Melanie Nutter is the Principal of Nutter Consulting that provides sustainability and smart cities strategy development and implementation for cities, foundations and companies. In July of 2010, Mayor Gavin Newsom appointed Melanie Nutter as the Director of the San Francisco Department of Environment. She continued to serve in that capacity for Mayor Edwin Lee through February 2014. Nutter led the Department, which helps all San Francisco residents and businesses take an active role in protecting the urban environment, conducts outreach and education on sustainable practices, and runs many innovative environmental programs including on zero waste, green building, climate and energy, toxics reduction and clean transportation.
During her tenure, San Francisco achieved an 80% waste diversion rate, reduced its carbon emissions to 14.5% below 1990 levels and was named the Greenest City in North America by Siemens and the Economist Intelligence Unit. Under Nutter’s leadership, the Department expanded its focus on community engagement, released an updated Climate Action Strategy, launched a citywide adaptation effort and started a biodiversity program. Nutter also championed smart city strategies to help the City meet its sustainability goals.
From 2005-2010, Nutter served as the Deputy District Director for the U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi, where she managed the Speaker’s district office by supervising staff, addressing constituent concerns, and advising on local policy issues. Nutter functioned as the district policy liaison to Speaker Pelosi’s DC policy advisors on issues including the environment, energy, transportation, environmental health, women’s issues, and food policy.
Nutter founded and is Chair Emeritus for the Energy and Environment Circle for Full Circle Fund. Nutter also served on the Planning Committee for the Urban Sustainability Director’s Network (USDN) and Co-Chaired USDN’s Innovation Fund. She currently serves as a Board Member for Ecodistricts and serves as the Chair of their Fundraising and Development Committee. Another Board Member seat she currently holds is for the Urban Age Institute. She also currently serves on the Sustainability Subcommittee for the 2016 Superbowl. Nutter was appointed in 2014 to the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) Smart and Sustainable Cities Network, working on international standards for smart cities.
Nutter is a frequent speaker on urban sustainability and smart cities, having presented at TEDx, South by Southwest Eco, the Urban Environmental Accords Summit, GreenBiz’s VERGE conference, the Aspen Ideas Festival, and the Smart Cities World Congress, among other events. She most recently curated the Sustainability Track for the City Innovate Summit. She has also been featured as a contributor on CNN.com and the Today Show. Nutter holds a Bachelor’s of Science degree from Northwestern University in Communications and Environmental Studies. She lives in San Francisco with her husband and son.
For the past 15 years, Christina has provided research, advisory services, project management, planning, and general management to a wide range of sustainability organizations and projects around the world. She uses this background to leverage system change for cities as a part of the Nutter Consulting team.
Previously, Christina assisted the San Francisco Planning Department explore its role in advancing urban sustainability at both the department and city levels. She also worked with the Wilson Center Urban Sustainability Lab as a rapporteur for a conference of select urban leaders exploring systems change in the energy-water-transportation nexus.
With the Urban Age Institute’s Meeting of the Minds network, Christina helps develop and share leading edge research and practice on urban sustainability. This includes disseminating information on transportation systems development, covering such topics as BRT (bus rapid transit), multi-modal integration, autonomous vehicles, and urban leadership at the policy, governance, and organizational levels. Through related work, she created two online learning courses in urban sustainability and innovation: one on smart cities and transportation and another on urban social equity.
For several years at the EcoSmart Foundation in Vancouver (BC), Christina developed and managed multi-stakeholder public-private green building and cleantech pilot projects in Canada, China, and the UAE. The most recent initiative was the creation of a 1MW solar farm on a large brownfield site in partnership with a municipality and mining company.
Christina’s other past work includes administering a peak oil think tank, improving government contaminated site management, researching for a UK environmental documentary organization, and delivering environmental education and community programs in the Caribbean. She is particularly interested in rooftops, bioregional carrying capacity, urban metabolism, and how our social, natural, and built environments can be better harmonized for regenerative cities. Christina holds a master’s degree in Sustainability and Environmental Management from Harvard and a BA in Environmental Studies – with a joint major in Anthropology – from the University of Victoria.