National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis
Managing Director, Morgan Stanley Private Wealth Management
Michael Burbank is a Managing Director with Morgan Stanley Private Wealth Management and manages a team that provides highly customized financial advice and investment solutions to individuals, families, and foundations with $20 million or more in investable assets. Michael is a Certified Investment Management Analyst and CFP and completed the Securities Industries Association Management Program at the Wharton School and the GE Management Course. An avid boater, fisherman and scuba diver, Michael graduated with a B.S. in Aquatic Biology from the University of California, Santa Barbara. Before starting his financial services career Michael ran field research diving projects under grants from the California Department of Fish & Game and the National Science Foundation at the UCSB Marine Laboratory and for Neushul Mariculture, Inc. Michael served on the Seacology Board for over ten years, the last four as President, and is a Founding Board Member of Naturally Bay Area. Michael, his wife Cindy Roberts, and their children, live in San Francisco.
Chief Environmental Officer, Microsoft
Dr. Lucas Joppa leads sustainability at Microsoft, as the company’s first Chief Environmental Officer. In this role, he works to advance Microsoft’s core commitment to sustainability through ongoing technology innovation, program development, policy advancement, and global operational excellence. With a combined background in both environmental science and data science, Lucas is committed to using the power of advanced technology to help transform how society monitors, models, and ultimately manages Earth’s natural resources. He founded Microsoft’s AI for Earth program in 2017—a five-year, $50-million cross-company effort dedicated to delivering technology-enabled solutions to global environmental challenges.
With a Ph.D. in Ecology from Duke University and extensive publication in leading academic journals, such as Science and Nature, Dr. Joppa is a uniquely accredited voice for sustainability in the tech industry. In addition to formerly serving on the Federal Advisory Committee for the Sustained U.S. National Climate Assessment, Lucas is an Associate Editor for the Ecological Society of America’s EcoSphere journal and serves on the boards of leading scientific organizations, such as NatureServe and the National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center (SESYNC).
Prior to his current role, Lucas was Microsoft’s Chief Environmental Scientist and led research programs at the intersection of environmental and computer sciences in Microsoft Research, the company’s blue-sky research division. He remains an active scientist and one of Microsoft’s foremost AI thought leaders, speaking frequently on issues related to Artificial Intelligence, environmental science, and sustainability. Along with his Ph.D., Lucas holds a B.S. in Wildlife Ecology from the University of Wisconsin and is a former Peace Corps volunteer to Malawi.
Cynthia Stebbins has extensive experience in the non-profit and research sectors, participating in numerous boards and councils. Cynthia has been actively involved with the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory and Association since 1997, and is currently an honorary Board Member for this esteemed biomedical research and education organization. For decades, Cynthia served on the Women’s Committee for the Wildlife Conservation Society, where she led fundraising activities. She has also served as a Board Member for the International Seakeepers Alliance and EcoHealth Alliance. Additionally, she has been involved with the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and Museum of the City of New York. Cynthia attended Vassar College and The New York School of Interior Design. She went on to own her own design company. She also enjoys painting, travel, and tennis. Cynthia has been supporting NCEAS since 2012. She and her husband split their time living in both New York and Santa Barbara.
Founding Partner, Bloomberg Financial Markets
Charles (“Chuck”) Zegar is one of the original four founding partners of Bloomberg Financial Markets. He was the technical computer expert for this partnership. He originally designed, programmed, and managed development of the Bloomberg terminal system. Prior to Bloomberg, Chuck was a vice president at Salomon Brothers (planning and choosing data processing equipment). Mr. Zegar has a BS in chemistry from Long Island University (1971). He also has two master’s degrees from New York University in Computer Science (1977) and Biology (2005). He is still involved in functional genomics research at NYU. Mr. Zegar serves as trustee and chief financial officer of his family foundation, the Zegar Family Foundation. He also serves as a trustee of NYU, The Nature Conservancy – New York State, and Sustainability Accounting Standards Board. Mr. Zegar, who prefers to be called “Chuck”, splits his time living with his wife Merryl in both New York City and Santa Barbara. Merryl is a former administrative law judge, who is also trustee and CEO of their family foundation. The Zegars have four grown children between them and also three grandchildren. One son and his family reside locally in Santa Barbara.