A Pillsbury pro bono team led by San Francisco Projects leader Rob James and Los Angeles Environmental & Natural Resources senior associate Stephanie Angkadjaja guided the California Resilience Challenge (CRC) in its annual award of grants to protect local California communities against climate stressors including drought, flooding, extreme heat and wildfires. The CRC is a 501(c)(3) program of the Bay Area Council Foundation that operates as a funding source for local climate change adaptation projects.

Pillsbury supports the CRC by assisting with Requests for Proposals and eligibility determinations and advising on legal aspects of the climate impact planning and infrastructure projects. Pillsbury works with Bay Area Council staff and representatives of the NAACP, the Environmental Defense Fund, and other nongovernmental organizations.

The 2022 awards went to projects protecting the most vulnerable communities in the state. For example, one grant mitigates the impact of extreme heat and wildfire smoke conditions through refuge centers and canopy tree plantings at children’s playgrounds throughout Los Angeles County.

In addition to James and Angkadjaja, Environmental & Natural Resources partner Tom Van Wyngarden (LA) and senior associate Eric Moorman (SF) have provided further pro bono support to CRC over the years.

“It takes a unique team of experts to execute a multi-million-dollar climate resilience grant program in a state as large and as diverse as California,” said Bay Area Council Vice President of Public Policy Adrian Covert. “We’ve been extremely fortunate to have had Pillsbury’s support from the start. Rob James and Stephanie Angkadjaja have been invaluable contributors to the California Resilience Challenge Advisory Committee since our first grant round in 2020.”

The California Resilience Challenge is a program funded and administered by stakeholders that share the drive to accelerate projects created to enhance climate change resilience. Specifically focusing on impacts of drought, flooding, extreme heat and wildfires, the challenge targets resilience for under-resourced communities that face disproportionate impacts of climate change. Since 2020, the program has awarded grants worth $5.25 million.

To learn more about the California Resilience Challenge, click here.