Yale Environment Review Staff

Krisztina Pjeczka

Editor-in-chief, writer

Krisztina Pjeczka is a second-year Master’s student of Environmental Management at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies. She focuses on energy, business and climate change. As a Research Assistant at the Center for Business and Environment, for example, she investigates potential business models for renewable thermal energy technologies in the building sector. Prior to Yale, Krisztina worked at the climate change mitigation programs of the World Resources Institute and ICF International. She earned her BA in Environmental Studies and Economics with a minor in French from Middlebury College, Vermont. Krisztina is excited to be YER’s incoming editor-in-chief for the next academic year.

questions? comments? email Krisztina.pjeczka@yale.edu

Rebecca Lehman

Digital Marketing Manager, writer
Rebecca Lehman is a second-year Master’s student of Environmental Management at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies. She is focusing on understanding the intersection between science, management and policy specifically in marine environments. Originally from New Hampshire, Rebecca lived in Colorado before coming to F&ES, working with local non-profits and researched climate warming adaptations. Her research focused on the community level effects of warming in alpine and montane meadows, and was part of a global study of environmental warming experiments. At F&ES, she is using geospatial software to better understand water resources. Rebecca is excited to be working at YER where she focuses on widening the network of YER readership through online platforms.

questions? comments? email rebecca.lehman@yale.edu

Sofia Caycedo

Assistant editor-in-chief, writer


Sofia Caycedo is a first-year Master’s student of Environmental Management at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies. Prior to arriving at Yale, Sofia graduated from the University of Amsterdam with a major in earth science and a minor in economics. During her undergraduate degree, she worked for an independent fund that supports progressive social, political and environmental youth projects worldwide. She also served as an advisor for undocumented migrants, and assisted in an ongoing research project regarding access to clean water in Bangladesh. These and other experiences have strengthened her interest in the linkages between human wellbeing, development and the sustainable use of natural resources. At Yale, Sofia’s primary focus is on environmental economics and policy. She is especially interested in the use of natural capital valuation, market-based instruments and business innovation towards climate change solutions. Sofia is excited to start working at YER, and help communicate scientific knowledge regarding environmental issues to a broader audience.

Anna Maria Cárcamo

digital marketing assistant, writer

Anna Maria Cárcamo is a first-year Master’s student of Environmental Management at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies. Her main interests are International Environmental Policy, Communications and Environmental Justice. Before coming to Yale, she graduated in Law with a minor in International Politics and screenwriting in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. She focused on Constitutional Law and researched Environmental Law. She also worked for two years with Environmental Law, in a law firm and at Rio de Janeiro’s Prosecution Office. Throughout these experiences, she became aware of the extent of environmental injustices and the importance of making environmental policies more effective and socially responsible. Since a great part of effectiveness comes from creating consciousness, she believes communications plays a big role and she is excited to be a writer at the Yale Environment Review.


Kathy Meek

Kathy Meek is a first-year MBA student at Yale School of Management, where she studies the intersection of business and the environment. In her free time, she serves as a consultant for a local non-profit, and it excited to join YER to communicate science to the public. Prior to Yale, she earned a B.S. in Marine Biology and went on to found a dive company specializing in training, education, and environmental assessments. In addition, she worked in the Clinical Services team at Rite Aid in business development, expanding healthcare services for clients. In her free time, she served on the Board of Directors for an environmental land conservation non-profit in Washington.

Laura Small


Laura Small is a second-year Master’s student of Environmental Management at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies. She is interested in working with the private sector to help businesses move on from traditional environmentally degrading practices and into sustainable practices. Laura has also focused her time at Yale on data science, and currently serves as a graduate teaching fellow for multivariate statistics. Prior to her studies at Yale, Laura ran the energy and climate policy program at The Environmental and Energy Study Institute (EESI) in Washington, DC. Laura is excited to work at YER to help broadly communicate new scientific findings.

 Emma Gildesgame

WRITER, Editor

Emma Gildesgame is a first-year Masters of Environmental Management student at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies. She focuses on watershed science, coastal restoration, and community engagement with conservation. As a social media producer for the Yale Program and Climate Change Communication, she develops compelling content to provide public opinion context for climate change news. Before attending FES, she spent over two years working in an aquarium, where she developed public programs which connected adorable animals like sharks and octopuses with solutions to environmental issues. She has also worked on coastal wetland restoration in the San Francisco Bay and as an outdoor educator and naturalist in New Hampshire, Colorado, and California. She has a BA in Environmental Science from Colby College in Waterville, ME.

Lexi Smith


Lexi is a first-year Master of Environmental Science student at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. Her thesis research focuses on modelling biomass in Wyoming big sagebrush steppe plant communities to improve land management practices. She received a BS in Environmental Science with a focus on Applied Ecology from California State University, Chico, and has been working as a research assistant while studying at Yale F&ES. Her interests include climate change, land conservation and management, environmental education, science communication, and social activism. She is excited to write for YER, and cares deeply about making applied ecological research accessible to people outside the scientific community.

Erica Engstrom

Erica is a 2019 Master of Environmental Management candidate at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies focusing on wildlife conservation and habitat connectivity. Her previous experience includes training and caring for lemurs at the Lemur Conservation Foundation and teaching about sustainable agriculture and international development at Heifer International. Most recently, she worked at The Nature Conservancy in Arkansas supporting a variety of land and water conservation projects and working with a coalition of partners to develop wetland reserve easement policy recommendations for the 2018 Farm Bill. Erica holds a B.A. in International Development Studies from the University of California at Los Angeles.

Laura Ostrowsky

Writer, editor

Laura is a first-year Master of Forest Science student at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies. Her research focuses on plant ecophysiology, forest ecology, and the biodiversity-productivity relationship in forests. She received a BA in English and environmental studies from Bowdoin College, and has been working as a writing tutor and environmental researcher. Her interests include forest conservation, environmental education, science communication, and creative writing. She is thrilled to be writing for YER, and cares deeply about making ecological research engaging and accessible to broader audiences.


Bowen Chang


Bowen is a second-year Master’s student of Environmental Management at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies During a summer internship in England, Bowen had a chance to visit Top Withens , a farmhouse that is said to have been the inspiration for the Earnshaw home in Emily Brontë’s novel Wuthering Heights. During his hike through miles of windswept moors in warm rain and heavy fog, Bowen witnessed a landscape that he had only read about in the books. 

“Pervades and broods above, changes, sustains, dissolves, creates and rears” – Emily Brontë

Before Yale, Bowen received his BA from the University fo Pennsylvania . His previous research experiences include studying forest tree species compositions influenced by landscape and geology in the El Yungue Rainforest in Puerto Rico. He also spent a summer identifying and mapping moths in North Yorkshire, England.

At FES, he is excited to be exploring the intersections of earth science and the social sciences. He hopes to study environmental protection through law, science, social work, and writing. In his spare time, Bowen loves to paint, sketch, and explore cities and nature.

Max Pothoff



Max Potthoff is a first-year Master’s student of Environmental Management at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies. Drawn to the story of science – the evolutionary epic that we are all apart – he worked for the past three years at The Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago, IL. At Yale, he is interested in bridging the gap between primary scientific literature and the public imagination through effective science communication, as well as pursuing sustainable supply-chain practices in the agricultural and food sector. He will be spending his summer at the Environmental Protection Agency in Washington, DC.


Matthew Kotchen

Faculty Advisor
Matthew Kotchen is a professor of economics at Yale University, with a primary appointment at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies and affiliated appointments in the Yale School of Management and the Department of Economics. He is also a faculty research fellow at the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER). Professor Kotchen’s research interests lie at the intersection of environmental and public economics and policy. Ongoing projects employ both theoretical and empirical methods covering a range of topics, including energy, climate change, “green” markets, corporate social responsibility, development, and applied game theory. Kotchen joined the Yale faculty in 2009 and has held previous and visiting positions at Williams College, University of California (Santa Barbara and Berkeley), Stanford University, and Resources for the Future.

Professor Kotchen recently served as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Environment and Energy at that U.S. Department of the Treasury in Washington, DC. While there, he worked on President Obama’s Climate Action Plan and represented the United States on the governing boards of the Climate Investment Funds, the Global Environmental Facility, and the Green Climate Fund, in addition to the Treasury Department in U.N. climate negotiations and energy and environment finance efforts in the G-20. Kotchen has also served on the Science Advisory Board of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and as the visiting chief economist of the Environmental Defense Fund.