San Francisco Department of the Environment

Quotes from Commissioners

Commission on the Environment 20th Anniversary

Current and former members of the Commission on the Environment discuss the highlights of their experience.

Anne Eng, Member, Commission on the Environment
October 1996 – March 1998

“The Commission was founded 20 years after the first Earth Day. It was time.  By the 1990’s we felt like San Francisco was missing coordination on all of the topics and initiatives related to the environment. I am very proud that over the past two decades the Commission has recognized that social and racial justice are part of sustainability.”

Johanna Wald, Member, Commission on the Environment
March 2003 - Present

“At every Commission and Policy Committee meeting I attend, I am impressed anew by the committed and talented staff of the Department of the Environment, their outstanding accomplishments, and the open and responsive way they carry out their vitally important work.”

Josh Arce

Josh Arce, Member, Commission on the Environment
August 2012 – January 2016

“The Commission worked with our amazing staff to achieve landmark clean energy wins that are now a model across the region, state, and beyond.  During all of our initiatives, we sought to increase inclusion of communities historically disenfranchised from the traditional environmental movement and create jobs along the way.”

Ruth Gravanis

Ruth Gravanis, Member, Commission on the Environment
July 2006 – Nov 2014

“In 2011 San Francisco was named the most sustainable city in the nation by Siemens and the Economist Intelligence Unit.  The commission and department can be justly proud of their roles in achieving this honor for the City.  However, conspicuously missing from Siemens’ evaluation categories was anything to do with nature. In late 2011 the commission passed a biodiversity policy and in 2012 created and staffed an Office of Biodiversity which helps keep our City in the vanguard of urban sustainability”

Linda Richardson

Linda Fadeke Richardson, Member, Commission on the Environment
October 1996 – March 1999

“The commissioners I served with were visionaries. We established the first framework of policies to uphold and guide the new department's mission, hired competent staff to work on the key environmental initiatives such as the landmark Integrated Pest Management, Green Building Sustainable Development – all of which have become models for the State of California, the United States and United Nations.”

Randall Hayes, Member, Commission on the Environment
April 1999 – December 2003


“One of the Commission’s greatest accomplishments was working with staff on the Precautionary Principle which the trade industry lobbied hard against by attending meetings and speaking out. The only reason the policy was adopted by the Mayor and Board of Supervisors was because the strength of the community that organized around the issue.”

Nick Josefowitz

Nick Josefowitz, Member, Commission on the Environment
January 2013 – May 2014

“The Department is a national leader on so many urban environmental issues, from waste and toxics reduction to climate change mitigation. I was always in awe of staff's expertise and commitment, and am so proud to have worked together with them to deliver some real environmental victories on clean energy and clean transportation that have served as a model for cities across the country.”

Commission on the Environment
20th Anniversary
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