Bay Advocate Program 2023

Do you care about the San Francisco Bay?

Want to protect the San Francisco Bay but don’t know where to begin?
The Sierra Club is here to help.

Bay Advocate Webinar Series

Join the Bay Alive Campaign's 2023 Bay Advocate Program to find out what’s happening on our Bay’s shoreline today and learn how you can make a difference in ensuring a healthy, sustainable future for our Bay. This free, eight-week course meets Thursday evenings 7:00-8:30 pm, via Zoom, beginning on September 21, 2023. All experience levels welcome!


What makes the Bay Area so unique? It’s the San Francisco Bay!

Did you know that it is under urgent threat? Do you know the history of the Bay, its ecosystems, and how we depend on them? Or the challenges that sea level rise presents to the ecology of the Bay and the resilience of our communities?  Do you know how agencies and organizations regulate, research, and provide policy regarding our Bay? What research, resources and tools are available to support you as a Bay advocate?

The 2023 Bay Advocate Program will get you up to speed and help build your skills and confidence to become an effective advocate for our treasured Bay.

Testimonial: Desiree Grahn, a former participant of the Bay Advocate Program, shares her thoughts on the program.


No experience is required. Already an experienced local advocate or a Bay Advocate Program alumni? This year’s course adds new content focused on regional decision-making about how to adapt to sea level rise. (This class is a project of Sierra Club's Bay Alive Campaign, produced in cooperation among all three Sierra Club Chapters surrounding the Bay. It is open to all Bay Area residents.)

Fall 2023 Bay Advocate Program Calendar

9/21 – Class 1  San Francisco Bay History
History of SF Bay Presentation including “Saving San Francisco Bay” Video Clips.

9/28 – Class 2  Threats to SF Bay and Shoreline Communities
Threats include sea level rise, flooding, shallow groundwater rise, habitat loss, buried toxins, algal blooms and encroaching development.

10/5 – Class 3  Value of SF Bay and Nature-based Adaptation to Sea Level Rise 
SF Bay and its wetlands provide fisheries, biodiversity, wildlife habitat, recreation, water purification, flood control and carbon sequestration.  How to protect and enhance these ecosystem services by providing nature-based solutions to sea level rise.

10/12 – Class 4  Overview of Organizations with Roles in Planning and Regulating for Sea Level Rise 
The entities that do the planning, policy-making, regulations and the science that play a decisive role in shaping the future of the bay can have a role in emphasizing solutions that prioritize nature and environmental justice.

10/19 – Class 5  Bay Conservation and Development Commission’s Bay Adapt Process and Shoreline Adaptation Plan Development, MTC/ABAG’s Priority Conservation Area Process “Refresh”
Opportunities and methods for advocacy for regional policy that lead to solutions to protect the Bay’s ecosystems and provide environmental outreach and inclusion.

10/26 – Class 6 – Introduction to Advocacy at the Local and Regional Levels 
What makes a good advocate? Making written and public comments, interacting with local city councils, planning commissions, and regional commissions and interacting with the CEQA Environmental Review process.

11/2 – Class 7 – Regional Resources and Tools for Shoreline Protection Planning
Regional coordination resources and efforts such as SFEI’s Adaptation Atlas, San Mateo County’s One Shoreline Adaptation Guidance Policy, and others.

11/9 – Class 8 – Culminating Case Studies
Case study presentations and opportunities to advocate for nature-based adaptation and shoreline communities.

Meet and organize with other interested environmentalists and gain experience through real world advocacy. This course will be a great opportunity to connect with other folks who are interested in protecting the environment. New and experienced advocates will help you learn and advocate. Join teams of Sierra Club volunteers to shape Bay policies and projects.


Contact Susan DesJardin for more information about the program.