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Celebrating Sustainability Champions

Sustainability Champions were awarded at the Center for Sustainability’s annual end-of-year Celebration event on June 1. We received a number of nominations for the awards; selecting just one Champion for each award category was quite difficult. Congratulations to everyone who was nominated: Andrea Filler, Carol Goad, Caroline Pepper, Chad Raphael, Chonsa Schmidt, Jane Barrantes, Janice DeMonsi, Jessi Franco, Leslie Gray, Luke Miller, Marianna Moore, Marisa Rudolph, Phyllis Brown, The rEvolve Tiny House Team, Sammi Bennett, Stephanie Hughes, and Zachary Gianotti. Thank you for your dedication & leadership! See photos from the Sustainability Celebration.

Sustainability Champion, Operations: Jane Barrantes

Jane Barrantes, Assistant Vice President, Auxiliary Services, has been a long-time supporter of campus sustainability. She is a leader not only by encouraging her team to integrate sustainability into daily operations, but also by supporting innovation among her staff. She encourages collaboration between her division and the Center for Sustainability -- she even developed permanent representation for the Center on advisory boards and committees in her area to ensure frequent communication.

Sustainability Champion, Engagement: Marianna Moore, ‘17

Marianna Moore has impacted the lives of many as a role model. She has consistently practiced sustainable behaviors since she stepped foot on the SCU campus: she rides a bike (or walks) almost everywhere, takes short showers, and has done many things to change her behavior to reduce her environmental footprint. She has encouraged peers to engage in sustainable behaviors too: She’s worked with peers in SCCAP through education and empowerment programs and LOCALS to reduce waste, compost, and recycle, and she has been a huge influence on her residents in SLURP, on the 7th floor of Swig Hall. Marianna has also participated in the Eco-Fashion & Art Show, three years in a row!

Sustainability Champion, Academics: Phyllis Brown

Phyllis Brown, a professor in the English Department, has been integrating sustainability into her courses for years. She was a participant in the first faculty-led workshop in 2007, called the Penstemon Project, for integrating sustainability across the curriculum. Since then, she has encouraged her students to explore sustainability at SCU through course assignments. She has even developed a paperless course - a noteworthy feat for Critical Thinking and Writing! Phyllis has also served as a Faculty Sustainability Liaison.

Sustainability Champion, Innovation: rEvolve Tiny House Team

Students across the University collaborated over two years to design and built a net-zero energy house by incorporating renewable energy, green building techniques, and sustainable living. The team used our campus as a living laboratory to create a showcase of sustainable innovation. By building the house on campus and winning the Sacramento Municipal Utility District's Tiny House Competition, they brought students' attention to sustainable building techniques. The team’s work will live on -- the rEvolve Tiny House was donated to Operation Freedom Paws, which pairs veterans with service dogs. The House will serve as temporary accommodations for out-of-town visitors -- from new clients being paired with a service dog to service dog trainers visiting to help lead classes.

In addition to celebrating our Sustainability Champions, the Center for Sustainability recognized our 100+ Liaisons who contribute to building a more sustainable University through their social and campus networks. Thank you to everyone at SCU who values academic discourse, research, action, and leadership to reduce our climate impacts and build a sustainable and just future for all.

The Center for Sustainability has developed several ways to get engaged in sustainability issues that matter to you -- whether you just want to keep up with the conversation, attend a few events, provide quick resources for colleagues, lead your peers to develop a culture of sustainability, or get your department certified as a sustainable workspace, we have tiered levels of engagement to suit your needs and capacity. Especially now, it is paramount for each of us to flex our citizen muscles (as Annie Leonard would say) and be engaged with our local government and businesses. Sustainability leadership--and climate leadership--in our communities are crucial. Please join us.

Sustainability