Mission & Goals
California ReLeaf was founded in 1989 and incorporated as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization in 2004. Our mission is to empower grassroots efforts and build strategic partnerships that preserve, protect, and enhance California’s urban and community forests.
Our goals include:
- Expanding delivery of services and resources to California ReLeaf Network groups.
- Broadening funding opportunities for urban and community forestry projects.
- Fostering involvement within the urban forestry movement throughout California’s diverse communities.
- Improving legislative outreach and advocacy efforts on a state and federal level.
California Arbor Week 2017 Press Release. California ReLeaf’s ongoing programs are possible because of strong support from the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection and the USDA Forest Service.
Amelia joined the California ReLeaf staff in February 2014 as Interim Executive Director but has been affiliated with the organization since 1995. She was a member of the California ReLeaf board of directors, 2007 – January 2014, holding positions as President and Treasurer. From 1995 to 2008 Amelia worked as Director of the Roseville Urban Forest Foundation, which is a Network member of California ReLeaf. During that time she served on the Network Advisory Committee and assisted with ReLeaf’s mentoring program, representing the small, volunteer-based nonprofit. Amelia brings many years of urban forest and nonprofit experience particularly her work in Roseville, where she promoted tree programs that support livable communities and sustainable green spaces. Amelia is an ISA certified arborist, community activist, and educator. She holds B.A. degrees in International Economics and Spanish from UC Davis, an M.S. in Natural Resource Economics from University of Missouri, Columbia, and is a Fulbright alumnus. Amelia became the Network & Operations Program Manager of California ReLeaf in October 2014. Her current responsibilities include overseeing the operations and financial components of the organization including payable & receivable, payroll, and general accounting. She also help maintain the network member database and leads the logistics of the annual Network Member retreat. She provides an interesting science-based perspective to the organization through her arboricultural training and her experience in the small urban forest nonprofit sector.
As an Earth and Environmental Sciences major at the University of California, Irvine, Mariela worked as a lab assistant, concentrating on carbon isotope analysis of terrestrial, air and bone samples. She graduated in May 2016 from University of San Francisco with a Master of Science in Environmental Management. Her graduate work focused on fracking, the cap and trade program, and renewable energy. Mariela’s passion for the environment began where she grew up in South Central Los Angeles. She worked for the Audubon Society, a nonprofit working in her local community where she helped restore and remove invasive species at the Baldwin Hills Scenic Overlook. South Central LA is one of the many areas in California where we need to focus our canopy efforts and reach out to diverse cultural communities. Mariela is very excited about the opportunity to make a positive impact on California’s urban and community forests. In addition, Mariela is particularly interested in helping disadvantaged communities to improve air quality in order to reduce asthma and other health issues.
Chuck has been an integral part of California ReLeaf for over 20 years, and was a founding Board Member for the organization when it incorporated as a nonprofit in 2004. He served on the Board of Directors from January 2005 to July 2010, including terms as Treasurer and President. He brings a wealth of knowledge and 28 years of experience in natural resource conservation to the organization. Currently, he manages California ReLeaf’s grants program and public policy portfolio. Prior to joining the California ReLeaf staff in August 2010, Chuck spent 3½ years with the California Council of Land Trusts and 12 years at the Trust for Public Land in program management and advocacy. Chuck holds varying degrees of degrees in communications, Canadian Studies, journalism, and government.