.org /College of Education/Florida Atlantic University, she has been a regional coordinator for educational and professional development programs; and adjunct faculty developing and/or teaching college-level environmental education courses.

Susan has served as a Board member for North American Association for Environmental Education, and has served as a consultant for the Environmental Education and Training Partnership (EETAP), developing and teaching EE courses for a national audience.

She is also the coordinator of the Palm Beach County Green Schools Recognition Program and its annual conference, Learn Green.

For additional information contact:

Jim McGrath, jmcgrath@greenschoolsnationalnetwork.org

Jennifer Seydel, jseydel@greenschoolsnationalnetwork.org