Sonoma County Conservation Council board member, Wendy Krupnick, presented the Ernestine Smith Environmentalist of the Year Award to Teri Shore, North Bay Regional Director for Greenbelt Alliance on Saturday, June 10th in Santa Rosa.
The Conservation Council was founded in 1982 as a federation of environmental organizations dedicated to maintaining and enhancing the quality of the environment in Sonoma County. The Ernestine Smith “Environmentalist of the Year” award was initiated in 1994 to recognize Ernie’s inspirational legacy, her generation of trail-blazing environmental leaders, and today’s environmental leaders.
“Teri’s outstanding work mobilizing and educating the community regarding Community Separators, working with County staff and many diverse stakeholders to craft Measure K, and her tireless efforts to assure its approval, resulted in protection of over 50,000 acres from sprawl for the next 20 years,” said Wendy to the more than 400 people attending the annual environmental awards gala.
Read more about Teri’s work that led to this well-deserved award in this article from the Sonoma Index-Tribune.
Teri inspired the crowd with her acceptance speech:
I dedicate this award to the environmental community of Sonoma County. I am so moved to be honored by you. You are my tribe now and forever. Together we tripled the community separators and won Measure K with 80 percent of the vote. We won because we were bold and persistent. And we won because the voters and residents are with us.
So now more than ever we need to be bold and persistent for the future of Sonoma County. We need to look 50 and 100 years to our next generations, not just 20 years at a time.
Now we need to work together to:
- Complete community separators to save green spaces and keep sprawl at bay.
- Enhance our open space and parks mosaic from Sonoma Mountain to the Sonoma Coast, including the precious greenbelts inside our towns and communities.
- Regenerate and rewild our forests, grasslands, oak woodlands, and vast eco-diversity with strong science-based policies for wildlife corridors, endangered species and plants, and all the critters and birds across the land.
- Restore healthy watersheds and salmon runs from headwaters to the coast with riparian and groundwater policies that allow our rivers and streams to run free and full of trout, tiger salamanders, red-legged frogs, and all other creatures.
- Protect our farms and ranches and rural character and heritage communities with new policies and vision and new county-level policies to compensate for when ag lands are lost or converted to other uses.
- Work for housing for all and build housing across the income spectrum in our towns and cities near public transit and services.
- Allocate a large portion of our transportation dollars to public transit and reduce auto travel—not more pavement.
- And get serious and take action on climate change by implementing measures, not just make more plans that sit on the shelf.
There are 400 of us here [at the gala]. If we each reached out to 10 people, that’s 4,000 voices. With 4,000 voices we can co-create and implement a vision for Sonoma County. We can achieve what the community wants and what the community needs.
So let’s be bold and persistent and work together and do it now.