Institute for Environmental Negotiation

Empowering communities to create shared solutions

Expansion Team

To accomplish its work, IEN draws on a cadre of talented subcontractors and affiliate partners, as needed, to assist with specific projects. Some work with us only occasionally, while others work with us consistently. Information on some of our expansion team may be found here.

Michael J. Ellerbrock, Ph.D.

Professor, Extension Specialist and Director of the Center for Economic Education at VT, Mike Ellerbrock, Ph.D., has been teaching environmental economics, environmental ethics and environmental theology for 33 years. Mike participated in the Kellogg Foundation’s pilot Natural Resources Leadership Institute and VT’s partnership with UVA.   Twice Mike has taught in the Semester-at-Sea program.  He served on the Governor’s Advisory Committee on Environmental Education and drafted the final report. Mike has received seven major university teaching awards, including the Congressionally-Sponsored USDA National Award for Teaching Excellence for all fields of Agriculture, Natural Resources, Human & Veterinary Sciences.

J. Michael Foreman

Mike’s focus has been on collaborative leadership and team-based performance planning his entire career. Mike is currently the Director of Public Policy and Conservation Stewardship for the American Canoe Association. After 30 years of state service, Mike retired from the Commonwealth of Virginia in December 2016 where he was the Director of the Office of Environmental Education at the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation. Prior to his state career, Mike held positions in academia and business. He has been a trained facilitator since 1990 and has led and served on many collaborative efforts such as the Chesapeake Bay Program, US Forest Service Forest Legacy Program and Virginia Nonpoint Source Advisory Council, Virginia United Land Trusts, and Farmland Preservation Task Force. He has also led many NGO and state strategic planning and conservation policy efforts. Mike has been teaching the leadership portion with the Virginia Natural Resources Leadership Institute since 2001 and is a graduate of the Covey Leadership course.

Christine Muehlman Gyovai

Christine Muehlman Gyovai is the Principal of Dialogue & Design Associates. She holds certificates in mediation and permaculture design and is a member of the National Roster of Environmental Dispute Resolution and Consensus Building Professionals.  Ms. Gyovai consults and lectures regionally about permaculture with the Blue Ridge Permaculture Network.  She holds a M.U.E.P. in Urban and Environmental Planning from the University of Virginia and a B.S. in Environmental Studies from Burlington College. She lives at the base of the Blue Ridge Mountains with her husband and two young children.