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Environmental, Health, Business and Public Policy Experts Join EWG Board

(202) 667-6982
For Immediate Release: 
Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Washington, D.C. – Six new members have taken seats on the board of directors of Environmental Working Group, collectively bringing with them decades of experience in environmental activism, grassroots organizing, children’s health and a wide range of public policy issues, from civil rights to constitutional law.

Joining the current 10 members of the board are Laura Turner Seydel, Francesca Vietor, Jeffrey H. Blattner, Carol McDonnell, Dr. Harvey Karp and Nina Montée Karp.

“I’m very excited that Laura, Francesca, Jeff, Carol, Harvey and Nina have agreed to join the board. The intellectual heft and commitment to the environment and public health these individuals possess will help EWG think through where we want to be in the years to come,” said EWG President and board member Ken Cook.

More about the new board members:

Laura Turner Seydel is a national environmental activist and eco-living expert dedicated to the ongoing education, community initiatives, and collective effort necessary to create a cleaner, greener, and healthier environment and sustainable future for our children and our planet. With an unrelenting passion, Laura plays an integral role in the environmental movement by serving on her family’s foundation boards including The Turner Foundation, Jane Smith Turner Foundation, the Turner Endangered Species Fund, and Ted’s Montana Grill. She serves on national boards including League of Conservation Voters, Defenders of Wildlife, and Waterkeeper Alliance. She also serves as Chair of Captain Planet Foundation and Zero Waste Zone-Downtown Atlanta. Laura has co-founded such influential organizations as Mothers and Others for Clean Air and the Upper Chattahoochee Riverkeeper.

She is a contributing eco-editor, environmental speaker, and philanthropist living with her husband Rutherford and her three children in their home EcoManor, the first Gold LEED certified residence in the Southeast. For more information about Laura Turner Seydel, visit:

Francesca Vietor has more than twenty years of experience working for environmental and social change in the United States and internationally. She has served as President of the Urban Forest Council (2003-2005), Chair of San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom’s Environmental Transition Team (2003), President of the S.F. Commission on the Environment (1997-1999) and Director of the S.F. Department of the Environment (1999-2001).

Vietor has worked for many non-profit organizations, including most recently as Executive Director of the Chez Panisse Foundation. She has served on both the staff and board of the Rainforest Action Network and worked for Greenpeace, Island Press, Commonweal and CARE Madagascar and is a regular contributor to Huffington Post. She is the co-founder and co-director of 1000 Flowers, a national women’s voter registration and mobilization effort that has registered and activated more than 20,000 women in 47 states. Vietor is currently the principal of Ecoworks and in September 2008 was appointed to the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC). She is now the Commission’s President and Executive Director. Francesca lives in San Francisco with her five-year-old daughter Chiara. You can find our more about Francesca here:

Jeff Blattner has spent much of his professional career handling high-profile legal policy matters on topics as diverse as antitrust, intellectual property, information technology, constitutional law, civil rights and judicial nominations. He is currently president of Legal Policy Solutions, LLC. From 2006-08, Blattner was Senior Vice President, Public Policy and Special Counsel of XM Satellite Radio Inc. From 2001 through 2005, Blattner was a partner at the Washington, DC law firm of Hogan & Hartson, LLP.

From 1998 through January 2001, Blattner was deputy assistant attorney general and special counsel for information technology in the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice, where he supervised the United States v. Microsoft Corp. litigation for Assistant Attorney General Joel Klein. From 1987 through 1995, Blattner worked on the Senate Judiciary Committee staff of Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, serving as the senator’s chief counsel from 1992 to 1995. Blattner worked on the presidential transition teams of Presidents Barack Obama and Bill Clinton. He lives with his family in Bethesda, Maryland.

Carol McDonnell is a dedicated environmentalist and parent activist who has worked in numerous capacities to educate consumers and organizations about the impact of their daily choices on individual and planetary well-being. For more than a decade, Carol has committed her considerable energy, personally and professionally, to the advancement of causes that foster environmental sustainability and personal health, particularly in the areas of toxin exposure, nutrition and children’s health.

Most recently Carol served as a founding consultant at Chartreuse Products, a growing entrepreneurial business that develops and promotes the use of organic cosmetics and home cleaning products, along with a line of innovative reusable products. Carol has used her depth of knowledge of the personal and environmental impact of exposure to everyday toxins to educate and train Chartreuse consultants across the country and in Canada, and has helped shift the conversation about environmental choice-making through her extensive personal and professional networks on both coasts.

In her early career, Carol served on the Board of Trustees of Woodley House, a residential facility in Washington, D.C. for people living with mental illness. She also spent eight years providing marketing, communications, technology, and M&A consulting services to Fortune 500 companies.

Carol divides her time between Maryland’s Chesapeake Bay and Mill Valley, California, where she lives with her husband John and three children, Jack, Grace and Declan.

Nina Montée Karp is a producer, director and an environmental activist. In collaboration with Dr. Harvey Karp, she created the award-winning educational DVDs, The Happiest Baby and The Happiest Toddler on the Block. These best-selling films are used across the nation to reduce parental struggles and promote healthy family relations. She also helped create one of the first environmental documentaries, Not Under My Roof with Olivia Newton John and Kelly Preston.

Most recently, Nina wrote, produced and directed Breast Cancer: The Path of Wellness and Healing. Hailed as a landmark educational guide, this DVD features the nation's most celebrated breast cancer doctors and wellness experts (including Dr. Susan Love, Dr. Marisa Weiss, Dr. Dennis Slamon, Dr. Deepak Chopra, Dr. Dean Ornish) and celebrity breast cancer survivors (including, Sheryl Crow, Christina Applegate, Melissa Etheridge, Olivia Newton-John). All the profits from DVD sales are donated to breast cancer related charities.

Nina is a founding Board Member of Healthy Child Healthy World – one of the nation's leading environmental non-profits dedicated to protecting young children from harmful chemicals and promoting healthier environments. She resides in Los Angeles with her husband, Dr. Harvey Karp, and she is the proud mother of their daughter, Lexi.

Dr. Harvey Karp is a nationally renowned pediatrician and child developmentalist, and a leading advocate in the field of children's and environmental health. He is on the faculty of USC School of Medicine and a fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics. Dr. Karp's books and DVDs, The Happiest Baby on the Block and The Happiest Toddler on the Block, teach parents simple techniques to reduce infant crying, boost sleep, build patience and eliminate tantrums and are translated into over 20 languages. The popularity of his work has made him America's most read pediatrician.

Over the past 20 years, Dr. Karp has been a spokesman on environmental issues for NRDC, the American Academy of Pediatrics, Environmental Media Services, California Department of Health, and many other groups.

Dr. Karp is an advisor to Parents, Ser Padres and American Baby magazines and a parenting advisor for Barnes and Noble and AOL. He has appeared numerous times on Good Morning America, The View, Larry King Live, Dr. Phil and his work has been featured by the Associated Press, New York Times, Time, Newsweek, People Magazine, etc. Reporting on his innovative ideas, the New York Times proclaimed, "Roll over Dr. Spock!" Dr. Karp lives in Los Angeles with his wife, Nina and their daughter.

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EWG is a nonprofit research organization based in Washington, DC that uses the power of information to protect human health and the environment.