Lizette Castaño Leclerc is director of finance and operations at the Water Foundation. She oversees finance, accounting, human resources, information technology, legal compliance, facilities, and systems that support the foundation. Before joining the Water Foundation, Lizette served as chief of staff to the chancellor emeritus of the California State University system and retired president and CEO of the J. Paul Getty Trust. Before that, she served as senior administrator of the Cotsen Family Office and Foundations and executive director of the Children’s Nature Institute in Los Angeles. She received a BS in Business Administration from the USC Marshall School of Business.
"I grew up in Los Angeles in the 80’s not realizing for a long time that the paved canal I saw on the way to and from East LA was the LA River.It looked nothing like the wild rivers my parents described from their native country of Colombia. In college, I learned about the history of water in Southern California and visited a water treatment plant that sparked greater interest in water and environmental issues more broadly. In 2013, when the Glendale Narrows portion of the LA River officially opened for recreation after 80 years, I was excited to be a part of the first group of kayakers exploring our natural heritage."