Our Story

NorthLight Foundation, a private foundation established by Dan and Sheryl Tishman, invests at the intersection of human and environmental landscapes to advance equitable and enduring solutions for environmental and human health.

Originally incorporated as the Dan and Sheryl Tishman Family Foundation in 2011, the Foundation entered a new phase in 2018 with the hiring of its first staff, an Executive Director, and the development of a strategic grantmaking framework. It also adopted a new name, NorthLight, evoking the Trustees’ commitment to supporting solutions that will bring about a healthy, just, and sustainable world. NorthLight Foundation is the product of many years of active philanthropy in education and the environment and builds upon the legacy of John L. Tishman.

The Foundation invests in five programmatic areas of focus, each centering on environmental movement building: leadership development, cross-movement collaboration, just transition, innovative strategies, and communications. A sixth area of focus is Alaska and the Arctic. NorthLight Foundation also supports scholarship and education through the John L. Tishman Fund. As a family foundation, the Trustees continue to support a range of additional causes and institutions of personal importance, including cutting edge brain science.

The Foundation is unable to consider unsolicited grant proposals.

 

Our Vision

NorthLight Foundation envisions a world where the Earth’s environment is healthy, protected, and sustained for future generations. Our work focuses on building power across diverse communities to lead on environmental protection, with a particular focus on climate and land conservation. We fund through a lens of environmental justice.

We envision a world in which:

  • Frontline communities across the country lead the charge for environmental protection with an effective, robust movement infrastructure and leaders equipped with the tools to address new challenges.

  • The environmental movement is growing, not shrinking, with new advocates, new tactics and new, effective messages.

  • The core base of the movement is strengthened by empowering groups led by low income people and people of color, who are disproportionately affected by environmental assaults.

  • The movement is broadened and deepened by new alliances with others also committed to the health and enjoyment of our environment – and the human communities it sustains.

  • The significant gains that environmental advocates have won in recent years are protected.

  • Critical new wins are not only achieved but lasting; in particular, sensitive and high value areas are free from encroachment by extractive industries and climate change solutions are widely supported and durable.


Trustees

Daniel R. Tishman, Chairman and President

Daniel R. Tishman is Principal and Vice Chairman of the Board of Tishman Hotel & Realty LP. Mr. Tishman formerly served as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Tishman Construction Corporation and currently serves as a member of the Board of Directors of its parent company, AECOM. Mr. Tishman is Chairman Emeritus of the Board of the Natural Resources Defense Council. He also serves as Chairman of the Board of Montefiore Medicine and as a member of the boards of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine and the National September 11 Memorial & Museum, among others. Mr. Tishman holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Ecology and Planning from Evergreen State College and a Master of Science degree in Environmental Studies from Lesley College.

Sheryl C. Tishman, Vice President

Sheryl C. Tishman is an avid environmentalist and currently sits on the Board of Trustees of the Trust for Public Land (TPL), Mountainfilm, and Teton Valley Ranch Camp. She has been helping TPL protect land in Colorado and her home state of Maine since 2007. Sheryl is a former Trustee of The Open Space Institute, the National Audubon Society Expedition Institute, Mianus River Gorge Preserve, The George Mitchell Scholarship Foundation and The Meade School. She holds a BS in Environmental Studies from Middlebury College and MS in Education from Lesley University. In her spare time she enjoys outdoor pursuits, wilderness travel and time with her husband and two sons.

Francis W. Beck, Treasurer

Frank Beck is Chief Financial and Administrative Officer for Tishman. Prior to joining Tishman in 1992, he was in charge of Finance and Administration for Guinness PLC, overseeing the financial activities for the Group's hospitality development and management business in the United States. Before that, Mr. Beck held various Hotel Corporate and Property Controllership positions and started his career in auditing and consulting with the CPA firm of Pannell, Kerr and Forester. Mr. Beck holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting and Business Administration from the State University of New York.

Kate Sinding Daly, Secretary


Staff

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Kate Sinding Daly, Executive Director

Kate Sinding Daly is the Executive Director of NorthLight Foundation. Prior to her current role, she was senior advisor to the president of the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and, before that, a senior attorney and deputy director of NRDC’s New York program. Before she joined NRDC in 2006, she was a partner in the specialty environmental law firm of Sive, Paget & Riesel, P.C. Kate has taught environmental law at Columbia University and Fordham University. She is a graduate of New York University School of Law, the Woodrow Wilson School of International and Public Affairs at Princeton University, and Barnard College. Kate is an avid outdoorswoman and enjoys spending time with her family exploring new destinations.


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Trevor Thompson, Program Associate

Trevor Thompson is the Program Associate at NorthLight Foundation. Trevor previously worked as a management consultant at The Bridgespan Group, which originated from Bain & Co. and advises nonprofits and foundations. Prior to that, Trevor was a professional futurist at the Institute for Alternative Futures (IAF), where he conducted long-term (e.g., 20 year) scenario development and forecasting for government agencies and nonprofit organizations. Trevor’s foresight work focused on climate change, health, and technology. Trevor is a graduate of Yale School of Management (MBA), Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies (Master of Environmental Management), and Harvard College.


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Nicole Follmann, Program Assistant and Grants Manager

Nicole Follmann is NorthLight Foundation's Program Assistant and Grants Manager. Prior to joining the team in 2019, she worked at the Brooklyn Community Bail Fund to free New Yorkers who could not afford bail and fight the injustice of pretrial incarceration. Previously, she worked to defend clean water for New Yorkers and was a fellow at the Flora Family Foundation. Nicole graduated from Stanford University in 2015 with a degree in Anthropology and a minor in Spanish. Nicole also spends her time organizing for the equitable redistribution of wealth and advocating for criminalized survivors of domestic violence, in addition to reading and running with friends.