The Friends of Marsh Creek Watershed was honored on Tuesday morning by Supervisor Mary Piepho and the Board of Supervisors by receiving the 2012 Chair of the Board Award for their work in the community.
Friends of Marsh Creek Watershed Board President Brian Curran and Executive Director Diane Burgis pose for the picture with Supervisor Piepho and representatives of Chevron, Tesoro, Allied Waste, and Garaventa Enterprises.
“It was an hour to be given this award by Supervisor Mary Piepho. This award represents the commitment and passion of our volunteers. This is a result of everyone coming together for a cause and its a real pleasure to work with them,” said Diane Burgis, Executive Director. “We appreciate the recognition and support of the Board of Supervisors and their commitment to our cause.”
Diane Burgis provided me with a list of the organizations accomplishments from the past year.
1,263 volunteers volunteer 4360 hours in 2012
Volunteers Removed approximately 7 tons of trash from waterways, trails and parks
FOMCW continues to conduct one of (or possibly the only) of the only rear round Citizen Water Quality Monitoring programs in Contra Costa County. Data is being shared with city, county, state, federal and NOG partners. FOMCW conducted trash assessments for the cities of Brentwood and Oakley & for Contra Costa County for the third year in a row.
FOMCW continued their restoration work with demonstration gardens that expanded to Oakley. In addition Creekside Park in Oakley is currently under construction. The City of Brentwood asked a developer to meet with FOMCW to discuss a project that required creek restoration. As a result it is likely that a creek restoration project 2 to 3 times the size of Creekside Park Oakley will be underway in Brentwood in 2013.
Outreach and Education
FOMCW participated in 15 large events and did outreach and education through either walks led, tables at events, or in community service projects that taught through hands on activities. In addition, FOMCW spoke or provided presentations to city councils, school boards, the workforce development board, EBRPD, the Watershed Forum, and more.
The FOMCW website saw a 44% increase in hits over 2011 with an average of 479 people visiting our website monthly. FOMCW was featured and quoted in dozens of newspaper articles in 2012 as well as being featured in blogs online. FOMCW was also featured on KGO and KCBS over the Christmas weekend this year.
FOMCW continues to monitor what is going on in the area. Accomplishments include participating in helping with Creekside Park permitting issues, assisting Brentwood with helping a 400+ home development move forward with the construction of a two stage (and possibly actual restoration project) to be built in 2013. FOMCW worked on holding the City of Brentwood accountable for their wastewater discharge issues. FOMCW has expanded our relationship with the CVRWQCB and we expect that we will be working more closely with them in the future. FOMCW volunteers are participating in the Brentwood General Plan. Brentwood has reached out to us for input on creek issues. FOMCW received funding to revisit and rewrite our corridor report. We will be expanding it to include Oakley this time as well.
FOMCW was reissued an umbrella permit from CC Flood control district and was given another permit for planting in Oakley. For the first time the City of Brentwood issued FOMCW an umbrella permit for our activities on Marsh Creek. EBRPD is now working with us to issue an umbrella permit.
FOMCW has continued to expand and strengthen our partnerships. One of our newest partners is Contra Costa County Office of Education and the Workforce Development Board. American Rivers worked with FOMCW to develop projects and helped get funding to work with us. Other new partners include EPA, PG&E and the National Fish and Wildlife Federation.
FOMCW was able to secure $91,585 in funding through grants and awards.
Awards and Recognition
- FOMCW Ex Dir received CA State Assembly Woman of the Year for her work with FOMCW
- FOMCW will be awarded the Chairman’s Award by CCC Supervisor Piepho next week.
- FOMCW was one of only 2 organizations awarded a Urban Small Waters Grant out of 63 applicants in California.
- FOMCW was recognized by the River Network and MillerCoors as the only west coast candidate for their grant contest.
- FOMCW produces more volunteer hours than any organization in Alameda or Contra Costa County with EBRPD.