Business Conservation Coalition Hails Designation of Three New National Monuments
Washington, D.C. – The Conservation for Economic Growth Coalition, a new advocacy group made up of high-profile CEOs and investors today congratulated President Obama on the upcoming designation of three new national monuments at Browns Canyon in Colorado, Honouliuli in Hawaii, and the Pullman historic site in Illinois.
Coalition co-chair Nancy Pfund, founder of DBL Investors, a venture fund that invested early in Tesla and Solar City, said: “These new monuments are prime examples of the expansion of recreational opportunities so important to the growth and culture of entrepreneurial, job-creating companies in the United States.”
Venture capitalist and co-chair Tom Baruch, founder of CMEA Ventures, a fund that invested in companies like Flextronics and InterMolecular, said: “When venture capitalists analyze an investment opportunity, the probability that the company will be able to recruit the best and brightest to help the company grow is critical to our decision. We have found that access to first-class outdoor recreational opportunities is extremely important to these target employees.”
Baruch and Pfund pointed out by way of example that Browns Canyon is the most popular whitewater rafting destination in the entire country. It’s also a great place for hiking, backpacking, hunting, fishing, snowshoeing, birding, climbing and horseback riding.
The designation of Browns Canyon alone will mean that Colorado entrepreneurial companies can more easily attract the financing they need and hire the employees who will help them grow. “That means that the designation will actually fuel more innovation,” they said.
The Conservation for Economic Growth Coalition launched in December 2014 because of the new dynamic in Washington: both the President and Republican Congress are motivated to support economic growth before the presidential elections in 2016. This coalition believes that conservation of America’s national public lands is critical to the bottom line of American businesses.
A full list of current Coalition members is below. As the Congress and the President are considering opportunities to protect public lands over the next two years, the Coalition will work closely with investors and entrepreneurs nationwide to build a voice for the Coalition’s message.
CURRENT COALITION MEMBERS
Wendy Abrams of Cool Globes, in Chicago;
Tom Baruch, founder and Emeritus Partner of venture capital firms CMEA Capital and Formation8 in San Francisco, CA;
Tom Dinwoodie, former CEO of PowerLight (sold to Sunpower), of San Francisco, CA; and
Michael Eynon of RedSeal Networks;
Robert Keith of Beartooth Capital;
Alex Laskey, founder of Opower;
Jiong Ma of Braemar Energy Partners in NYC;
Susan Mason of Aligned Partners;
Laura Mather of Unitive, Inc. and Co-Founder of Silvertail Systems;
Mark Mendel formerly of Intellectual Ventures in Seattle;
Nancy Pfund of DBL Investors;
Pete Rive, Founder of Solar City;
Jason Scott of Eko Asset Management Partners;
Paul Smith of Los Altos, CA, angel investor and founder and CEO of three entrepreneurial companies, each of which has been acquired or gone public.
Mark Wan of Walden Ventures in San Francisco;