President, Senior Program Advisor & Co-Founder
Jill Ratner was trained as an attorney and specialized in environmental and financial law. She serves as the President and Co-Director of our New Voices Are Rising program, a youth leadership development program delivering environmental justice and civics curricula to underserved East Bay high school students. Before co-founding the Foundation in 1992, Jill organized a multi-cultural recycling advocacy coalition in the Los Angeles area, effectively moving the City of Los Angeles to implement a curbside recycling program, and previously was an associate at the Los Angeles law firm Irell & Manella. Other former appointments include the Los Angeles City Environmental Quality Commission, LA City Solid Waste Advisory Board, Council of the Foundation Partnership for Corporate Responsibility Advisory Board, and the Boards of Communities for a Better Environment and Californians Against Waste.
Executive Director & Co-Founder
Tim Little is Rose Foundation’s chief executive and principal grants officer. Starting 25 years ago from an endowment of zero, Tim built a family of environmental and consumer protection grantmaking funds at the Foundation – most supervised by expert advisory boards – that collectively award $3 – $7 million each year. Tim is an evangelist about the power of grassroots community activism and the need to funnel resources toward the grassroots base of the environmental movement. He is also a nationally-recognized voice in the field of sustainable investing and has co-authored The Environmental Fiduciary series of publications related to fiduciary responsibility and corporate environmental performance. Before co-founding Rose Foundation, he held leadership positions with a number of non-profits including the Coalition for Clean Air, Heal the Bay, and Communities for a Better Environment. Other past affiliations include serving on the board of the Sierra Nevada Alliance and Confluence Philanthropy.
Pamela is an experienced administrative professional who is applying her skills and passion to the environmental health and justice movement. She has volunteered for various groups and projects including Latin American Club during college to raise scholarships funds for low-income Latino students, registering new voters during presidential campaigns and motivating them to make their voices heard, and most recently as a founding member of Bay Area Refinery Corridor Coalition to fight environmental injustices committed against disadvantaged communities in the San Francisco Bay Area. She has a Bachelor of Science in International Business with a minor in Latin American studies and Master in Business Administration. Pamela is absolutely thrilled to have joined the Rose Foundation team as a Administrative Manager.
Sage grew up in the East Bay and migrated north to study Marketing and Spanish at the University of Oregon. Following graduation, she moved to Spain to teach English and experience life in a foreign country. She has spent the past year reconnecting with and serving Bay Area communities through volunteer work, canvassing for the Census Bureau, and supplying generous portions of Italian comfort food at Lo Coco’s on Piedmont Avenue. Sage is excited to use her marketing skills to uplift the voices of grassroots organizations. She also looks forward to celebrating community resilience in the wake of a difficult year.
Inspired by the tenacity, resourcefulness, and passion of Rose Foundation grantees, Aurora is honored to support their work as the Program Officer for Rose’s grassroots funds. Originally from Napa, CA, Aurora joined the Rose Foundation in 2018 as the Administrative Assistant, where she gained experience with nonprofit administration, finance, and human resources. She is excited to bring her experience to bear, building community solutions to protect the environment and helping grassroots groups build capacity and navigate the grant-seeking process. She holds a degree in cultural anthropology from Mount Holyoke College in Massachusetts. When not in the office, Aurora can be found dancing Cuban salsa by Lake Merritt, doting on her succulent garden, or catching up with her reading.
Amy has spent over 20 years working with underserved, frontline communities in California and around the world on developing and implementing environmental justice and sustainable development strategies that are equitable, durable, and scalable. Before moving to California, Amy worked on social and political development issues as a program officer and fundraiser specialist for a variety of international organizations. Her work has allowed her to live all over the world – including China, Hong Kong, Brazil, Panama, Dominican Republic, Argentina, Korea, Botswana, England, and Australia – where she has had the opportunity to explore beautiful landscapes, meet fascinating people, and eat delicious food. In her free time, you can find Amy during the day getting lost in wild spaces with her adventure cats, Lil Dude and Pico De Gato, and at night attending concerts, plays, and art installations.
Nancy is a longtime South Seattle resident with over 10 years of leadership experience in environmental justice. They hold a degree in Aquatic and Fishery Sciences from the University of Washington. Nancy has experience in research, policy, community organizing, and education and outreach. They are excited to join the philanthropic sector with the Rose Foundation to utilize their technical background and community advocacy experience to continue building a thriving community. In their free time, Nancy can be found exploring with their dog or munching at local eateries and restaurants in the Pacific Northwest.
Mitigations Fund Director
Jodene is a public interest attorney who has exclusively represented non-profits in federal enforcement cases related to water and toxic waste pollution. Jodene has a master’s degree in Geography, and prior to becoming an attorney, she worked as a planner and geographic information systems analyst at environmental consulting firms and a major utility where she contributed to planning documents. After many years of practicing litigation, Jodene is pivoting to philanthropy as a more direct means to advance social progress, promote change, and improve people’s lives. Jodene regularly volunteers with several local organizations including her county’s civil grand jury. She is also a trained mediator and has helped unrepresented litigants settle claims in in Bay Area Superior courts. In her free time, she hikes with her smallish labradoodle in the hills of Marin County.
Mars was born and raised in San Francisco’s Bayview – Hunters Point neighborhood. Her interest in environmental justice grew out of living in a known EPA Superfund site and watching her family and community experience many adverse health effects. She then went off to study Forest Resource Conservation at Humboldt State University and continues her education at her local community college. Mars is passionate about creating new narratives around the environment, so Black and Brown people can find belonging, joy, and healing in nature. As Program Coordinator, Mars helps develop and implement workshops, field trips, and actions to build New Voices students’ environmental justice knowledge and leadership skills. She enjoys watching youth spark their passions while in the program.
Yenny grew up in Richmond, CA, leaving the sunshine to study visual arts and film production at Bennington College in Vermont. This is also where she discovered a passion for farming, food security, and environmental conservation, which only continued to solidify after graduating in 2014. She has spent the last handful of years working on a pangolin conservation documentary film project in Singapore and then at food rescue nonprofits in Los Angeles and Boston. She is currently pursuing an MA in environmental advocacy art at NYU and is excited to learn more about change-making and community action from the Rose Foundation.
Raised in San Francisco, Perla previously worked with Heart of the Town (HOTT), bringing operational support and event production work to Oakland’s arts and culture events, festivals, and fairs. She has also worked with Kiva to commemorate International Women’s Day at Oakland’s City Hall. Perla is now applying her event planning experience to administrative and support work at Rose. She is excited about being part of the team and learning about the impact the Rose Foundation has in the Oakland community. When Perla is not working, you can find her taking pictures or whipping up new recipes.
New Voices Are Rising Program Manager
Mykela Patton first joined Rose in 2016 as a Summer Academy student and over the years has taken on ever-increasing leadership roles in the program. Mykela has played an integral part in defining and building New Voices’ youth leadership pipeline including designing youth leadership positions and mentoring many students to help them develop their skills and gain experience in environmental justice work. We are thrilled to have her back now that she has completed her environmental policy degree with a justice concentration at Colby College.
Born and raised in Oakland, Andrea joins us for her 4th year with New Voices Are Rising. As Youth Co-Coordinator, Andrea helps plan and run the New Voices Summer Climate Justice Leadership Academy. She is passionate about making learning fun and accessible for everyone, especially when it’s about environmental justice. Andrea loves using her creative ideas to make work feel less like work, and more like fun!
Sarah comes to the Rose Foundation with over ten years of experience strengthening and resourcing organizations committed to building more healthy, sustainable, and equitable communities. She is proud to work with values-driven organizations advancing racial, economic, and social justice, including seven years at LeaderSpring, a Fellowship for progressive social sector leaders in the Bay Area, and operationalizing the launch of She the People, a national effort to elevate the political voice of women of color. As Operations Director, Sarah is excited to lead the continued development, implementation, and refinement of the Rose Foundation’s data management and evaluation tools and systems. A devoted daughter of the Bay Area, you can find her strolling around Lake Merritt or trying to send the latest boulder problems at Berkeley Ironworks.
Originally from Lima, Peru, Maria learned to create a more positive environment by organizing in her own community, hosting events, and creating gardens and parks. Now, she is a dedicated mother and wife and enjoys helping others. After moving to Elk Grove, CA for a better environment for her daughter, she has returned to the Rose Foundation team as an Administration Assistant while pursuing her career in Business Administration with a concentration in Accounting at Consumnes River College. Through her four years in the nonprofit sector with Rose Foundation and Community Water Center, she is excited to teach her daughter about protecting and loving nature and make a difference for her future.
Jessica Guadalupe Tovar is a longtime climate and environmental justice organizer in a variety of urban, rural, and indigenous communities throughout California and Arizona. Jessica interned with the Environmental Justice and Climate Change Initiative in 2003, working with organizations across the U.S. on issues of climate justice. She is currently an Energy Democracy organizer with the Local Clean Energy Alliance and has been hosting youth from New Voices Are Rising for years. Jessica enjoys comedy, art, traveling, scary movies and spending time with family; especially the toddlers!