Meet our Head of Sustainability & Policy: Genevieve Rose Sherman
For all future generations, it is essential to me that we find a way to live within the resource bounds of the earth we call home – powering a good quality of life with clean, renewable sources of energy is the foundation of this effort.
Our Head of Sustainability & Policy, Genevieve Sherman, has been a member of the Nuveen Green Capital team since the very beginning.
A Denver, Colorado native, now based in San Francisco, she worked with Co-Founders Jessica Bailey and Ali Cooley to design and launch the first statewide C-PACE program in Connecticut in 2012.
Here she shares more about her fascinating background and passion for the environment.
When did you join the Nuveen Green Capital team?
I worked with Jessica Bailey and Ali Cooley at the Connecticut Green Bank to design and launch the first statewide C-PACE Program in Connecticut in 2012. I joined Greenworks Lending in 2016 to help scale C-PACE and its operations nationally.
What do you do in your current role?
I oversee the Programs & Policy team, which both advocates for clean energy policy adoption nationwide, and also nurtures relationships with public, non-profit, and private sector stakeholders that manage the programs in which Nuveen Green Capital is active. I also design and lead our company strategy to identify and develop new clean energy and sustainability investment areas, markets, key partnerships, and product structures for NGC to grow its business and its impact. I also support Nuveen Green Capital’s ESG data collection efforts and metrics to ensure robust reporting and long-term accountability.
What led you to this career path?
While I grew up in the Rocky Mountains and have a deep love of wilderness and the outdoors, I’m also a city mouse and I started my career in urban planning, first in New York City then in Cape Town, South Africa. It quickly became apparent to me that cities fundamentally lacked decision-making infrastructure around how to evaluate and make critical climate-change related infrastructure investments. Completing a master’s degree in environmental policy and finance, I learned we have 100% of the technologies we need to decarbonize our energy sector! What we lacked were political leadership, smart policy, and capital solutions. This inspired me to work at the nation’s first green bank, alongside Nuveen Green Capital’s cofounders, to build those scalable, smart solutions, which is what I have worked on for the past 10 years.
What do you see in the future for clean energy and this business?
I see nothing but opportunity and growth in the future for clean energy and Nuveen Green Capital. The electric grid, its power sources (power plants), and power users (buildings!), comprise the largest and most complex machine in the world. We are at the forefront of transitioning it to new technologies for the first time in over 100 years, which presents both an enormous policy and regulatory challenge, as well as a vast capital investment opportunity. This transition can, and must, have meaningful benefits for the environment and communities for them to endure. This challenge is not a matter of if, but when – and that when has become now.
Why is this important to you?
I cherish the beauty and diversity of life on earth. The changing climate has already led to the largest extinction of plant and animal species in human record; now humanity’s own ability to live comfortably on our planet is threatened. For all future generations, it is essential to me that we find a way to live within the resource bounds of the earth we call home – powering a good quality of life with clean, renewable sources of energy is the foundation of this effort.
Do you have any charitable causes that you support and why?
I have supported various chapters of the Youth Conservation Corps for over a decade. YCC is a summer youth employment program that engages young people in meaningful work experiences at national parks, forests, wildlife refuges, and fish hatcheries while developing an ethic of environmental stewardship and civic responsibility. I know that I am incredibly lucky to have grown up in close proximity to wilderness, which engendered in me a love and respect for all the gifts and insights we receive from nature. I feel it is so important for all young people to have access to the outdoors and to learn environmental stewardship.