Maggie Ullman.

Maggie Ullman takes an ecological approach to bureaucracy. “Everyone complains about silos in government, but it’s just like talking about monocropping,” she says. “If we cross-pollinate more and have richer diversity of thought and experience, we are going to have a more vibrant ecosystem.”

Ullman, 28, manages the office of sustainability in Asheville, N.C., a progressive city of 85,000 in the southern Appalachians. For episode 3 of Knope and Change, a series about the women working to make our cities more sustainable, I caught up with Ullman to chat about small-city government, groggy chickens, and what Coca Cola can teach us about getting people to go green.