Amy, this is actully an interesting idea that certainly should be looked at, and if I know this group, they will indeed consider this. Recognizing the past absolutely enriches the future. The big question is how can the event be used to support and foster sustainability in Contra Costa. By recognizing those currently active, you really do motivate them to do more. I think there are a lot of people doing a lot of things right now that could also be credited--Igor from John Muir Association, David Mudge trying to create his community garden in Martinez (using permaculture ideas), Lesley Stiles, etc., etc. We'll get them into the mix, though, be assured.
Working for government, I believe it is crucial to get the politicos onboard. They are the ones that adopt the policies that we so very much need. And their presence meant that they saw the scope of possibility, and the support for, sustainability.
So...did the event meet my own test of success (fostering sustainability)? I have to say yes. To know that so many are so interested, and are doing so much in their own ways--and to bring it all together in one place so that we could see it all--that to me helps build the momentum that sustainability needs. Robin
Hi Amy! Thanks for your kind words about the Awards Gala - indeed, it involved a lot of planning, but we have an enthusiastic and dedicated group and have been fortunate to be encouraged and supported by so many individuals and businesses.
You're absolutely right that the sustainability movement wouldn't be where it is if not for the generations of people who have courageously maintained the forward momentum and we do humbly thank them because their determination has paved the way. I hope that we honor them by continuing to "carry the torch" - by raising awareness of the many facets and benefits of sustainability, motivating people to take action, and educating them about what they can do. I liked what Senator DeSaulnier said about striving to carry on the legacy of the great John Muir. Many great people came before him, and after, that may never be recognized for their efforts or accomplishments, but that in no way lessens the importance of their contributions. They have made a difference - and their legacy lives on. Adding categories to recognize various achievements makes a lot of sense and we would welcome your involvement with this process.
Sustainable Contra Costa is excited to identify and publicly recognize what's currently happening in our county because it has the potential to grow or to be replicated. We worked diligently to reach out to our large county and seek nominations so that we can learn and share with as many people as possible some of the exciting things that are happening. Through the nomination process, we invite everyone in our community to help bring awareness to deserving people and projects they know of. In fact, we rely on the community for this because our small team can't possibly know of everything that is happening in our vast county in the many arenas of sustainability. The Senator also said something about how all of the nominees are winners and it's so true; all of the nominations were displayed there because all of them deserve recognition.
It's exciting that you know so much about the local sustainable movement and community, and we invite you to share your knowledge and, yes, to nominate them. I don't know most of the people you mentioned, but would welcome a chance to learn more about them. SCOCO is fortunate to have been introduced to some you mention like Jim Ocean, who performed at the Awards Gala, and Kristie Knoll, who kindly donated delicious produce from her Brentwood farm. We're honored to have had the opportunity to meet many inspirational people like Mary Lou Laubscher, Tom Powers, and Igor Skaredoff. There are so many individuals that deserve recognition: I can literally think of dozens of people - like Debi Tidd and Patrice Hanlon, who have long practiced and promoted sustainable gardening and landscaping, open space advocates like Bill Hunt and Brian Murphy, health and nutrition champions like Cindy Gershen and Allison Negrin, and many more. What an honor it was to see many of these people at the Awards Gala! I hope we are all inspiring each other with our various passions. Together we can nurture the seeds that have been planted and help sustainability continue to grow.
I'll see you Wednesday at the Green Business Lunch at Nibbler's, as usual!