Extreme Heat Resilience Alliance

Founded and managed by Arsht-Rock, EHRA works hand-in-hand with global leaders and practitioners at every level to increase heat resilience in urban areas, focusing on vulnerable populations. 

What is the Extreme Heat Resilience Alliance?

Recognizing the need for a diverse, multi-sectoral effort to address the impacts of rising temperatures, Arsht-Rock created, launched, and now leads the Extreme Heat Resilience Alliance (EHRA). EHRA is committed to protecting lives and livelihoods from the impacts of extreme heat, with a particular focus on the most vulnerable people.

EHRA is comprised of global, city, and county leaders and experts in public health, humanitarian assistance, disaster management, policy, implementation, climate risk and climate science, finance and insurance, and engineering and design. EHRA supports local, regional, and national governments with reducing the risks and impacts of extreme heat to their residents. Two science panels advise EHRA on its work, with experts from a range of fields including climate, meteorology, human health, and social and behavioral science.

EHRA’s priority areas:

  • Educating decision makers linked to vulnerable communities
  • Co-developing heat risk reduction policies
  • Creating affordable capital and risk transfer products for heat resilience
  • Supporting on the ground implementation

What does EHRA do?

Bringing heat resilience solutions to cities worldwide

When Arsht-Rock launched EHRA, we recognized that there were experts in the fields of heat-related preparedness, governance, and response who had been working on this issue for decades. Our goal was to bring these individuals and organizations together, united around the common cause of working in urban areas to meet their specific needs for heat resilience solutions.

EHRA works with governments through its Global Champions for Heat Action (GCHA) platform, formerly known as City Champions for Heat Action (CCHA), which contains two tracks for engaging mayors and other decision-makers: Core Partners and Champion Cities.

Core Partners:

This group of 3-5 cities and counties works closely with EHRA to reduce the heat risk and impacts that their residents face. Core partners including Miami-Dade County (USA), Athens (Greece), and Freetown (Sierra Leone), receive extended technical assistance from EHRA and connection to a network of global cities working to address heat risks. Each appointed a Chief Heat Officer, a government official focused on the threat extreme heat poses to residents of urban areas.

 Champion Cities: 

This group of cities commits to highlighting the risks of heat to their residents—and potential solutions—during their summers. They use communications materials produced by Arsht-Rock as part of the ongoing #HeatSeason campaign, implement Heat Wave Naming and Categorizing initiatives, and amplify the message that the threat of heat must be addressed around the globe.

EHRA’s priority areas

Knowledge sharing

Educate decision-makers linked to vulnerable communities about the risks and impacts of extreme heat and how to reduce them.

Policy recomendations

Develop policy recommendations that create the enabling conditions for effective heat risk reduction interventions.

Implementation tools

Create tools to support the implementation of heat resilience measures.

Affordable capital and risk transfer products

Provide better access to affordable capital for long-term interventions and to extreme heat risk transfer products, building physical and financial resilience to heat.

On-the-ground interventions

Implement replicable, effective on-the-ground extreme heat reduction interventions.

EHRA’s working groups

EHRA members work through working groups that enable EHRA to respond to partners’ needs with agility and flexibility.

Education of decision-makers linked to vulnerable communities

  • Co-chair: Mauricio Rodas, former Mayor of Quito & Senior Fellow, Adrienne Arsht-Rockefeller Foundation Resilience Center   
  • Co-chair: Tiziana Bonzon, Manager, Climate, Migration, and Resilience, International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies  
  • Dr. Caspar Ammann, Project Scientist III, Regional Climate Applications, National Center for Atmospheric Research   
  • Dr. Aaron Bernstein, Director, T.H. Chan School of Public Health at Harvard Center for Climate, Health & the Global Environment & Senior Fellow, Adrienne Arsht-Rockefeller Foundation Resilience Center   
  • Jeff Goodell, Best Selling Author, New York Times & Contributing Editor, Rolling Stone   
  • Maree Grenfell, Chief Resilience Officer, City of Melbourne   
  • Amy Knowles, Chief Resilience Officer, City of Miami Beach, Florida   
  • Barbara Merz, Managing Director, Empowerment Funds, Pathfinder International   
  • Jim Murley, Chief Resilience Officer, Miami-Dade County   

Finance and Risk Transfer

  • Co-chair: Sophie Evans, Head of Country Programmes, The Centre for Disaster Protection (Quality Assurance Partner)   
  • Co-chair: Vikram Widge, Senior Advisor, Climate Finance, Climate Policy Initiative   
  • Omar Abou-Samra, Director, The Red Cross Global Disaster Preparedness Center   
  • Isaac Anthony, CEO, CCRIF SPC   
  • Francis Bouchard, Senior Fellow, Adrienne Arsht-Rockefeller Foundation Resilience Center   
  • Dr. David Bresch, Full Professor, ETH Zurich, Weather and Climate Risks Group   
  • Annette Detken, Director, Climate Risk Solutions Management, Limited   
  • Louis Downing, CEO, Global Infrastructure Basel   
  • Jackie Higgins, Head of Public Sector Solutions, North America, Swiss Re   
  • Ekhosuehi Iyahen, Secretary General, Insurance Development Forum  
  • Daniel Magallon, Managing Director, Basel Agency for Sustainable Energy   
  • Kelvin Massingham, Director, Risk and Resilience, FSD Africa   
  • Ryan Vaughn, Technical Product Manager Jupiter Intelligence     

Policy and Governance

  • Co-chair: Jorge Gastelumendi, Director, Global Policy, Adrienne Arsht-Rockefeller Foundation Resilience Center   
  • Co-chair: Eleni Myrivili, Chief Heat Officer, City of Athens, Greece  
  •  Louis Blumberg, Climate and Heat Policy Consultant, Adrienne Arsht-Rockefeller Foundation Resilience Center   
  • Leticia Gutiérrez, General Director on Policy Coordination and Environmental Culture, Ministry of Environment, City of Mexico City, Mexico   
  • Tessa Kelly, Climate Change Coordinator, IFRC   
  • Amy Knowles, Chief Resilience Officer, City of Miami Beach, Florida   
  • Jim Murley, Chief Resilience Officer, Miami Dade County   
  • Mike Peterson, Deputy Commissioner, California Department of Insurance   
  • Ben Webster, Head of Secretariat, The Risk-informed Early Action Partnership (REAP)   



  • Co-chair: Jad Daley, President and CEO, American Forests   
  • Co-chair: Rebecca Scheurer, Director, Humanitarian Initiatives, Adrienne Arsht-Rockefeller Foundation Resilience Center   
  • Julie Arrighi, Urban Manager and ICRC Partnership Lead, Red Cross Red Crescent Climate Centre   
  • Luis Bonilla Ortiz Arrieta, Senior Consultant, Partnership Strategy, Resilient Cities Network   
  • Joe Curtin, Director, Power and Climate Team, The Rockefeller Foundation   
  • Guy Deknuydt, Climate Action Plan Officer, City of Tel Aviv, Israel   
  • Alissa Farina, Resilience Programs Manager, City of Miami, Florida 
  • Catherine McKalip-Thompson, Manager of Sustainability, Infrastructure, Bechtel   
  • Krishna Mohan, Chief Resilience Officer, City of Chennai, India   
  • Jonathan Parfrey, Executive Director, Climate Resolve   
  • Jayshree Vencatesan, Managing Trustee, Care Earth Trust   




Meet EHRA’s members

Our expert science panels

Grounded in the imperative of science-based decision making, EHRA is supported by scientist panels, with experts from a range of fields including climate science, meteorology, human health, medicine, social and behavioral science, and more.

  • Dr. Caspar Ammann, Project Scientist III, National Center for Atmospheric Research
  • Dr. Aaron Bernstein, Director, Center for Climate, Health, and the Global Environment at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health
  • Dr. Larry Kalkstein, CEO, Applied Climatologists & Professor Emeritus, University of Delaware
  • Dr. Iphigenia Keramitsoglou, Research Director in Earth Observation, National Observatory of Athens, Greece
  • Prof. Phoebe Koundouri, Athens University of Economics & Business
  • Dr. Kostas Lagouvardos, Research Director, National Observatory of Athens
  • Dr. Simon Mason, Columbia University, International Research Institute for Climate & Society
  • Dr. Robert McDonald, Lead Scientist, Nature-Based Solutions, The Nature Conservancy
  • Dr. Madeleine Thomson, Senior Science Lead for Climate Change and Health and Interim Head, Our Planet our Health, Wellcome Trust
  • Dr. V. Kelly Turner, Assistant Professor, Urban Planning, Luskin Center for Innovation, University of California Los Angeles
  • Dr. Gregory A. Wellenius, Professor of Environmental Health, Boston University School of Public Health

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