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Linda M. Abriola


In addition to her role as the Director of TIE, Linda is a University Professor at Tufts University, where she holds appointments in the departments of Civil and Environmental Engineering and Chemical and Biological Engineering. She is a member of both the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering (NAE) and a Fellow of the American Geophysical Union. From 2003 to 2015, she served as the Dean of the Tufts University School of Engineering.  Prior to joining Tufts, Dr. Abriola was the Horace Williams King Collegiate Professor of Environmental Engineering at the University of Michigan.  An expert in the characterization, transport, fate, and recovery/destruction of contaminants in the subsurface, Professor Abriola is the author of more than 150 refereed publications and has been the recipient of many awards and honors, including her recent appointment as a US State Department Science Envoy. Among her numerous professional activities, she has served as a member of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Science Advisory Board, the National Research Council Water Science and Technology Board, the NAE Governing Council, the National Science Foundation Engineering Directorate Advisory Committee, the National Academies Committee on Science, Engineering, and Public Policy, and the National Research Council Division Committee on Engineering and Physical Sciences.

Dr. Abriola received her Ph.D. and Master’s degrees from Princeton University and a Bachelor’s degree from Drexel University, all in Civil Engineering.

Nitsan Shakked

Associate Director

Nitsan is the Associate Director of Tufts Institute of the Environment (TIE), an institute dedicated to interdisciplinary environmental research and education. Her research and professional interests lie at the intersection of water, energy, conflict, policy and society. Nitsan is a hydrogeologist by training and specializes in renewable desalination solutions for small island developing states (SIDS) and off-grid locations. She holds an M.A. in Global Affairs from Yale University, where she focused on technology and innovation in development. In addition, Nitsan holds a M.S. in Applied Environmental Geoscience from Tübingen University, and a B.S. in Geology and Earth Sciences from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. She continuously advises organizations such as USAID, the State Department, GIZ, the European Union, the World Bank and various foreign ministries on development projects as well as innovation in peace building and conflict resolution. 

Jill Parlee

Assistant Director for Programs

Jill joined TIE in December 2016 as Assistant Director for Programs. Jill works closely with the Associate Director to help design, establish, facilitate, and coordinate TIE's core programs.

Jill is a natural resource management professional with a firm background in a range of natural resource issues, including climate change, waste management and food security. Jill has nearly 10 years of experience in the Caribbean region working on environmental issues in small islands and championing various grant-funded projects and consultancies related to sustainable development. She has expertise in responsible business practices, green growth, community development, sustainable financing, and stakeholder engagement garnered through her work and education.

Jill has a Master of Science degree in Natural Resource Management and Climate Change from the University of the West Indies, Barbados and a Bachelor of Commerce degree in Social Context of Business from McGill University, Canada.

Christina Kaltcheva

Administrative Coordinator

Christina joined TIE in May 2018 as the Administrative Coordinator. In conjunction with the Assistant Director for Programs, Christina works to support the expansion of interdisciplinary academic initiatives that make up TIE's programs. She also coordinates meetings, programs, and special events for TIE and assists with the development of materials, in addition to performing general administrative duties for TIE. 

Christina is a recent graduate of Brandeis University, where she earned a Bachelors degree in Environmental Studies and International and Global Studies. During her time at Brandeis, she studied Sustainable Development in Copenhagen, Denmark, with a particular interest in biking infrastructure and sustainable design. 

Helia Zarkhosh

Communications Specialist

Helia joined TIE in October 2019 as the Communications Specialist with extensive experience in writing, design, social media, and web management. Her role is focused on executing communications strategies that promote the goals and mission of the department through effective messaging and content management.

A native of Northern Virginia, Helia holds a B.S. in Psychology from Virginia Tech and an M.S. in Animals & Public Policy from Tufts' Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine. Her passion for and background in animal welfare advocacy goes hand-in-hand with the sustainability focus of TIE's programs and initiatives.

Taylor Wurts

Undergraduate Intern
TIE Communications

Undergraduate Student, School of Arts and Sciences

Taylor is an undergraduate intern focusing on communications and outreach at TIE. At Tufts, Taylor studies International Relations and Economics and hopes to pursue a career at the intersection of international relations and environmental policy.

Justin McCollum

Undergraduate Intern
TIE Programming

Undergraduate Student, School of Arts and Sciences

Justin is a senior at Tufts University majoring in Economics and Sociology. With a focus on finance, he hopes to go into either the energy or clean technology sectors after graduation. At TIE, Justin works on UNFCCC COP and Tufts Energy Conference.

Taylor Parrish

Graduate SWM Tutor
TIE Programming

Ph.D. Candidate, Department of English

Taylor has worked as a Program Coordination Intern for SWM and has also worked on website maintenance and development, and news stories for TIE initiatives and events. Currently, Taylor works with TIE as a tutor for students in the Sustainable Water Management program. She earned her bachelor's degree from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse in English Literature and Professional/Technical Writing. At Tufts, she is focusing on Transatlantic Environmental Literature and Ecocriticism.

Miley Aiyin Xiao

Undergraduate Intern
TIE Communications

Undergraduate Student, School of Arts and Sciences

Miley is an undergraduate intern focusing on communications and outreach at TIE. At Tufts, Miley studies Economics and hopes to pursue a career in marketing.

Ally Friedman

Graduate Intern
TIE Programming

Masters Candidate, Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy

Ally is a graduate intern focusing on environmental programming. Academically, Ally is a first year Masters of Arts in Law & Diplomacy student at The Fletcher School with concentrations in Environment and Natural Resource Policy and Business for Social Impact. She completed her undergraduate education at St. Lawrence University.

Chelsea Alexander

Graduate Intern
TIE Programming

Masters Candidate, Department of Urban and Environmental Planning

Chelsea is a graduate intern focusing on environmental programming. Academically, Chelsea is working toward receiving a Masters in Urban and Environmental Planning. Prior to coming to Tufts, Chelsea received a B.A. in Environmental Studies from James Cook University.

Victor Leos

Graduate Intern
TIE Programming

Masters Candidate, Department of Education

Victor is a graduate intern focusing on environmental programming. Academically, Victor is a working toward receiving a Masters in Education with a focus on STEM Education. Prior to coming to Tufts, Victor received a Bachelor of Arts in Biology and Environmental Studies from Bowdoin College.