Kristine Zeigler has spent the past sixteen years as a professional fundraiser finding the necessary financial resources to safeguard animals and nature. As Director of Philanthropy at The Nature Conservancy in California, Kristine works for the world’s largest environmental nonprofit and raises more than $30 million annually for land and water conservation globally. Kristine began her career in environment and animal welfare in 1998 when she landed her first nonprofit job as a grantwriter at the San Francisco Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. Kristine also served as Director of Development at Yosemite Conservancy where the legacy of John Muir and the history of the national parks movement came alive for her.
Kristine's love of wild places is in her blood. Kristine’s family moved to the remote hamlet of Bishop Creek in the Eastern Sierra Nevada Mountains when Kristine was just six months old. She traversed glacial mountain streams, sledded on frozen lakes, and played in snowdrifts taller than her family’s truck; this exposure translated into her direct action as an adult for preserving land, water and wildlife. Her family later settled in the Owens Valley, a 90-mile long crib-shaped depression bordered on the east and the west by two mountain chains – the Sierra Nevada and the White-Inyo. Both mountain ranges loom in dramatic fashion anywhere from 7,000 to 10,000 feet off the valley floor, earning local author Genny Smith’s moniker as North America’s “deepest valley.”
A Summa Cum Laude graduate of Lafayette College in Easton, Pennsylvania, Kristine studied Art History and French and lived and studied as an undergraduate for a year in Dijon, France and in London, England. Kristine holds a private pilot license and flies out of Concord Airport; flying gives her a perspective on land and water that brings her even closer to nature even as she soars thousands of feet above it. In 2012, Kristine completed a writing residency in the HJ Andrews Experimental Forest as part of an Oregon State program to promote understanding of humanity’s role in nature.
Kristine lives in Walnut Creek, California with her husband Joe and dog Connor adopted from the SF/SPCA.