Our Team

Foremost, we’re a team of scientists, trained in forestry, ecosystem ecology, forest economics and management, and public policy. Building on our academic training, we’ve developed skill sets relevant to guiding carbon projects, ranging from project management, to quantification, technology development, analysis, and credit sales. The thread that runs consistent across our team, is a commitment to finding economic solutions to environmental problems.

Dr. David Saah

Co-Founder, Spatial Informatics Group

Dr. Saah is a founding member of Spatial Informatics Group.

Dr. Saah has been broadly trained as an environmental scientist with expertise in a number of areas including: landscape ecology, ecosystem ecology, hydrology, geomorphology, ecosystem modeling, natural hazard modeling, remote sensing, geographic information systems (GIS) and geospatial analysis. He has used these skills to conduct research primarily at the landscape level in a variety of systems.

Dr. Saah has participated in research projects throughout the United States and Internationally. His academic research uses integrated geospatial science for multi-scale mapping, monitoring and modeling of environmental spatial heterogeneity, particularly in riparian, savanna, and forest ecosystems. These efforts include quantification of change in landscape pattern, investigating the linkages between pattern and processes, and understanding the pattern-process dynamic within different environmental management regimes.

To complement this, Dr. Saah’s consulting research interest and experience include: developing holistic decision support systems for resource management, assessing natural hazards, and quantifying ecosystem service valuation. In addition, all of his research addresses access, availability, and accuracy of geospatial and environmental datasets, and scale in natural resource and environmental research. Dr. Saah is committed to producing high quality research projects that integrate the most current science and technology. He is dedicated to the accurate dissemination of results from these endeavors through innovative presentations, publications, and workshops.

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Dr. Charles Kerchner

Managing Director

Dr. Charles Kerchner oversees the SIG Carbon team that includes a portfolio of 22 Improved Forest Management projects, encompassing 800,000+ acres and 16.3 million credits in the voluntary and California compliance market. He is a recognized VCS AFOLU expert reviewer and has worked in all stages of project development, including origination, inventory design, quantification, and credit sales. Dr. Kerchner has transacted over $100 million worth of credit sales on behalf of clients in the voluntary and California compliance market, including some of the largest California compliance projects to date.

Prior to joining SIG Carbon, he was the lead carbon specialist for a Global Environmental Facility that funded afforestation / reforestation project in the Dominican Republic. Dr. Kerchner has also worked as the Director of Forestry at AgRefresh, an environmental accounting firm, as a research assistant at the University of Vermont’s Carbon Dynamics Lab, and as an agroforestry Peace Corps Specialist and development consultant.

He holds a B.A. from Lafayette College, an M.S. in Forest Economics from the University of Vermont, and a Ph.D. in Forestry from the University of Vermont. His peer-reviewed published dissertation assessed the viability of the California compliance offset market for Northeast landowners.

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Tim Kramer

Director, Carbon Operations

Tim Kramer is a forest carbon and project management specialist whose primary responsibilities consist of the sourcing, analysis, and development of forest carbon offset projects. Tim manages SIG’s forest project implementation team, overseeing all aspects of project development, from initial contracting to the ultimate issuance of offset credits. Throughout this process Tim works with clients, directs SIG’s technical staff, supervises third party contractors, and coordinates with carbon registry administrators. Tim also leads efforts to accelerate innovation in natural climate solutions through the integration of remote sensing technologies into forest carbon development and standards.

As a carbon and land management specialist, Tim has more than fifteen years of experience overseeing projects for private, tribal nations, government and non-profit organizations. Prior to joining SIG, Tim worked in state government managing large-scale restoration planning projects and in the private sector where he led efforts to implement large-scale land management and planning initiatives for a wide range of clients. Tim holds a B.A. in Geography from University of Iowa and a Master of Environmental Science (MESc) from the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies.

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Erin Alvey

Senior Project Manager

Erin is a Project Manager for SIG Carbon, and has also served the team as a GIS Lead and biometrician. Erin is a forest ecologist with over a decade of experience in natural resources consulting, ecological restoration, and research-grade data collection in a multitude of ecosystems across North America, coordinating with a diverse array of tribal, agency, private, and non-profit partners.

Erin has guided multiple forest carbon projects through all stages of development in the compliance and voluntary markets, including numerous compliance verifications and even transitions from Early Action programs to the compliance Improved Forest Management protocol. Erin seeks to empower her project partners, valuing transparency, honesty, and democratic education. She draws on her background in wildfire and applied forest ecology, and expertise in geospatial (GIS) modeling to help project partners navigate balancing forest carbon needs with other land management needs. She also helps partners build a culture of commitment to maintaining forest carbon project compliance for the long-term. Erin is humbled to be entrusted with the responsibility of supporting their projects, lands, and communities.

Erin earned her B.S. from Ithaca College and M.S. in Ecology (fire ecology focus) from Humboldt State University.

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Paul Cousar

Director, Carbon Analytics

Paul is the Lead Biometrician for SIG’s Carbon Offsets Team. Paul has 25 years of experience working as a decision support analyst for timberland investments and ongoing management operations. At SIG, Paul leads work on forest inventory design and statistical analysis, growth and yield modeling using Forest Vegetation Simulator (FVS), linear programming and harvest scheduling, and database design and management, in support of voluntary and compliance forest carbon offset projects, timberland valuation, and forest inventory operations.

Prior to joining SIG, Paul worked for some of the largest timberland investment and management companies in the United States. His model development efforts and analysis have supported billions of dollars of timberland transactions, as well as supported management plan development and implementation on millions of acres.

While at Hancock Forest Management, Paul developed a modern timberland valuation database model that is used to estimate land values on Hancock properties throughout the world. Prior to this, he spent 9 years working for Forest Capital Partners where he led the quantitative analysis that resulted in acquisition of 2.4 million acres of the Boise Cascade timberlands.

Paul holds a B.S. in Forest Management/Business Administration from Colorado State University and an M.S. in Forest Management from Oregon State University.

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Gary Roller

Carbon Field Coordinator

Gary Roller is the Field Lead for SIG Carbon. He is a California Registered Professional Forester (#2899) with over 18 years’ experience in natural resource management, applied forest ecology, research-grade data collection, and sampling design. Gary has held instructor positions in silviculture, dendrology, and forest mensuration, as well as positions as a forester and a research associate at the University of California Berkeley, Wildland Fire Science Laboratory and the U.S. Forest Service, Pacific Southwest Research Station. He is co-author of several publications in forest ecology and fire behavior modeling.

Gary received both his B.S. in Forestry and Natural Resource Management and M.S. in Forestry Science and from California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo, CA.

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Ethel Wilkerson

Senior Project Manager

Ethel Wilkerson is a Project Manager for SIG Carbon. She is responsible for the development of forest carbon projects. Ethel is an environmental scientist by training with expertise in stream ecology and watershed management, ecosystem service markets, and climate change mitigation and adaptation. Ethel has served as the program manager for studies on forestry and watershed management, carbon offsets, recreation management, and fisheries restoration and diversification. Ethel has over 15 years experience working with diverse stakeholders on natural resource and sustainability projects.

Ethel has a Master of Environmental Science and Master of Public Affairs (MSES/MPA) from Indiana University’s School of Public and Environmental Affairs. She also serves as the President of her community’s land trust and as a Girl Scout leader. Ethel is based in Maine.

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Sunil Nepal

Senior Carbon Analyst

Sunil is a Biometrician for SIG Carbon. Sunil is broadly trained in forestry, geospatial technology, forest inventory, data management, visualization, and analysis and enjoys applying spatial and statistical techniques to understand and quantify forest resources. He enjoys analyzing and managing forest inventory data of a variety of sizes, formats, and inventory designs, and forecasting growth and yield the most.

His expertise includes data management, spatial and statistical analysis, data visualization, silviculture, forest inventory, US Forest Service Forest Inventory and Analysis (FIA) database, and growth and yield model. He is a PhD candidate, pursuing PhD degree in Forestry, at the School of Forestry and Wildlife Sciences at Auburn University. His dissertation research combines field experiments, simulation modeling, and diverse spatial analyses to understand and quantify forest dynamics and forest health and inform natural resource management across small and large scales in the southern US.

Sunil has an MS in Forestry Sciences from Mississippi State University and a BS in Forestry from Institute of Forestry, Tribhuvan University, Nepal. He has more than nine years of working experience at the Department of National Park and Wildlife Conservation.

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Jarrett Barbuto

GIS Manager

Jarrett Barbuto is a geospatial analyst and research scientist for SIG Carbon. Prior to joining SIG, Jarrett was a supervisory GIS technician at University of Vermont’s Spatial Analysis Lab, and a member of the Lab’s Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Team.

Jarrett is a FAA Certified UAS Pilot, and has completed over 50 UAS missions (from flight planning to data collection and processing to feature extraction and map production). Jarrett has been involved in a wide-variety of GIS projects, which have utilized different sources of remotely sensed data (e.g., multispectral, hyperspectral, and near-infrared), that mostly focused on the creation of high-resolution land cover maps. During his post-college gap years, Jarrett worked in mountain communication departments at Mt, Bachelor and Jackson Hole resorts, where he was responsible for posting daily snow condition reports.

He holds a BS degree in Environmental Science with a focus on Natural Resources at the University of Vermont.

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Heather Ryan

Director, Go-to-Market

Heather has 15 years of experience in marketing and communications. She’s worked exclusively with mission-driven companies for the last five years. At SIG Carbon, she drives go-to-market strategy, and collaborates with clients to tell their story and better understand the environmental impacts of applying improved forest management practices to forests.

Prior to SIG Carbon, Heather specialized in finding product-market fit and developing GTM strategy at technology startups. She’s helped bring digital curriculum to market for teachers and students, provide design software to urban transportation planners, and deliver AI-driven technology for predicting revenue to sales teams.

Prior to moving cross-country to San Francisco, Heather founded a NYC-based marketing consultancy. She and her team functioned as an outsourced marketing department, managing across design, demand generation, content and PR teams to help early stage companies move into their next stage of growth. Heather also ran business development for the Intellectual Property Litigation practice at Ropes & Gray, one of the leading IP LItigation practices in the country. Fresh out of college, she was a financial journalist, writing about the corporate bond market.

A love for writing has been the common thread throughout her career, and she thoroughly enjoys distilling complicated ideas into clear messages that people remember.

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Dr. Thomas Buchholz

Director, Forest and Agriculture

Dr. Thomas Buchholz leads the Forest and Agriculture Team at SIG. Thomas has more than 16 years of experience in working with governments, academia, nonprofits and the private sector in forest management, economics as well as energy and carbon life cycle assessments (LCA) for of natural forests as well as timber and biomass plantations in the US, Europe and Sub-Saharan Africa. Thomas combines technical expertise on forest ecology, wildfire risk and behavior, remote sensing applications, ecosystem service markets (e.g. carbon offsets) and wood product markets to provide new forest management opportunities to clients. Thomas has affiliations with the University of Montana, Strathmore University in Nairobi, Kenya, and the Gund Institute for Environment at the University of Vermont. He has been the lead author of numerous peer-reviewed science publications and technical reports on forest economics and forest-based bioenergy topics across the globe, ranging from carbon LCA’s for wildfire-prone forests in the western US to bioenergy economics in East Africa. Thomas is based in Missoula, Montana.

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Bill Keaton

Senior Advisor

William Keeton is a Professor of Forest Ecology and Forestry at the University of Vermont’s Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources and an advisor to SIG Carbon. He directs UVM’s Carbon Dynamics Laboratory, is Chair of the Forestry Program, and direct’s the Vermont Forest Ecosystem Management Demonstration Project. Dr. Keeton received his BS in Natural Resources from Cornell University and his Masters in Conservation Biology and Policy from Yale University. He holds a Ph.D. in Forest Ecology from the University of Washington. His current research focuses on forest carbon management including modeling, climate change impacts on forest ecosystems, natural disturbance-based silvicultural systems, natural disturbance ecology, the structure and function of late-successional forest systems, forest-stream interactions, and forest biodiversity. Dr. Keeton served as a Fulbright Scholar in Ukraine and continues to work actively on sustainable forest management in Eastern Europe. He has been a P.I. or Co-P.I. on over 2.5 million in research grants and served as major adviser for 18 graduate students. His record includes over 70 publications (including more than 40 peer-reviewed journal papers).

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Dr. Gary Johnson

Director, Software Platforms

Gary Johnson leads the software development team for Spatial Informatics Group. His passion is finding new ways to use advanced computational techniques to solve meaningful environmental problems.

He specializes in the dynamic modeling of spatially distributed environmental phenomena and has built a variety of software applications in this domain, including ecosystem services (SPAN and ARIES), carbon sequestration (CAMEO), and wildland fire (IWAP, GridFire, and Pyregence).

His research interests include simulation modeling, literate programming, functional programming, extreme value statistics, decision support systems, risk assessment and uncertainty modeling, data mining, and machine learning.

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