By the Daily Post staff
Attorney Joe Cotchett has donated $250,000 to Green Foothills to help the local environmental nonprofit compete for employees.
The gift was made in honor of former Palo Alto congressman Pete McCloskey, who is a partner in the law firm Cotchett founded and heads, Cotchett, Pitre & McCarthy.
Green Foothills is putting the money into its Lennie Roberts Advocacy Fund, which has grown to $1 million. The fund is named after local environmental advocate Lennie Roberts.
“Lennie Roberts has volunteered her time for Green Foothills as an environmental advocate since 1978 and our region is a greener place because of her dedication,” Cotchett said. “I made this gift to ensure local nature always has an advocate. Green Foothills needs to be able to attract diverse and impactful talent, providing competitive compensation to full-time members of their advocacy team so they can live and work in this area.”
“The advocate job requires a thorough knowledge of local government, land use policies, and ecological science,” said Megan Fluke, executive director of Green Foothills. “Without support from the larger community and people like Joe Cotchett, we wouldn’t be able to compensate our team.”
Green Foothills is a nonprofit organization that works to protect nature in San Mateo and Santa Clara counties, advocating for land use decisions to affirm climate resilience and biodiversity and partnering with diverse leaders to support conservation and inclusion.
“The cost of living in the Bay Area can make it difficult for nonprofits to attract staff,” Fluke said. “There are talented people who would like to work in a job protecting the environment, but who can’t afford to do that here. Especially if you want to have an organization that’s representative and inclusive, you need to be able to pay a living wage. Otherwise working for a nonprofit becomes a luxury that only the privileged few can afford. Joe’s gift will help us to broaden the pool of talented candidates.”
An anonymous supporter has put forth a $100,000 dollar-for-dollar match challenge made to the Lennie Roberts Advocacy Fund with $41,000 remaining. To support Green Foothills’ Advocacy Program and make a contribution or pledge a gift, go to www.greenfoothills.org/ways-to-give/lraf/.