INTERIM DIRECTOR - GRANT WILSON
Interim Director Grant Wilson is an attorney who has advanced environmental campaigns in the United States and throughout the world. As a law clerk, Grant attended the 2010 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Cancún to support the Pacific Small Island Developing States. He also traveled to Kenya, where he worked with local Samburu and Maasai communities to help shape the National Land Policy and 2010 Constitution of Kenya. Later, Grant advocated on behalf of the Environmental Management and Law Association in Budapest for environmental access rights and analyzed the connection between human rights and the environment. Then, as Deputy Director of Global Catastrophic Risk Institute, Grant advocated for greater attention to threats such as the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, ocean fertilization and emerging technologies like bioengineering, and wrote articles for several prominent law journals on these topics.
At Earth Law Center, Grant acts as Interim Director and conducts a wide range of advocacy and policy efforts in support of nature’s rights. Grant has served as a lead coordinator of two rights of nature “People’s Tribunals,” co-authored a report on co-violations of human and environmental rights, and worked to restore flows to California’s rivers and streams through legal advocacy and grassroots action. Grant earned a degree in Environmental Policy from Huxley College of the Environment at Western Washington University, and a J.D. with a Certificate in Environmental and Natural Resources Law from Lewis & Clark Law School in Portland, Oregon. Grant speaks conversational Spanish.
Policy and advocacy coordinator - MICHELLE BENDER
Earth Policy Fellow Michelle Bender graduated Summa Cum Laude from Vermont Law School, where she earned a Master’s in Environmental Law and Policy. While there, Michelle took ELC’s Earth Law course and became a strong advocate for the rights of nature. While completing her degree, Michelle worked to advance environmental law and policy, particularly with respect to ocean health and wildlife. As an Ocean Policy Research Intern at the Monterey Bay Aquarium, she took on issues such as sea otter recovery and plastic pollution entering the ocean. Michelle also conducted research and developed legal and policy arguments for the Animal Welfare Institute's various campaigns. She further has prepared ongoing analysis for Friends of the Sea Otter where, among other things, she assisted with amicus brief preparation for federal court litigation in opposition to captive display of cetaceans. With a B.S. in Biology with a Marine Emphasis from Western Washington University, Michelle combines her expertise in science and policy to inspire the incorporation of Earth Law in our legal, economic and other governance systems.
ASSOCIATE - GREG NAYLOR
Greg Naylor is an attorney and environmental advocate who has worked with NextGen Climate Action and former V.P. Al Gore's Climate Reality Project to educate the public on climate change and the need to protect the rights of nature. Trained as a climate change leader by Organizing for Action, Greg has been active in the NorCal Climate Reality Leadership Group since relocating to the Bay area after retiring early from the private practice of law. During his legal career, Greg was recognized by Best Lawyers in America, Great Plains SuperLawyers and Chambers USA: Leading Lawyers for Business, and he was rated AV by Martindale Hubbell. While working on his book addressing America's ineffective response to climate change, Greg joined the ELC team to help the organization provide educational outreach, advise on rights of nature issues and provide assistance with fundraising.