Real Talk: When Nature Calls

Presented by NYU Wagner's International Public Service Association & NYU Stern's Social Impact and Sustainability Association, in collaboration with FLUSH LLC.

4:30pm - 5:50pm EST
November 19, 2018
4:30pm - 5:50pm
Kaufman Management Center, 44 West 4th Street, New York, NY 10012

Celebrate World Toilet Day with professionals who are in the business of toilets across the globe. These experts will share stories about what it's like to work in toilets - the good, the bad, the ugly. Get an appreciation for the trials and tribulations of working on the important work, yet taboo topic, and what it takes to get billions of people to use a toilet "when nature calls."



Virak Chan, MBA, MDM, MIWM Virak  is currently a Water and Sanitation Specialist for the World Bank Group’s Water Global Practice based in Cambodia. More than 12 years of experiences working in the field of Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene and WRM, he has led rural and urban WASH projects in Cambodia and neighboring countries; recently he co-leads Water Resources Management Project. He has spent many years in water sector and applied his knowledge and skills in many cross-sectoral aspects such as urban development, agriculture, and environment. His main expertise is capacity building, social enterprise development, social research, governance and project management. With his commitment to creating next generation water leaders, he founded a Non- Profit Organization known as Center for Sustainable Water in Cambodia. Virak graduated in Master of Integrated Water Resource Management (IWRM) at University of Queensland in Australia and another two master’s degrees in Business Administration and Development Management.

Jessie Kaliski, MBA/MPA: Jessie is in her second year of a three year dual degree program with NYU Stern School of Business and Wagner School of Public Service. She wrote her undergrad thesis on sanitation, spent two years in Cape Town working for a startup in the water sector, and now is hoping to do international development consultancy post graduation.

Vlada Kenniff, PhD, MUP, Vlada oversees the implementation of the NexGeneration NYCHA Sustainability Agenda and its Sustainability Programs. The Sustainability Programs team designs and manages initiatives in areas ranging from water conservation, stormwater management, and waste reduction to renewables and resident-led programs. The team works in close partnership with NYCHA departments, as well as NYC and State sister agencies. She was formerly the Managing Director of an Integrated Water Management group in the New York City Department of Environmental Protection where Vlada managed a Demand Management Program designed to reduce NYC water demand by five percent. This program included measures such as fixture retrofits, system optimizations, public-private partnerships, and water reuse. Before that, she lead the development of the NYC Green Infrastructure Plan. Vlada is a graduate of the Urban Planning Master’s Program at Pratt Institute and is currently pursuing a Ph.D. from Long Island University.

Christopher McGahey, PhD, MSc, Dr. Christopher McGahey’s work has ranged from leading a sanitation program in a refugee setting to designing and managing USAID’s largest water supply, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) project in Afghanistan to leading efforts to capture experiences and best practices from national programs for communication across the global WASH sector. He has contributed to program design, implementation, and evaluation in both the non- and for-profit sectors in Sub-Saharan Africa, the Middle East, South Asia, Southeast Asia, and the Caribbean working with community leaders, governmental decision makers, multi-lateral businesses and organizations, and senior executives. His current work is designing a nutrition-sensitive WASH program in Timor-Leste, developing a business model for municipal fecal sludge management in Nepal, and supporting sanitation improvements in Malawi as part of rural health care center service delivery. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering, a master’s degree in environmental engineering, and a doctorate in engineering from the Johns Hopkins University and began his career as a WASH sector Peace Corps Volunteer in Kenya.

Shawn Shafner, Shawn Shafner is an artist, educator and activist. Creator of The People's Own Organic Power Project (, an arts / education organization with a mission to promote critical conversations about sustainable sanitation for the individual person, global community, and the planet we all share. Major POOP works include An Inconvenient Poop (Time Out New York Critic’s Pick, 2015 NY International Fringe Festival Award for Overall Excellence in Solo Performance), feature documentary Flush, family musical Innie / Outie, and monthly episodes of SHHH: The Poopcast (aka Shit and Shame with Shawn). Shawn has been awarded some fancy opportunities for his work, including a 2018 National Fellowship through the Environmental Leadership Program, a 2017 Global Social Impact House fellowship through UPenn's Center for Social Impact Strategy, and membership in the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Foundation's ROI Community since 2015. The POOP Project is currently traveling the USA with a new show, inviting audiences to Assume the Throne.

Kimberly Worsham, MPA, MIWM Kimberly is a WASH expert and Founder of FLUSH LLC, a start-up working towards building knowledge and understanding around sanitation and hygiene through public dialogue while supporting sanitation efforts through consulting services. She is also currently the Monitoring and Evaluation Manager at Safe Water Network, where she analyses and uses diagnostics to manage and improve program performance in Ghana and India. She has worked seven years in WASH in consulting roles for multilateral agencies and nonprofits in the US and other countries like Australia, Cambodia, India, working on strategic initiatives, analytics, and capacity building programs. Outside of the WASH sector, Kimberly has led performance management in city government programs, marketing analytics in the healthcare industry, and taught math and testing at institutes in Rwanda. She received her MPA and B.Sc in international business at NYU, and a Masters in Integrated Water Management from the University of Queensland, Australia as an International Water Centre Scholar.



NYU Wagner provides reasonable accommodations to people with disabilities. Requests for accommodations for events and services should be submitted at least two weeks before the date of the accommodation need. Please email or call 212.998.7400 for assistance.
Real Talk: When Nature Calls