About the Leadership Academy:

The Nature For All Leadership Academy (Leadership Academy) was established in 2011 to support the Nature For All coalitions’ mission of training and empowering the next generation of diverse environmental leaders who will care for and protect our public lands. The Leadership Academy is a FREE 5-month public lands advocacy training program that trains local leaders to advocate for our local mountains and rivers.

Participants gather every week from 6pm to 8pm to discuss: the Nature For All campaign, community organizing, strategic planning, power mapping, public speaking, strategic media, public engagement, and local ecology. With mentorship from members of the Nature for All coalition, each participant is expected to propose and execute a community project that engages their community in protecting and enhancing the San Gabriel Mountains and rivers. Hear more about the academy and projects from recent graduates themselves:

“Through Nature for All’s Leadership Academy, I was connected with workshops, advocacy tools, networking opportunities and career resources. The leadership academy really shaped my ability to put in motion the steps to pursue a career in environmental conservation. Since graduating, I started a position as the California Desert Program Manager with the National Parks Conservation Association and completed a certification as a California Naturalist. I appreciate N4A’s commitment to public lands and ensuring more BIPOC leaders have a supportive path to environmental careers.”

Demi Espinoza Cohort 17

What to expect:

The Leadership Academy (or “the academy”) is a FREE training program designed for diverse communities from historically underrepresented neighborhoods in LA County. Currently, the academy is a hybrid program with the majority of classes online/virtual and at least one Saturday for the first three months in person outside. The Academy used to be held in person and when we are able to safely meet again, we hope to bring in-person meetings back soon. The academy is a competitive program, as we only allow for 15 per cohort to create a small community and have greater impacts when it comes to learning from and connecting with each other.

The academy can be broken down into two parts: 1) the training and 2) project implementation. The first three months of the academy is where we host the public lands advocacy training program. The last 2 months of the training program is more loosely organized and focused on mentorship and project implementation (more on the project below)

If accepted into the program, the first three months of the leadership academy will consists of virtual meetings every Wednesday evenings, from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. and some Saturdays, from 8am to 2pm. This is a total of 12 classes.

Each academy class is interactive and includes skill building workshops and discussions on how the skills can be applied in environmental protection and advocacy and participants’ community projects.

Who should apply?

  • Those over the age of 15
  • Those who live in LA County
  • Those with a passion to improve their communities
  • Those who have a desire to learn more about Public Land advocacy
  • Those who have a desire to learn more about local environmental issues and how to get involved
  • Those who identify as black, indigenous or people of color or those that come from park poor communities( as identified in the LA County Parks Need Assessment)
  • Those who have an equal interest in the CA Naturalist Program, but is not the sole reason for applying.

“I confess, I expected the Academy to be a light weigh forgettable workshop/webinar but I was so wrong! It was so great to be with other like-minded people and to see a perspective that acknowledges our history and embraces our culture. I highly recommend the Leadership Academy!”

Laura Santos – Cohort 17


Each participant is expected to organize and carry out a project within 2 months of graduation that will serve their community and will work towards our goal of further protecting our local San Gabriel Mountains and Rivers. If accepted into the program, participants will receive direct mentorship from coalition members, alumni, or partners on project design, implementation, and follow-up.

Each participant is required to write a Letter of Intent for their project and verbally pitch their projects to Nature for All members, to be eligible for a grant worth up to $1,000 for their project. Please note that the project can change from when you applied to when you graduate, but must be connected to our missions to further enhance and protect the San Gabriel Mountains and must be completed no later than August 2022. Funding from this grant can NOT be used for fundraising purposes.

Read more about past Academy projects here.


Questions? Learn more at our informational session held on January 25, 2023 at 6 pm via Zoom!
Click here to RSVP Can’t attend? No worries, check back after the session for a link to the recording!

Academy Dates:

8 am – 3 pm Saturday, March 4, 2023 (In-person)
6-8 pm Wednesday, March 8, 2023
6-8 pm Wednesday, March 15, 2023
6-8p m Wednesday, March 22, 2023
8 am-3 pm Saturday, April 1 (in-person)
6-8 pm Wednesday, April 5th, 2023
6-8p m Wednesday, April 12, 2023
6-8 pm Wednesday, April 19, 2023
6-8 pm Wednesday, April 26, 2023
8 am-3 pm Saturday, May 6, 2023
6-8 pm Wednesday, May 10, 2023
6-8pm Wednesday, May 17, 2023
GRADUATION: Wednesday. May 24, 2023
Project implementation from May 2023 – August 2023

Click here to RSVP for the Academy Informational Session on Jan. 25th at 6pm

Applications are DUE by Sunday, February 12th, 2023 at 11:59pm

Apply Below!

If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to Brenda at Brenda@lanatureforall.org.

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