Catherine Martineau, Executive Director, has been a leader in the nonprofit urban forestry field for over a decade. She serves on the board of California Releaf, a statewide urban forestry organization. She brings to her role extensive professional experience in both the financial and management consulting sectors. Leading Canopy, she draws on her professional experience as well as her personal interest in community service, education and the environment.

A native of France, Catherine started her career in Paris with the BNP Group and moved to the United States in 1986, joining BNP Venture Capital. In 1991, she and her husband created Martineau & Associates, a management consulting practice specializing in new initiatives. Catherine holds a post-graduate degree (ABD) in economic theory, a master’s degree in mathematical economics, and a bachelor’s degree in international economics from the University of Paris. Catherine became Executive Director in 2004. Send Catherine an email.


Michael Hawkins, Program Director, has loved planting trees since he participated in his first neighborhood tree planting in Oakland at age ten. He joins Canopy most recently from Davey Resource Group where he was a Consulting Utility Forester for PG&E. Prior to that, Michael was a project coordinator at Our City Forest in San José and worked on the Million Trees NYC initiative with the New York Restoration Project.

Michael holds a BA in Literature from the University of California, Santa Cruz, and studied Horticulture at Cabrillo College. He is also an ISA-Certified Arborist. Michael joined Canopy in 2010. Send Michael an email.

maika profile

Maika Horjus, Communications & Development Manager, joined Canopy in fall of 2013. A native of the verdant Pacific Northwest, she brings a love of connecting people with nature and with one another. Prior to Canopy, Maika worked with a community food security non-profit in her hometown of Vancouver, Washington, cultivating volunteer efforts and coordinating a small-scale marketing co-op for urban farmers.

Maika holds a BS in Conservation and Resource Studies from the University of California, Berkeley, where she studied community development and conservation biology. Send Maika an email.

Anwyn Hurxthal, Senior Development Specialist, oversees Canopy’s foundation and corporate grants. Anwyn helps guide strategic development and communications outreach. Prior to joining Canopy in 2007, Anwyn managed signature cause programs for Cone Inc’s Fortune 500 clients in Washington DC. Before that, Anwyn worked with Oxfam America in Boston, developing communications campaigns for national and international initiatives. She has also served as a consultant specializing in nonprofit branding.

Anwyn holds a bachelor’s degree in Anthropology from Boston University, and studied communications design at the Corcoran College of Art and Design. Born and raised in Africa, Anwyn is now a California rancher. She spends her free time running her family ranch with her husband and two children. Send Anwyn an email.


Natalie Brubaker, Education Manager, oversees the youth and adult education programs at Canopy. She enjoys creating opportunities for people to explore their local ecosystem and learn from others in the community.  Natalie’s love of trees developed in the Piedmont region of the southern states where she grew up in Atlanta, known as “The City in the Forest.”  

After completing her B.S. degree in Environmental Studies at Emory University, Natalie served as Director of Afterschool Programs at The Advent School in Boston.  Her interest in place-based education led her to pursue her master’s degree in Ecological Teaching and Learning at Lesley University.  Prior to joining Canopy in the fall of 2016, Natalie was the Farm & Landscape Educator at Gore Place, an historic site in Waltham, MA.

Uriel Hernandez

Uriel Hernandez, Community Forestry Coordinator, started volunteering for Canopy in his home town of East Palo Alto, in May 2014 and joined Canopy as a staff member in May 2015. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Middlebury College where he studied Architecture and History. Studying in rural Vermont he developed a love for the manmade and natural worlds around him and discovered a desire to bridge discord between the two.

Prior to Canopy, Uriel worked at several Bay Area start-up companies where he developed an ability to juggle many roles. He enjoys exploring the diverse ecosystems found throughout the Bay area. Send Uriel an email.

Shannon McDonald

Shannon McDonald, Operations Coordinator, joined Canopy in fall 2015 after returning from seven months of living abroad in the Costa Rican jungle. Prior to Canopy, Shannon worked with various nonprofits in roles such as public policy research, community outreach, and advocacy. 

Shannon holds a Master of Urban & Regional Planning from San Jose State University, where she studied community development. She enjoys spending her free time exploring new places, hiking, and practicing yoga. Send Shannon an email.

Elise Willis

Elise Willis, Community Forestry Coordinator, joined Canopy in fall 2015. She started as a part-time staff member conducting two studies for the City of Palo Alto’s Urban Forest Master Plan, and is excited to begin implementing some of the recommendations to grow the canopy in south Palo Alto. Prior to Canopy, Elise worked for the City of Palo Alto as a contract employee checking building permits for the Urban Forestry division.

Elise holds a BS in Forest Resources and Conservation from the University of Florida, and is an ISA-Certified Arborist. She enjoys hiking and is excited to continue exploring California’s wonderful natural areas. Send Elise an email.


2017 Summer Interns

Laura Duffy, Young Tree Care Survey Intern, comes to us from Boston College where she just completed her sophomore year studying Environmental Studies and Political Science. Laura grew up in San Jose, and loves hiking in the Bay Area’s open spaces.

During her time at Canopy, Laura is coordinating the 2017 Young Tree Care Survey, gathering key data on the health of Palo Alto’s urban forest. Laura has signed up for a busy summer; in addition her position at Canopy, Laura is working as a Local Government Affairs Intern at the Santa Clara Water District. 

Lourdes Sanchez, Urban Forester Intern, will oversee the Teen Urban Foresters for the summer of 2017. She is a rising junior at UC Merced, studying public health and earth system science. She found interest in working with Canopy as they align with her interests in giving back to the community she has grown up in, East Palo Alto. She hopes that working with the TUFs this summer will encourage youth in the Bay Area to make an impact on the environment and learn about the importance trees do for them everyday.

“I can’t wait for the TUFs to see the impact that their current efforts will make in our community in the future.”


Simon Willig, Urban Forestry Intern, just completed his sophomore year at Middlebury College in Vermont, where he’s majoring in Environmental Studies and Political Science. This summer, he’ll be taking on special tree care projects like installing and updating irrigation and helping Canopy jumpstart a new tree mapping project currently in the works.

Growing up in Redwood City, Simon spent his youth maintaining vegetable beds and learning all about plants from his father, a landscape architect. He has studied plants in and out of the classroom, and looks forward to turning his passion and fascination with plants towards urban trees this summer. 


2017 Summer Teen Urban Foresters

Kelly Cortes is a rising junior at Eastside College Prep. She has been volunteer with Canopy for several years, and participated in the TUF program in summer 2016, too. Her goals as a TUF this year are to attain more work experience and improve her leadership skills. Her vision for the community is to see more trees and greenery. She wants to show her community what Canopy can do to better their environment. Her hobbies include reading and computer science and her favorite tree is the Chinese Elm.

“My vision is to spread awareness to see more green in my town.”

Amil Muwwakkil attends Eastside and is going into her sophomore year. She joined Canopy this summer because she wants to be more aware of what is happening outside. This also allows her to work with people her age who have the same goals and aspirations of giving back to their community. For hobbies, she works out and loves to make people laugh. Her favorite tree is the palm tree because it makes her feel like she is on vacation.  

“I want to see Oakland greener, to encourage a better working environment.”

Akasha Fobbs will be a sophomore at Eastside College Preparatory. For fun she enjoys hanging with friends, cooking, and drawing. This summer she joined Canopy as a TUF because she wants to get to know her community better. She also is looking forward to having a fun summer while bettering the environment around her. As a TUF, Akasha wants to learn more about what she can do to protect her community and meet new people. After high school, Akasha wishes to study marketing.

“My vision for my community is to create a cleaner and safer environment so kids and adults can enjoy the outdoors.”


Harold Kirkendoll, will become a senior at Eastside College Prep. Harold enjoys spending time with friends and family by playing sports and talking with them. Harold became a Teen Urban Forester to learn more about trees and what they require to grow. Harold is interested in studying sports medicine and body movement in the future. His hobbies consist of reading political and sports articles.  

“My vision is having a clean and efficient community where people can do community service for fun.”

Jaime Ramirez is a rising junior at Eastside College Prep and is a part of the school’s soccer team. Apart from soccer, he is interested in mathematics and engineering. He became a Teen Urban Forester in hopes of the East Palo Alto community becoming more environmentally friendly and nicer to look at. He enjoys helping the environment and likes the Oak tree because it provides lots of shade and is common in the Bay Area.  

“I want to see my environment more clean so that more people will enjoy the outdoors.”

Luz Abarca is a senior at Woodside High School. She enjoys participating with groups like Acterra and Grass Roots because she likes protecting the environment and giving back. She wants to learn more about tree care and make an environmental impact as a TUF. Her vision for her community is for an increased awareness on the importance of protecting the planet. For fun, Luz likes to workout, go on hikes, and do make-up. She is involved in Youth & Government which consists of debates and creating bills. After high school, she plans to study environmental science or environmental protection and management.  

“One that plants trees, loves others besides himself.”


Alexander Aldama is a junior at Woodside High School. He is sixteen years old, and joined Canopy’s TUF program because he would love to get job experience and loves nature. He also likes to learn how trees can help the environment and how to help them grow. He rows in crew and likes to work out and spend time with his friends and dog. He also loves to do community service to help improve his community. That is also why he would like to study biology or environmental science in college.  

“I want the next generation in community to have a cleaner and greener environment.”

“Canopy’s staff and volunteers are dedicated, serious and sophisticated about preserving
and expanding
Palo Alto’s canopy.”

~ Alan Weller,
Palo Alto Resident

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