Meet the Team

Dr. Leslie Field Founder and CEO   LinkedIn

Dr. Leslie Field
Founder and CEO


Leslie has been working to save polar ice since 2006. She’s an inventor with 54 U.S. patents who has worked at HP Labs and Agilent Labs, and has founded two technical MEMS consulting companies; MEMS Insight and SmallTech Consulting. Leslie is a lecturer at Stanford University. Her course, Engineering, Entrepreneurship and Climate Change, helps students and professionals consider various ways to approach climate change challenges. Auditors are always welcome! Additionally, she’s the Director of the Center for Climate Restoration’s Polar Restoration Action Group. Leslie earned her B.S. and M.S. in Chemical Engineering from MIT, and her M.S. and Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from UC Berkeley, with a minor in Materials Science. She loves hiking, painting and singing with Schola Cantorum, a 60-voice community chorus.

Alexander Sholtz Principal Engineer   LinkedIn

Alexander Sholtz
Principal Engineer


Alex, who joined the team in 2015, manages field research, testing, deployment, and instrumentation, ensuring that all field tests are successful. He graduated magna cum laude with a BSE in Materials Science and Engineering from the University of Michigan. At UofM Alex captained the mock trial team, and researched polymer thin film dynamics in the lab of Dr. Peter Green. He spent his summers with Stanford professor Dr. Mark Krasnow researching Madagascar’s mouse lemurs. When not bundled up in the Arctic, Alex enjoys photography. Check out his personal flickr!

Lauren Polash Education and Outreach    LinkedIn

Lauren Polash
Education and Outreach


Lauren, who has been teaching environmental science and sustainability for the past five years, is excited to educate students about the Arctic! She developed the Ice911 Arctic Literacy Curriculum, which she teaches at SF Bay Area high schools. Lauren is working on developing relationships with Arctic indigenous groups, and is dedicated to incorporate local and traditional knowledge into our research framework. When she’s not working, Lauren enjoys spending time outdoors and hiking with her pup.

Stephanie Lapensee Director, Strategic Development   LinkedIn

Stephanie Lapensee
Director, Strategic Development


After more than 15 years of working in the nonprofit sector, and with more than $120 million raised for organizations and causes, Stephanie joined Ice911 to lead its philanthropy efforts. Her experience, including The UN Foundation, UNEP, The Enough Project, and Save the Children, has given her the skills to provide critical insights into strategic fundraising and communications, public and private sector reforms and advocacy efforts. When she’s not chasing after her 18-month-old son (and husband), you can find her drinking coffee and reading a good book.

Susan Kramer  Communications   LinkedIn

Susan Kramer

Sooz has in-house and agency brand-building experience for a variety of lifestyle, nonprofit, consumer tech and wine companies. She loves helping teams create a communications strategy that aligns with their short-term and long-term business goals. She's thrilled to bring her experience to such an inspired cause, and to help further develop Ice911’s storytelling strategy. Outside the office, Sooz enjoys taking long walks with her spoiled rescue dog, and taste-testing burritos throughout the San Francisco Bay Area.

Marianna Grossman Strategy and Operations   LinkedIn

Marianna Grossman
Strategy and Operations


Marianna assists with strategic planning and strengthening operational systems. She led Sustainable Silicon Valley for 7 years and subsequently founded Minerva Ventures, a consultancy focused on strategies and solutions for a resilient future. She got to know the Ice911 team when they were a finalist in the 2013 Solutions for Planetary Sustainability competition co-hosted by Sustainable Silicon Valley and NASA Ames Research Center.

Krista Kahl Operations   Connect on LinkedIn

Krista Kahl

Connect on LinkedIn

Krista, a professional photographer, artist, and secret journalist, has an unorthodox history that has led to a multidisciplinary skill set. Her greatest passion is education about the human role on the planet in conservation, both with endangered animals in Africa and the Arctic’s environmental crises. At Ice911, she assists with operations, volunteer coordination and fills in doing stuff that helps makes the office run smoothly. In her spare time she has a dedicated yoga practice, reads, hikes, creates mixed media collages, and paints animals on clothing.

Holly Van Hart  Operations   LinkedIn

Holly Van Hart


Holly is an environmental activist and internationally exhibited artist. Her paintings are inspired by nature and explore her fascination with the limitless opportunities we have in our lives. The Huffington Post, Professional Artist Magazine, The Monthly, and Houzz have all featured Holly’s work. When she is not painting, Holly is donating her time and business expertise to Ice911.

We’ve attracted an interdisciplinary group of notable people with foundation, legal, business, management, climate, scientific, and engineering expertise to our governing board and to advisory roles to steer us toward achieving our organization’s goals.


Satish Chetty

Evangelos Christodoulou

Marianna Grossman, MBA

Doug Johnson, Ph.D.
Materials Science & Deployment

Jane Mackey, CPA

Tony Manzara, Ph.D.
Materials Science & Deployment

Willy McAllister
Electrical Engineering

Shalini Venkatesh, Ph.D.


Bob Barrett, JD
Program Manager, William & Flora Hewlett Foundation

Roger Howe, Ph.D.
Director, Stanford Nanofabrication Facility, Stanford Professor

Kathleen McCowin, JD
Special Counsel & IP Law

Don Perovich, Ph.D.
AGU Fellow &  Geophysicist, Dartmouth

Terry Root, Ph.D.
Professor Emeritus & Woods Institute Fellow, Stanford University

Nathalie Udo
Author, Organizational Survival

Peter Wadhams, ScD
Head, Dept. of Ocean Physics, University of Cambridge

Kimberly Wiefling, M.S.
Founding Member, Silicon Valley Alliances

Gary Wolff, P.E., Ph.D.

Environmental Engineer and Resource Economist


Subarna Bhattacharyya, Ph.D.
Arctic Scientist and CEO, Climformatics

Detelina Ivanova, Ph.D.
Arctic Scientist and Lead Climate Modeler, Climformatics

Velimir Mlaker
Lead Computer Scientist, Climformatics


Steve Payne, MBA
Chairman of the Governing Board
Architect Partners

Steve Zornetzer, Ph.D.
Vice Chairman of the Governing Board
Fmr Associate Director, NASA AMES

Armond Cohen
Executive Director, Clean Air Task Force

Nicole Kerness, Ph.D.
V.P. Technology, Kionix

Carol Sontag
Clinician, Palo Alto Unified School District