Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.
President, International Waterkeeper Alliance
Robert Kennedy’s reputation as a resolute defender of the environment stems from a litany of successful legal actions: prosecuting governments and companies for polluting the Hudson River and Long Island Sound; winning settlements for the Hudson Riverkeeper; arguing cases to expand citizen access to the shoreline, and suing sewage treatment plants to force compliance with the Clean Water Act.
Mr. Kennedy serves as Senior Attorney for the Natural Resources Defense Council, Chief Prosecuting Attorney for the Hudson Riverkeeper and President of the Waterkeeper Alliance. He is also a Clinical Professor and Supervising Attorney at the Pace Environmental Litigation Clinic at Pace University School of Law in New York. Earlier in his career he served as Assistant District Attorney in New York City. He has worked on several political campaigns and was state coordinator for Edward M. Kennedy’s 1980 Presidential Campaign. He has worked on environmental issues across the Americas and has assisted several indigenous tribes in Latin America and Canada in successfully negotiating treaties protecting traditional homelands. He is credited with leading the fight to protect New York City’s water supply.
Among Mr. Kennedy’s published books are The Riverkeepers (1997), New York State Apprentice Falconer’s Manual, (1987), and Judge Frank M. Johnson, Jr: A Biography (1977). His articles have appeared in the New York Times, Atlantic Monthly, The Wall Street Journal, Esquire, The Village Voice, The Boston Globe, The Washington Post, Pace Environmental Law Review, and other publications.
Mr. Kennedy is a graduate of Harvard University. He studied at the London School of Economics and received his law degree from the University of Virginia Law School. Following graduation he attended Pace University School of Law, where he was awarded a Masters Degree in Environmental Law.
Founding Director and Chief Executive Office, Beacon Institute
John Cronin has earned a reputation over 30 years as one of America’s preeminent environmentalists. The Knight-Ridder newspapers praised him as a “hero in one of the great success stories of the modern environmental movement,” People magazine described him as “equal parts detective, scientist and public advocate,” and the Wall Street Journal has called him “a unique presence on America’s major waterways.”
Named a “Hero for the Planet” by TIME magazine in 1999 for his work as America’s, and the Hudson’s, first full-time Riverkeeper, Mr. Cronin was responsible for bringing to justice more than 100 polluters and environmental lawbreakers. He co-founded the Waterkeeper Alliance, which now represents more than 200 “Keeper” programs on waterways in four countries. He also serves on the founding staff of Governor George Pataki’s Rivers and Estuaries Center on the Hudson, a global institute for environmental research and education, and is the president of the Hudson Fisheries Trust, established to preserve the maritime history and lore of the Hudson River’s commercial fishing families.
Mr. Cronin is an author, an award-winning documentary filmmaker and former commercial fisherman. He has been the subject of two books and numerous documentaries and profiles, co-authored the book The Riverkeepers, with Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., and has been a frequent contributor on environmental policy to The New York Times.
Since 2000, Mr. Cronin has been the Resident Scholar in Environmental Studies at Pace University, where he founded the Pace Institute for Environmental and Regional Studies to focus the talents and expertise of the University community on the environmental challenges facing the Hudson River and its people.
Terry Tamminen has long been drawn to the undersea world, starting in the 1960s with a family-run tropical fish breeding business in Australia and continuing with studies on conch depletion in the Bahamas, manatee populations in Florida coastal waters, and mariculture in the Gulf States with Texas A&M University.
More recently, Mr. Tamminen was appointed as the Secretary of the California Environmental Protection Agency by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger on November 12, 2003. Ten years earlier in 1993, Mr. Tamminen founded the Santa Monica Baykeeper and served as its Executive Director for six years. He co-founded Waterkeeper programs in San Diego, Orange County, Ventura, and Santa Barbara. From 1999-2003, MR. Tamminen was the Executive Director of Environment Now in Santa Monica, a foundation dedicated to the restoration and protection of California’s environment and natural resources.
Mr. Tamminen has served on numerous civic and charitable Boards and Commissions, including as Chair of the Public Advisory Committee to the Southern California Wetlands Recovery Project and on the U.S. Navy Pt. Mugu Naval Air Station Restoration Advisory Board, the Los Angeles/Long Beach Harbor Safety Committee and on the Board of the Wishtoyo Foundation, a group that preserves natural resources through Chumash Indian traditional teachings.
Mr. Tamminen has authored numerous technical papers, The Ultimate Pool Maintenance Manual (McGraw-Hill 1993; third edition 2000), and several theatrical works on the life of William Shakespeare. He is an avid airplane and helicopter pilot and speaks German, Dutch and Spanish.
Owner, K. Nathan Gallery, La Jolla
Owner, K. Nathan Gallery, La Jolla
Executive Director, Pisces Foundation
Previously, David Beckman was a senior attorney with the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), a national environmental organization with over 500,000 members. Beckman directs the Coastal Water Quality Project in NRDC’s Los Angeles office, where his work focuses on Clean Water Act enforcement, groundwater quality protection, and environmental justice matters. In recent years, Mr. Beckman and the Project have successfully brought major impact litigation to force the adoption of more stringent water pollution standards throughout Southern California and the clean up of major “factory farms” in the Chino Basin, home to the largest concentration of dairy cows in the United States. Mr. Beckman’s work led to passage of the Comprehensive Groundwater Quality Monitoring Act of 2001. Mr. Beckman practiced for three years at the law firm of Heller Ehrman White and McAuliffe in San Francisco prior to joining NRDC in 1995. He received his law degree from Harvard Law School in 1991.
Richard Dittbenner, J.D.
Law Professor, Southwestern College
Retired Optometrist and Retired Captain (USNR), Coronado, California