Willow Waterhole Greenspace Conservancy
Purpose: Founded in 2001, the Willow Waterhole Greenspace Conservancy (WWGC) partners with the Harris County Flood Control District and the City of Houston Parks and Recreation Department to enhance the 280 acre Willow Waterhole Park as a native plant and wildlife area and a passive recreational greenspace.
Programs: Music in Park performances, Movies in Park screenings, conservation volunteer work days on the second Saturday of each month, monthly bird surveys on the third Saturday of each month by Houston Audubon Society, and free environmental education series for kids and families.
Major Events: April Music Fest; Cross Country Meets & Fun Runs; Invasive Fish Round-up and Carp-a-thon in the fall.
Volunteer Opportunities: Historian, photographer, trail maintenance, cleanup days, event and festival volunteers, fundraising, guided hikes, children’s programs, Scout projects.
Speakers: Available for community and school groups.
Publications: Website, Facebook, and Newsletter
Ralph Rieger, CPA, CGMA, President
Gulf Restoration Network
Purpose: The Gulf Restoration Network (GRN) is a network of environmental, social justice, and citizens’ groups and individuals committed to restoring the Gulf of Mexico to an ecologically and biologically sustainable condition. Within this vision, we see the mission of GRN as one of uniting and empowering people to protect and restore the resources of the Gulf Region for future generations.
Programs: Resolve to Restore Louisiana Wetlands, the Gulf Coast is ground zero for the impacts of Global Warming, Save Our Cypress campaign, Save the Bait – Protect Menhaden in the Gulf of Mexico, Natural Defenses – protect our coastal wetlands and barrier islands, Defend our Nature Coast – Florida, Species at Risk, BP Drilling Disaster.
Major Events: Gulf Gathering annual retreat.
Volunteer Opportunities: Internships.
Publications: Gulf Currents – quarterly newsletter blog: http://www.healthygulf.org/blog/
Cyn Sarthou, Executive Director
(504) 525-1528 ext. 202
Ariadne Acevedo, Director of Membership and Community Fundraising
(504) 525-1528 ext. 210
Raleigh Hoke, Campaign Director
(504) 525-1528 ext. 204
Andrew Whitehurst, Water Program Director
504-525-1528 ext. 205
Cypresswood Water Conservation Garden
Purpose: Harris County Water Conservation and Improvement District (WCID) 132’s Water Conservation and Demonstration Center showcases efficient, sustainable water techniques and practices, which are aimed at providing solutions applicable to suburban landscapes whose owners desire to conserve water while sustaining beautiful plant materials.
The Center’s focus – water conservation in the landscape – is shared through presentations, site features, and plants. Presentations on water saving and sustainable practices include watering established plants with captured rainwater and air conditioner condensate, mulching to conserve moisture, working with the soil’s capacity to hold water, eliminating invasive species, and composting. Site features and materials, approximately 20 found in each of the 16 demonstration areas, include rain barrels, rain gardens, rain chains, and reused and recycled materials.
William Papp, President
Jim Dow, Vice President
Cindy Lane, Secretary
Gary Toll, Asst. Secretary
Mary Bonetati, Asst. Secretary
Purpose: Scenic Houston works to eliminate visual blight because all Houstonians are entitled to a green, uncluttered, visually appealing city. Scenic Houston promotes sign control, billboard reduction, freeway landscaping, scenic byway development, and enhanced design standards for public projects. Our success improves the quality of life for all Houstonians.
Major Events: Scenic Visionary Awards Dinner, October.
Volunteer Opportunities: Young Friends Initiatives, Scenic Action network, assisting with special events, outreach. Contact the office for more information.
Publications: Scenic Views e-newsletter, legislative alerts as needed, brochures, articles, blog.
Anne Culver, President
Sherry Weesner, Director of Projects
Environmental Defense Fund
Purpose: Environmental Defense Fund is dedicated to protecting the environmental rights of all people, including the right to clean air, clean water, healthy food and flourishing ecosystems. Guided by science, we work to create practical solutions that win lasting economic and social support because they are nonpartisan, cost-effective and fair. We were founded in 1967.
Programs: Texas Regional Office
Climate and Air
Land, Water & Wildlife.
Volunteer Opportunities: Case by case basis.
Speaker’s Bureau: Contact Elena Craft.
Elena Craft, Senior Health Scientist
Stacy Brick, Media Contact
University of Houston: Office of Sustainability
Purpose: The University of Houston Office of Sustainability serves as the hub for campus sustainability efforts. Engaging the campus and community, the office fosters collaboration and educates individuals about social, economic and environmental factors that impact today’s society and generations to come. On-campus sustainability initiatives include academic programs and research, educational events, the campus community garden, single-stream recycling, water bottle refill stations, renewable energy use, sustainable transportation, green building and more.
Programs: Sustainability Task Force, Sustainability Meetups, Student Sustainability Team and Campus Community Garden
Events: Cleanup Day, Sustainability Fest, Bike to UH Day, Electronics Recycling Drive, RecycleMania and Earth Week,
Volunteer opportunities: Gardening, Campus and community events, Cleanup events
Publications: Blog: uhsustain.wordpress.com, The Sustainable Coog Newsletter: http://www.uh.edu/sustainablecoog,
Michael Mendoza, Sustainability Program Manager
Melissa Halstead, Sustainability Coordinator
Energy Corridor District
Purpose: Represent property owners, businesses, and residents in the district, serving as a liaison with local, state, and federal governments and agencies to improve public safety, transportation, parks and trails, and business development to enhance the district.
Meetings: Second Friday of each month in ECD office, 8:30 a.m.
Major Events: Transportation Fairs, 75 Eldridge bus route, Bike to Work Day, ECD Livable Centers Plan, ECD Bicycle Master Plan, Grisby Square Preservation, National Park Service West Houston Trails Master Plan, Spring and Fall Recycling Events.
Clark Martinson, General Manager
Robert Rayburn, Development & Natural Resource Director
Ali Lamkahouan, Finance and Economic Development Manager
Rachel Weaver, Community Relations Coordinator
League of Women’s Voters in the Houston Area
Purpose: To encourage the informed and active participation of citizens in government, and to influence public police through education and advocacy. Founded in 1920.
Meetings: Four meetings per year, which are free and open to the public. Meetings discuss various policy issues. Visit lwvhouston.org for upcoming meetings dates and events.
Volunteer Opportunities: Assist with Voters Guide, voter registration, serve on committees, online newsletter e-voter. For information, email [email protected]
Publications: Monthly newsletter, voter guide before each election, voter keys every February.
Aimee Bertrand, Secretary
Sheldon State Park and Envir. Learning Center
Purpose: Sheldon Lake State Park & Environmental Learning Center is a 2,800-acre outdoor education and recreation facility located in northeast Harris County. It offers year round adult and family programs and activities as well as field trip opportunities for students of all ages. Beginning in 2003, the park is became an important restoration site for tall grass prairie. The park is open to the public daily from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. The lake, its banks, and levees are open from sunrise to sunset.
Programs: The park offers a variety of nature and ecology programs to organized groups on a reservation basis. Park staff and volunteers provide programs on nature/ecology, nature walks, catch-and-release fishing in two stocked ponds (fishing poles provided), pond ecology, native plant gardening, hunter education, composting and recycling. Programs range in time from one to two hours each.
Events: For a complete listing of the park’s daily events, please visit https://tpwd.texas.gov/state-parks/sheldon-lake/park_events
Activities: Sheldon Lake is open every day to public fishing with appropriate licenses. Birding, wildlife/nature study, hiking, and fishing for children. The park includes a 0.5-mile self-guided nature trail that passes 28 naturalized ponds that contain alligators and other wildlife. (Binoculars are recommended for best viewing.) Free catch-and-release family fishing is permitted for children accompanied by adults, in the two fishing ponds. Alternative energy technologies and green building techniques (photovoltaic, solar hot water, wind turbine and ground coupled-geothermal) are demonstrated at the Pond Center. A wildscape demonstration garden shows techniques for using native plants and wildflowers to attract birds, butterflies and other wildlife to your backyard.
Volunteer Opportunities: For information on volunteer opportunities at Sheldon Lake, contact the park at (281) 456-2800
Jesse H. Jones Park and Nature Center
Purpose: A 312-acre, Harris County Precinct 4 nature park dedicated to environmental and natural history, education, wildlife conservation, and passive recreation. It opened in 1982.
Programs: Wide variety of weekday tours and free weekend educational programs, ranging from the lifestyles and customs of local early settlers to the environmental benefits of nature. Teacher workshops and training programs are offered as well.
Major Events: Arbor Day Celebration – 3rd weekend in January; Homestead Heritage Day – 2nd Saturday in February; NatureFest – 1st Saturday in March; Pioneer Day – 2nd Saturday in November
Children’s Activities: Wide variety throughout the year, including Summer Nature Camp, Tadpoles Club, and scout programs. Playground with separate toddler section. Field trips are available to the park for your class or student group.
Volunteer Opportunities: Trail guides, invasive plant removal, trail maintenance, greenhouse help, office aide.
Publications: Bi-annually the Update – Harris County Precinct 4 Parks.
Darlene Conley Hostetler, Director
Mark Seegers, Media Contact
Al Barr, Outreach Coordinator
City of Houston Green Building Resource Center
Purpose: To enable the public to experience and learn more about healthy and energy, water, and material conserving design and construction; also known as Green Building.
Programs: The public can have their interim building plans reviewed for opportunities to add green strategies to save energy and water, and make their building healthier. Customers can peruse the shelves and over 50 displays, touch and feel samples, and learn about green building options in a relaxed setting. Free educational seminars (generally) scheduled on the fourth Wednesday evening of the month; check the GBRC calendar on the website.
Tours for groups: Available by appointment for your school field trip or group outings. Student activity package (with answer key for teachers) is available.
Speakers Bureau: Steve is available for speaking engagements.
Volunteer Opportunities: Yes, contact the Program Director to discuss.
Steven M. Stelzer, AIA, LEED AP, Program Director
Texans for Clean Water
Purpose: Texans for Clean Water is a coalition of business leaders and citizens who are committed to protecting the waterways. Through education, prevention and collaboration, we can eliminate floatable litter: including drink containers, polystyrene to-go containers and plastic bags, from Texas waterways. In doing so, we will generate economic prosperity and improve water quality for all Texans and Texas wildlife.
Programs: Speakers are available to talk about strategies to improve water quality by reducing, discarding, and appropriate alternatives to: plastic bags, polystyrene to go containers, and other AWAY FROM HOME packaging. Texans for Clean water also works to support municipal and statewide legislation to prevent land based litter from becoming marine debris.
Volunteers Opportunities: Help to spread the message that litter is a problem in Texas. What’s your favorite tool to get the word out? Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr, Twitter? Whatever it is, click here for our latest post on Facebook and relay it out to your audience.
Emerson Unitarian Universalist Church
Purpose: Emerson Unitarian Universalist Church was chartered in 1960 to serve the growing western suburbs of Houston. Proudly recognized as a Welcoming Congregation (LGBTQ friendly), Emerson Church invites people of all races, ethnicity, ages, gender identities, and sexual orientations to join us. The congregation has the diversity of spiritual beliefs, cultural backgrounds and sexual orientations that make Unitarian Universalism such a dynamic faith.
Programs: The Ministry for Earth group is large and active. This group promotes the seventh principle of the Unitarian Universalist Association: “…to affirm and promote respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part.” They learn about environmental issues; advocate public policies to protect the global environment; act locally in our homes, church and city; and connect spiritually with the web-of-all-existence. Specific programs include the Renewable Congregations Campaign, the Ethical Eating and Environmental Justice series, and Consumption and Sustainability Initiatives.
Learn more at http://www.emersonhouston.org/ministry-for-earth.html.
Volunteer Opportunities: Learn more at http://www.Emersonhouston.org/volunteer
Becky Edmiston-Lange, Co-Pastor
(713) 782-8250 Ext. 125, [email protected]
Mark Edmiston-Lange, Co-Pastor
(713) 782-8250 Ext. 127, [email protected]
Galveston Island Nature Tourism Council
Purpose: Galveston Island Nature Tourism Council is a non-profit, community-based volunteer organization that supports and develops nature-based educational and recreational activities, and promotes the value of area natural habitats and resources.
Interest in nature tourism is on the rise. The Council invites you to explore its website, http://www.GalvestonNatureTourism.org, to learn about programs and projects for the environmentally rich Galveston Island and its surrounding areas. The Council has enjoyed great success with its unique nature events, community education and outreach programs, and anticipated growth in these and other endeavors.
Programs: Galveston Sea Turtle Saturday, Featherfest Birding & Nature Photography Festival, and Holiday with the Cranes.
Volunteer Opportunities: To volunteer, please contact Julie Ann Brown at (409) 789-8125 or email [email protected]. The Galveston Island Nature Tourism Council could not succeed in its mission without its dedicated and enthusiastic volunteers. The Council relies on volunteers to help with its events, assist in the office, help conduct research, and much more. Whether you are an individual, an organization, or a corporate or school group, we have the perfect volunteer opportunity for you!
Jeffrey P. Rabek, President
Julie Ann Brown, Executive Director
Texas Campaign for the Environment
Purpose: Empowering Texans to fight pollution through sustained grassroots organizing campaigns that shift corporate and governmental policy. The TEC envisions a Texas free from pollution. As the largest environmental group in Texas organizing support through door-to-door canvassing, grassroots is both who we are and what we do.
Programs: Advocates for local, state and national policies that hold manufacturers responsible for recycling the toxic products they create (such as electronic waste or “e-waste”); works to strengthen environmental and health standards for Texas landfills; educates residents and builds grassroots support through a year-round neighborhood canvassing program; and works toward recycling for all Houstonians.
Job Opportunities: Full and part-time paid Community Organizer positions available year round.
Volunteer Opportunities: Call Rosanne Barone.
Publications: Annual report and regular email action alerts to TCE members. Visit the website http://www.texasenvironment.org to view past reports and join as a member.
Robin Schneider, Executive Director
Rosanne Barone, Program Director
Nicholas Borjas, Staff Director
White Oak Bayou Association
Purpose: To promote greater public awareness, appreciation, and enjoyment of White Oak Bayou, its tributaries and environs by advocating the preservation, restoration, and maintenance of the natural wildlife habitats thereof, while promoting compatible educational and recreational opportunities within the area. White Oak Bayou Association was founded in May 1986.
Meetings: Monthly: 2nd Tuesday, 7:00 p.m. except November; Annual: November (Location, date, and time to be announced); Please confirm meeting location, date, and time by calling (713) 864-3008.
Programs: Field trips, tree planting, bike ways, storm water quality and environmental advocacy, participation in Harris County Flood Control District stakeholder committees, coordination with City of Houston Floodplain Management office, and education. Coordination with Bayou Preservation Association – http://www.bayoupreservation.org.
Tom Gall, President
Christina Hughes, Vice President
Bob Lee, Vice President
Tom Dornbusch , Vice President
Teresa Matlock, Treasurer
Doug Shannon, Secretary
Keep Kingwood Green
Purpose: To educate and advocate for recycling in the Lake Houston area (and other issues as appropriate). Non-profit 501c3, all volunteer organization.
Major Projects: Participation in Kleenwood, Nature Fest, YMCA events, Kingwood Farmers Market, and other recycling events in the area. We work with the City of Houston, Humble ISD and other governmental units to facilitate and educate about recycling. We hold public meetings, publish Green Columns and recycling brochures, host a “Where Can I Recycle” website and “hotline” and help local businesses “go green.”
Speakers Bureau: Speakers available for community groups and schools, mostly on recycling topics. Contact: Candy Bowman.
Hal Opperman, President of the Board
Brigitte Collee, VP/Development Director
Susan Pollard, Secretery/Community Association Liaison
John Cotter, Treasurer
Candy Bowman, Education Director
Katrin McManis, Board Member, Special Projects,
Uma Rajendram, Board Member, Special Projects,
Hermann Park Conservancy
Purpose: Founded in 1992, Hermann Park Conservancy is a nonprofit citizens’ organization dedicated to the stewardship and improvement of Hermann Park, one of Houston’s largest and most loved urban parks, where more than six million visitors make memories each year.
Beyond raising funds to improve and maintain the Park, the Conservancy oversees strategic planning for Hermann Park’s future as well as programs focused on visitor services, conservation and stewardship, tree care, and operations and maintenance of the McGovern Centennial Gardens. For more information on the Conservancy, visit hermannpark.org.
Programs: Corporate sponsorship programs, volunteer programs and community events.
Major Events: Hermann Park Conservancy Kite Festival (held each March), Part to Port Bike Ride, Run in the Park, Evening in the Park Gala, Hats in the Park Luncheon, and Urban Green young professionals events.
Children’s Activities: Hermann Park Rail Road, Pedal boat rides, family volunteer opportunities, Hermann Park Conservancy Kite Festival (held each March), Children’s Story Hour (held every Friday in the McGovern Centennial Gardens’ Family Garden).
Volunteer Opportunities: Opportunities are available for individuals, corporations, civic associations, school groups, and families. They range from administrative duties and event preparation to weeding and tree planting. Contact Diane Kerr, for more information.
Speakers Bureau: Contact Doreen Stoller.
Publications: Parkside newsletter, Hermann Park Conservancy e-news.
Doreen Stoller, President
(713)-524-5876 ext. 331
Monique Stitts, Outreach Coordinator, Community & Coorporate Partnerships
Houston Access to Urban Sustainability
Purpose: The HAUS Project was formed in late 2010 to provide affordable, sustainable, cooperative housing in the accessible, urban core of the Houston region within close proximity of Houston’s growing light rail transit system. Our goal is to open 5 green coops in 5 years.
The mission of HAUS Project is to
Provide affordable housing operated cooperatively by residents.
Provide greener, more sustainable lifestyle options.
Educate the general public about cooperative organizational principles and greener, more sustainable lifestyle options.
Assist other cooperative and sustainability efforts in the Houston region and elsewhere.
Programs: The first house, Rosalie, opened on January 1, 2011 in Midtown and now houses ten people in its ten rooms. We’ve since expanded to include a second 15-bedroom house on Ruth St. We intend to develop houses of various sizes and appropriate for various lifestyle options, including at least one student focused house, and at least one house appropriate for children and families.
Volunteer Opportunities: We are always looking for future members and are especially looking for people who are excited about being on the front lines of developing our next house. Come over ANY Sunday – Wednesday at 7pm for dinner (bring $5 to cover your food costs) and we’d love to have you. E-mail [email protected] to let them know that you’re coming.
Marissa Ramos, Member Co-Coordinator and Board Representative
Air Alliance Houston
Purpose: Houston’s leading health and clean air advocacy non-profit specializing in both the treetops and grass roots of environmental advocacy and organizing.
Air Alliance Houston’s mission remains to reduce air pollution in the Houston region and to protect public health and environmental integrity through research, education and advocacy.
Programs: Research, Advocacy and Education, including Ozone Theater (three curricula for grades K-3, 4-5, and middle school). Annual Earth Day Art Contest for grades 3-12, earthdayartcontest.org.
Volunteer Opportunities: Volunteer
internships and various activities.
Speakers Bureau: Yes. We will visit classrooms for presentations. Call or visit website for booking.
Publications: Please visit our website,
http://www.airalliancehouston.org, for a complete list of our reports.
Air Alliance Houston is the result of the 2008 merger between Galveston-Houston Association for Smog Prevention and Mothers for Clean Air.
Dr. Bakeyah Nelson, Executive Director
Paige Powell, Director of Operations
Research and Policy Director
Community Outreach Director
Community Outreach Coordinator
Community Outreach Coordinator
For general inquiries, contact: [email protected]