Tamra Peters, Director and Steering Committee
Since shortly after the first Earth Day in 1970, Tamra Peters has been working to protect the Earth. She was on the staff of: The Nature Conservancy as it grew from 17 employees to an international organization; the Natural Resources Defense Council as it began its campaign to stop global warming in the 1980’s; Rainforest Action Network when it launched its campaign against Mitsubishi’s rainforest destruction; and San Francisco Friends of the Urban Forest, where as Executive Director she learned about the power of people coming together to improve their neighborhoods.
Tamra has served on the boards of both national Earth Share and Earth Share California. She’s served as president and was a trustee for 18 years of the Strong Foundation for Environmental Values that has supported hundreds of grassroots environmental organizations. Most recently, she served for seven years on Sustainable Marin’s board.
Tamra considers climate change to be the most important issue of our time. So after her retirement, she started looking for what she could do. With the help of several others, she created Resilient Neighborhoods and launched the successful pilot in the fall of 2011. Since then she has worked full time as a volunteer, running the organization and motivating hundreds of Marin families to reduce their carbon footprints and build more resilient communities.
Tamra holds an undergraduate degree from Antioch University in Business Management and Psychology and has an MA in Organizational Development from the California Institute of Integral Studies. She has been a resident of Marin for almost 30 years.
Cory Bytof, Steering Committee
As the Sustainability Coordinator for the City of San Rafael, Cory works with the City Sustainability Team to realize the vision of the City’s Climate Change Action Plan (CCAP). He is the chair of the San Rafael Clean Campaign, an anti-litter and recycling education and advocacy group in San Rafael. As a member of the City’s Emergency Operations Center, he developed and continues to manage the City’s Emergency Volunteer Center, coordinating unaffiliated volunteers during local disasters.
Cory has lived in the Bay Area since 1986 and currently resides in San Rafael with his wife and daughter. He has a degree in Interdisciplinary Social Science from San Francisco State University. He worked for twelve years with people with disabilities in various capacities for transportation programs, residential group homes, day programs and job development programs before coming to work for the City of San Rafael in 1997. He has a background as an event producer, public relations coordinator, and volunteer coordinator.
Robert Brown, Steering Committee
Bob Brown has been a planning manager and director for 33 years in some of the most progressive cities in the Bay Area, including Palo Alto, Berkeley and San Mateo. He has specialized in reinvigorating downtowns into pedestrian-oriented, mixed-use/mixed-income community centers, promoting environmental protection and facilitating public involvement. He was the Community Development Director for the City of San Rafael for 13 years and acted as the City’s Sustainability Coordinator. He authored San Rafael’s Climate Change Action Plan and the BERST model green building ordinance, one of the most stringent in the nation, which has been adopted by several Marin jurisdictions and won a Leadership in Sustainability Award from the Marin Builders Association. Bob is also an adjunct faculty member at Dominican University, teaching in the Sustainable Practices Certificate Program.
Bob believes that government must be a catalyst in moving residents and businesses toward more sustainable lifestyles and business practices. He is a strong advocate for coordinated local action to fill the void of national leadership. He is a regular speaker at the League of California Cities, the Local Government Commission and the American Planning Association.
Bob holds an undergraduate degree in environmental biology from the University of Santa Clara and a Masters in Urban Planning from San Jose State University. He is a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners.
Kiki La Porta, Communications Advisor and Steering Committee
Kiki La Porta’s agency, Descom Studios, has provided branding, advertising, communications, and graphic design for businesses and agencies such as MCE Clean Energy, MMWD, Marin General Hospital, Marin Workforce Housing Trust, League of Women Voters, and many others since 1995. She is a leading advocate with Sustainable Marin, Coalition for a Livable Marin (CALM), Marin Environmental Housing Collaborative (MEHC), and others, and worked on San Rafael’s Climate Change Action Plan and the MMWD Water Rates Advisory Committee.
Kiki’s personal and professional focus is promoting environmental and economic sustainability, social justice, and climate morality, and addressing social problems through wise public policy, socially responsible business, and conscious everyday decision-making.
Marilyn Price, Operations Volunteer and Steering Committee
Marilyn Price is the founder of Trips For Kids® a nonprofit that has opened the world of cycling to over 140,000 at-risk youth since 1988 through mountain bike rides and Earn-a-Bike programs. Currently over 70 Trips for Kids chapters operate in the United States, Canada, Africa and Israel. Marilyn brings her love of kids and bicycling, desire for a healthy environment, and indefatigable devotion to the organization.
She is a visionary with keen entrepreneurial skills, in 1994 she started a bike thrift shop, a totally “green” business that currently supports 67% of the programs operating expenses.
She has received much recognition including an interview with General Norman Schwarzkopf on “Schwarzkopf’s America” on Tom Brokaw’s NBC Nightly News; a full page article in Sports Illustrated Magazine, induction into the Mountain Bike Hall of Fame , the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition Community Leadership Award.
As a University of Michigan alumnus, she was awarded the University of Michigan Humanitarian Service Award, the University’s most prestigious alumni honor, the Outdoor Industries Women’s Coalition Pioneering Woman Award, and most recently was named a 2015 CNN Hero. Her accomplishments are well known and generously supported by many members of the national bicycle industry.
Dara Rossoff Powell, Outreach Associate
Dara has dedicated the last 15 years of her career to sustainability education, environmental outreach and to implementing community based programs that make an impact. She has taught thousands of students and adults about the Bay Area ecosystem and inspired people to take actions in their daily lives to protect it. She worked with the City of Berkeley, the City of Oakland and the East Bay Regional Park District. During her 6 ½ years with the City of Berkeley she inspired countless students to protect the marine environment and facilitated the engagement of many hundreds of volunteers. She earned Mayoral Special Recognition for her volunteer coordination during the 2007 Cosco Busan Oil Spill response.
Recently with Clean Water Action, she helped to implement the innovative ReThink Disposable program. She engaged food service establishments and the public in strategies to reduce single-use disposables, tracking and measuring the waste prevention that occurred as a result of her work. She collaborated with eight municipal partners across the Bay Area and served as the lead trainer on program implementation. She is educated in Global Sustainability through UCLA, holds a BA from the California Institute of Integral Studies, and is educated in art and marine science. She loves finding elegant solutions to complex problems and working on climate change in her own community. She lives in Marin with her husband and daughter.
" Today, everyone wants to achieve these goals, but it always takes someone to ignite the fire under each of us. This program was effective in doing just that. "
Our Vision: Marin’s residents live in a resilient community—in harmony with nature’s cycles; in accord with regional resources of water, energy and food; and in strong connection with one another and with locally rooted businesses. Marin is a community that can respond effectively, with flexibility and strength, to inevitable changes in local and global conditions.
Resilient Neighborhoods' pilot program in 2012 helped 100 Marin households, organized into 20 EcoTeams, lose 500,000 pounds of carbon. The program has grown from there, spreading to households and neighborhoods throughout Marin.
Tamra Peters came up with the idea for Resilient Neighborhoods in 2009. The Low Carbon Diet workbook served as the inspiration for the program. The program is localized to Marin, and builds community among participants and within neighborhoods as it spreads.
Our program partners make Resilient Neighborhoods possible. Sustainable Marin acts as our fiscal agent; Dominican University’s Green MBA students worked on the Handbook and database development; the County of Marin’s Energy Upgrade California Program staff helped with expenses and acted as EcoTeam coaches; and the City of San Rafael’s staff contributed to all aspects of the program.