Meet two heroes in our midst

By Maika Horjus on April 3, 2017

At Canopy, one of our greatest assets is our team.

Canopy’s impact is only possible because of dedicated people–from our staff and board to our volunteers, tree champions, donors, and our amazing community partners–who are willing to work together and invest in a greener future.

That’s why we’re always excited to celebrate the wonderful people who make it all happen. Last January, we recognized outstanding volunteers and community members with Canopy Tree Awards. And last month, we were thrilled to cheer on two of our teammates as they were recognized by others in the community for their work championing a healthy urban environment.

Both of them succeed because of their persistence, their ability to connect people, and their talent for winning others to their cause.

Susan Rosenberg: Community Champion Distinction from Senator Jerry Hill

Presented during Java with Jerry on 3/25/17

Susan Rosenberg is a Canopy founder and a current Board Member. For over 20 years, she has worked and advocated tirelessly to protect and grow the urban forest in Palo Alto and beyond.

In the early days of Canopy, she went door-to-door to get her neighbors involved, hosted gatherings at her home, and made sure good food and good fun were staples of every Canopy event–all things she continues to do to this day!

Recently, Susan was appointed to the City of Palo Alto’s Storm Drain Blue Ribbon Committee, where she helped prepare a new multi-year storm water program for voter approval. The new program will upgrade hardscape infrastructure, but also emphasizes “green infrastructure,” including natural landscapes, rain gardens, tree wells, green roofs, and pervious pavement. With the plan complete, Susan is now getting the word out to Palo Alto residents to make sure the measure passes.

For her decades of work ensuring a vibrant, nature-filled community, Senator Jerry Hill presented Susan with a Community Champion Distinction, noting especially her leadership on the Trees for El Camino project, and her knack for solving any problem by thinking of it as an opportunity.

“What good fortune I have to live in a community that places such value on a healthy environment,” Susan said afterwards, “and for me it all begins with the trees.”

Uriel Hernandez: Bay Nature Local Hero Award for Youth Engagement

Presented at Bay Nature’s Annual Awards Dinner in San Francisco on 3/26/17

Photo by Khalil Anvar, courtesy of Bay Nature

Uriel Hernandez is Canopy’s Community Forestry Coordinator. The biggest project on his plate now is Branching Out, Canopy’s initiative to plant 500 street and yard trees in East Palo Alto neighborhoods by 2020.

To make this happen, Uriel spends his days knocking on doors, recruiting “tree champions,” and checking neighborhoods for planting sites. He also helps care for young Canopy-planted trees throughout the community, organizing tree care work days and tree pruning teams, and ensuring residents know how to care for their newly planted trees.

Uriel’s hard work was recognized this year when he was selected as a Bay Nature Local Hero.

“The positive response has been overwhelming,” says Uriel, who has fielded interviews from newspapers and radio stations excited to share his story. “I am so happy that people see the value in giving back.”

We’re proud to have Uriel on our team, and grateful to Bay Nature for highlighting his great work! See photos from the Award Dinner.

Read more about Uriel’s story…

Thank you to all you everyday heroes

We’re grateful to have Susan and Uriel on our team, and we know they’re not the only heroes in our midst. Thank you to all of you who transform communities with your passion, dedication, and creativity!

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