About Us

Our History

The Third Millennium Foundation, Inc., (3MF) was established by David McTaggart, former Chairman of Greenpeace International, in Sweden in 1987.

David McTaggart, founder of the Third Millennium FoundationDavid McTaggart
It became the base for the work of McTaggart and a small team — including current Executive Director Leslie Busby and Secretary/Treasurer Doug Falkner — after McTaggart’s retirement from Greenpeace in 1992. In 1998, 3MF was incorporated in North Carolina as a 501(c)(3) and the Swedish-registered organization was subsequently closed.

Using McTaggart’s network of contacts, 3MF has focused on various projects over the years, including:

  • Pressing for the remaining ratifications to allow the Environmental Protocol to the Antarctic Treaty to come into force (1996).
  • Campaigning for the establishment of the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary by the International Whaling Commission (1994) and working on whale conservation generally through the IWC and the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species.
  • Working with a team of doctors and psychologists to help children and families affected by the Chernobyl disaster.
  • Campaigning in Italy for more widespread use of organic farming in olive cultivation.
  • Supporting efforts to ratify the Specially Protected Areas and Wildlife (SPAW) Protocol to the 1982 Cartagena Convention for the Caribbean with the intention to create a de facto Caribbean-wide whale sanctuary.
  • Supporting NGOs in Dominica to oppose a plan for copper mining that threatened serious environmental damage to the island and its inhabitants.

After McTaggart’s death in 2001, 3MF concentrated on the SPAW Protocol and the International Whaling Commission (IWC), with a special emphasis on the exposing Japan’s vote-buying program. The Third Millennium Foundation has received support from Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, Turner Foundation, Stichting Doen in the Netherlands, International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW), World Wildlife Fund (U.S.) and Greenpeace.

Our People

Leslie Busby

Executive Director, The Third Millennium Foundation
International Coordinator, International Whales Network

Leslie Busby, executive director of the Third Millennium FoundationLeslie Busby, executive director of the Third Millennium Foundation (3MF) and international coordinator for the International Whales Network (IWN), has worked on International Whaling Commission (IWC) issues for nearly 30 years. She was coordinator of a special Greenpeace/WWF International IWC project through the 1980s and author for nine years of the “Briefings for IWC Commissioners,” which was sent to all pro-conservation IWC delegates and NGOs. She also played a significant role in the campaign that led to the establishment of the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary by the IWC in 1994. In 2000, Leslie became executive director of the Third Millennium Foundation, Inc., for which she has conducted extensive research into the Japanese/IWC vote “recruitment” program, publishing an in-depth analysis of the problem in 2007. In 2008 she became coordinator of the Pew Environment Group's (PEG's) International Whales Network, part of PEG's wider whales conservation project. When that project ended, the Network became a full-time project of 3MF. Leslie is a graduate of Mount Holyoke College and currently lives with her daughter in Italy.

Douglas Falkner

Secretary/Treasurer, The Third Millennium Foundation

Douglas Falkner, Secretary/Treasurer, The Third Millennium FoundationDoug Falkner is a Certified Public Accountant, a Certified Financial Planner and a Professional Charitable Fundraiser. He has a Masters degree from the University of Southern California School of Business and a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Doug was, for more than a decade, the International Administrative and Fundraising Director of Greenpeace International and served on a three-person executive committee, which was responsible for the day-to-day running of the organization. During Doug’s executive tenure from 1980 to 1993, he is credited with building the Greenpeace worldwide supporter base from less than 75 thousand to over 6 million supporters.

During those years, Greenpeace won national gold medals for having the best fundraising / marketing in the United States, Germany and the United Kingdom. In recognition of his successful work, Doug was elected to the Board of the World Fundraising Council, which at time was the world governing body for over 25,000 professional fundraisers including those who were members of the National Society of Fund-Raising Executives (NSFRE) in the U.S.

Doug has been Secretary/Treasurer of the Third Millennium Foundation, Inc. since its establishment in the U.S. in 1998.