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$25 million gift from Jack Little and Cleve Moler to help protect natural lands
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$25 million gift from Jack Little and Cleve Moler to help protect natural lands

Jack Little and Cleve Moler owned MathWorks, the Natick-based developer of mathematical computing software, has made a multiyear commitment to a Massachusetts organization that will have a big impact well beyond the MetroWest.

The company has given Mass Audubon a $25 million gift to “help protect and restore the Commonwealth’s most valuable natural lands,” according to a news release.

This seven-year commitment from MathWorks is the largest programmatic gift in Mass Audubon’s 127-year history and will be used to address “urgent, high-impact land protection and restoration projects resulting in the permanent preservation of nature throughout the Commonwealth,” Audubon officials said.

“This extraordinary commitment to protecting the nature of Massachusetts is nothing short of transformative, and we are forever grateful for MathWorks’ overwhelming generosity,” said David O’Neill, president of Mass Audubon. “It’s so heartening to see a world-renowned company like MathWorks prioritize the natural world, and we are honored they are entrusting us to carry out such important work.”

Audubon officials said this donation also presents them with an opportunity to match and leverage the gift “to help meet the ambitious and critically important goals of protecting 30 percent of the land in Massachusetts by 2030, restoring critical habitat for wildlife, and creating new open spaces for people to enjoy.”

“The opportunity for nature to play a role in fighting climate change is more vital than ever,” said Jeanne O’Keefe, SVP and CFO of MathWorks. “Between Mass Audubon’s 127-year history of conservation and MathWorks’ commitment to its local communities and green initiatives, we’re confident this kind of partnership will inspire even more corporate social responsibility and lead to the protection of outdoor spaces that benefit people and wildlife across the state.”

At the organization’s annual meeting, Mass Audubon presented MathWorks with the Nature of Massachusetts Award. The award is given to an individual or group “that has furthered the cause of conservation and environmental protection or that has broadened the public awareness of the nature of the Commonwealth.”

“MathWorks has recognized the urgent need to preserve this state’s most ecologically important lands, and their bold action in the face of the existential threat that is climate change should be recognized and applauded,” said Jocelyn Forbush, Mass Audubon’s Chief Conservation Officer. “This award recognizes the leadership of a company seizing this moment to form partnerships, meet shared goals, and protect valuable open space for generations to come.”

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