Our team is made up of strategic advisors with a proven track record serving some of the world’s most influential companies. We are exceptional writers with extensive ESG and sustainability knowledge and seasoned project managers with supreme attention to detail. We pride ourselves on providing impeccable client service—and, on occasion, respectfully challenging our clients to raise the bar. We bring a flexible and tailored approach together with a roll up our sleeves, get-it-done attitude to function as an extension of our clients’ teams.
For more than 20 years, collaboration, empathy, and integrity have been at the heart of how we work—both with our clients and with each other.
As an Administrative and Accounting Specialist, Vikki’s wide scope of responsibilities include supporting BuzzWord’s finance function and managing the day-to-day administrative activities of BuzzWord’s parent company, BuildESG. As a detail-oriented individual and all-around problem solver, Vikki is dedicated to her work and supports her colleagues in all ways possible.
Prior to joining BuzzWord, Vikki was the Finance Director at the Darien Arts Center, a non-profit nature and education center in her hometown. Her experiences there taught her the importance of being a team player, to never give up when difficult situations arise, and to always take one day at a time.
Vikki holds a BBA in Public Accounting and graduated Summa Cum Laude from Pace University.
In her role as Project Manager at BuzzWord, Tina provides expert ESG strategy, reporting, and project management support to Fortune 500 companies across industries. A creative, driven and detail-oriented individual, Tina uses her skills in research and analysis, effective communication and problem-solving to tailor solutions to best meet clients’ ESG needs and achieve project goals. Before joining BuzzWord, Tina spent 2.5 years at Cheniere Energy, Inc., helping the company to build and execute its ESG reporting strategy, garnering feedback from hundreds of internal and external stakeholders, and transforming the company’s sustainability progress from the first steps of its journey into an industry-leading position.
Tina holds a BS in Environmental Science from Fordham University and a MS in Environmental Analysis from Rice University.
As Director of Reporting Strategy, Ali is BuzzWord’s go-to person for materiality assessments, competitor analyses, ESG raters and reporting frameworks, including TCFD, SASB and GRI. Ali has over 20 years of experience helping organizations develop and implement sustainability reporting and communication strategies. She also has years of experience developing and writing sustainability report content for major brands and companies, and is known for her strong project management skills.
Ali has a PhD in Sustainability-focused Consumer Behavior from the University of Montana, and an MBA, MS, and BA from the University of Michigan.
Chris is a Project Lead and Writer at BuzzWord with 20 years of experience on the front lines of corporate sustainability. In that time, he's led a wide variety of stakeholder engagement, reporting, and strategy projects across numerous industries, including automotive, energy, ICT, financial services, manufacturing, entertainment, food & beverage, and apparel. Known for his deep thinking and attention to detail, he is skilled at breaking down complex issues and problems, understanding the perspectives of diverse stakeholders, and articulating strategies and ideas that move things forward. Prior to BuzzWord, Chris was the US Lead at the Ellen MacArthur Foundation and a senior consultant and Research Director at SustainAbility.
He earned his BA in English from Vassar College and MBA and MS degrees from the University of Michigan.
Leah has been an innovator in ESG and sustainability disclosure and communications for more than 30 years. She founded BuzzWord in 1999 and served as CEO until 2021, when she transitioned the management of BuzzWord to new ownership and long-time team members. She remains part of the BuzzWord family as a Director and sometime consultant. Before BuzzWord, Leah led development of Waste Management, Inc.’s pioneering public environmental reports and stakeholder engagement. She also worked at World Wildlife Fund, Business for Social Responsibility and in renewable energy at the state level.
Leah is a graduate of Barnard College and holds an MES from the Yale School of the Environment.
As Operations Manager, Melissa leads the day-to-day business activities that enable BuzzWord to deliver to its clients. A solutions-oriented thinker, strategic communicator and champion of culture, Melissa sits at the nexus of people, process and performance, working to enhance BuzzWord’s operational and staff capabilities. Melissa brings over a decade of administrative, human resource and operations management expertise to her role. Prior to joining BuzzWord, Melissa worked as Human Resource Manager at the racial equity non-profit, Race Forward, and as People Operations Manager at SustainAbility, a think tank dedicated to accelerating corporate leadership in sustainability.
Melissa holds a BS in Business Administration from the University of San Diego and is a 200-hour Registered Yoga Teacher.
As a Writer and Project Lead for BuzzWord, Nora collaborates closely with teams on strategy, reporting and content development for all things related to ESG. She combines her writing, editing and communications expertise with a deep knowledge of sustainability issues, reporting frameworks and stakeholder audiences to create interesting and cohesive narratives for a global clientele. Over the years, Nora has applied her strategic thinking, interviewing and writing skills within a wide range of industries including healthcare, media, technology, financial services and energy. Whatever the sector, she works with a strong commitment to advance the vision of creating more social impact and environmental sustainability in the world.
Nora received her MS from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism.
Gina is a Writer at BuzzWord who thrives on partnering with companies to create inviting, effective corporate responsibility reports. An awarding-winning editor and writer, she brings more than two decades of experience in content strategy and creation, including ESG reporting across media at The Bank of New York Mellon to drive progress as tracked by S&P Global, CDP, MSCI and others. As the editor-in-chief for Solar Today, Durability + Design, Energy Customer Management and other media brands, she gained deep expertise in energy and high-performance building. Her experience also includes work as a nonprofit leader, collaborating with hundreds of businesses to help advance their social and environmental performance.
Gina holds an MBA in Sustainability from Duquesne University and an MA in Professional Writing and Editing from George Mason University.
As an Account Director at BuzzWord, Elizabeth leads strategic reporting and disclosure engagements for a wide range of clients. Elizabeth has 20 years of experience working with companies to articulate their ESG vision and strategy. Prior to BuzzWord, Elizabeth spent seven years leading Citigroup’s strategic communications for its ESG efforts including issues related to climate, diversity and inclusion, racial equity and community development. Throughout her career, she has managed multi-stakeholder communications campaigns for global companies in industries including financial services, consumer products, media, non-profit and more.
Elizabeth holds a BA from Villanova University.
As BuzzWord’s CEO, Valerie leads the team in providing exceptional service to our clients and advancing our company’s mission to drive impact through disclosure. She brings more than 25 years of experience advising on sustainability and ESG strategy and disclosure, and has led the development of dozens of sustainability reports and related communications for Fortune 500 clients across a broad range of industries. A strategic thinker and hands-on doer, she combines the ability to see the big picture and frame issues with a ferocious attention to detail. Prior to joining BuzzWord in 2009, Valerie worked as Chevron’s Corporate Responsibility Coordinator and at Business for Social Responsibility.
Valerie holds an MA in International Public Policy from University College London and a BA from Boston College.
A Writer and Project Lead at BuzzWord, Heather has 15 years of experience in sustainability strategy, stakeholder engagement, reporting and project management in North America and Europe. Heather is equally adept at thinking strategically and digging into the finer details and is known for building long-term client relationships. Prior to BuzzWord, Heather worked at Deloitte, Tim Hortons, Retail Council of Canada, SustainAbility and Canadian Business for Social Responsibility. Some clients she has worked with at BuzzWord include Armstrong World Industries, Fannie Mae, Marvell Technologies and ViacomCBS.
Heather holds a BCom with Distinction in Marketing from McGill University and an MBA with Honours in Sustainability from Schulich School of Business, York University.
As a Senior Analyst at BuzzWord, Carson helps clients in the financial services, energy, consumer packaged goods and private equity sectors, among others, navigate the multifaceted landscape of reporting frameworks and ESG raters and rankers. He also conducts benchmarking research to find best practices, helps companies implement materiality analyses to reveal reporting priorities, leads reporting frameworks and rater gap analyses, generates and validates framework indexes, and researches reporting trends.
Carson majored in Biology at Pomona College and earned an MEM at the Nicholas School of the Environment at Duke University.
As a Writer at BuzzWord, Jay brings more than 25 years of experience creating and curating authentic, compelling content for companies, organizations, publications and leaders to his work. An award-winning storyteller, he takes a journalistic approach to shaping sustainability and ESG reporting and editorial strategy for clients including The Coca-Cola Company, Comcast NBCUniversal, Cheniere and Revolution. From 2012–2019, Jay served as global editor-in-chief of Coca-Cola Journey, The Coca-Cola Company’s pioneering digital magazine and owned media channel. In this role, he led global editorial strategy and content development for the platform, bringing to life the stories behind the company's brands, business, people and priorities.
An avid musician, he has a BA in Journalism from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
As a Writer for BuzzWord, James helps companies across different industries tell their stories to a variety of ESG and sustainability stakeholders. Clients include American Airlines, EOG Resources, Hess Corporation and Wintrust Financial Corporation. He brings more than 20 years’ experience in corporate communications and investor relations to this role and has worked with a number of Fortune 500 companies, including CVS Health and Kimberly Clark. For more than 15 years, James also helped produce a series of print and web-based sustainability reports for global food company Smithfield Foods.
James holds a BA in English from Emory University and an MA in Italian from Middlebury College.
As an Account Director at BuzzWord, Rebecca serves as a senior point of contact for clients, leading projects to help companies put their best foot forward in ESG and sustainability reporting. She has deep experience working collaboratively to execute data- and purpose- driven reporting that supports business strategy. Rebecca has worked in sustainability reporting for 15+ years with companies including UPS, Shaw Industries, BBVA USA (now PNC) and others. Early in her career, Rebecca held communications roles in non-profits before joining the Public Relations team at UPS, where she worked for more than a decade.
Rebecca earned a BA in Media Studies from Ithaca College and an MS in Public Relations from Syracuse University.