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2010 Goldman Environmental Prize Ceremony in San Francisco

Yesterday, April 19, my dad and step-mom, four other Environmental Club members and I attended the Goldman Environmental Prize Ceremony. Here are some pictures from the inspiring event that took place in San Francisco:

The ceremony took place in the San Francisco War Memorial and Performing Arts Center/Opera House. We sat in the top balcony with the other youth groups from the Bay Area.

The five of us in our seats at the event. My dad and step-mom came with us.

Peter Coyote was the Master of Ceremonies (he narrates The National Parks: America's Best Idea series...I knew I recognized his voice!). You can see him in the bottom left of the picture and on the screen. The man in the wheelchair is Richard N. Goldman, who established the Goldman Environmental Prize in 1990 with his wife Rhoda. With him is his daughter, Susan R. Gelman.

Six awards are given out to represent the 6 inhabited areas of Earth. The first award went to Thuli Brilliance Makama of Swaziland, Africa. From the Goldman website: Thuli Brilliance Makama, Swaziland’s only public interest environmental attorney, won a landmark case to include environmental NGO representation in conservation decisions and continues to challenge the forced evictions and violence perpetrated against poverty-stricken communities living on the edges of conservation areas.

For Islands and Island Nations, Humberto Ríos Labrada of Cuba: "A scientist and biodiversity researcher, Humberto Ríos Labrada promoted sustainable agriculture by working with farmers to increase crop diversity and develop low-input agricultural systems that greatly reduce the need for pesticide and fertilizer, encouraging Cuba’s shift from agricultural chemical dependence."

From Europe, Małgorzata Górska of Poland: "Małgorzata Górska led the fight to protect Poland’s Rospuda Valley, one of Europe’s last true wilderness areas, from a controversial highway project that would have destroyed the region’s sensitive ecosystems."

Before the prizes were awarded and following the third prize, Baaba Maal performed. The man on the screen isn't Baaba Maal, but his drummer. Baaba is in the center, playing guitar.

From North America, Lynn Henning of USA: "A family farmer in rural Michigan, Lynn Henning exposed the egregious polluting practices of CAFOs –concentrated animal feeding operations- gaining the attention of the federal EPA and prompting state regulators to issue hundreds of citations for water quality violations."

From Asia, Tuy Sereivathana of Cambodia: "Tuy Sereivathana worked to mitigate human elephant conflict in Cambodia by introducing innovative low-cost solutions, empowering local communities to cooperatively participate in endangered Asian elephant conservation."

From Central and South America, Randall Arauz of Costa Rica: "Drawing international attention to the inhumane and environmentally-catastrophic shark finning industry, Randall Arauz led the campaign to halt the practice in Costa Rica, making his country the new international model for shark protection."

"The Goldman Prize amplifies the voices of these grassroots leaders and provides them with:

•International recognition that enhances their credibility
•Worldwide visibility for the issues they champion
•Financial support of $150,000 to pursue their vision of a renewed and protected environment"

After the ceremony, there was a brief youth ceremony in which a poetry group called Youth Speaks performed a poem. It was very neat! There was a reception for youth following the event, but we didn't stay.

The event was interesting, inspiring and informational! For more information, visit the website at


  1. I'm so glad that we were able to come with you to the event. The stories of the award recipients were inspiring. As promised, I announced the club's attendance at the ceremony at last night's school board meeting.

  2. thank you for sharing your experience!


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