Updates from Our Office

Updates from the Office of Sustainability: including our name change, a new member of our team, and a promotion announcement.

March 29, 2023

Allow Us to Re-introduce Ourselves: Office of Sustainability

Formerly called Environmental Stewardship, the role of the office has grown since its formation in 2006 and under the leadership of Jessica Prata, which began in 2013. The change reflects a shift to data-driven recommendations to empower University partners and schools to reduce impact and enable the University to achieve Plan 2030.

Welcome Samreen Afzal to the Team

Samreen is the first to fill the role of Director, Sustainability Analytics, responsible for creating and implementing a strategic plan to centralize sustainability metrics and employ more rigorous and frequent analytics that ensure Columbia achieves Plan 2030 goals. In this role, she oversees the development of both internal and externally-facing sustainability data hubs and curate detailed metrics to support senior level decision-making. Samreen joined the Office of Sustainability after completing her Master of Science in Sustainability Management (SUMA) at Columbia. Samreen’s background includes a variety of roles at Shell International, including supply chain, sales, marketing, Human Resources, health, safety, and environment. Her progressive professional experience within the energy sector spans over 12 years.

Dan Allalemdjian Promoted to Director, Sustainability and Transportation

Dan was hired to establish new Transportation Demand Management (TDM) initiatives at Columbia with the onset of the Manhattanville development in 2014. In his time as Director of TDM, Dan has helped launch a Columbia sponsored park-and-ride, grew the construction worker carpool program to over 90 participants, led sustainability planning around Sustainable Transportation featured in Plan 2030, played a key role in transitioning Columbia’s intercampus shuttle buses to electric, acted as a client and mentor in six capstone assignments, implemented the Crown Commuter email badge incentive program, and much more! In his new role, he will continue to assist with electrifying Columbia’s vehicle fleet, building on Columbia’s Scope 3 emissions inventories, take a leadership role in Columbia’s Sustainability network, and lead efforts to expand “Campus as a Living Lab” initiatives. Dan is most excited about engaging with departments to corral momentum, continuing to work with faculty, and highlighting Columbia’s progress in sustainability.