Announcing Rincon's Director-Level Promotions

It is with great excitement that we formally introduce the following team members recently promoted to the Director-level! We are very proud of their achievements and look forward to watching them continue to do great work.

Please join us in congratulating Rincon’s new Directors:

  • Christina Shushnar
  • Kelsey Bennett, MPA, LEED-AP
  • Ryan Gardner, MESM, LEED-AP, ENV-SP
  • Steven Treffers
  • Susanne Huerta, AICP
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Christina Shushnar

Director, Natural Resources 

“Christina is the quintessential consultant: she shows up every day to solve problems and satisfy our clients’ expectations. She is good humored and highly competent, with an unshakable demeanor. Her sense of urgency is unparalleled, with a laser focus on achieving client success and Rincon goals. She sets high expectations for her team yet builds trust by supporting them at every step of the process (first in, last out). She is committed to Rincon excellence, client satisfaction, and creating a space for her team to become great consultants. What more could we want?”

— David Daitch, Vice President, Natural Resources

With 10 years in her field and at Rincon, Christina is a new Director in the Natural Resources team! In this role, she will be responsible for a mix of client management, business development, Natural Resource program and staff management, and mentorship. She will be taking a lead role in the renewables market, as well as overseeing one of Rincon’s largest projects. Christina will also be leading the Business and Operations strategic group for Natural Resources, focusing on tracking the group’s financial metrics and influencing our Natural Resources group’s Best Management Practices and behaviors that will help the team meet 2023 goals. Underlying all this activity will be her support of the team and a commitment to ensure everyone is enthusiastically working toward success.

“I’m incredibly grateful for the privilege and opportunity to grow in my career at Rincon alongside such a supportive and talented group of colleagues and mentors. It’s amazing to see what our team has accomplished during my first 10 years at Rincon, and I’m excited to continue to support the advancement of the team for the next 10 years and beyond!

— Christina Shushnar

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Kelsey Bennett, MPA, LEED-AP 

Director, Environmental & Sustainability Planning

“Kelsey’s brings an infectious passion for sustainability planning to her new role as Director. I’m looking forward to working with Kelsey as a pillar of growth for our Water Market in northern California, leveraging her superior management and her experience with climate action and adaptation plans. Kelsey is incredibly articulate and demonstrates Rincon’s core values for technical excellence; she is a key asset to ensuring we achieve our vision – contributing to a resilient California one community at a time!”

 Jennifer Jacobus, Principal, Environmental Planning & Sustainability

As Director of Environmental and Sustainability Planning, Kelsey will continue her great work related to a broad range of environmental planning, science, and sustainability services. She will continue leading our Climate Action/Adaptation planning and CEQA-related programs across the State. Kelsey will also provide oversight to CEQA, NEPA, Permitting, and Climate projects throughout the Bay Area and State, particularly for communitywide long-range planning and complex water/coastal projects.

“I’m honored to represent the company in environmental and sustainability planning. Rincon is a cutting-edge firm, and I look forward to helping us further our focus on the intersection of environment, sustainability, and policy to help the largest swaths of society gain access to healthy, safe, and vibrant communities. I’m excited to continue to help lead teams that provide quality climate and environmental Rincon documents.”

— Kelsey Bennett

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Ryan Gardner, MESM, LEED AP, ENV-SP

Director, Climate Action and Decarbonization

“Ryan has been part of Rincon’s Sustainability Climate Resilience+ Practice from day one. His technical capabilities, credibility, and reputation are an important part of the success and evolution of our practice and team. We are excited by Ryan’s Promotion to Director and looking forward to how is interest, enthusiasm and technical aptitudes will continue to help our clients and contribute to Rincon’s companywide success!” 

Erik Feldman, Principal, Environmental Planning

Ryan has been at Rincon since 2013, when he joined the team as an intern. Fast forward 10 years later, Ryan is now our Director of Climate Action and Decarbonization! Over the last decade, Ryan has worked tirelessly to expand Rincon’s technical capabilities, credibility, and reputation with an impressive portfolio of new and existing clients. Rincon’s continued access to this market and client capture will require dedication, technical analysis, innovation as the market continues to evolve, and a strong team that can perform at the high level that Rincon’s clients are accustomed to. He oversees the continued evolution of Rincon’s climate action planning and implementation projects by identifying and deploying new technologies, providing QA/QC on our technical deliverables including greenhouse gas (GHG) inventories, forecasts, GHG reduction strategy quantification, and other analyses. Ryan also works to provide mentorship and direction to our super talented and growing team of analysts and project managers to allow Rincon to continue as a leading environmental and climate science consulting firm. 

“Working at Rincon over the last decade has been a real journey. From my first experiences as an intern to leading first of their kind deliverables, I have always been impressed with Rincon’s openness to new ideas, demonstrated flexibility, and authentic mentorship which has kept me engaged and excited in a way that I don’t think would be possible anywhere else.”

— Ryan Gardner

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Steven Treffers

Director, Cultural Resources

“The CR Team is thrilled to promote Steven to Director. He clearly demonstrates and embodies the core values of Rincon (Trusted, Fair, Transparent, Accountable, Disciplined, Entrepreneurial). His leadership is evident in his strong technical expertise, mentorship of peers and junior staff, willingness to jump in and help, and his entrepreneurial pursuits. In addition to his significant presence within the Cultural Resources Group, Steven has made an indelible impact at Rincon that is felt across the company and within our industry.” 

Shannon Carmack, Principal, Cultural Resources

Steven joined Rincon in 2016 and has over 14 years of professional experience. In his new role as a Cultural Resources Program Director, Steven will collaborate with the Executive Team and leadership both within the Cultural Resources group and across the company to support the continued success of Rincon and its employees. He will work closely with staff to identify training and mentorship opportunities which support their career goals and ensure Rincon remains an industry leader in both our technical capabilities and client service. His work with the Cultural Resources group will continue to include program oversight, quality assurance/quality control, and client management. With an eye towards the future, Steven is also working to expand Rincon’s services and geographic reach through Rincon’s strategic business development efforts, taking a collective and organic approach to identify and capture new opportunities in California and beyond.

“Rincon has provided me with so much over the past six years and I am truly appreciative of all of the people that make this company so amazing. I am excited to take this next step in my career and contribute in any and all ways I can to our continued success.”

— Steven Treffers

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Susanne Huerta, AICP

Director, Environmental Planning

“I am amazed at how well Susanne manages her large book of work; she just puts her head down and gets the work done (and done well). She does this along with being incredibly supportive of all the staff she works with, while managing the Los Angeles office (including our social events) and keeping a positive attitude. I am fortunate to work with her and am excited to see what she does in her new role as Director.”  

Deanna Hansen, Vice President, Environmental Planning

Susanne has over 15 years of CEQA experience and has been at Rincon over 7 years. Susanne leads a large portfolio of environmental work for Rincon. Growing the Los Angeles office, since its inception, she has steadily built Rincon’s reputation throughout southern California and especially in the Los Angeles area. She has been successful at developing strong teams through determination, quality work, client service, and lots of humor! She is a team player and never hesitates to roll up her sleeves to support her colleagues. Susanne is a great mentor and takes time to make sure her team has the necessary support to be successful. With her effective leadership skills and positive attitude, she has risen as a leader at Rincon, and we look forward to many more years of success.

“During my first months at Rincon, I often sat alone at the LA office. There has been a lot of growth since then, both at the company level and personally. I am so grateful for the professional and personal growth during my time at Rincon and I’m looking forward to the continued success of the Rincon team in the years to come.”

— Susanne Huerta

Please join us in congratulating Rincon’s new Directors!