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Senior Leadership Team

Managing Director, Climate Action Implementation
United States
Aditi Maheshwari Managing Director of Climate Action Implementation

Aditi Maheshwari has been addressing climate change from both a public and private sector perspective for over 20 years. She currently serves as the Managing Director for Climate Action Implementation at C40, where she leads new programme design and delivery and funder engagement for major urban climate action programmes spanning multiple regions and sectors. Her remit also covers the management of existing programmes, including the Cities Finance Facility, Laneshift and UCAP CAI.

She was previously part of the leadership team of IFC’s Climate Business Department, where her areas of focus included sustainable cooling and decarbonisation of heavy industries. Prior to this appointment, she was the Director for Climate Action in the UN Secretary General’s Executive Office. Aditi’s role there was to lead stakeholder engagement to advance climate action in key sectors and deliver on coalitions and initiatives launched at the Climate Action Summit in 2019, prioritising energy and industry transition, cities, transport, resilience, and nature-based solutions.

Preceding this she was a Senior Operations Officer at IFC, mobilising private capital for climate investments in developing countries. She led initiatives to promote private sector investment aligned with national climate plans, and supported businesses to manage carbon risks and capitalise on opportunities. Her publication credits include co-authoring IFC’s Green Buildings: A Finance and Policy Blueprint for Emerging Markets and leading IFC’s flagship report on Climate Investment Opportunities in Cities. Aditi has held other climate and clean energy-related roles at the World Bank, DFID and the South African National Treasury while on an ODI Fellowship. She holds an MSc in Environmental and Resource Economics from University College London.

Managing Director, Climate Finance, Knowledge and Partnerships
Colombia
Picture of Andrea Fernández

Andrea Fernández serves as C40’s Managing Director of Climate Finance, Knowledge and Partnerships. Andrea is responsible for overseeing C40’s Climate Finance, Business Engagement and Knowledge and Learning programmes, as well as C40’s engagement in the Urban Shift Programme. She also drives new strategic priorities and partnerships.

Previously, Andrea worked in the World Bank’s Private Sector Development Department for five years, where she delivered investment appraisals and technical assistance for public enterprise reform and infrastructure projects in emerging economies. Andrea has a Bachelor’s degree in International Business and Economics from Concordia University and an MBA with a finance specialisation from Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business.

Co-Managing Director, Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy
Belgium

Andy is the Co-Managing Director of the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate and Energy (GCoM).

Previously he held the role of the Director of Strategy and Operations at GCoM, guiding program delivery across multiple areas of activity. Immediately prior, Andy was Policy Coordinator for Climate Alliance, where among other projects, he was project technical coordinator for the series of EU Sustainable Energy Investment Forums.

Andy has worked for 20 years across a range of environmental protection issues focusing on climate change, energy and air quality in local, regional and central government, academia and NGOs. He has been part of and led major initiatives on city carbon reduction strategies, community energy, large-scale home retrofit financing, household energy-saving behaviour, and air pollution assessment and management.

Andy has a BSc in Geography and Environmental Studies from the University of Surrey Roehampton Institute and an MSc in Applied Meteorology and Climatology from the University of Birmingham.

Managing Director, Governance and Executive Engagement
United Kingdom

Anna serves as the Managing Director of Governance and Executive Engagement. Anna supports the Executive Director and oversees relationships with key C40 strategic funders. In particular, she provides support to the Executive Director in managing the Board of Directors, supporting the C40’s Chair’s Office functions and managing the Governance and Fundraising teams. Before joining C40 in 2015, Anna spent seven years living and working in East Asia, including Hong Kong, Beijing, and Chengdu. Prior, Anna worked in the Mayor of London’s Office for the climate change and sustainable transport adviser, and was part of the team who developed London’s first Climate Change Action Plan. Anna holds a BA in Philosophy and Political Science from the University of Birmingham, UK and is learning to speak Mandarin Chinese.

Regional Director, East Asia (China)
China

Boping is the Regional Director for East Asia (China) of C40. She is responsible for leading C40’s work in China to support Chinese member cities to further advance their climate ambition and lead the transition towards an urban ecological civilization.

Before joining C40, Boping was the China Director of the World Future Council (WFC) and helped WFC to establish and develop its office in China. Previously, she was the Director of Policy and International Strategy of WWF China, leading WWF China’s policy research and advocacy work to influence China’s high-level policy framework for stronger environmental targets in its development policy. Earlier in her career, Boping had experience with both private sector and government programs. She provided consultancy on climate change and renewable energy for investments in China, served for Dexia bank on public and project finance and started her career with the EU-China Natural Forest Management Project under the State Forestry Administration of China, which inspired her to pursue a career in sustainable development.

Managing Director, Climate Solutions and Networks
United Kingdom

Cassie is the Managing Director for the Climate Solutions and Networks team, leading the development and delivery of sector programmes and support to cities in energy and buildings, food and waste, transport, urban planning, air quality and climate resilience. Cassie started at C40 as the Director for Energy and Buildings, supporting cities to reduce energy consumed by existing buildings, ensure new buildings are efficient from the start, and clean up the energy supply to buildings and beyond.

Prior to joining C40, Cassie was at the Greater London Authority (GLA) where she was the project manager for the London Environment Strategy; launched in 2018, it is a world-leading strategy for environment ambition at the city level. She was also leading the climate adaptation and sustainable development team, working to manage London’s climate risks and impacts and improve quality of life. Cassie has a wide range of technical experience in buildings and energy including developing new carbon scoring tools for national energy efficiency schemes and assessing new energy efficiency measures while working at the UK energy regulator Ofgem. She has also developed national government policy on smart energy systems.

Cassie graduated from Edinburgh University with a BSc in Environmental Geoscience and Newcastle University with an MSc in Clean Technology.

Managing Director, Inclusion and Global Leadership
Italy

Caterina Sarfatti is C40’s Managing Director for Inclusion and Global Leadership. As such, she oversees C40’s inclusive climate action and external engagement teams, driving C40’s work to build public support and social licence for urban climate action through programmes on equity and inclusion, global advocacy and campaigns.

She previously served as Director of C40’s Inclusive Climate Action programme, which provides mayors and local administrations with support to plan, build consensus and deliver bold climate action that is equitable and beneficial for all. The programme deals with the links between the climate crisis and social justice in cities. Before joining C40, Caterina worked in the City of Milan, where she served as a policy advisor at the Mayor’s Office, in the International Relations Department. Caterina led and coordinated EU projects and city diplomacy initiatives on smart cities and environment, social innovation and social cohesion, migration and integration.
Prior to this, Caterina collaborated with human rights NGOs such as the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) in Paris and the Italian Council for Refugees (CIR) in Rome. Caterina is an ad honorem member of the Italian NGO CESVI and sits on the Scientific Committee of the Italian Climate Network association. She is the author of several articles and editorials on climate change, smart cities and human migrations.

Managing Director, C40 Centre for Urban Climate Policy and Economy
Canada

David Miller is the Managing Director of the C40 Centre for Urban Climate Policy and Economy.

Mr. Miller was Mayor of Toronto from 2003 to 2010 and served as Chair of C40 Cities from 2008 until 2010. Under his leadership, Toronto became widely admired internationally for its environmental leadership, economic strength and social integration. He is a leading advocate for the creation of sustainable urban economies.

Mr. Miller has held a variety of public and private positions and served as Future of Cities Global Fellow at Polytechnic Institute of New York University from 2011 to 2014. He has an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Waterloo in Environmental Studies, an Honorary Doctor of Laws from York University and is currently Executive in Residence at the University of Victoria. He is the author of ‘Solved, how the great cities of the world are fixing the climate crisis‘, (University of Toronto Press).

David Miller is a Harvard-trained economist and professionally is a lawyer. He and his wife, lawyer Jill Arthur, are the parents of two children.

Regional Director, Africa
South Africa

As C40’s Regional Director for Africa, Dorah leads C40’s work in the African region through cooperative engagements with city leaders and teams to accelerate the implementation of their climate change programmes.

Dorah is a sustainability enthusiast with over 26 years of experience in areas such as environmental sustainability, international diplomacy, government (local, regional and national) as well as industry associations.

She was the inaugural Chief Executive Officer of the South African Paper and Packaging Producer Responsibility Organisations Alliance (PRO Alliance), tasked with conceptualising and implementing joint extended producer responsibility programmes with and on behalf of member PROs. Her other executive role was Chief Executive Officer of the Green Building Council of South Africa, where she led the green transformation of the built environment sector through numerous green building certification tools and programmes. She also served as the chairperson of the World Green Building Council’s Africa Regional Network, with a key role of coordinating, consolidating, and stimulating the development of Green Building Councils across the African Continent.

Dorah also held the position of Head of Sustainability at the City of Tshwane, where she conceptualised and implemented groundbreaking city sustainability programmes. Dorah’s tenure at the National Environment allowed her to develop and refine her environmental diplomacy skills through her leadership roles in the then United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development processes, which included the Rio+20 in 2012. Dorah is proud to have led the development of the environment sector green economy response programme, including the establishment of the national green fund.

Regional Director, Latin America
Brazil

Ilan serves as Regional Director for Latin America, after having worked as Deputy Regional Director and C40 City Adviser to Rio de Janeiro, helping the city implement its climate action plan in multiple areas and setting the first sustainability office in Latin America. Ilan successfully launched the C40 Clean Energy Network, which now has over 30 cities from various C40 regions.

Ilan previously worked at the China-Brazil Center for Climate Change, where he worked with government agencies, energy companies and NGOs in bilateral projects related to biofuels, clean energy innovation policies, electric vehicles and carbon capture and storage.

Ilan holds a BA in International Relations from PUC-RJ and a Master’s degree in Environment and Development from the London School of Economics.

Regional Director, Europe
Spain

Júlia López Ventura is C40 Cities’ Regional Director for Europe since 2015. Her work focuses on supporting top political decision makers to fight climate change in global megacities, from mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions to adaptation to the already present climate change effects, as well as the regional coordination of city diplomacy work to influence climate policy of supranational actors like the UN or the European Commission. Before joining C40, Júlia worked for over a decade for the city of Barcelona, including the IT International Office, which she headed from 2013-2015. She helped Barcelona develop collaborative relationships with institutions such as the European Comission and the World Bank, and she developed an international urban knowledge transfer strategy by co-leading Barcelona’s candidacy for the first European Innovation Capital (which Barcelona won). Júlia has lectured at several universities, including the Polytechnich University of Catalonia Foundation in Barcelona and the IE Business School in Madrid, with courses on City Strategy and Governance. She is a fluent speaker of English, French, Spanish, Italian and Catalan and holds an MSc in Telecom engineering from the Polytechnic University of Catalonia and Master’s Degree in Sociology from UOC in Spain.

Managing Director, Corporate Services
United Kingdom

Juliette Carter serves as Corporate Services Managing Director for C40 and is responsible for the effective running of the organisation through C40’s finance, HR, legal and IT functions. Juliette previously worked at the Greater London Authority where she was the lead on HR and organisational development, supporting the organisation through two changes in political leadership. Whilst working in City Hall, she had accountability for HR, resourcing, internal communications, project management, learning and organisational development teams. Juliette also worked with C40 whilst on secondment from the GLA to develop the in-house HR function and support the implementation of the City Adviser programme. Before working at the GLA, Juliette was Director of HR and in a variety of HR roles in the National Health Service. Juliette completed her BA in Literature and French at King’s College London. She has a Master in Human Resource Management and a postgraduate certificate in employment law.

Deputy Executive Director
United Kingdom

Dr Kevin Austin serves as C40’s Deputy Executive Director. Kevin oversees all of C40’s programme delivery, operations and finance functions as well as contributing to global thought leadership and innovation in urban climate change issues. Kevin joined C40 from the Greater London Authority where he was responsible for External Relations for the Mayor of London. His previous role at the GLA included Head of Olympic projects, leading the delivery of the major city-related elements associated with the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympics Games. Between 2002 and 2009 he served as Head of Transport, advising the Mayor of London on all aspects of transport policy. In earlier years he worked for a major consultancy advising clients on project implementation and economic appraisal He has a Masters in Transport Planning and a Doctorate in Civil Engineering from Leeds University.

Regional Director, North America
United States

Laura Jay serves as Regional Director for North America at C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group. In this role, she works with C40’s 17 cities in the US and Canada to help advance climate actions, from policies to mitigate emissions to strategies for adapting to climate impacts. Previously, Laura served as the Deputy Regional Director for North America as well as the Land Use Planning Network Manager at C40. Prior to joining the C40, Laura served as a Project Manager at Terrapin Bright Green where she consulted to government agencies, developers and non-profits to create more sustainability policies and designs. She has also worked at the U.S. Green Building Council on governance and strategic planning. Laura has a Master’s degree in Urban Planning from Columbia University in New York and a Bachelor’s degree from Wheaton College in Massachusetts.

Executive Director
United Kingdom
Mark Watts, C40 Executive Director

Mark’s aim as Executive Director is to ensure that C40 Cities is equally focused on science-based climate action and political leadership for climate justice. C40 has grown dramatically in scope and ambition under Mark’s tenure and its 300 staff now support nearly 100 of the world’s leading cities, representing around 700 million residents.

Mark has been named one of the world’s most influential leaders driving climate action as a ‘defender’ by TIME as part of its inaugural TIME100 Climate list. Prior to joining C40 Cities, Mark was a director at pioneering engineering and design firm Arup; and previous to that role, he was a senior adviser to the Mayor of London. Outside of work, he can usually be found either up a mountain or proclaiming the discovery of a great new band.

Regional Director, East, Southeast Asia and Oceania, and Global South Diversity Lead
Singapore

Milag San Jose-Ballesteros serves as the Regional Director for East, Southeast Asia and Oceania at C40. In this role, she is responsible for engaging and supporting C40 member cities in the region as well as facilitating collaboration between cities across the global C40 network. Central to this is working with C40 cities across the region towards ambitious commitments and transformative actions to address climate change. Milag has more than 20 years experience working on environmental governance and policy, natural resources management and sustainable development. Prior to joining C40, Milag served as Regional Environmental Governance Specialist with the Environmental Cooperation-Asia (ECO-Asia) program of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), where she led programmatic partnerships between national and sub-national environmental agencies, and provided technical support to pilot initiatives covering topics including urban environmental issues, compliance and enforcement mechanisms, climate co-benefits and public participation. In this capacity, she worked with 16 countries across Asia and coordinated engagements with various organizations and partners including the US Environmental Protection Agency, the World Bank, Asian Development Bank and the UN Environment Programme. Prior to this, she previously served as a Senior Program Officer with the US-Asia Environmental Partnership promoting clean technology, and as Executive Director of the Philippine member of Friends of the Earth International. A native of Manila, Philippines, she has been based in Singapore since 2008.

Chief Financial Officer
United Kingdom

Rachel serves as the Chief Financial Officer at C40, overseeing financial management, operations and compliance for C40, as well as the strategic financial planning process. As part of the Management Team, Rachel’s role is to help optimise C40’s impact by bringing data-driven, actionable insights to ensure the responsible use of funding to support our missions.

Before joining C40, Rachel held leadership roles in both the commercial and Not for Profit sectors in the UK and the US. Rachel has worked for organisations such as Diageo plc, Kao Corporation, Cambridge University and Boys & Girls Clubs of America. 

CIMA qualified with over 15 years experience in senior finance roles at the global, European, and national levels, Rachel has also been an examiner and author for several Chartered Accountancy bodies.

Managing Director, Regions and Mayoral Engagement, and Regional Director, South and West Asia
India

Shruti Narayan is the Managing Director of Regions and Mayoral Engagement. Shruti previously served as C40 Regional Director for South and West Asia. She is based in New Delhi, India, and works closely with city leadership to sustain and scale up C40’s regional efforts.

Before this she was an Upstream Officer with the International Finance Corporation’s (IFC, World Bank Group) Asia Pacific Cities Platform and has also led the IFC’s Green Building programme in South Asia. Shruti has almost 20 years of global work experience specialising in energy efficiency and sustainability. Her work experience also includes Will Alsop Architects in London, Arup in San Francisco and USAID ECOIII in New Delhi, where she has worked with diverse clients such as corporates, developers, institutions, policymakers and donor agencies to identify, design, incorporate and implement sustainable solutions with the goal of reducing resource consumption and maximising efficiency.

In addition, she has also been a faculty member in sustainable design with educational institutions globally, such as Stanford University, USA, California College of Arts, USA, and the School of Planning and Architecture in India.

C40 Staff

Jameel x C40 Urban Planning Climate Lab Senior Manager
India

Aagya serves as Senior Manager for Jameel C40 Urban Planning Climate Labs, part of the C40 program that aims to support cities, and embed their climate action plan into urban planning regulations. Aagya is an architect and urban and regional planner by training with more than a decade of experience working in spatial planning, public policy, statutory development plans and project development. 

Aagya’s previous experience includes working with CRISIL Ltd., Surbana Jurong Pvt Ltd and Khatib Alami where she worked on diverse projects, teams and clients in India, the UAE and Oman on especially large-scale city master plans. 

She has also independently collaborated with different firms and delivered projects majorly for state governments and local bodies, such as planning strategies and formulation of development controls for AMRUT smart cities, detailed tourism master plans, GIS-based statutory master plans, and new town development master plans. Aagya has lived in quite a few cities across India (Bangalore, Ranchi, Hyderabad, Delhi and cities in UP, Rajasthan and Uttarakhand); she is presently settled in Mumbai. In her free time, Aagya loves to read and paint and she is fond of travelling.

Head of Youth and Civil Society Engagement
United Kingdom
Aaron Kiely

Aaron Kiely is responsible for the development and implementation of C40’s new flagship Global Youth Initiative, working with C40 mayors and young activists to create a Global Youth and Mayors Climate Forum capable of building a shared agenda to drive forward climate solutions, and engaging youth leaders in urban climate action.

Prior to joining C40, Aaron co-led Friends of the Earth’s climate campaign in the UK. He worked to grow and empower a network of 200 activist groups to campaign for socially just climate action both locally and nationally. He was involved in the successful legal challenge to halt expansion of Heathrow airport, and has campaigned on air pollution and fracking. He played a leading role in organising the largest ever UK climate demonstration ahead of the Paris climate talks in 2015.

Previously Aaron was elected to represent 1 million students of African, Arab, Asian and Caribbean descent at the National Union of Students UK. Aaron organised inspiring and successful campaigns that dramatically increased the number of Black representatives in the student movement, effectively challenged racism and halted deportations of international students. Aaron also has experience in local government where he has served as an elected representative.

Aaron has a BSc in Sociology and Social Policy from London Metropolitan University.

Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Manager
Indonesia

Abigail is C40’s Equity, Diversity, & Inclusion Manager. She is responsible for C40’s work in developing ED&I strategy through C40’s programmes and workstreams and monitoring its progress within C40’s internal workforce and culture.

Prior to C40, she served on a special assignment as Programme Specialist for the G20 EMPOWER & Women20. Both groups focus on women’s advocacy under the G20 Indonesia 2022 Presidency.

An advocate for women’s rights, she founded Girls Can Lead in her early 20s; a social initiative established to catalyze the growth of leadership skills among young women in Indonesia, especially those living in rural and conflict-prone areas. Through her work with GCL, she was chosen by the US State Department to join the Young Southeast Asia Leaders Initiative Academic Fellowship in Illinois and Washington D.C., USA.

Abigail obtained her Master’s degree in Public Policy from the University College London as a Chevening Scholar and spend one semester during her Bachelor’s degree as a Temasek Scholar exchange student at the National University of Singapore.

Abigail is currently based in Bali, Indonesia. In her spare time, she enjoys practising yoga, playing tennis & badminton, walking by the beach, as well as collecting books to satisfy her needs as an avid reader.

Head of Climate Data and Analytics
United Kingdom

Adam is the Head of Climate Data and Analytics in the Business Planning and Reporting team. 

He is responsible for leading our analysis of KPI data like emissions, mode share and air quality and working with colleagues to acquire and analyse new data in critical areas like resilience, equity and health benefits.

Having cerebral palsy, Adam is passionate about equality. He has co-chaired the National Disability Summit for the UK National Health Service (NHS), one of the biggest employers in the world. Subsequently, he is now part of C40’s initiatives around Inclusive Climate Action.

Adam was previously a Mathematician and Statistician for the NHS, Founder and Research Director at Numeration Systems and a Hydrogeologist for the Environment Agency in England. 

In addition to environmental data, he has 20 years of experience with health and equity data, producing peer-reviewed publications and presentations to audiences such as Yale and Public Health England. For example, he designed architecture to collate data to remodel health systems and preventative interventions to optimise system cost, emissions and patient outcomes. 

Adam is based in Cornwall on the south coast of the UK. As well as enjoying the coast most weekends, Adam watches local rugby and the local music scene. Both his kids are now at university, giving him time to pursue these and new interests. 

Deputy Director of International Advocacy
United Kingdom

Agathe is Deputy Director of International Advocacy.

Before this, Agathe was City Diplomacy Manager, where she served to engage C40 members in the C40 City Diplomacy Strategy and support C40’s engagement and participation in intergovernmental climate, urban and development policy-making processes.

Agathe works closely with the Head of City Diplomacy to drive strategic and effective engagement of the C40 network in global climate policy dialogue and to maximise its impact in the global political stage. Prior to joining C40, Agathe managed low-carbon development projects for an international local government network and supported the network’s global climate advocacy strategy and engagement in the UNFCCC process.

Agathe has an interdisciplinary background in climate science, international climate policy and urban planning. Her experience includes research and consulting for international organizations, NGOs, consultancies, local governments and research institutes in Europe, the US, Brazil and Bangladesh. Agathe holds a MA in Climate and Society from Columbia University and joint Master degrees in European Affairs and Urban Sustainable Development from Sciences Po Lille and Lille University of Science and Technology.

Youth Engagement and Campaigns Manager
South Africa
Ahmed Mokgopo

Ahmed Mokgopo serves as Youth Engagement and Campaigns Manager at C40. In this role, Ahmed supports the development and implementation of C40’s Global Youth and Mayors Forum.

Before joining C40, Ahmed worked as a Campaigns Specialist at 350.org where he led the South Africa teams fossil fuel finance and divestment campaigns. There, he managed 350.org’s efforts in urging the City of Cape Town to commit to divest from fossil fuels. Following Cape Town’s announcement to divest from fossil fuels in 2017, Ahmed headed up the development and implementation of a public finance campaign advocating for South African Development Finance Institutions (DFIs) to commit to policy that would exclude fossil fuel financing. The campaign enhanced 350’s visibility amongst senior public finance officials through media, public mobilisation and direct engagement. Through this campaign, 350.org became a key partner in stopping the development of the Thabametsi coal fired power plant which was officially cancelled in November 2020.

Before 350.org, Ahmed was a research assistant at Itad an international development consultancy where he supported a global programme evaluating the role of markets in poverty reduction. Ahmed holds a Master’s in Globalisation, Business and Development from the University of Sussex and a Bachelor’s degree in Anthropology from the University of the Witwatersrand.

Senior Manager, Thriving Cities Initiative (TCI)
Spain

Aida (they/she) is the Senior Manager for the Thriving Cities Initiative at C40. In this role, they support Barcelona’s and Glasgow’s efforts to foster new models that reduce harmful consumption while focusing on well-being and equity.

Aida has over a decade of experience working across sectors, cities and disciplines to address barriers that prevent people and communities from thriving. They have worked as an urban planner, community organizer, researcher and facilitator focusing on how cities can proactively address housing insecurity, unsustainable consumption, and barriers to transportation. They hold a Master’s degree in Environmental Studies (Urban Planning) and Ecological Economics, and a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and Economics.

Aida is of Persian and Kurdish ancestry on their mother’s side, and of Iberian ancestry (primarily Catalan) on their father’s side. They enjoy travelling by train and bike, growing food, getting lost in dystopian sci-fi, and learning about places, people, languages and traditions.

Inclusive Climate Action City Adviser, Bengaluru
India
Akshatha Venkatesha, Inclusive Climate Action (ICA) City Advisor, Bengaluru

Akshatha serves as the C40 Inclusive Climate Action City Advisor for Bengaluru. She is an architect and a landscape architect by training, a designer at heart, and enjoys solving problems with a social lens.

Akshatha is passionate about building inclusive partnerships between communities, donors, and not-for-profit organisations to achieve long-term social impact. Over the last eight years, as a development sector professional, Akshatha has successfully developed and implemented community programs and mobilised funding for organisations that work across sectors such as women empowerment, healthcare, education, and the environment. Her core competencies are partnership development, program development and management, strategic planning, impact monitoring and evaluation, and community engagement.

Akshatha enjoys practising simple yoga, reading, and gardening every day. She is fascinated by butterflies and elephants. Akshatha enjoys travelling, and as an ardent foodie, desserts are her go-to meal.

Water Programme Officer
United Kingdom

Alejandro is an architect and urban planner with relevant experience setting resilience plans for vulnerable communities. As C40’s Water Programme Officer, Alejandro is responsible for coordinating and managing the second phase of the Water Safe Cities Project delivery, which aims to reduce water-related climate risk.  

Prior to joining C40, he lectured on slum upgrading strategies and developed several urban regeneration schemes in the Global South. His most recent work was setting up a Mobility Plan for Medellín city (Colombia), seeking to prioritize pedestrians, cyclists, and public transport in street design. 

Alejandro studied architecture at two regional universities: Universidad Pontificia Bolivariana (Colombia) and Universidad Catolica (Chile). Afterwards, he won a Chevening scholarship targeted at local leaders that allowed him to study for a Master’s degree in International Planning and Sustainable Development at the University of Westminster (United Kingdom).

Alejandro enjoys sketching urban landscapes, practising yoga and visiting local markets.

Head of Campaigns (Green Jobs and Green & Healthy Streets)
Italy

Alessio Baù serves as C40’s Head of Campaigns. He is a campaign and communications expert focused on public engagement, grassroots organising, digital media, creative content and social innovation, with experience both in the public and private sectors. He is also a C40 LGBTQIA+ staff representative.

Prior to joining C40, Alessio worked as Social Media Editor-in-Chief for the City of Milan, as Content Strategist and Campaign Manager for the Airbnb Policy & Communications team, and as a consultant for agencies, firms, electoral campaigns, and non-governmental organisations.

Alessio has a Bachelor’s degree in Humanities (University of Padova) and a first-level Master’s in Plants, Social Innovation & Design (University of Florence). He is a published author with a background in journalism, a board member of the Milan LGBTQIA+ association and passionate about rooftop gardening and train travel.

Deputy Chief of Staff and Head of the Executive Office
United Kingdom

Alice serves as Deputy Chief of Staff and Head of the Executive Office. In this role, Alice oversees the smooth functioning of the Executive Director’s private office, his international engagement, and the coordination of C40’s global leadership strategy which aims to use the collective voice and actions of C40’s mayors and partners to help the world avoid climate breakdown. Alice has worked at C40 since 2019, working on various projects from leading the 2022 C40-Bloomberg Philanthropies Awards to coordinating C40’s COVID-19 response and rapid response strategy.

Alice has a BA in Geography from the University of Manchester, including a year at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver. She is currently studying for an MSc in Spatial Planning at UCL.

Senior Manager, Land Use Planning
Kenya
Photo of Alice Kaumba photo, the C40 Senior Manager of Land Use Planning, in the Climate Solutions and Networks team

Alice manages C40’s Land Use Planning network, which is responsible for providing support to cities to develop sustainable land use and urban planning policies.

Prior to joining C40, Alice worked as a chief land use planner with National Land Commission Kenya. She was responsible for monitoring the implementation of the National Land Use Policy, coordinating collation of data for drafting responses to questions raised by the Kenyan Parliamentary Committee on Land, and providing technical assistance to county governments in developing sustainable urban plans. Alice has also worked in local government, responsible for development permitting and advising real estate developers, and previously as an urban planner with a consultancy firm, where she was the head of the research and community engagement unit. Alice is based in Nairobi, Kenya.

Digital and Social Media Manager
United Kingdom

Alicia serves as Digital and Social Media Manager for C40. In this role, she is responsible for taking C40’s presence on social media and digital platforms to the next level, and increasing the visibility of both C40, and our cities’ work. 

Alicia helps to further strengthen C40 as one of the leading voices in the global climate conversation, and connects our organisation with audiences around the world through creative and engaging content on new and existing platforms.

Before joining C40, Alicia worked as a journalist for newspapers across the UK, covering live news and producing content for digital and social media platforms.

Alicia holds a BA in Journalism Studies from the University of Sheffield, UK, and is accredited by the National Council for the Training of Journalists (NCTJ).

Senior Manager, U20 & G20 Engagement
United Kingdom

As Senior Manager in the External Engagement team, Alina is the C40 project lead for Urban 20, an initiative which brings cities together to elevate urban voices in the G20 ecosystem and beyond. Since leading the project in 2022, Alina has worked closely with Jakarta City Hall, Ahmedabad Municipality, and the city halls of Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo, as well as the G20 Indonesia, G20 India and G20 Brazil Presidencies. Before joining the U20 team, she managed the Cities Race to Zero campaign, a programme for cities committed to delivering climate action run by a coalition of not-for-profit partners.

Previously, Alina was Programme Coordinator with the Europe Programme at Chatham House, a leading international affairs think tank, where she supported the development and management of complex research projects. Her specific focus was on multi-partner initiatives. Among these, a project exploring the intersection of democracy and technology and a youth engagement project working to increase young people’s understanding of key policy issues across Europe and Africa. Alina also has previous professional experience in Brussels, including at the Strategy unit of the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Neighbourhood and Enlargement Negotiations (DG NEAR) and at the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum, a regional civil society organisation.

Alina graduated from King’s College London with a degree in European Studies and holds an MSc in International Relations from the University of Edinburgh.

Deputy Director, Ports and Shipping
United States

Alisa is Deputy Director of Ports and Shipping, working to connect port cities, ports, and related public and private sector stakeholders in sharing knowledge and developing and implementing policies and solutions that improve public health and mitigate greenhouse gas emissions from ports and supply chains. Alisa has extensive experience working with engineering consultancies, power utilities, technology companies, and government agencies in the energy and maritime sectors.

Over the past 5 years, Alisa championed and managed a port efficiency programme for the US Department of Energy’s Better Communities Alliance and supported the technical and advisory teams on the 2050 Masterplan for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. Alisa also spent a part of her career in Southeast and South Asia with an international electric utility, where she was responsible for leadership, project direction, business planning and development of critical power and infrastructure projects.

She is also a co-founder of SolarSkyrise, a clean technology company that tackles the emissions challenge of large buildings and transforms the value of urban renewables.

Alisa holds a B.A. in International Relations and Political Science from Boston University, and an Executive Master in Urban Planning from the University of Southern California.

Deputy Regional Director for East, Southeast Asia and Oceania (ESEAO)
Malaysia
Alissa Raj

Alissa serves as the Deputy Regional Director for East, Southeast Asia, and Oceania, supporting regional initiatives and maintaining strong relationships with C40 member cities.

Prior to her current role, she worked as the Senior Manager for Climate Action Planning as well as the City Adviser for Kuala Lumpur, where she facilitated the development of a Paris Agreement compatible Climate Action Plan for the city.

With a background in environmental sustainable design consulting, she contributed to optimizing building and masterplan designs for sustainable certification and carbon emission reductions in projects across Malaysia. She notably assisted in the development of Kuala Lumpur’s Carbon Management Plan for council-owned assets. Her experience also includes corporate consulting, including sustainability strategy and reporting for locally listed companies.

Alissa holds a Bachelor’s degree in Architectural Studies as well as a Master of Environments from the University of Melbourne.

Project Officer, Divest/Invest Forum
United Kingdom

Amaia is C40’s Divest/Invest Forum Project Officer, where she works closely with the Head of Sustainable Investment as part of the Climate Finance, Knowledge and Partnerships team. In this role, she supports cities with their commitments to divest financial assets from fossil fuel companies and champion investments in climate solutions.

Prior to joining C40, Amaia was at the Birmingham City Council, with a focus on various international projects with Birmingham’s sister cities and EU-funded projects. She also supported partners within the Commonwealth networks. While at the Council’s leading Brexit Programme, she collaborated closely with the UK Government Home Office.

Amaia is passionate about working with cities and building global relationships with partners, and has rich experience with city governments, NGOs, universities and local authorities.

Regional Senior Programme Manager, Africa
Nigeria

Amaka Agwu is Regional Senior Programme Manager for the Africa region at C40.

She is based in Abuja, Nigeria, with expertise in programme design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation, and has actively worked in the development sector over the years, processing proposals and designing theory of change by analysing the country’s socio-economic situations, trends, needs and gaps.

Before C40, Amaka worked as Head of Programs, where she was supported in conducting research, gathering business and programme intelligence for the purpose of identifying new opportunities, and tracking and engaging with donors for funding.

Amaka has many skills in working with community and city structures and mobilising stakeholders using participatory approaches to secure buy-in and project ownership. She led the process for developing and approving the National Policy on SRHR of persons with disabilities in Nigeria. She has also led capacity building of government institutions, private organisations, and CSOs on gender and disability mainstreaming.

Head of Adaptation Implementation and Water
United States
Amanda Ikert

Amanda Ikert (“Mandy”) serves as Head of Adaptation Implementation at C40. In this position she is responsible for supporting cities as they work to meet their climate change adaptation and water management goals.

Before taking on this role, Mandy served as the City Director for Jakarta at C40 where she worked closely with the Governor and regional government of Jakarta to identify, develop and implement programmes and projects to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Before joining C40, Mandy was a city planner in New York, serving in both NYC’s City Planning and Parks and Recreation departments.

She has a research background in urban and architectural history as well as international environmental programming, including projects with the Asia Foundation and the Aga Khan Trust for Culture. Mandy holds a Master of City Planning and a Master of Science in Architectural Studies from MIT and a BA in History from Wesleyan University.

Global Senior Manager, CFO Network for African Cities
United Kingdom

Amandla serves as the Global Senior Manager, CFO Network for African Cities – an initiative focused on engaging and empowering senior finance officials in C40 Cities’ network to access climate finance, and implement evidence-based budgetary decisions and policy making in public financial management. Amandla is responsible for driving new strategic priorities, partnerships and programming to develop the network.

Amandla is currently based in the United Kingdom and has worked across a wide variety of areas within international development, including environmental sustainability, agribusiness management, private sector development, women’s economic empowerment and innovation in Europe and Africa. Before joining C40 Cities, she was stationed in Nairobi, Kenya and worked as an internal consultant for One Acre Fund. Amandla has also consulted on a Horizon2020 climate change project to set up a twinning programme between European cities and African cities and municipalities to empower climate-vulnerable communities within Africa to develop and sustain nature-based solutions to climate change and inequitable exposure to air pollution. In addition, she has previously held project management positions at UK Research and Innovation and Connected Places Catapult.

Amandla holds an MSc in Public Policy and Administration from the London School of Economics and Political Science, and a BA in Social Policy, Politics and Economics from the University of Birmingham.