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Each year Sierra Club California takes an opportunity to recognize those individuals that have made a difference in fighting for the environment here in California. As a volunteer organization, there really are not that many opportunities to show our appreciation to those individuals that have spent countless hours working on issues the Sierra Club holds dear. The individuals listed below have been recognized as leaders in our past battles to protect the environment and we are all grateful for their invaluable contributions. In recent years, the Club has made a point of acknowledging the contributions of those younger, up and coming volunteers and has worked to incorporate an equity lens to award considerations and distribution.


All awards are not given every year
Updated January 20, 2023

SALLY AND LES REID CONSERVATION AWARD recognizes an individual who has served Sierra Club California in the area of conservation. The award is named for two of our most distinguished and effective activists. In addition to serving on the Sierra Club Board of Directors, both Sally and Les were instrumental in developing the club in a new area - Sally with forestry issues in Southern California forests, and Les in developing connections with organized labor. Sally Reid died in 2002, after a long illness.
     Recipients: Sally and Les Reid, Judy Anderson, George Whitmore, Marge Sill, Robin Ives, Gordon Ruser, Joe Fontaine, Vicky Hoover, Joyce Burk, Kathy Bailey, Carla Cloer, Harriet Allen, John and Hermi Hiatt, (2004) Terry Davis, (2005) Gordon Nipp, (2006) Mark Bagley, (2007) John Moore, (2008) Joan Taylor, (2009) Bob Schneider, (2011) Joan Jones Holtz and Don Holtz, (2013) Letty and Cal French, (2014) Kim Floyd, (2015) Arthur Boone, (2018) George Courser, (2019) Deirdre Des Jardins & Dr. Clyde Tom Williams PhD., (2020) Steve Birdlebough, (2021) David Grubb, (2022) Lionel Mares

DAN SULLIVAN EXEMPLARY SERVICE AWARD FOR LEADERSHIP AND ORGANIZATIONAL SERVICE TO SCC (formerly Founders Award) recognizes an individual who has served Sierra Club California in an administrative or organizational capacity. The founders of Sierra Club California included about 50 volunteers who participated in a long process from 1983 through 1987 to develop a more effective California state organization.   
    Recipients: Dan Sullivan, Cal French, Bob Hartman, Ann Pogue, Claudia Elliot, Freeman Allen, Stan Weidart, Sherman Lewis, Janie Figan, Lee Siegal, George Shipway, Robin and Lori Ives, Emil Lawton, John Burdett, Jan Clucas, Ladd Seekins, Alan Carlton, (2004) Julia Bott, (2005) Clayton Mansfield (2006) Allan Eberhart, (2007) Owen Malloy, (2008) Andy Sawyer, (2009) Art and Lorraine Unger, (2011) Steve Farrell, (2012) Karen Maki, (2013) Vicki Lee, (2016) Dale Stocking, (2018) Jason Hashmi, (2019) Barb Williams, (2020) Tara Mueller

LEGISLATIVE ADVOCACY AWARD (formerly John Zierold Award) recognizes an individual who has served Sierra Club California in an area of legislative advocacy. John Zierold was the club's first lobbyist in Sacramento. Many of our landmark environmental laws were passed during his tenure including the Endangered Species Act, California Environmental Quality Act, the Coastal Protection Act, and the act that established energy conservation as the cornerstone of California energy policy.
     Recipients: Mark Palmer, Rich Ferguson, Michael Endicott, Kathy Bailey, Elden Hughes, Joan Jones Holtz, Bob Schneider, Kelly Moran, John Holtzclaw, Tara Mueller, Kevin Hall, (2004) Bill Vanderburg, (2005) Bill Allayaud, (2006) Vicki Lee, (2007) Dale Stocking, (2008) Tim Frank, (2011) Bill Magavern, (2012) Kurt Newick, (2013) Jim Metropulos, (2013) Annie Pham, (2017) Kyle Jones

CALIFORNIA STAFF EXCELLENCE AWARD (formerly Mary Ferguson Award) recognizes a paid staff member who has served the Sierra Club in California. Mary Ferguson was on the Angeles Chapter staff from 1970 until she retired in the spring of 1995. During her long career she performed nearly every possible task for the chapter, always with a deep and thoughtful dedication to the Sierra Club's environmental goals.
     Recipients: Mary Ferguson, Janie Hawker, Linda Barr, Frannie Hoover, David Nesmith, Barbara Boyle, Kathy Crist, Mark Massara, Mike Paparian, Bill Craven, Bonnie Holmes-Gen, Warren Alford, Bill Magavern, (2004) Marianne Batchelder, (2005) Don Forman, (2006) John Monson, (2007) Elizabeth Lambe,(2008) Bill Allayaud, (2009) Micah Mitrosky, (2011) Joanne Drabek, (2012) Andrew Christie, (2013) Sarah Matsumoto, (2014) Allen Hernandez, (2015) Kathryn Phillips, (2017) Richard Miller, (2019) George Watland, (2020) Geraldine Alava, (2021) Jenny Binstock, (2022) Roberto Morales

CALIFORNIA PUBLIC LANDS ACTIVIST AWARD (Combining the former Stan Weidart "ye old bottle award" and William Penn Mott State Parks Award) recognizes an individual who has served Sierra Club California in public lands activism or a person who has made a significant contribution to state parks in California.
     Recipients (Stan Weidart): Jim Dodson, Elden Hughes, Judy Anderson, Joe Fontaine, Vicky Hoover, Patty Carpenter-Hughes, George Barnes, Alan Carlton, Luis Ireland, Joan Taylor, Edie and Jim Harmon, Miriam Romero, Mike Prather, (2004) Wilma and Bryce Wheeler, (2005) Heather Anderson, (2006) John Rasmussen, (2007) Tom Budlong, (2008) Craig Deutsche, (2009) Susan Sorrells and Brian Brown, (2011) Carol Wiley, (2012) Sid Silliman, (2013) Joyce Burk, (2014) Fred Roberts, (2015) Terry Frewin, (2017) Carla Cloer, (2019) Karen Maki, (2020) Wendy-Sue Rosen & Ileana Wachtel, (2022) John Monsen

     Recipients (William Penn Mott): Doris Leonard, Murray Rosenthal, Steve Moore, Bob Mark, David Meyer, Daniel Preece, Tarren Collins, Mike Lunsford, (2004) Norman LaForce, (2005) Jack Beigle, (2006) Stan and Jeannie Haye, (2007) Barry Breckling, (2009) Mark Faull, (2011) In memory of John Wilkinson (Pine Ridge Association),(2012) Traci Gerardo-Torres, (2013) Patricia Jones, (2017) Pete Dangermond, (2021) Jack Ainsworth, (2022) John Monsen

POLITICAL ACTION AWARD (formerly Bob Hattoy Award) recognizes an individual who has made a significant contribution to Sierra Club political activities in California (established 2011). Bob Hattoy was a witty and outspoken advocate for the environment and for AIDS research, & LA Times, 3-6-07. Bob was the Sierra Club Southern California Regional Representative 1981 - 92; he advised activists on the importance of electing candidates who support Club policies. Bob subsequently served in the U.S. Department of the Interior, 1993-1999, and served on the California Fish & Game Commission Board from 2002 - 2007. He was President of the Commission when he died in 2007.
     Recipients: (2011) Susana Reyes, (2012) Howard Strauss, (2013) Victoria Brandon, (2014) Gayle Eads, (2015) Alex Mintzer, (2017) Fran Farina, (2018) Joan Jones Holtz, (2021) Ruth Muzzin, (2022) Andy Sawyer

JONO HILDNER AWARD (formerly the Emerging Leader Award) may be given to a volunteer member under the age of 30 who has shown outstanding promise through their actions contributing to the efforts of the Club in conservation, politics, environmental justice or membership development. This person must have been a member of the Club for more than one year and their actions and involvement must have demonstrated that they are likely to be a contributing member for years to come.
     Recipients: (2018) Chance Cutrano and Luis Amezcua, (2019) Nadia Wilson and Toshiro Tokunaga, (2020) Mirelle Lindquist, (2021) Sydney Pitcher, (2022) Wes Chuang 

SPECIAL RECOGNITION for long time activism
     Recipients: (1999) Stan and Carl Weidert, (2001) Matt Kuzins, (2007) Letty French, (2008) Joe Fontaine, (2009) Eric Parfrey, (2011) Ed Mainland and Jim Stewart, (2012) John Stephens, (2013) Richard Garcia, Jono Hildner, Dave Grubb, (2014) Gail & Ladd Seekins, (2015) Ralph Salisbury, (2017) Mike Bullock, (2019) Joyce Burk, (2020) Bruce Rienzo, (2021) Charming Evelyn, (2022) Kathy Dervin, George Hague

*New* Environmental Alliance Collaboration Award  recognizes a person or local entity working in collaboration with allies to achieve progress with environmental, social and racial justice issues to include work with EJ allies and tribal collaboration.   

    Recipients: (2022)Yvonne Martinez Watson 

*New* Environmental Justice Achievement Award  recognizes a person or local entity achieving a victory for frontline or underserved communities impacted by climate change and environmental racism. 

    Recipients: (2022) Bobbi Jo Chavarria

*New* Fundraising Award  recognizes a person or group or local entity with an exceptional success in fundraising activity for their local or state-wide entity.

   Recipients: (2022) Katie Davis