Co-Founder, Grades of Green
Kim is the Associate Director of the Los Angeles Waterkeeper (LAW), her oldest and dearest client as an environmental lawyer, where she is helping them work towards better watershed management and the protection of water quality in the Los Angeles region. Kim’s prior 25+ environmental legal career included consulting other environmental groups, foundations and tribes on advocacy, funding, and enforcement of environmental laws pertaining to climate change, the protection of water quality, air, endangered species, and mitigation of the environmental impacts of land use projects. Noteworthy successes include developing and managing the Revolving Litigation Fund, the Water for Fish Fund, and the Climate Litigation Fund for the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation; representing the Orange County Coastkeeper against The Irvine Company to successfully protect Crystal Cove’s Area of Special Biological Significance from the Newport Coast development; representing the Ventura Coastkeeper to protect water quality and indigenous rights in a proposed Ahmanson Ranch development, and representing the Friends of the Los Angeles River to ensure prospective developments along the LA River had best practices in watershed management.
When her kids started school, she volunteered to green their school and district, helping both to receive the U.S. Department of Education’s Green Ribbon award. This inspired Kim to Co-Found Grades of Green, where she served as its Co-Executive Director as it grew from that first school to a movement of over 700 schools across 47 states and 27 countries. As a result, 600,000+ students are being inspired and empowered to care for the environment by reducing toxins, waste, and air emissions, and conserving water & energy.
Kim has taught Environmental Law at Pepperdine Law School and UCLA Extension. She serves on Grades of Green’s Board of Advisors, the City of Manhattan Beach Environmental Task Force, the Manhattan Beach Unified School District’s Green Council, the South Bay Cares Environment Committee, and American Martyrs Creation Care Team. She has previously served on the Board of Directors for the Coalition for Clean Air and Grades of Green, the Legal Advisory Committee for Heal the Bay, the Executive Committee of the Los Angeles County Bar Association Environmental Law Section, and the Editorial Boards of several environmental legal publications.