Scoop: Leading Latina environmentalist Belinda Faustinos is new appointee to TRPA

100_5314Editor’s note: In reporting for our regional lifestyle magazine — this time for a feature on “Sierra Stewards” – I often dig up some statewide news. This one interested me, since I grew up in the shadow of the San Gabriel mountains, and now we are part-time residents at Lake Tahoe. I expect the TRPA to soon issue a press release about this:

Belinda Valles Faustinos — who helped lead the effort that culminated in President Obama declaring part of the San Gabriel Mountains a national monument —  is being appointed to the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency (TRPA). She replaces former land use planner and fine arts photographer Elizabeth Carmel of Truckee, who has held the prestigious position since 2013. Elizabeth’s marvelous photographs of the Sierra often are featured in our magazine, including our upcoming fall issue. She is a “Sierra Steward.”

The TRPA seat is one of 14 voting positions on the environmental planning agency’s board – seven representing California and seven representing Nevada. One board seat, appointed by the President of the United States, is non-voting. President Obama visited Lake Tahoe in August for the 20th annual Tahoe Summit,  an event committed to exploring changing climate and its impact on ecosystems, like the Tahoe basin.

(“I can think of no better way to honor our past and protect our future than by preserving the San Gabriel Mountains,” Obama said in October 2014. News reports added: “Belinda Faustinos, deputy chair of San Gabriel Mountains Forever, said all Los Angeles residents will benefit from the new national monument. “For Latinos, this is especially significant,” she said. “This new monument will protect our natural public lands that are part of our history and heritage as the Gabrielinos who originally lived in these lands.”)

The Tahoe Regional Planning Agency cooperatively leads the effort to preserve, restore, and enhance the unique natural and human environment of the Lake Tahoe Region now and in the future.

Belinda is a board member of the National Park System Advisory Board and was a member of the National Parks Second Century Commission.

She has been a leader in the development of integrated regional watershed management planning, urban nature parks, river parkway, and interpretive programs.

Belinda has served as an alternate California Coastal Commissioner, Land Trust Alliance Board Member, California State Audubon Board Member, and as an Executive Advisor to the San Gabriel River Discovery Center Foundation. She earned her B.A. from Pitzer College and lives in the San Gabriel Valley.

(Photo: Google Plus)

Author: jeffpelline

Jeff Pelline is a veteran editor and award-winning journalist - in print and online. He is publisher of Sierra FoodWineArt magazine and its website SierraCulture.com. Jeff covered business and technology for The San Francisco Chronicle for years, was a founding editor and Editor of CNET News, and was Editor of The Union, a 145-year-old newspaper in Grass Valley. Jeff has a bachelor's degree from UC Berkeley and a master's from Northwestern University. His hobbies include sailing and trout fishing.

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