Meet the Chapter Director – Camilla Feibelman

Camilla Feibelman serves as Director of the Rio Grande Chapter of Sierra Club, which represents over 10,000 members. Camilla works with hundreds of volunteers throughout New Mexico and West Texas to protect special places like the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks and Albuquerque’s Rio Grande Bosque, and to help curb global warming while stimulating the economy through renewable energy development. Feibelman was appointed by President Obama and confirmed by the Senate as a Trustee on the Morris K. Udall and Stewart L. Udall Foundation in 2014.

Camilla dedicated over ten years in Puerto Rico to protecting the Northeast Ecological Corridor, a swath of coastal habitat that is the second most important Leatherback Turtle nesting beach in U.S. jurisdiction. Through ceaseless community and public participation, the area was protected by law in 2013. Camilla helped to found the Puerto Rico Chapter of the Sierra Club, the organization’s only Spanish-speaking Chapter. She also worked to establish the Coalition for the Northeast Ecological Corridor. She continues to work as an advisor to the Chapter and the Coalition.

In the Sierra Club’s Washington, D.C., press office, Camilla helped environmental justice communities throughout the country reach the media on pressing issues from chemical plant compliance to proposals to mine coal adjacent to sacred sites. She was also responsible for the Club’s Spanish-language media outreach and helped develop the first nationally syndicated Spanish-language, weekly environmental column, Sierra & Tierra, which continues 15 years later. She later worked to develop new relationships with Latino communities in the United States around environmental issues, resulting in part in the formation of the Sierra Club’s Puerto Rico chapter.

Camilla directed the Sierra Student Coalition, the national student arm of the Sierra Club. She facilitated the founding of campus environmental groups throughout the country. She worked to bring environmental concerns to trade negotiations including the Free Trade Area of the Americas.

As a Fulbright scholar, Camilla spent a year living in the Peruvian Amazon, studying the urbanization of the rainforest and its impacts on natural resource use. She worked with colleagues to carry out a conflict mediation workshop between urban and rural fishermen, who were at odds because of diverging traditional and federal rules regarding fisheries management.

Camilla has a master’s in urban planning from the University of Puerto Rico, highlighted by a thesis study entitled, “Can an Ecotourism model be successfully applied to the town of Luquillo and the Adjacent Northeast Ecological Corridor?” She has a bachelor’s in environmental biology from Columbia University in New York. She was named a Udall Scholar in 1997. Camilla was born and raised in New Mexico, the land of enchantment, where, attending Girl Scout camp in the Jemez Mountains each summer, her love of nature blossomed. She is a graduate of Albuquerque High School.  Camilla lives in Albuquerque with her husband Xavier Obando, her stepdaughter and son.

Contact Camilla: camilla.feibelman@sierraclub.org

Meet the Chapter Director – Camilla Feibelman