Jonathan KuselExecutive Director, Sierra Institute
Dr. Jonathan Kusel founded Sierra Institute for Community and Environment in 1993 and directs the organization today. He received a Ph.D. in Natural Resource Sociology and Policy from U.C. Berkeley, where he taught before launching the Sierra Institute in the northern Sierra. He holds a Master's degree in Forest Science from the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies.
Dr. Kusel has been working to help rural communities thrive by bringing people and ideas together to improve socioeconomic conditions and natural resource management. In 2018, Dr. Kusel led a team that built a small biomass-powered energy facility for Plumas County's Health and Human Services Center. The facility is housed in the first full cross laminated timber (CLT) building constructed in California. Following the Dixie Fire, Dr. Kusel and partners designed and built three fire-resistant mass timber homes to demonstrate the capability, financial viability and beauty of single-family CLT homes. Sierra Institute is currently working to launch the first community scale CLT production facility in California.