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Correcting our Planet's Trajectory
Our team is working tirelessly to heal the planet and ensure that a just and livable future prevails.

With three decades of clean energy industry experience, our leadership team draws upon a long track record of environmental stewardship and meaningful throughput to confidently navigate today's unprecedented challenges.

We are teaming up with local philanthropists, nonprofit organizations, advocates and elected officials to implement effective solutions towards stopping the climate crisis.

Meet our team

Get to know us a little better, and then reach out!  We look forward to connecting with you and learning how we can work together to expedite positive change.

Photo of Tara Hammond, Co-founder and Executive Director of HCS Foundation
Tara Hammond
Co-founder & Executive Director

Tara was born and raised in Santa Cruz where she developed a strong foundation for caring for the planet and all beings. In 2006 Tara moved to San Diego to study Journalism and Media Studies at San Diego State University (SDSU). She became very involved and held top leadership roles with the Enviro-Business Society (e3), the leading grassroots environmental student organization on campus and the Green Love Sustainability Advisory Board, the Associated Students. Tara helped start the weekly on-campus farmers market, first-ever SDSU bike lane, Meatless Monday campaign, compost pilot program, Greek Life and residence halls recycling programs and oversaw sustainable upgrades such as additions of solar power systems. As the Sustainability Commissioner on campus, she also sat on the GreenFest Executive Committee, planning annual Earth Day events on campus that focused on sustainability and environmental justice. She also advocated for the first Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Platinum student union in the world, the Conrad Prebys Aztec Student Union.

In 2011 Tara joined a leading solar and energy storage developer in San Diego. From May 2011 - February 2020, Tara played an instrumental role in that organization’s success, including four years as the Director of Community Development during which time the company won numerous awards for its community involvement. Over this same time span, San Diego was named Environment America’s top solar city in the country several times.

In response to San Diego Gas & Electric’s egregious attack on solar in 2011, Tara founded the San Diego Solar Coalition, which later transformed into the founding chapter of the California Solar Energy Association San Diego in 2012.  This coalition has successfully defeated numerous utility attacks on the rooftop solar industry, and remains committed to promoting the expansion of solar, storage and middle-class green jobs.  In 2013 Tara became the Chair of the California Solar + Storage Association's San Diego chapter, and still holds that leadership role to this day.

In 2014 Tara earned the North American Board of Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) Technical Sales Certification and became one of a handful of women in North America to do so.

Tara joined the board of directors for local nonprofit GRID Alternatives San Diego in 2016, and has been the board president since 2018.

In 2020 Tara became one of 10 San Diego County residents on the San Diego Community Power Community Advisory Committee, helping shape California’s second-largest community choice energy program. Tara serves as the vice chair of the committee and was selected to be on the CEO search committee.

Tara is the proud recipient of the San Diego Business Journal’s 2020 and 2019 40 Leaders Under 40 awards and the San Diego Business Journal’s 2019 Business Women of the Year award.  Tara was also recognized by San Diego Magazine as a Celebrating Women finalist in 2019.

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Photo of Karinna Gonzalez, Climate Justice Policy Manager of HCS Foundation
Karinna Gonzalez
Deputy Director

Karinna was born and raised in Chula Vista and received her BA in Sustainability from San Diego State University. After exploring which direction she wanted to take her career, interning for Zero Waste San Diego and a presidential campaign, Karinna found her passion in the climate justice and clean energy space. In 2018, she began her career as a Project Associate at the Center for Sustainable Energy where she worked on a number of programs to help expand renewable energy access to communities of concern across the state and helped to launch the statewide Solar on Multifamily Affordable Housing Program, which provides incentives for multifamily affordable housing to go solar. She now works to track important energy and climate justice legislation and policies, advocating for good policies that help create a more just and livable future. Karinna is also involved in various San Diego climate coalitions, working with local activists to influence policies that stop climate injustices and reduce the impacts of the climate crisis. Karinna serves as a Steering Committee member for the California Alliance for Community Energy and the San Diego Green New Deal Alliance. Karinna also serves as a board member for GRID Alternatives San Diego.

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Photo of Maya Steinberg, Climate Justice Development Manager of HCS Foundation
Maya Steinberg
Climate Justice Development Manager

Maya was born and raised in Los Angeles then ventured east for college. She attended Boston University and graduated with a degree in Communications and a concentration in Environmental Analysis and Policy in 2018. After graduating, she returned to Los Angeles and worked as a Publicity Coordinator for Katrina Wan Public Relations then as an Event Marketing Coordinator at Variety.  Maya was eager to return to the climate field and joined Hammond Climate Solutions in December of 2021 as their Climate Justice Development Manager. Within her role, Maya manages climate projects and programs as well as seeks funding opportunities to enhance current programs and help the Hammond Climate Solutions team create a bigger impact.  Currently, Maya is a member of the Climate Reality Project San Diego chapter, and in her free time, you can find her playing beach volleyball, geeking out on improv, experimenting with her film photography skills or hiking with her dog, Archie.

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Photo of Karen Cederholm, Climate Justice Policy Intern at HCS Foundation
Karen Cederholm
Climate Justice Policy Intern

Karen is a current undergraduate student at UCLA, majoring in environmental science and minoring in geography and Geographical Information Systems and Technology (GIS&T). Raised in San Diego, she became involved with environmental activism during high school through climate justice walkouts in collaboration with SanDiego350, and in college, volunteering for her university’s CALPIRG. At Hammond Climate Solutions, Karen will be assisting the team research important climate legislation, expand projects and programs, and grow the foundation’s presence online. During her free time she enjoys cooking, watching movies and TV, and playing taiko with her drumming ensemble UCLA Kyodo Taiko.

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Photo of Justin Hammond, Co-founder and Board Chair of HCS Foundation
Justin Hammond
Co-Founder & Board Chair

Justin is a North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) certified PV Installation Professional, who holds a Bachelors of Science degree in Civil Engineering from San Diego State University. He has been responsible for the development and design of nearly one hundred solar & energy storage systems serving a wide range of organizations; from small, medium, and large scale businesses, to houses of worship, school districts and college universities, local municipalities and the U.S. military, and regional electric utility providers.  Justin grew up in San Diego, where his mother’s family restarted their lives after fleeing conflict in Cambodia in 1975.  He loves being with his family outdoors and spending time in the ocean surfing and diving.

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Photo of Quinn Laudenslager, Board Vice Chair of HCS Foundation
Quinn Laudenslager
Board VIce Chair

Quinn has over 15 years in the electrical construction industry, graduating from a five year IBEW electrical apprenticeship program with an emphasis on photovoltaic systems.  Over a decade of that experience was specifically focused on designing, installing and maintaining Photovoltaic and Energy storage systems in the US.  He is an experienced leader, electrician, sales manager, project manager and executive with extensive experience in renewables.  Quinn has a deep knowledge of energy storage systems, market trends, construction and safety and has been involved in successful deployment of thousands of systems.

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Photo of Dr. Alexis Tashima, Board Treasurer and Secretary of HCS Foundation
Dr. Alexis Tashima
Board treasurer & Secretary

Dr. Alexis is currently a plastic surgeon completing fellowship training in craniofacial and pediatric plastic surgery at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. She completed her undergraduate degree at UCLA in psychobiology.  She earned her medical degree at Penn State Hershey Medical School and subsequently completed her plastic surgery training at Penn State Hershey Medical Center.  After 7 years of working in the medical field and participating in both local and global medical missions, Dr. Alexis has developed a passion for bettering the health of future generations.

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Photo of Rocio de Lis, Board Member of HCS Foundation
Rocio de Lis

Rocio is a Bilingual (Spanish and English) Talent Acquisition professional with ten years of International Recruiting and Business Development experience. With a focus on People Analytics, Strategy and Operations, she empowers teams with useful metrics and predictive models to help hit company-wide financial and strategic goals. She thrives with data, efficiency, learning from others, and loves managing projects through completion with methodical organization. She is originally from Spain, has given public presentations in 15 countries and enjoys reading, writing, and cooking with family and friends. Rocio holds a MSc in Project Management, a Postgraduate Diploma in Business Management, a BA in Business and Bilingual Tourism and a Certificate in Tourism Management

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Photo of Danylo Lesko, Climate Justice Intern at HCS Foundation
Danylo Lesko
Alum - Climate Justice Intern

Danylo was born and raised in South Orange, New Jersey then spent six years in Brooklyn before he ventured west to San Diego in 2021. He is currently in his last year of a master’s degree at the University of Edinburgh in Biodiversity, Wildlife, & Ecosystem Health with a focus on Southern California wetlands as blue carbon ecosystems and their role as natural solutions to climate change. Prior to joining Hammond Climate Solutions Foundation, he worked as an ESG & Sustainability Consultant at PwC where he worked on several engagements helping clients produce ESG Reports, establish Net Zero Targets, and create GhG inventories for Scope 1 & 2 emissions. Danylo is eager to explore his passion for climate activism and community engagement as a Climate Justice Intern having volunteered with a variety of nonprofits as a grassroots organizer in the past. In his free time, Danylo loves to spend time by the ocean, where you can find him surfing across San Diego County, hiking, and swimming.

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Affiliated Organizations

We proudly serve on the board, a committee, or are a member of the following organizations.