Senior Director, Office of Sustainability
Geory Kurtzhals joined the Office of Sustainability as the Senior Director in 2022. In this role, she oversees the strategic and managerial direction for the office, working with the Office of Sustainability staff and interns, and focusing on partnerships with campus groups and individuals to advance campus sustainability.
Geory comes to Notre Dame from Sustain IU, where she was an Assistant Director and Sustainability Analyst. Prior to that, she served as Director of the Office of Sustainability at Southern Illinois University. Geory is a Returned Peace Corps Volunteer.
Geory traces the roots of her commitment to sustainability to her upbringing in southern Indiana, where she was raised on a farm surrounded by the Hoosier National Forest. After an early and diverse corporate career with Starbucks Coffee, she fulfilled a childhood dream by serving as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Nicaragua. During this 27-month experience, Geory had the opportunity to think deeply about human role in the world - the ways our individual and collective decisions affect our local and global neighbors.
Upon returning to the United States, she completed her Master of Business Administration in Sustainability and Social Change in 2015 at Clark University Graduate School of Management in Worcester, Massachusetts, where she was a Paul D. Coverdell Fellow. Geory earned her Bachelor of Arts in Journalism with a certificate in Environmental Studies in 2001 from Indiana University in Bloomington. Geory’s diverse background also includes work as an outdoor educator and additional volunteer and cultural exchange experiences within and outside of the United States.
She was recognized by the Southern Illinois University (SIU) Leading the Pack program, which highlights faculty & staff members that have gone above and beyond to fulfill SIU’s mission. She has presented at several sustainability conferences including ACUBSS, AASHE, and the Illinois APPA State Conference.
Program Manager of Education, Outreach & Engagement
Anna Balas serves as the Program Manager of Education, Outreach & Engagement for the Office of Sustainability. In this role, she is responsible for students, faculty, and staff engagement in sustainability, leading educational programs across campus and to raise awareness of how the impact our personal behaviors have on the environment and to assist departments in implementing sustainable practices.
Prior to joining the Office of Sustainability, Balas worked for the Purdue University Extension Elkhart County office where she was responsible for coordinating youth and adult volunteer education for the Elkhart County 4-H program. She also served with AmeriCorps, providing garden and nutrition education to youth.
Balas earned her degree in Environmental Science & Policy and Spanish from Duke University with a certificate in Sustainability.
Sustainability Program Manager
Caitlin Jacobs is the Sustainability Program Manager and provides remote project support for the Office of Sustainability from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. In this role, Jacobs is responsible for efforts to measure and reduce the University’s greenhouse gas inventory, support academic partnerships, contribute to progress on key regional climate concerns, and develop future-facing initiatives aligned with the University’s Comprehensive Sustainability Strategy.
Jacobs joined the office in July 2018 as an Associate Program Manager with responsibility for student-facing outreach and engagement. Prior to joining the Office of Sustainability, Jacobs worked for the Center for Social Concerns as a community-based research assistant and supported the Minor in Sustainability program as a part-time program coordinator. Jacobs graduated from the University of Notre Dame in 2017 with a B.A. in American Studies and a Minor in Sustainability.
Program Manager for Sustainable Operations
Greg Koehler is the Program Manager for Sustainable Operations for the Office of Sustainability. In this role, he fosters relationships between our operations and key campus stakeholders, with a particular focus on waste reduction, sustainability in Athletics, and the campus’ natural resources. Koehler joined the office in January, 2020 as the Associate Program Manager overseeing outreach and engagement with faculty and staff.
Prior to joining the Office of Sustainability, Koehler served as an adjunct instructor in Sustainability and Science/Math at Indiana University South Bend, Southwestern Michigan College, and Ivy Tech Community College. He was a founder and manager of Purple Porch Co-op in downtown South Bend.
Koehler earned a B.S. in Biological Sciences from Purdue University and an M.S. in Environmental Science from Indiana University, along with a Teacher Certification in Secondary Science from the University of Missouri.