Michael Cyr is a waste industry expert based in New York City. Through years in the commercial hauling industry he has learned the ins, outs, and limitations of diversion as we know it. He is now an operations consultant specializing in waste reduction and is also the founder of Cup Zero – providing reusable zero waste cups for events and festivals.
Jill has been the Executive Director of the Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper, a non-profit organization, since 2012. Over the past 19 years, Jill has helped secure and implement over $100 million in federal, state, local and private investments towards local initiatives throughout Western New York that have contributed to the region’s waterfront and economic resurgence. Specifically, this includes the toxic sediment clean-up of the Buffalo River, large scale habitat restoration, water quality improvement projects, public access to the waterfront, and Great Lakes policy. Under her leadership, in 2015, Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper was awarded the North American Riverprize, and international competition for excellence in watershed and river system management. Then, in 2016 in New Delhi, India, the organization was also awarded the Thiess International Riverprize a prestigious global recognition.
Caitlin Dewey is a journalist based in Buffalo, New York. She has hired fake boyfriends, mucked out cow barns and braved online mobs in pursuit of stories for outlets including The New York Times, Cosmopolitan, The Atlantic, Medium’s OneZero and the Washington Post. From 2012 to 2018, she covered digital culture, food and agriculture on the Post’s business and style desks. She is currently an enterprise reporter at The Buffalo News, her hometown paper.
Dr. Balaguru Ravi
Dr. Balaguru Ravi is an Internal Medicine/Primary Care Sports Medicine Physician based in Victoria, Texas. Dr. Ravi completed his Sports Medicine Fellowship with the University at Buffalo and worked closely with UB’s Concussion Clinic. He is passionate about treating patients with the latest scientific evidence available, especially regarding concussions and nonsurgical musculoskeletal injuries. Currently, he works for DeTar Healthcare Systems as an internist and concussion specialist.
Dr. Phil Stokes
Dr. Phil Stokes is currently the Executive Director of the Penn Dixie Fossil Park & Nature Reserve in Buffalo, NY. Prior to working for big fossil, Dr. Stokes served as instructor, research associate, academic advisor, and community outreach coordinator in the Department of Geosciences at the University of Arizona — a top 10 Geology program — while pursuing his PhD. His 2016 dissertation, Diversity in Geoscience: Critical Incidents and Factors Affecting Choice of Major, used social and behavioral science to look at the factors behind underrepresentation in STEM fields, and in particular geology. In his spare time he plays guitar and ukulele, travels, and brings a telescope to music festivals for late night stargazing.
Dr. John Panepinto
John Panepinto is an Associate Professor of Microbiology and Immunology in the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at UB. John’s research specialty is fungi that cause infections in humans. John is passionate about communicating science broadly, especially regarding the ways that microbes impact our daily lives, and how our daily lives may impact our microbes.