Growing the Canopy Campaign

Bringing nature into neighborhoods through tree planting, tree care, and youth engagement

Imagine a girl walking outside her 5th grade classroom, ready for some exercise and fun during recess. It’s a hot day and she has to shield her eyes from the sun as she walks to the playground. Looking around, she sees no trees, no shade, just the asphalt blacktop, harsh and unwelcoming.

That’s the case at some schools in our community, but it doesn’t have to be this way. In 2014, Canopy completed phase one of Healthy Trees, Healthy Kids!, planting 1,000 shade trees and fruit trees, engaging youth in hands-on nature activities, and transforming streets and schoolyards with the life-giving benefits of trees.

Today, we have the chance to create more tree-filled schools and neighborhoods. School districts in East Palo Alto, Mountain View, and Redwood City have asked Canopy to bring our unique combination of tree planting, tree care, and youth engagement to their communities.

To make this possible, we launched Growing the Canopy, a campaign to raise $600,000 from individual donors to fund this next phase of Healthy Trees, Healthy Kids! Over 5 years (2015 – 2020), we’ll:

  • PLANT 1,000 new trees where people need them the most
  • CARE for 2,000 young trees to ensure a thriving urban forest
  • ENGAGE 5,000+ youth as stewards and leaders in their community.

We warmly invite you to join us!

June 2017: We crossed the campaign finish line!

“We are so thrilled and grateful to arrive at this milestone with all of you. As we expand our scope and impact, your support as donors and friends of Canopy has been essential—and so heartening! Thank you for believing in us, and for investing with us in a greener future.” —Susan Rosenberg, Campaign Chair and Canopy Co-Founder

After beginning the quiet phase in 2015 and entering the public phase in fall 2016, we crossed the finish line for Growing the Canopy in June 2017, with completed gifts and enjoying pledges totaling $605,000. Special thanks to everyone who contributed!

But our work isn’t done yet

These funds are already growing the life-giving benefits of trees as we continue implementing our 5-year Healthy Trees, Healthy Kids! Initiative, bringing urban tree planting, tree care, and hands-on nature education into new schools and neighborhoods.

Now that we’ve reached our financial goal, we’re excited to share updates about the impact in the community over the next few years as we work towards our initiate goals:


Healthy Trees, Healthy Kids! Initiative Goals

1. PLANT 1,000 urban trees where people need them the most




Because healthy trees TRANSFORM communities.

Seen from space, the “green gap” is striking.

Wealthy neighborhoods are lush with trees, poor areas are not. This is not just a matter of aesthetics; trees are a matter of public health and environmental equity.

Over the last ten years, Canopy has worked to bring trees into nature-poor neighborhoods and schools in East Palo Alto by partnering with community members, city staff, and school communities.

Thanks to the success of these efforts, the school districts in East Palo Alto, Redwood City, and Mountain View have invited Canopy to participate in long-range facilities planning, and to lead campus-wide tree plantings in new areas.

They’ve seen how our work transforms barren school grounds into green, welcoming campuses. We’re making plans to take advantage of this exciting opportunity, but we need your help to put our plans into action.


  • Neighborhoods and schoolyards transformed: Trees create healthier, more connected, and more resilient neighborhoods.
  • Improved student health and focus: Schools full of greenery improve student wellbeing and academic achievement.
  • Easy access to nearby nature fosters connection, discovery, and stewardship of the natural world.


“Our new trees have directly contributed to making our school more conducive to education and learning. The healthy trees have positively affected the morale of our entire school community, which correlates to overall academic results.”

Gina Sudaria, Principal, Costano Elementary School




2. CARE for 2,000 young trees to ensure a long-lived urban forest

Because people and trees THRIVE together.

Young trees need care to thrive in a tough urban environment.

That’s why Canopy commits to at least three years of care for each tree we plant.

We also train students, teachers, and neighbors as local tree stewards. In low-income neighborhoods and public schools, we often provide a full five years of care. This ensures that trees are successfully established and can thrive on their own.

Because of our rigorous tree care practices, Canopy trees have one of the highest survival rates in the nation for urban tree planting.


  • Planting trees is a long-term investment in community health and quality of life.
  • Tending young trees creates healthier, longer-lived mature trees, reduces life-time maintenance costs and maximizing safety.
  • Community members trained to steward urban trees help keep trees healthy and have a greater sense of ownership and pride in their local environment.


“Nearly all of the 1,000 trees planted five years ago are thriving. That’s a rarity in urban forestry, a real testament to Canopy’s hard work.”

– Lara Roman, Research Ecologist, USDA Forest Service





3. ENGAGE 5,000 youth as stewards and leaders in urban greening

Because today's youth are tomorrow's LEADERS

Trees provide powerful opportunities for nature-based learning.

At at time when schools increasingly lack funds for outdoor science education, Canopy’s hands-on lessons offer profound opportunities for kids to plant, tend, and connect with their own campus trees.

Our curriculum meets state Common Core and Next Generation Science standards, integrating key scientific concepts with an opportunity for kids to care for nature in their own backyard.

At the forefront of Canopy’s work with youth are the Teen Urban Foresters. These high school students from low-income areas serve as stewards and leaders in urban greening. As young advocates for the urban forest, these teens participate in every facet of Canopy’s planting programs, and improve their community in tangible ways.

Through in-depth encounters with nearby nature, Canopy sparks kids’ curiosity and inspires a new generation of environmental stewards.



  • Youth discover their own power to make a difference as they work together to explore, steward, and shape their local environment
  • Teen Urban Foresters gain real-life job skills, leadership training, and exposure to careers in environmental protection and public service.
  • A new generation of nature stewards is fostered as we connect kids with nature where they live, learn, and play.


“Our students are acquiring on-the-job life skills with Canopy. They are learning to care for the environment where they live and to be leaders in their community. It would be fantastic if more students could participate.”

– Chris Bischof, Principal, Eastside College Preparatory School





Support Growing the Canopy

We’ve crossed the official campaign finish line, but we still welcome your partnership and support to bring this vision to life!

Will you join us?

Yes! I want to support Growing the Canopy with a:

One-time campaign gift

Multi-year pledge

When you make your gift, please select “Growing the Canopy Campaign gift” as the designation.

Thank you for bringing nature into neighborhoods!

Questions? Contact Maika Horjus, Communications & Development Manager:
[email protected] or 650-964-6110 x5


Our profound gratitude to Growing the Canopy campaign donors to-date:


$100,000 and above

Susan Ellis and Mark Linton
Susan Rosenberg

$75,000 – $99,999

Angela and David Filo – Yellow Chair Foundation

$25,000 – $74,999

Nancy Drapkin
John A. and Cynthia Fry Gunn*

$10,000 – $24,999

David and Trish Collins
Marty and Judy Deggeller
Matthieu Devin and Catherine Granger
Leila Hay
Judy Koch
Laurie T. Jarrett
Dave Muffly
Bill Reller
Georgia and Alan Rittenberg
Liz Schwerer
Don and Anne Vermeil

$5,000 – $9,999

Riyad and Suzanne Abu-Sharr
Janice Brody and Bruce Rule
Ruben and Barbara Green
Joe and Bette Hirsch
Beth Lim
Kammy Lo and Kowsik Guruswamy
Sally O’Neil and Ken Bencala
Susan Rosenberg*
Roger Smith and Judy Kay
Wen Shu Tang
Marcus Wood

$2,500 – $4,999

Matthew Bahls and Jess Weare
Ann Bilodeau
James F. and Wendy Cook
Hank Heubach
Larry Klein and Milbrey McLaughlin
Smiler Pantling
Linda and Ted Schlein*
Gail Schubert

$1,000 – $2,499

Kathleen Bennett and Tom Malloy
Kate and Robert Disney
John and Nancy Cassidy
Bill Courington*
Constance Crawford
John and Kristine Erving
Jesse and Kristin Herzog
Bruce Gee and Jane Alhouse Gee
Marilyn Keller and Jeff Greenfield
Alison Mark
Catherine and Pierre Martineau
Bob Meltzer
Nancy Mueller*
Marilynn and Brooks Nelson
Fred and Kirstin Nichols
Geoff and Jeanine Paulsen
Girvin and Lesley Peters
Nancy Peterson
Bernard J. and Allean Richter
Maria Rocha
Carol and Reinhart Ruescher
Meryl and Robert Selig
Jane Stocklin
Lisa Van Dusen and John Kelley
Jenny Wei and Brian Williammee

$500 – $999

Robert Hall and Susan Woodward*
Anwyn Hurxthal and Dan Collins
Edma Dumanian
Robert and Margaret Harrington
Jeff Koseff and Thalia Anagnos
Genni Lawrence
Evelyn Lim
Doria Summa and Robert Phillips*
Jeffrey and Jeanese Snyder*
Lauren and Kirk Swezey
Mike and Ellen Turbow
Bart and Nancy Westcott*

$250 – $499

Dudley and Elaine Andersen
Phyllis Browning
Lee and Amy Christel*
Jeannette Cosby and Glenn Skinner*
Caryn Huberman Yacowitz
Dexter and Jean Dawes*
Jeff Justice
Joanne Koltnow and Ray Applebaum*
Barbara Leighton and Philip Green
Stan and Suzanne Mantell*
Alice Martineau*
Shannon McDonald
Paula McFarland and Bart Anderson
Nicki and Pete Moffat*
Leslie and Doug Murphy Chutorian*
Christopher and Anne Ream
Gayle Riggs
Carl and Susan Thomsen
Kathleen and Michael Torgersen
Judith and Saul Wasserman

Up to $249

Janet Ague-Kennedy
Barbara Alhouse
Bob and Vicki Archibald
Matthew Austern and Janet Lafler
Ginny Babbitt*
Megan and Harris Barton*
Irene Beardsley and Dan Bloomberg
Bern Beecham and Cheryl Lathrop
Lu and John Bingham
Laura Blakely
Pat Blumenthal
Dave and Flo Braker*
Ellen and Marc Brown*
Natalie Brubacker
Bill and Barbara Busse
Margaret Carney
Andrea Cervenka and Shai Friedland
Andy and Liz Coe
Tom Collins*
Martha Dorn and John Scandling
David and Charlotte Epstein
Judith Fan and Robert Reay*
Elspeth Farmer and Jamie Rappaport*
Fred and Ira Fischer
Larry and Carol Fisher*
Fran Goodwin
Mark and Renee Greenstein
Michael Hawkins and Jenessa Schwartz
Jane Harris
Walt and Kay Hays
Uriel Hernandez
Maika Horjus
Sharon Hudak and Lee Marshall
Teena and Mike James*
Glenda Jones and Dick Clark
Jane Jones
Sue Kemp
Derek and Diana Kennedy
Maureen and David Kennedy
Tony and Sheryl Klein
Debbie, Doug, and Lizzie Kundrat
Ben LeNail and Laurie Yoler
Janice Li
Marion and Erick Mack*
Francis and Priscilla Marzoni
John McMurty and Janet Moody
Lynnie and Joe Melena
Wallace Mersereau
Roshi Mina*
Michael and Terry McMahon
Jack and Mary Ellen Morton
Bob and Harriett Moss
Deborah Mytels
Thao Ngo
Barbara Powell and Joseph Doniach
Lee and Kitty Price
Fran Rominger
Susan Schaps and Rob Shelton*
Flash Sheridan
Natalia Schoorl
Charles Schulz an Claire Taylor
Greg and Alison Takata
Sue Thiemann and Bill Faustman
Mary Vincent
Holly Welstein and Stuart Rajstaczer
Elise and Trent Willis

Legacy Pledge

Urban Cummings



* Gifts in honor of Canopy’s founding arborist, Kevin Raftery

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