As former long-standing President of the Back Country Land Trust, I am calling on you both to resign from their board. As you are both members of the Alpine Planning Group, you have competing interests on matters regarding Wright’s Field. Your support of a 26-acre active park on Wright’s Field ignores phase III of BCLT’s Wright’s Field Acquisition plan — the last portion to be acquired as part of a 25 year concerted effort by BCLT to acquire the entire Wright’s Field property as open space. Its extremely high biological significance has been documented and recognized by all relevant state and federal government agencies, including the county of San Diego, but you already knew that.
You also knew that it was this very significance of biological and other environmental resources that led to my husband Dave’s, mine and others’ successful recruitment of state and county funds for the acquisition of Phase I and II, with an added bonus of our acquisition of Findel Ranch. All of those acquisition efforts and successes happened before either of you came on board.
When government funding became inadequate for the purchase price of Phase III, George, you knew that several on the board wanted to put together a donor campaign which is common practice for land trusts in acquiring open space.
Dave and I had fundraisers come to a board meeting with a plan and an offer their services for free. We started the Legacy Society with the partnership of the San Diego Foundation with the goal of raising money to acquire the final phase of Wright’s Field. Yet, you had doubts, after all that, that we could raise enough money to buy the land. You, as then President and Executive Director, told the board you were making progress with the seller, but you refused to offer the board details for months on end. My husband, whose dying wish was to see Phase III saved after 25 years of dedicated service, quit the board out of frustration.
The fact that you are not only supporting the unnecessary destruction and diminishment of one of the highest quality native grasslands left in the state of California, but your advocacy for an active park on Wright’s Field has significantly alienated those who have supported BCLT over the years with their devotion, donations and grants to protect Wright’s Field.
In short, you are not only harming Wright ’s Field, but BCLT’s ability to protect land. You have chosen your political ambitions over your obligations to BCLT. I feel it is a violation of your nonprofit duty of obedience to BCLT’s mission. I, therefore, call on you both to resign.