2017
Steve Frisch
President

Steve Frisch

President

Steve is President of Sierra Business Council and one of its founding members. Over the last 20 years Sierra Business Council has leveraged more than $100 million of investment in the Sierra Nevada and its communities through community and public-private partnerships.  Sierra Business Council also manages the Sierra Small Business Development Center focusing on advancing sustainable business practices and linking new and expanding businesses to climate mitigation and adaptation funding. Steve manages SBC’s staff and programmatic development.

Prior to joining the Sierra Business Council, Steve owned and operated a small business in Truckee. Steve serves on the board of the California Stewardship Network, the Large Landscape Practitioners Network, the National Geographic Geo-tourism Council, Capital Public Radio, and Leadership For Jobs and a New Economy.  Steve is also a former Fulbright Exchange Program Fellow, sharing information and knowledge gained in the Sierra Nevada in China and Mongolia.  Steve is a graduate of San Francisco State University with a B.A. in Political Science.

 

Personal Highlights:

Steve lives in Truckee with his wife Lisa. He is an avid reader of history, politics, community planning and Sierra issues. Steve enjoys traveling the back roads, connecting to local history, camping and cooking.

 

August 10, 2017

It's Not Too Late to Save Giant Sequoia National Monument

Nearly 20 years ago President Bill Clinton designated the 328,000-acre Giant Sequoia National Monument within the boundaries of Sequoia National Forest.

The decision was not made lightly, but after careful consideration and a strong science based approach to assess the boundaries necessary to protect the numerous groves of Giant Sequoia within the Monument.

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Paul Ahrns
Program Director

Paul Ahrns

Program Director

Paul grew up in Nevada City, spending his summers exploring the mountains and valleys around Truckee. His summers in the Sierra fostered his passion for protecting and sustaining the natural wealth and beauty of the Sierra Nevada region. Paul returned home to the region in 2010 to join the Climate Planning team and work on the first phase of the Green Communities Program. Paul has served as a Planning Technician and Project Manager for the Climate Planning team providing technical expertise and project management support to assist over 30 local governments, special districts and private developers with climate planning assistance. Paul brings his experience in sustainability, planning, community engagement and project management to his new role as the Climate Planning Program Director for the Sierra Business Council.

Personal Highlights:

Paul earned his Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Science & Policy from California State University, Long Beach where he graduated Magna Cum Laude and was selected as the Department’s Outstanding Graduate for 2009. Paul combines his passion for the environment and desire to explore the world. He has had the pleasure of exploring 5 different continents and more countries than he can keep track off. The highlights of which have been working with communities in Kenya to drill water wells without using electricity or fuel and exploring the incredible history and culture of China.

August 04, 2017

Increasing Your Energy Efficiency Options: The Story of PACE Financing

As you may have heard, the State of California recently set a number of ambitious goals to reduce our impact on the environment. Unsurprisingly, many of these goals face multiple barriers with the potential to impede their progress. Two of these goals in particular: “50% renewable electricity” and “Double energy efficiency savings at existing buildings” are limited by the availability of financing for renewable energy and energy efficiency projects. SBC has seen this firsthand. Thankfully, opportunities have been developed to help overcome such barriers. 

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Jessica Carr
Program Manager

Paul Ahrns

Program Director

Paul grew up in Nevada City, spending his summers exploring the mountains and valleys around Truckee. His summers in the Sierra fostered his passion for protecting and sustaining the natural wealth and beauty of the Sierra Nevada region. Paul returned home to the region in 2010 to join the Climate Planning team and work on the first phase of the Green Communities Program. Paul has served as a Planning Technician and Project Manager for the Climate Planning team providing technical expertise and project management support to assist over 30 local governments, special districts and private developers with climate planning assistance. Paul brings his experience in sustainability, planning, community engagement and project management to his new role as the Climate Planning Program Director for the Sierra Business Council.

Personal Highlights:

Paul earned his Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Science & Policy from California State University, Long Beach where he graduated Magna Cum Laude and was selected as the Department’s Outstanding Graduate for 2009. Paul combines his passion for the environment and desire to explore the world. He has had the pleasure of exploring 5 different continents and more countries than he can keep track off. The highlights of which have been working with communities in Kenya to drill water wells without using electricity or fuel and exploring the incredible history and culture of China.

July 28, 2017

Valuing Vacation: A Boost to Employee and Employer Alike

Ah, vacation. The word alone conjures memories of lakes, rivers, cabins, camping trips, Yosemite, the beach…just to name a few of my own. Those were the summers of my youth, those three glorious months off between school years.

Alas, they had to end sometime. I have to say though, doesn’t it seem like the kids are living it right with all that free time to explore?

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Chelsea Walterscheid
Program Manager

Chelsea Walterscheid

Program Manager

 SBC Chelsea Walterscheid ProfilePic 2017 07

Chelsea is a new member of the Small Business Development Center.  Not new to the needs of small businesses, Chelsea worked with the Truckee Downtown Merchants Association, helping to promote local businesses as well as working on beautification projects and infrastructure improvements in Historic Downtown Truckee. She helped produce many successful fundraisers for the TDMA, including managing Truckee Thursdays.  Chelsea loves to show off Truckee's historic charm, so she is proud of her work producing a large, successful event right in the heart of her hometown.

Personal Highlights:


Chelsea was born and raised in Truckee and has always been passionate about Truckee's unique history.  She is a twenty + year volunteer with the Truckee Donner Historical Society, ran the Old Jail Museum for many years, and puts together the annual Old Timers' Picnic. Chelsea and her husband, John, have two teenagers who keep the family busy as members of the Truckee High Trap Shooters Club, Girl Scouts, and Boy Scouts.

July 25, 2017

Building Better Broadband: We Just Need Your Speed!

SBC is working to improve broadband infrastructure in the Sierra Nevada (something we're extemely excited about!), but before we get into the nitty gritty, let's back up a moment. What is broadband, anyway? The textbook answer is this: broadband is telecommunication in which a wide band of frequencies is available to transmit information.

In other words: high-speed internet. 

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Kerri Timmer
Vice President Climate and Energy

Kerri Timmer

Vice President, Climate & Energy



As Vice President of Climate & Energy, Kerri works in partnership with local, regional, state and federal agencies and officials to advance sustainable communities strategies, climate action planning, energy efficiency programs and other SBC activities.

Kerri is a communications and management specialist with more than 25 years of public- and private- sector experience in community and government relations, business communications, land and water conservation, and nonprofit management and capacity building.  Prior to joining SBC, Kerri spent six years with the Sierra Nevada Conservancy, where she served most recently as that agency’s Regional Policy and Program Manager.  Before that, she was Executive Director of a non-profit conservation group, operated her own consulting practice where she cultivated relationships with watershed organizations, land trusts and other community groups within and outside the Sierra, and served as account executive and creative director for a community and government relations firm in San Francisco.  Kerri holds a B.A. in English Literature from San Francisco State University and a certificate in Land Use and Natural Resources planning through UC Davis Extension.  Kerri has also authored a number of publications addressing land and water conservation and community sustainability issues in the Sierra Nevada. 

Personal Highlights

Kerri and her husband John live in the foothills of the western Sierra Nevada, where they enjoy hiking, biking, boating, camping and hosting backyard barbeques for friends and family.

July 21, 2017

Success! California's Cap-and-Trade Program Lives to See Another Decade

After months of worrying, weeks of wrangling, days of despairing, and hours of hoping, SBC is happy to report that California’s Legislature voted to extend our state’s signature Cap-and-Trade (C&T) program to 2030.

The agreement reached on Monday night, July 17, ensures that California will continue its leadership role in reducing harmful carbon emissions while supporting business growth that some people expect will bump the state up to the 5th largest economy in the world this year.

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