Lin obtained her JD degree from Lewis & Clark Law School with a specialization in environmental and natural resources law in 1991. Her career to date has included law practice, nonprofit executive directing (Friends of Trees and Oregon Mediation Association), and academia, where she served as an administrator and professor in top-ranked environmental law programs at Lewis & Clark and Pace University. During her academic career she taught and mentored international and US law students enrolled in JD, LLM, and SJD level programs. She also served as Co-Chair and Chair of the American Bar Association’s Endangered Species Committee.
Lin brings an international perspective to GPSEN’s work on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). She co-taught Pace’s United Nations Environmental Diplomacy course with Ambassador Robert van Lierop, training students placed in the UN Headquarters Missions of small island developing states, and several of her students sat in on negotiations for the SDGs. Her course in Comparative Environmental Law from a Global Resources Perspective was the first of its kind in the US, and she is coauthoring a book on Global and Comparative Environmental and Natural Resources Law with colleagues. She has also taught Environmental Negotiation and Mediation in the US and Brazil. She led Pace’s academic delegation to the IUCN’s 2012 World Conservation Congress, has been a member scholar of IUCN’s Academy of Environmental Law for more than a decade, and twice served as Chair of the Jury for the international Haub Award for Environmental Diplomacy.
Upon returning to Portland from New York in 2014, Lin founded the Ethical Future Institute, an organization seeking to convene creative thinkers from all disciplines to envision and promote an ethical and sustainable future for life on Earth. She also joined the board of GPSEN, where she served as Governance Chair and President. She became Executive Director in September 2017, when GPSEN’s founder and previous President and Executive Director, Kim Smith, stepped down to take academic leave.
Lin and her husband Conan, a network architect who has set records as a volunteer crew leader with Friends of Trees for more than 20 years, love exploring the many cultures and habitats of the Pacific Northwest.