Welcome Cohort # 15!

One-hundred and thirty seven people have graduated from Nature for All’s Leadership Academy! This month, we welcome 15 new participants to the 15th Nature For All Leadership Academy Cohort!

The Leadership Academy’s six-month training program helps community members develop new skills in political organizing, civic engagement and communications techniques.

The fifteenth class is composed of Tania Romero, Miguel Ramos, Margarita Gatica, Sierra-Dawn Bennaton, Lupita Solano, Jacqueline Ramirez, Carly Curiel, Adriana Lola Pellicer, Felipe Guzman-Donate, Karlamaria Aguilar, Marisa Cherry, Danielle Furuichi, Alfredo Martinez, Manuela Garay, and Jaime A. Jorge-Memije! Yet another VERY  impressive group — get to know them!

Check-out the new crew here.

Apply for the Nature for All Leadership Academy

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Our Nature for All Leadership Academy application for the Spring 2019 term is now OPEN! Applications are due at 11:59pm, January 8, 2019 (deadline extended). Apply online today!

The Nature for All Leadership Academy is a five-month training program focused on organizing, advocacy, civic engagement, and local community action.

Individuals must meet the following criteria:

A) Individuals must demonstrate experience OR interest in environmental protection related to the San Gabriel Mountains, River, watershed areas and local parks.

B) Individuals must commit to carrying out Nature For All’s vision of engaging diverse communities in protecting and improving equitable access to the San Gabriel Mountains and our public lands.

C) Applicant must live in the San Gabriel Valley OR within the greater Los Angeles region.

Learn more and apply online by January 8th.

Nature For All Celebrates 13th Leadership Academy Cohort Graduation

After completing six months of biweekly evening trainings, our 13th Leadership Academy cohort graduated on May 9, 2018!

Nature For All celebrated the graduation at the Jeff Seymour Family Center with keynote speaker David Diaz, Programs Director of BikeSGV. We presented the Leadership Academy participants with their diplomas, and Jenny Lopez spoke about her experience as the Leadership Academy student speaker. Graduate Liliana Griego also shared about how graduates can continue staying involved through the Stewards group, our core volunteer group.

Congratulations to our wonderful participants: Elizabeth Bayne, Monica Curiel, Reina Adelina Duran, Tiffany Kinh Lam, Jenny Lopez, Omar Madrid, Berenice Martinez, Remi Mateo, Rhonda Moller Mulherin, Audrey Murray, Melanie Nhan, Kimberly Orbe, Mary Pickert, Jesse Soria and Michelle Tarian! We wish them the best of luck in their future endeavors.

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Lucky Thirteen — Nature for All Welcomes Leadership Academy Class #13

One-hundred and twenty-two people have graduated from Nature for All’s Leadership Academy.

A new class arrives this week — the thirteenth class since 2011.

The Leadership Academy’s six-month training program helps community members develop new skills in political organizing, civic engagement and communications techniques.

Led by the Wilderness Society for Nature For All, this thirteenth class is composed of Elizabeth Bayne, Monica Curiel, Reina Adelina Duran, Tiffany Kinh Lam, Jenny Lopez, Omar Madrid, Berenice Martinez, Remi Mateo, Rhonda Moller Mulherin, Audrey Murray, Melanie Nhan, Kimberly Orbe, Mary Pickert, Jesse Soria and Michelle Tarian.

Check-out the new crew here.

Their biographies are posted — an impressive group — get to know them!

Support Leadership This #GivingTuesday

We need good leaders, now more than ever.

This #GivingTuesday, we give thanks to the future leaders helping us care for our public lands and advocate for the protection and enhancement of our mountains, forests, rivers, parks, and urban open spaces.

Now is the time to lead, and to take a stand. Our public lands are being threatened — including our beloved San Gabriel Mountains National Monument — by a federal administration that has no regard for protecting our environment or serving our communities.

On this #GivingTuesday, you can take a stand with us and support our Leadership Development program to find, educate, develop and encourage a new generation of environmental stewards to carry on our work.

IMG_4546 1Earlier this month, we celebrated the 12th graduating class of our Leadership Academy at a newly created urban park, the Los Angeles State Historic Park. The six-month training program focuses on developing outreach and advocacy skills, civic engagement, and local community action, and it was inspiring to look around and see faces of local citizens ready to rise up and resist — to defend our public lands and demand justice for our underserved communities.

meg-convert-a-canIt was also inspiring to see previous graduates in the audience, including Meg Devine, who developed the Convert-A-Can project in the program several years ago and continues with running it today. The program enlists volunteers to turn trash bins into art installations, to curb graffiti and beautify our public spaces. Meg is among 121 Leadership Academy graduates have worked on projects to enhance and improve our public lands; provide access to nature for kids and families living in park-poor communities; clean our trails, rivers and streams; and educate students about environmental justice and the public health benefits of spending time in nature.

In addition to the academy, our Leadership program supports 100+ volunteers and dozens of super-volunteers activists working with us on community engagement projects. We are grateful for these volunteers and inspired by them. You can be, too. We can do this together.

With your support, we can continue to grow our Leadership program and work to protect the mountains and rivers in our area, to conserve resources and be more climate-resilient. We can continue to create more natural spaces, such as parks and bike paths, in our historically underserved neighborhoods. We can continue to connect people to public lands through more trails and other outdoor recreational opportunities, to improve public health.

With your help, we can find and support the leaders we need to ensure that everyone in the Los Angeles area — no matter where they live—has equitable access to the wide range of benefits that nature can provide.

Thank you for giving.

Leadership Academy Graduation: Congrats, 12th Cohort!

We celebrated the graduation of our Leadership Academy‘s 12th cohort at LA State Historic Park!

Laura Torres from member organization National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA) served as our emcee, and National Park Service Ranger Kya-Marina Le was our keynote speaker.

Congratulations to graduates Sofia Aleman, Alain Bourgault, Yuhki Fukusumi, Michael Gasbarro, Sally Gee, Joel Glen, Christina Harrington, Erika Martinez, Cristina M. Plemel, Kathy Ramos, Krystle N. Ramos, Alejandra Sandoval, Melina Simonds, and Adrienne Wade.

During the event, we also presented Champion Awards to honor the work of Los Angeles County Supervisor Hilda Solis; Helen Hong from Eaton Canyon Nature Center; and the late Brian Velez, a Leadership Academy graduate and BikeSGV employee.

On the Ground Work Update: Wild River Ride Bike Tour

For her Leadership Academy project, recent graduate Dorothy Wong partnered with Bike San Gabriel Valley’s Women on Wheels to host an educational bike tour of the San Gabriel River in September. The Wild River Ride bike tour started at the Santa Fe Dam Recreation Area and ended at Cogswell Dam. Along the way,  she educated the 30-plus female riders on our watershed areas and highlighted the four dam systems along the San Gabriel River.