NEFF Leadership, News Room

Andrea Colnes Joins NEFF as Exemplary Forestry Center Director

Jan. 06, 2022

New England Forestry Foundation (NEFF) is pleased to announce that Andrea Colnes has joined the organization’s staff as Director of NEFF’s new Exemplary Forestry Center. Members of the NEFF community may know Andrea from her role on the NEFF Board of Directors, her work at the Coalition for Green Capital, or her time as the founding Executive Director of the Northern Forest Alliance.

As Director of the Exemplary Forestry Center, Andrea (Andi) oversees NEFF’s high-leverage, high-impact programs that drive forward climate solutions based on the management and protection of New England’s forests. The Center works to implement NEFF’s “30 Percent Solution” by spreading the use of Exemplary Forestry, conserving forests, and increasing the use of local, sustainable mass timber products in tall buildings. Taken together, these climate solutions can offset fully 30 percent of New England’s required reductions in energy-related emissions in the next 30 years.

“I am thrilled to join NEFF in this new capacity to advance nature-based climate solutions to help meet climate goals here in New England, and serve as a globally relevant model,” said Andi. “It is wonderful to return my professional focus to New England to help implement this bold new chapter in NEFF’s longstanding endeavor to advance sustainable forestry and conserve forests at a landscape scale.”

Andrea has led strategic campaigns focused on energy, large-scale land conservation, and sustainable forestry over a 30-year career, most recently as the Director for Global Green Bank Development at the Coalition for Green Capital, where she brought the Green Bank model to developing countries to scale up climate finance in support of national climate goals. This work included a focus on Africa and working with the Green Climate Fund to launch the first Green Bank in the developing world for the Development Bank of Southern Africa, working extensively with the African Development Bank in multiple countries and with the Government of Rwanda to design new climate finance facilities. Andi also served as the co-secretariat to the global Green Bank Network in the context of broad global outreach in the climate finance arena.

“I first met Andi through her work at the Northern Forest Alliance, where she led a coalition of more than 50 conservation organizations to establish a vision for the future of the region and a framework for making it happen that we are still following today,” said Bob Perschel, NEFF Executive Director. “Andi is the perfect person to lead our Exemplary Forestry Center thanks to both these deep roots in New England land conservation and her more recent experience with innovative markets, policy and finance, areas that feature heavily in NEFF’s climate-solutions programs.”

NEFF’s Board of Directors and staff are delighted to have Andi move into this dynamic new role that melds her forestry, renewable-energy and climate-finance expertise to implement NEFF’s 30 Percent Solution in the years ahead.