I am an Environmental Attorney, Mother, and Activist on behalf of a Just and Sustainable Future.
My passion for the environment began at the age of 6 on the first Earth Day, April 22, 1970. As part of that great event, my first grade class crossed the street from Spring Harbor Elementary in Madison, Wisconsin, to take a “nature walk” in a small wooded area. During this welcome escape from the classroom, wearing the green and white ecology button passed out by my teacher, I learned to look at the world around me with heightened appreciation. I was hooked.
After graduating from Vanderbilt University, I attended Tulane Law School where I joined the Environmental Law Clinic representing clients from Greenpeace to the Audubon Society. I graduated from law school with honors in 1990 and moved to Los Angeles to prosecute environmental and other crimes in the Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office. In 1997, I was recruited to be Heal the Bay’s Director of Law and Policy.
In 2005, I became a member of Heal the Bay’s Board of Directors and Chair of the Santa Monica Pier Aquarium. For seven years, I served as Co-Chair for Heal the Bay’s largest annual fundraising event, raising over 5 million dollars during that time period. In 2006, Heal the Bay honored me with its highest volunteer award, the Super Healer Award.
I am a Founding Board Member of The 5 Gyres Institute, Founding Board Member of The George Greenstein Foundation, and I served on the Board of Heal the Bay for 10 years. In 2012 I produced two panels at The United Nations: one on plastic pollution moderated by Kyra Sedgwick, and the other on using social media for environmental causes. Also in 2012, I was invited to speak at The Rio Earth Summit on plastic pollution.
In 2009, I co-founded Plastic Pollution Coalition, a global alliance of individuals, organizations and businesses working together to stop plastic pollution and its toxic impacts on humans, animals and the environment.
In 2014, I co-drafted legislation to ban plastic microbeads in consumer personal care products. California Governor Jerry Brown signed the legislation in 2015, and President Obama signed the law in December 2016.
In 2016, I joined WeTap.org as Co Executive Director. WeTap increases access to and appreciation of safe and well maintained public drinking fountains. WeTap's App geotags an evaluates water fountains around the world.