Michele L. Christina
Ms. Christina spent over 10 years in the environmental consulting field, working predominantly on pre-remedial assessments on Federal and State superfund sites. She then jumped to the public sector side of the fence working as the City of Trenton’s Brownfields Coordinator and, later, as the City’s Director of the Division of Economic Development.
Currently, Ms. Christina is co-owner of BRS, Inc., a municipal consulting services group headquartered in New Jersey. BRS helps their municipal and county government clientele that struggle with redevelopment funding and staffing capacity. BRS assist public sector entities create places where residents want to live, work, and play by preparing winning grant applications and providing outsourced project management for public sector redevelopment projects.
As co-owner of BRS, Michele Christina manages redevelopment projects and municipal brownfield programs. Ms. Christina is the principal in charge of the firm’s technical services. Services performed for clientele on public sector redevelopment projects include:
• Redevelopment strategies;
• Identification of redevelopment funding sources;
• Application for and administration of funding sources;
• Regulatory liaison;
• Management of revolving loan funds; and
• Community outreach and facilitation.
Ms. Christina holds her Bachelor of Science in Biology and Environmental Science, with a concentration in Chemistry, from Westminster College. She is licensed in New Jersey in underground storage tank closure and subsurface evaluation. She is also a certified Economic Development Finance Professional.
Leah B. Yasenchak, PhD AICP/PP, CEcD/EDP
As co-owner of BRS, Leah Yasenchak oversees redevelopment projects on environmentally compromised property through project inception and funding to cleanup and completion of regulatory approvals. Dr. Yasenchak is the principal in charge of the firm’s environmental planning, outreach, and grant writing and management services. Services performed for clientele on brownfield redevelopment projects include: identification of redevelopment and environmental funding sources; application for and administration of funding sources; environmental planning; technical assistance for environmental investigations and cleanups; management of environmental contractors; service as a liaison between various regulatory agencies; and provision of community outreach. Dr. Yasenchak also serves as the NJ Future Local Recovery Manager for Sandy-impacted communities, working with them to plan for a more resilient future.
Leah has more than 22 years of experience at the federal and local levels in environmental policy, grant writing and administration, and brownfields redevelopment. Prior to establishing BRS, Dr. Yasenchak spent 12 years working for the US Environmental Protection Agency including a four-year loaned executive assignment as the Brownfields Coordinator for the City of Trenton. While at EPA, she served on numerous federal committees developing grant requirements as well as on grant selection panels. Dr. Yasenchak’s successful grant writing and relationship building talents, as well as her project management skills, make her a premiere expert on municipal brownfield redevelopment.
Dr. Yasenchak received her Bachelor and Master of Arts degrees in Public Administration of Environmental Policy from The American University, her Master of Environmental Science degree from Johns Hopkins University, and her Doctorate in Planning and Public Policy from Rutgers University. She is a certified and licensed planner and a certified economic developer.