Simone Pulver

Dr. Simone Pulver

Executive Director, Croft Center for Undergraduate Environmental Leadership 

Associate Professor, Environmental Studies


ELI is the brainchild of Dr. Simone Pulver who built and now directs the Environmental Leadership Incubator. Dr. Pulver’s proposal for ELI and commitment to sustainability won her UCSB’s 2019 Faculty Sustainability Champion. She is also the recipient of the 2019 Distinguished Teaching Award from the Academic Senate due to her excellence in teaching and service. Dr. Pulver teaches the core course for ELI.

Dr. Pulver arrived at UCSB as an Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies in 2009. Prior to her arrival at UCSB, she was a research professor at Brown University's Watson Institute for International Studies and the Center for Environmental Studies. She received her doctorate in Sociology from the University of California, Berkeley and also hold an M.A. in Energy and Resources from UC Berkeley, as well as a BA in Physics from Princeton University.  

Her research focuses broadly on the intersection of economic action and environmental harm and seeks to integrate theoretical frameworks related to global governance, organizational theory, and economic and environmental sociology. Specifically, she has led NSF-funded research projects investigating oil industry responses to climate change, climate politics in Mexico, low carbon investments by firms in Brazil and India, and toxic pollution in US manufacturing. 


Erika Zollett

Dr. Erika Zollett

Associate Director, Croft Center for Undergraduate Environmental Leadership 


Dr. Erika Zollett arrived at UCSB in 2019, starting as a Program Manager for the Environmental Leadership Incubator (ELI) and now as the Associated Director for the Croft Center for Undergraduate Environmental Leadership (CCUEL).  Dr. Zollett facilitates programs to help students successfully transition from their environmentally-focused undergraduate studies to an impactful career in the environmental field. For ELI, she manages the mentorship program, advises students on their environmental change-making projects, and coordinates logistics of the Environmental Leadership Incubator.

Dr. Zollett joined ELI after working for over a decade in the environmental consulting sector. Her work focused on using the best available science and innovative solutions to address challenging issues in fisheries management and ocean conservation. She possesses an expertise in protected species bycatch and conservation. She holds a B.S. degree from Bates College, a Master of Environmental Management Degree from Duke University, and a Ph.D. in Natural Resources and Cognate in College Teaching from the University of New Hampshire.

Dr. Zollett continues her work, addressing ocean conservation, through consulting and environmental education. For the past six years, she has also co-led a NOAA-funded Ocean Guardian program at a local elementary school, which successfully raised awareness about ocean conservation and watershed protections, funded environmental education field trips and assemblies, hosted zero-waste lunch days and lunchtime composting, promoted biking and walking to school, held school and beach clean-ups, supplied classrooms with zero-waste party kits, provided students with reusable water bottles and utensil kits, and more. In 2024, she helped the school transition from plastic to reusable sporks in the cafeteria.  The student group won the Explore Ecology Environmental Stewardship Award at the Santa Barbara Earth Day Festival in both 2019 and 2024.