Esther works with faculty and community partners to develop and implement courses that integrate service and learning. She received her undergraduate degree in Earth Systems at Stanford, and has worked on environmental and international development issues for over 15 years. After completing a Master’s degree in International Affairs at Columbia University, Esther worked at the United Nations Development Programme, assessing the outcomes of grants made to community-based organizations in over 29 countries to expand the use of renewable energy while supporting improved livelihoods. During her six years at Columbia University’s Earth Institute, she managed interdisciplinary research projects in collaboration with local governments and nonprofit agencies in South and Southeast Asia, focused on improving resilience to climate risks. Esther received her PhD in Environmental Science, Policy and Management at UC Berkeley, where her research focused on policies to support sustainable water management and adaptation to climate change. During her studies, she worked closely with the California Department of Water Resources to carry out several studies of how climate change can best be accounted for in water planning. As a post-doctoral fellow at Stanford’s Water in the West Program and the Gould Center for Conflict Resolution at Stanford Law School, Esther collaborated with local water agencies on research projects to inform implementation of a new California law guiding groundwater management.
Outside of work, Esther is actively involved with a community-based group focused on affordable housing issues in the city of San Mateo, where she lives. She also enjoys hiking, traveling, cooking, gardening, and spending time with family and friends.