The Climate Institute is lean and targeted organisation that brings together a team of highly-credentialed and passionate people. Our diverse range of backgrounds and skills sets gives us the ability to address and interpret a wide range of climate change issues with a speed and agility absent from larger organisations.
  • John Connor

    John Connor

    Whilst qualified as a lawyer, John has spent over twenty years working in a variety of policy and advocacy roles with organisations including World Vision, Make Poverty History, the Australian Conservation Foundation and the NSW Nature Conservation Council.

    Since joining The Climate Institute as CEO in 2007 John has been a leading analyst and commentator on the rollercoaster that has been Australia’s domestic and international carbon policy and overseen the Institute’s additional focus on institutional investors and climate risk.

    John has worked on numerous government and business advisory panels currently including the NSW Government’s Climate Council.  He is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Corporate Directors and a Board member of the Environment Defenders Office and the Asset Owners Disclosure Project.  He is also a “Governator” with the Australian Youth Climate Coalition.

  • Erwin Jackson

    Erwin Jackson

    Erwin is Deputy CEO of The Climate Institute.

    With nearly 20 years practical experience in climate change policy and research, Erwin has developed and led many national and international programs aimed at reducing greenhouse pollution. This work has been undertaken in Australia, Europe, North and South America, the Pacific and Antarctica. He has represented non-governmental groups and advised government and business in national, regional and international fora, including being a non-governmental expert reviewer of the reports of the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. He has sat on research advisory committees on low emission technology deployment for the CSIRO and the University of Queensland’s Centre for Low Emission Technology.

    Erwin is currently a member of the Victorian Premiers Reference Group on Climate Change. Erwin has written, researched and produced many publications on climate change and energy policy including a number of review papers in scientific journals such as the Medical Journal of Australia. He has given lectures at institutions ranging from the Royal Institute of International Affairs in London to local community group meetings in far north Queensland.


  • Kristina Stefanova

    Kristina Stefanova

    Kristina is Communications Director at The Climate Institute. She has more than a decade of experience working with the private and public sectors in Australia, the US and the UK in the areas of communications, climate change, energy and environment.

    Prior to joining The Climate Institute, Kristina was international media liaison for the Global CCS Institute. Her previous experience also includes working in communications in Australia’s private sector, for the US and UK governments, and at large international organizations such as the World Bank as well as working as a newspaper and wire reporter.

    Kristina holds an MsC in Development Studies from the London School of Economics.

  • Richard Plumpton

    Richard Plumpton

    Richard is Development Director at The Climate Institute. He initially trained as a geographer and after graduating from Durham University spent nine years in the UK in advertising/marketing agencies and as a consultant. In 2002 he joined Coca-Cola South Pacific, where he held a variety of commercial roles before focusing on sustainability and community projects, including work on The Coca-Cola Australia Foundation and the ‘Live Positively’ global sustainability framework.

    Richard has been involved in working with diverse partners from the business, community, government and NGO sectors throughout his career and has seen first-hand the positive impact such partnerships can have. Most recently he was a key instigator of Project Catalyst - a Banksia Award winning partnership that is still actively finding ways to reduce the impact of farming on the Great Barrier Reef.

  • Kate Mackenzie

    Kate Mackenzie

    Kate is Investment and Governance Manager at the Climate Institute. Prior to joining the Institute in 2014, she worked primarily as a financial journalist, winning awards for her work at the Financial Times and the Australian. She was most recently Asia correspondent for the highly respected FT Alphaville blog, after serving as a Companies Reporter, Editorial Stakeholder in a wide-ranging redesign, and launching and editing the energy and climate blog, FT Energy Source. Before joining the FT, Kate was a technology and business reporter for the Australian, and online editor of Australian IT. Kate is a veteran of new media, and was one of the first online journalists to be hired by the ABC in the late 1990s. She has also worked for the internet addressing authority, APNIC; Australia's first private internet service provider, Pegasus Networks; and served as treasurer at one of Australia's oldest food co-operatives. Kate is on twitter at @kmac.

  • Olivia Kember

    Olivia Kember

    Olivia is National Policy and Research Manager at The Climate Institute. She has worked in the US, UK, Australia and New Zealand across the fields of journalism, diplomacy and resources.

    Olivia has provided policy analysis and advice for the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade and the NSW Minerals Council.

    She was the recipient of a Fulbright award to study in the United States and holds an MA in Security Studies from the University of Georgetown.
  • Esther Green

    Esther Green

    Esther, who has a BSocSci from Waikato University, joined The Climate Institute in May 2006, bringing diverse administration experience from NZ, UK and Australia. She has enjoyed being a part of the growth of the organisation, starting with just two permanent staff to 11 staff today.

    Esther is the Office Manager at The Climate Institute.

  • Luke Menzies

    Luke Menzies

    Luke is Multimedia & Communications Manager at The Climate Institute. He is working on his PhD at ANU, centered on the strategic communication of climate change, insights which directly transfer to The Climate Institute campaigns and communications. Luke also holds a BSc from The University of Melbourne and Honours in Environmental Science from Murdoch University.

  • Michael Hall

    Michael Hall

    Michael Hall, a professional photographer with over 20 years of experience, was Creative Fellow at The Climate Institute July 2012 - September 2014, and continues to be engaged with the organisation through different projects. 

    Throughout his career, Michael has built a considerable reputation in Australia and internationally as both a fine art and commercial photographer. He was selected as Photographer of the Year in 2006 by the Federation of European Photographers, and in 2004 won the Canon New Zealand Architectural Photographer of the Year. More recently, Michael was announced as a finalist in the Hasselblad Masters 2009.

    His fine art work focuses specifically on exploring human impact upon the landscape. Michael invests much time and energy in personal photographic projects – projects that engage with compelling and often confronting issues that ultimately affect us all. He is currently undertaking an extensive project to document the impacts and opportunities of climate change that will eventually include over 300 photographs captured in 40 international destinations.  The project has been widely exhibited to date and has received critical acclaim from the likes of UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon.
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