Climate and Energy
Kate joined Waterkeeper Alliance in January 2017 as our Advocacy Coordinator for the Western United States, supporting advocacy and organizing teams and coordinating with Waterkeeper Organizations and Affiliates on all domestic western campaign activities. In March 2022, Kate’s advocacy coordination work shifted to focus on Climate and Energy. Her work includes policy, legislative, communications, investigations, and legal work related to these high priority issues impacting water quality, quantity, and our fight for Free Flowing Rivers. She continues to develop partnerships with local, state, and national organizations to jointly work on the climate and energy-related challenges that threaten our public lands and waters, and face our Waterkeepers in the Pacific Region and across the U.S.
Kate began her environmental career in 1985 as a Regional Attorney for the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation handling enforcement and permitting matters in all program areas, including water quality, air quality, solid and hazardous waste and mining. In 1999, Kate joined the NY Attorney General’s Office Environmental Protection Bureau as a member of its Hudson River Team, responsible for preparing the State and Federal Trustees natural resource damage claim against GE for its PCB contamination of the Hudson River. Kate rejoined NYS DEC in 2007 to lead the creation of a ten person unit dedicated to pursuing NY State natural resource damage claims. As Director, she represented DEC in developing claims, coordinating assessment and litigation activities with Federal Trustee agencies and Native American Tribes, and negotiating settlements with responsible parties.
Kate joined Riverkeeper in February 2011 as its NYC Watershed Program Director and then Director of Cross-Watershed Initiatives until November 2016. Kate headed Riverkeeper’s efforts to build a powerful partnership and advocacy campaign with anti-fracking groups across New York State, resulting in the state’s December 17, 2014 decision to prohibit high-volume hydraulic fracturing in New York. Kate and the Watershed Team also fought NYC’s releases of muddy water from its Ashokan Reservoir to the Lower Esopus Creek to control turbidity in the NYC water supply. Finally, Kate initiated and helped lead Riverkeeper’s campaign against the exponential increase in crude oil transport down the Hudson River Valley and the formation of a broad coalition of environmental organizations to oppose that expansion.