Legal Environmental Assistance Foundation
The Legal Environmental Assistance Foundation (LEAF) is a non-profit organization that serves as an environmental watchdog and provides legal support for court actions to protect the environment. The group was founded in Birmingham in 1979 by Suzi Ruhl, who moved the groups offices to Tallahassee, Florida to serve a three-state region. Ruhl left in 2002 and the group has struggled to remain solvent, cutting staff and, in 2006, ceasing operations pending new funding.
The group has initiated and supported several lawsuits aimed at forcing the Alabama Department of Environmental Management to enforce the Federal Clean Water Act more strenuously. It also sured the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency over a program by which Alabama oil and gas companies inject waste into groundwater.
LEAF board members included Birmingham residents Vivian Vines Campbell, Jeffrey M. Roseman, and Robert A. Webb. David Ludder was vice president and general counsel. Cynthia Valencic was vice president for programs.
- Bouma, Katherine (November 29, 2006) "Environmental watchdog foundation to close doors." The Birmingham News