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DEC Environmental Justice Team

Environmental Justice Team at the DEC

Learn more about our Foundation, Team Goals, Current & Ongoing Projects, or Members of the Team!


In 2016, the Environmental Protection Agency set a standard for Environmental Justice incorporation into all Vermont DEC programs. In the years following, EPA has provided continued  guidance and support as we launched these efforts here in Vermont. Although the principles of environmental justice were established in the early 1990s , the Vermont DEC has no Environmental Justice Policy. While lacking a formal  Environmental Justice Program or specialized staff, through a group of dedicated staff, we are making progress on incorporating environmental justice into all of DEC’s programs through collaboration with external stakeholders and other state agencies, piloting innovative community engagement techniques, staff training, development of an environmental justice mapping tool for Vermont and exploring opportunities to fund this critical work.. The Environmental Justice Team was formed in 2018 to carry on the work and effort in absence of formal policies or programs, and has continued to make progress on many fronts.


Team Goals

  • Empower Team member to serve as division liaison in Environmental Justice 

  • Advise the Department on how to integrate Environmental Justice into DEC’s regulatory, outreach and funding programs 

  • Explore funding sources (ex. EPA Healthy Communities grant program) for projects in Vermont communities  

  • Develop a plan for Environmental Justice sustainability and consistent application throughout all DEC Divisions into the future 

  • Support and develop further staff training including EJ team experts (ex. Diversity, Equity & Inclusion and Poverty Training)

  • Monitor the effectiveness of DEC EJ work and Title VI compliance.

  • Promote awareness of Environmental Justice in DEC 


Current and Ongoing Projects

  • Training and Internal Engagement

  • Informational Environmental Justice Mapping Tool

  • Environmental Justice Community Engagement 

  • Improving Language Access Resources

  • External Stakeholder Collaboration  


Team Members 

Team Lead

Megan Cousino

Representing Administration and Innovation Division 

Rebecca Williams

Representing Air Quality and Climate Division

Ellen Parr Doering

Representing Drinking Water and Groundwater Protection Division

Erin Stewart

Sarah Bolaski

Representing Environmental Compliance Division

Emily Rogers

Bridget Phillips

Dan Mason

Representing Legal Services

Katelyn Ellermann

Rachel Stevens

Representing Watershed Management Division

Jamie Bates

Representing Waste Management and Prevention Division

Kristi Herzer

Anne Bijur

Representing Water Investment Division

Chris Rottler