County Toxics Coalition (WCTC) is a nonprofit, 501(c)(3),
multi-racial membership organization founded in 1986 to empower low
and moderate-income residents to exercise greater control over
environmental problems that impact their quality of life in West
Contra Costa County (West County), California.
Specifically, WCTC seeks to protect the communities of West
County against the toxic threats posed by petrochemical facilities,
as well as the citing and/or expansion of municipal and hazardous
waste operations in the Richmond area.
The residents of Richmond, particularly in North Richmond,
have grown to respect and rely on the hard work and advocacy of WCTC.
The staff of the WCTC includes a
Director, Office Manager, Community Organizer, and a part-time
Community Outreach Worker. In
addition, we are able to maintain a viable volunteer pool of ten to
twenty volunteers that contributes invaluable support.
Several volunteers are students of the University of
California at Berkeley.
We rely on members, community residents and activists, and
community organizations for assistance in assessing environmental
conditions, and encourage their collaboration and feedback.
Their support and feedback assists us in establishing our
priorities and strategies for the
organizational. The criterion for membership in WCTC is a demonstrated
commitment to our mission to achieve environmental justice and
empowerment for the citizens of West County.
Empowering people ...
The West County Toxics
Coalition has been a pioneer in Environmental Justice for over
organization has developed a model that communities throughout the
United States and groups abroad can use in their struggles.
Our efforts to get Environmental Justice incorporated into
ordinances in the City of Richmond, Contra Costa County, and the
State of California, has provided the legal framework to protect our
communities from continuing disproportionate impact.
Concurrently, we work with companies and local and state
municipalities to reduce the risk from present hazards, and hold
regulatory agencies accountable for equitable enforcement of
Board of Directors
The Board of Directors is the final
decision-making authority of the organization.
The majority of the Board is comprised of residents from our
constituent communities – over 90% of the Board members are
low-income people of color. Each
Board member is a grassroots activist with a base of support within
the surrounding communities. They
bring to the Board a wealth of experience as well as an assessment
of current conditions existing within the communities they
Community activist, doctorate in religious studies
organizer, board member of the Community Action Center
organizer, nursing assistant, bilingual translator
Executive Director, Henry Clark, PhD., manages the implementation of
the Community Empowerment Workshops and other program activities.
Dr. Clark is an expert in community organizing, mobilizing
residents, and analyzing issues, conflict resolution, negotiation
and problem-solving, multi-ethnic relations, human relations.
In addition, he has a particular sensitivity towards building
coalitions among diverse neighborhood groups.
Dr. Clark is an expert in environmental and social justice
issues. He completed
training at the Midwest Academy – Organizing for Social Change in
1989 and the Citizens Clearinghouse for Hazardous Waste in 1989.
Dr. Clark, the West County Toxics Coalition has received numerous awards
Environmental Justice Award
Charities of the East Bay’s Faith and Justice Award
Public Foundation Award for Environmental Justice and Social Change.
Clark was the recipient of:
Clark is a member of the following committees and councils:
Richmond Center for Health Board of Directors
Richmond Municipal Advisory Council
Costa County Hazardous Material Commission
Action Board of Directors
Communities Against Toxics
Black Environmental Justice Network
National People of Color Environmental Leadership Planning Committee.