The climate crisis threatens the future of life on earth. To help solve it, an energy revolution is moving the world beyond fossil fuels. How, and how fast that revolution happens will determine the future of humanity…

Mission

Driven by the imperative of climate justice, The Sunrise Project’s mission is to scale social movements to drive the transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy as fast as possible.

How we work

The Sunrise Project is a network of changemakers who believe in the power of social movements to change the world. From ending slavery to civil rights to women’s suffrage: social movements have achieved impossible things to make the world a better place. Now, more than ever, we need to nurture and scale powerful movements to solve the climate crisis.

Sitting at the intersection of social movements and philanthropy, we’ve developed a ‘directed network’ model that supports networks of people and organisations to work together to achieve large-scale change that wouldn’t have been possible by individual organisations acting alone.

We essentially do six things:

  • Analysis to understand the political, social and economic systems driving the climate crisis;
  • Strategy design for multi-partner efforts that create systemic change;
  • Partner with philanthropy to resource these strategies;
  • Fund a diversity of organisations and support them to work together for collective impact;
  • Support organisations and movements to sharpen their strategies and build their capacity to achieve real world outcomes; and
  • Drive strategic interventions that will hasten the transition beyond fossil fuels.

Read more about the work of the Sunrise Project

Governance of the Sunrise Project Inc.

The Sunrise Project Inc. operates in accordance with the legal and regulatory framework of the United States. The Sunrise Project Inc.’s financial accounts are audited annually by independent certified accountants. These reports are made publicly available.

The board of The Sunrise Project Inc. is supported by appropriate subcommittees, including a Grants Advisory Committee and ad-hoc subcommittees as required.

You can find our current board members here.

Governance of the Sunrise Project

Sunrise Inc. is a member of the Sunrise Project, a global network of independent organisations that share a common mission and common values. Driven by the imperative of climate justice, the Sunrise Project’s mission is to scale social movements to drive the transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy as fast as possible.

The Sunrise Project is a global network of independent organisations that share a common mission and common values. The Sunrise Project currently comprises:

  • The Sunrise Project Australia Limited (Sunrise Australia), incorporated in Australia > read more here
  • The Sunrise Project International Stichting (Sunrise International) > read more here
  • The Sunrise Project Inc. (Sunrise Inc.), incorporated in the United States

Each organisation is a fully independent legal entity with its own board of experienced Directors, who bring deep expertise across climate change, social movements, law, finance, organisational leadership and governance.

Further information:

People


People

People are our most valuable asset and we’re passionate about nurturing a culture that supports great people to do great work. The diverse and growing team of passionate changemakers are distributed around the world and work with a wide network of partner NGOs to deliver world changing strategies. If you’re interested in joining the team, please keep an eye on our jobs page for future opportunities.

You can see more details the Sunrise Project leaders and staff via the links below.


The Sunrise Project Inc. Board

Anay Shah

Director
Read Anay's bio

Anay Shah

Director

Anay is a startup leader, helping build fintech and climate-tech companies across Asia, Africa, and Latin America over the past 15+ years. He is passionate about leveraging technology to alleviate economic injustice and ensure the planet is flourishing for future generations. Most recently, Anay was the SVP for Global Business at Tala, a global fintech startup delivering digital financial services to the underbanked in emerging markets. Anay led a global team of 250+ people and was responsible for the P&L, strategy and operations across all of Tala’s markets. As a member of the Executive Team, he played a pivotal role in driving Tala’s vision and execution to deliver $3B+ in capital to 8M+ people globally.

Prior to Tala, Anay was a Regional Director at Remitly, a digital payments company serving  immigrants sending money home to their families.  As the 10th employee at Remitly, Anay wore multiple hats including helping lead international expansion and launching the product in Remitly’s first 12 new countries. Anay’s climate journey began at d.light, a global off-grid solar startup, where he led partnerships in India. No stranger to emerging markets, Anay began his career with the US State Department driving public-private partnerships across 13 countries for USAID.

Anay earned an MBA from Stanford’s Graduate School of Business and a BA in International Politics from Wesleyan University. Anay is currently a Venture Partner and Investor in early stage climate tech and fintech funds.  Most importantly, he enjoys a life in Los Angeles with his wife and son.

Danny Kennedy

Director
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Danny Kennedy

Director

Danny Kennedy is the Chief Energy Officer for New Energy Nexus, an international organization that supports clean energy entrepreneurs with funds, accelerators and networks that operates programs in China, India, Southeast Asia, and East Africa. He worked at California Clean Energy Fund, and is the President of CalCharge, a public– private partnership in California. Prior to being an entrepreneur, he worked at Greenpeace and other NGOs on climate and energy issues for 20+ years. Danny is based in the United States of America.

John Hepburn

Founder & Co-Executive Director
Read John's bio

John Hepburn

Founder & Co-Executive Director

John is an activist and social entrepreneur with over twenty-five years experience running environmental campaigns. In 2017 he was an inaugural recipient of the Climate Breakthrough Award which was the catalyst for Sunrise scale its work globally. Prior to founding The Sunrise Project in 2012, John spent a decade leading campaigns with Greenpeace and previously worked on a wide variety of environmental campaigns at a grassroots level. He is the founder of several non-profit recycling businesses which led to him being awarded a Churchill Fellowship in 2002. John holds degrees in Manufacturing Systems Engineering and Business Management and before becoming an activist, worked for several years as an engineer making components for the oil, gas and coal industries.

Lorena González

Director
Read Lorena González's bio

Lorena González

Director

M. Lorena González is the Legislative Director at ACLU of Washington. In that role, she provides strategic counsel to a cross-departmental, integrated advocacy team on multiple, complex civil liberties and rights issues within local and state government in the areas of reproductive and gender-affirming health care, sentencing reform, conditions of incarceration, drug policy, youth policy, privacy and technology, policing, and health care access for immigrants.

Lorena is a nationally and locally recognized civil rights attorney and a former elected official with nearly 20 years of advocacy and organizing experience. In 2015 and 2017, Lorena was elected twice to serve as one of two citywide representatives and the first person of Latino/o/e descent on the Seattle City Council. As a civil rights attorney, she represented people who were victimized by those in positions of power, including the government. She represented workers in wage theft and anti-discrimination cases and victims of police misconduct.

Born and raised in Washington State’s lower Yakima Valley to a Spanish-speaking migrant farmworker family, Lorena earned her first paycheck at the age of 8, alongside her parents and five siblings. She relied on scholarships and worked three jobs to attend Yakima Valley College and later Washington State University. In 2002, she moved to Seattle to attend Seattle University Law School, where she graduated with honors in 2005. Since then, Lorena has worked with foundational immigrant rights organizations like OneAmerica, El Centro de la Raza and Latino Victory Project to protect our democracy and to champion the needs of women, children, and immigrant families in Washington State.

In her six years in public office, Lorena spearheaded legislation to ban conversion therapy, created secure scheduling for thousands of retail and restaurant workers, established a permanent $1 million legal defense fund for immigrants and refugees facing immigration proceedings, expanded Seattle universal pre-k programs for three- and four-year olds, permanently funded free community college for Seattle’s public school graduates, created sexual assault and workload protections and access to affordable health care for Seattle’s hotel workers, and passed meaningful police reform. During the pandemic, she focused on creating progressive revenue to fund Seattle’s equitable economic recovery, established hazard pay for essential workers, created tenant protections, funded rental assistance, and helped to significantly increase Seattle’s investments in affordable housing and homelessness prevention programs.

Parin Shah

Director
Read Parin Shah's bio

Parin Shah

Director

Parin provides strategic advice and consulting to emerging renewable energy and environmental organizations, his specialty is working with communities of color and native communities.

He has worked on climate, environmental justice (EJ) and energy equity policy for over 20 years, most recently as Director of The Climate and Clean Energy Fund (The Fund) where he established their Policy Accelerator. The Accelerator supports organizations to advance policies that improve conditions for communities experiencing the causes and effects of climate change. Prior to The Fund, he was at the Asian Pacific Environmental Network (APEN) leading their California focused environmental justice policy portfolio. At APEN, Parin led their equitable energy and climate justice policy agenda. His leadership led to the passage of Californias 33% (SB 350, de León) and 100% renewable (SB 100, de León) legislation. His favorite legislative win was a first in the nation legislation that put solar and storage on multifamily affordable housing (AB 693, Eggman).

Parin also helped launch Green For All, which gave birth to the green jobs movement in the US. He established their program working with mayors, cities and counties across the U.S. on workforce and green jobs with a focus on bringing about a triple bottomline profit, planet and people. And in 2004, he founded the Urban Accords Institute, which in 2005 co-hosted the U.N. World Environment Day in San Francisco out of which was developed the Urban Environmental Accords a road map for creating sustainable cities which was signed by the mayors of 67 of the 100 largest cities in the world.

From 2000-04, he served as the President of the Commission on the Environment for the City and County of San Francisco. He co-authored ground-breaking policies on climate change, environmental justice, wetlands conservation and restoration, zero waste, green buildings as well as food security. Parin began his environmental work developing habitat restoration projects, horticultural education and job-training programs for formerly incarcerated youth and adults in Southeast San Francisco. He began his ecological work as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Tunisia.

When he is not working on policy or watching/playing basketball at home in Oakland, Parin loves to connect with the Earth and garden or hike with his teenage daughterif he can get her away from a glowing screen.

Sam La Rocca

Director
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Sam La Rocca

Director

Sam leads the Sunrise Project’s Australian Program. He brings over twenty-five years experience building people powered movements for a socially just and ecologically sane world. Sam holds a multidisciplinary degree in environmental science, and while completing his first class honours thesis on grassroots mobilisation, he co-founded activist education outfit The Change Agency to deliver social movement education, campaign strategy and organising training programs to community groups around Australia and internationally. He’s worked as a senior political advisor in federal parliament and led highly successful electoral campaigns. He has facilitated movement-wide processes for the Climate Action Network Australia and Friends of the Earth International’s Asia Pacific Region; and he has a strong interest in building powerful networks to catalyse system change.

Sudha Nandagopal

Chair of the Board
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Sudha Nandagopal

Chair of the Board

Sudha recently served as Chief Executive Officer of Social Venture Partners International (SVPI), where she cultivated and expanded a philanthropic network to catalyze more resources to communities around the globe, demonstrated ways for philanthropy to share power and wealth, and built stronger relationships between philanthropists and communities. Previously, Sudha co-created and led the City of Seattle’s Equity & Environment Initiative a first of its kind effort to center communities of color in city environmental policy and programs. She co authored Seattle’s Equity & Environment Agenda, established the Environmental Justice Fund, and laid the groundwork for the city’s Climate Justice program.

The Sunrise Project

Driven by the imperative of climate justice, The Sunrise Project scales social movements to drive the transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy as fast as possible.

CONTACT

The best way to contact us is by email at [email protected]

ANNUAL REPORT

Jobs

We respectfully acknowledge the Indigenous peoples and local communities of the lands on which we live and work.  We recognise the leadership of these communities in the struggle for climate justice and our responsibility to uplift their voices and histories.