In 2011 Floridians witnessed one of the most environmentally destructive legislative sessions in the history of their state.
- The budget for Florida’s water management districts was cut by $700 Million and 596 staff positions were eliminated.
- The state’s comprehensive growth management law was dramatically weakened.
- The Department of Community Affairs, the state's growth management agency, was abolished.
- Governor Scott vetoed the entire $300 million annual appropriation for Florida Forever, the state’s preeminent land conservation program.
- The Department of Environmental Protection's staff was reduced.
Environmental safeguards that activists worked for decades to put in place were dismantled and years of bipartisan environmental stewardship were replaced by the leadership of special interests.
In the face of this destruction, environmental Champions Bob Graham, former Florida Governor and United States Senator, and Estus Whitfield, former Principal Advisor to 5 Florida Governors, teamed up to form the Florida Conservation Coalition (FCC). Both Estus Whitfield and Senator Bob Graham, along with Victoria Tschinkel, former Secretary of the Department of Environmental Regulation, lead the FCC today, bringing conservation organizations together to share information, collaborate, and form a stronger, more united front to fight against the forces that would destroy Florida's environment for future generations.
Today, the FCC is a non-partison coalition of over 80 environmentally-minded organizations and over 2,000 individuals dedicated to protecting Florida's land, waters, and wildlife.
Founder & Chairman
Bob Graham, Former Governor of Florida & U.S. Senator
Nathaniel Pryor Reed, Former Assistant Secretary of the Interior, Former Chairman of SFWMD, Founder & Chairmen Emeritus of 1000 Friends of Florida
Com. Lee Constantine, Seminole County Commissioner and Former State Senator, State Representative and Mayor of Altamonte Springs
Lester Abberger, Former Board Member of 1000 Friends of Florida, Audubon Florida, & Florida Conservation Voters
John Finlayson, Agriculturist, Jefferson County, Former Chairman of the SRWMD
Bill Kerr, Environmental Consultant, Brevard County, Former Chairman of the SJRWMD
Gary Kuhl, Former Executive Director of SWFWMD
Jay Landers, Former Secretary of the Department of Environmental Protection & Former Director of the Department of Natural Resources
Allan Milledge, Former Chairman of the Elms Committee and SFWMD
Roy Rogers, Former Budget Chair of SFWMD, Chairman Emeritus of 1000 Friends of Florida & the Florida Chapter of The Nature Conservancy
Auley Rowell, Agriculturist, Taylor County, Former Chairman of SRWMD
Earl Starnes, Former Dade County Commissioner, Former Director of the Division of State Planning
Sonny Vergara, Former Executive Direcotr of SWFMD and SJRWMD
Estus Whitfield, Former Principal Environmental Advisor to 5 Florida Governors