April 1: Kajsa James Donating to <a href="http://www.maddiejamesfoundation.org">Maddie James Foundation</a><br> "Make every visit to the beach a clean-up day. Teach your children the importance of not littering and that no matter where you live in Southern California, all litter can eventually end up in our precious ocean. In our everyday lives, we can all make small changes that together will have a huge impact on the environment we are so fortunate to live in."
April 2: Jenny Miller Garmendia Donating to: <a href="http://www.projectaware.org">Project AWARE Foundation</a><br> "Our ocean planet home needs our care and attention. The simplest actions truly matter. Using reusable shopping bags can help prevent the death of marine mammals and seabirds. Reducing your energy use can help coral reefs. Actively supporting the protection of threatened species such as sharks can help safeguard healthy ocean ecosystems. No matter where you live or how far you are from the ocean, these simple actions are critical to our future and the health of our children and our ocean planet. "
April 3: Reginald Durant Donating to: <a href="http://www.backtonatives.org">Back to Natives Restoration</a><br> "Planting natives plants can help the community and the planet! Native plants provide habitats for animals. They conserve water – an increasingly scarce natural resource. Used in a landscape setting they eliminate the need for pesticides, which harm beneficial insects and other animals. Plant natives in your yard, or volunteer to restore a habitat near you! "
April 4: Environmental Nature Center Donating to: <a href="http://www.encenter.org">Environmental Nature Center</a><br> "Everyone can help the planet by making small, easy changes in their own behavior – using reusable shopping bags, riding their bike, run errands close to home, using a re-usable drink container, etc. Change happens when individuals are influenced positively by people they respect. Be a good example!"
April 5: Anne Younglove, Kathy Evans, and Debra Davis Donating to <a href="http://www.vitallinkoc.org">Vital Link Orange County</a><br> "We, at <a href="http://backbay.nmusd.us/">Back Bay – Monte Vista High School</a> believe by educating the youth of our community in green technology we are creating environmental ambassadors and the future stewards of our earth. Engaging them in global environmental practices with companies and organizations gives them real life experiences that enhance their everyday lives and prepares them to enter the national green workforce."
April 6: Matt Petersen Donating to: <a href="http://globalgreen.org">Global Green USA</a><br> "I believe everyone can do something to take responsibility for a corner of their world and the environment, and be what I call a “citizen entrepreneur.” As the head of Global Green USA, I am proud of our staff, volunteers, and partners who all work to reduce air pollution, improve air quality, and stem greenhouse gas emissions by greening homes, schools, offices, and cities in California and nationally."
April 7: Andi Tomlinson Donating to: <a href="http://www.surfrider.org">Surfrider Foundation</a><br> "We can help any environment we find ourselves in by simply being mindful and respectful of it. Look after your surroundings wherever you are, like it’s a dear friend. Give it what it needs to make it clean and happy. If we all cultivate this attitude, as well as, use less, dispose less and clean up more, our planet, and we ourselves, would be a lot cleaner, healthier and happier! It’s a matter of lifestyle – celebrate and honor the earth everyday in the way you live – not just Earth Day, but everyday."
April 8: Erica Aguilera Donating to: <a href="http://www.healthebay.org">Heal the Bay</a><br> "Everyday I strive to be the change I want to see in the world and motivate other to do the same."
April 9: Mahuya Barua Donating to: <a href="http://www.acespace.org">Alliance for Climate Education</a><br> "I want to take the lead by doing environmental projects and sharing ideas with other youths to inspire them to action within their school and community. I want everyone to reduce, reuse, and recycle!"
April 10: Sara Bayles Donating to: <a href="http://www.healthebay.org">Heal the Bay</a><br> "To date, Sara has collected over 1,002 pounds of trash, twenty minutes at a time, with just over 90 days left to go. Her diverse background in the arts, teaching, and ocean conservation makes her a special asset for inspiring young people to care for their ocean, and home environment."
April 11: Nancy L. Caruso Donating to: <a href="http://www.getinspiredinc.org">Get Inspired</a><br> "I have made it my personal mission to be in service to nature. In any way I can, I try to introduce people to nature and let them realize it’s power. Nature has the power to inspire people just by being! Kelp Forests are the foundation of the coastal ecosystem in Southern California. They are the 'rainforests of the sea' with over 800 species relying on them and we are one of those species."
April 12: Claudio Garzon Donating to: <a href="http://www.thelongbeachdepot.org">The Long Beach Depot for Creative ReUse</a><br> "As an artist and a citizen of this planet I am compelled to be an advocate for the sustainable use and protection of it ecosystems, organisms, and resources. This is what drove me to start up Save Oceans and Seas. It also allows me to teach my fellow citizens of the planet about how we are harming our oceanic and other aquatic ecosystems, and what we can be done to mitigate the effects we are having. It is up to us to make the necessary changes and teach future generations how to be stewards of our planet and its natural resources, ecosystems, organisms, etc. This is the best way we have to ensure that future generations will be able to enjoy them like we do."
April 13: Patricio Guerrero Donating to: <a href="http://www.healthebay.org">Heal the Bay</a><br> "I set out to use my passion for engineering to make machines that would meet the demands of the people while not hurting the environment. This is why I joined Team Marine, a student operated organization, to promote a sustainable lifestyle with the help from technology. One of our current projects is converting a 1971 red beetle convertible to run on electricity. We are going to use this project as a lesson plan on wheels and drive it around to different schools teaching students about the solutions and negative effects tailpipe pollution has on our environment."
April 14: Jeanne Kumagai Donating to: <a href="http://www.nixonacademy.org">No Waste Lunch Program at Nixon Academy</a><br> "By far, the biggest challenge I have undertaken is this year's implementation of the NO WASTE LUNCH program in January. Although I offered initial guidance, my Sixth Grade GATE students have been at the helm all the way. I truly believe that empowering the students to come up with their own solutions, and to take the needed steps towards achieving a goal, are critical life-long skills. Currently, I have challenged these students to come up with steps to ensure that the program will continue beyond their participation, as they will be leaving our campus to attend Middle School in the Fall. I am grateful to have the support of my principal and fellow staff members as well."
April 15: James Lieber Donating to: <a href="http://www.oceandefenders.org">Ocean Defenders Alliance</a><br> "I hope to see the day when people intrinsically understand the value of protecting the environment since we all are so dependent on it. I'd like to see money taken out of politics so peoples voices can be heard. The majority of Americans want to end nuclear energy and yet we are moving toward building more. I'd like to see a transition to renewable energies (wind, solar and geothermal). "
April 16: Kurt Lieber Donating to: <a href="http://www.oceandefenders.org">Ocean Defenders Alliance</a><br> "I started my own org, in 2000, when I saw a need to remove abandoned fishing gear that was killing animals needlessly. We have removed over 12,000 pounds of nets and traps. My goal is to get the commercial fishermen to become responsible citizens and remove this gear themselves, or pay into a fund that would allow ODA to afford the expenses that are incurred in the operations to remove this 'ghost gear.'"
April 17: Cindy Liles Donating to: <a href="http://www.iewaterkeeper.org">Inland Empire Waterkeeper</a><br> "I realized my passion for the environment early on in my life, and have since been on the mission to protect, preserve, and restore our natural resources. I love being involved in a variety of projects pertaining to environmental issues, with the hopes my knowledge will be applicable and beneficial in moving forward towards a green revolution. In the future, I plan to continue my career working with government and local officials on remediation techniques to improve our energy and water use."
April 18: Jennifer Naegele and Matt Yurko Donating to: <a href="http://www.coastal.ca.gov/publiced/UNBweb/cbrep.html">California Coastal Commission’s Community-Based Restoration and Education Program</a><br> "We work diligently to restore native habitats while involving and educating the public at Upper Newport Bay and throughout Orange County’s open spaces. Merging science and experience with hands-on public education, they engage community members in understanding and contributing to Orange County’s rich natural heritage to conserve it for future generations of people and wildlife."
April 19: Dency Nelson Donating to: <a href="http://www.pluginamerica.org">Plug In America</a><br> "We have one planet. We are “Spaceship Earth” with limited resources and an exponentially growing population, but we can keep both us and the planet alive and healthy if we use science and common sense in our day-to-day lives. It doesn’t require any real sacrifice, it is fun, and it is ultimately kinder to both the planet and to our budgets. That’s the message I preach, and I can demonstrate it to folks with a lifetime of personal experience."
April 20: Elizabeth Zernik and April Parise Donating to: <a href="http://www.conejo.k12.ca.us/aspen">Eco Program at Aspen Elementary School</a><br> "We love our kids and the planet, and we know that with hard work and dedication, it is possible to have a beautiful future. Our aim is to “lead by example,” inspiring our children to be good citizens and thoughtful stewards of the environment! We are proud to be leaders of this new generation that is committed and dedicated to making the world a better place; through reducing, reusing, recycling, rethinking, and many acts of kindness."
April 21: Kary Rappaport Donating to: <a href="http://www.treepeople.org">Tree People</a><br> "My hope is that I can show others by example how easy it can be to live this way by making lots of small, simple changes to the way we do things. I am motivated by the impressive efforts of certain family members, friends, and environmental bloggers, such as <a href="http://zerowastehome.blogspot.com">zerowastehome.blogspot.com</a> to continuing my efforts to reduce my waste (and transition from a reliance on recycling, to a habit of reducing and reusing). I also am on a mission at the moment to rid my daily routine of chemical laden products. My favorite alternatives are coconut oil for face and body lotion, beet juice as a lip and cheek stain, and witch hazel with tea tree oil as deodorant!"
April 22: Anna Cummins and Marcus Eriksen Donating to: <a href="http://www.5gyres.org">5 Gyres Institute</a><br> "Anna and I are hopeful that the threats to our oceans can be reversed once awareness of the problem, and the opportunity to participate in the solution, are offered to anyone. Together, we founded the 5 Gyres Institute, a non-profit organization that has already logged 25,000 miles of sailing through the 5 subtropical gyres to study plastic pollution. We've found it everywhere, but if we can turn off the tap, the ocean will wash much of the millions of tons of plastic ashore. We have tremendous hope, and it's because everyone that learns about this issue wants to help."
April 23: Michelle Spieker Donating to: <a href="http://www.journeyschool.net">Eco-literacy Program at Journey School</a><br> "My mission is to bring environmental education to children. I'm a volunteer parent at Journey School, a public Waldorf charter school where I've helped implement an eco-literacy program. The curriculum provides hands-on, age appropriate environmental education for K to 8th graders with classes such as gardening, composting, rainwater harvesting, permaculture principles/design and eco-leadership. A goal of the program is to help students use natural resources efficiently and to become inspiring future entrepreneurs and leaders to tackle some of the challenges of our time."
April 24: Lorie Suntree Donating to: <a href="http://www.suntreefoundation.org">Suntree Foundation</a><br> "I have been introducing students to the importance of individual and collective actions as it pertains to the environment, watershed systems and the community. For most students that participate in the STEM Service Learning Environmental and water projects, a realization occurs that global projects need to established in order for the planet to heal. So my quest is to form partnerships throughout the globe with schools partnering with schools. Just think: if every school in the United States partnered with a school around the world we could establish 657 school partnerships in every country including the United States. If these partnerships problem-solved water and educational issues, we would greatly affect our chances for environmental improvement."
April 25: Robina Suwol Donating to: <a href="http://www.calisafe.org">California Safe Schools</a><br> "California Safe Schools believes children and adults have a right to learn, work and live in a healthy environment. Current limitations of our regulatory system—dependent on risk-assessment approaches that fail to address key issues of chemical mixtures, cumulative impacts and synergistic effects—cry out for the need for programs, policies and legislation built on the concept of precaution."
April 26: Mati Waiya Donating to: <a href="http://www.chumashmaritime.org">Chumash Maritime Association</a><br> "We have gotten very comfortable and accustomed to the luxuries of modern life. There was a time when we harvested our waters from the springs and creeks, and we would appreciate each drop because there was an effort to go get it. There was a time you would appreciate the food and plants you would harvest because there was an effort. Today, we turn on the faucet to get water, or turn on the switch to get light. We’ve lost our respect and appreciation for those things that are part of everyday life. It is going to take all of us together to protect and heal the pains that we have caused in this world, to the oceans, to the habitat and the things that we depend on."
April: 28: Anita Dunham Donating to: <a href="http://www.parktrust.org">National Park Trust</a><br> "I think that we need to leave the Earth a better place for our children. I try to reduce my carbon footprint with the products that I purchase and by recycling. One easy way that I reduce waste is by composting. We compost most of our yard refuse in addition to household waste."
April 29: Mark Gold Donating to: <a href="http://www.healthebay.org">Heal the Bay</a><br> "My life has been dedicated to environmental protection and education. I was fortunate enough to work at Heal the Bay on coastal conservation and pollution prevention issues for 23 years as their President and Executive Director. I’m happy to say, thanks in some part to Heal the Bay’s efforts, that the state of water quality, marine ecology, and coastal resource protection in Santa Monica Bay has improved dramatically since Heal the Bay was founded in 1985. Dorothy Green, Heal the Bay’s founding President, was my mentor and she taught me that environmental stewardship requires tireless perseverance, collaboration with others, and an innovative approach to problem solving using science, education, and advocacy. Recently, I just moved to my alma mater, UCLA, in order to help build their Institute of the Environment and sustainability, teach, and work with students and faculty on applied environmental research and projects that will result in greater environmental protection."
April 30: Jim Moriarty Donating to: <a href="http://www.surfrider.org">Surfrider Foundation</a><br> "The best way for a person to engage with environmentalism is to do so in a personal way, in a way that's an extension of who they already are and what they already do," says Jim Moriarty, CEO of Surfrider. "Start small. Start by making a pledge to yourself to never take a single-use plastic bag at the market. Focusing in that small habit will enable you to be successful and become aware of things you can do to build on that habit such as refusing to use single-use plastic water bottles. The key is start small, stay focused and build on that." "The best way for a person to engage in environmentalism is to start small, stay focused and build on that."
Categories: Earth Month Heroes