Board of Directors Profile: Julie Fisher, Samsung Austin Semiconductor

Back in 2012, I began leading Clean Sweep for my company, Samsung Austin Semiconductor. It was my first experience organizing a volunteer opportunity for Keep Austin Beautiful and I was overwhelmed by the turnout! We had 125 Samsung employees, friends, and family clean up Zilker Park and the surrounding areas. I was inspired by the interest and continued to explore other volunteer opportunities, which lead me to become a Clean Lady Bird Lake site leader. Since then I have joined the Board of Directors and am currently serving in the secretary role.

Do the right thing and recycle!

By Ilya Shmulenson, director of programs

Ask a public school student what should be done to protect the environment and you will likely hear, “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle!” Ask them to draw a poster for Earth Day and the three “Rs” will make their way onto the page along with the triangular recycling symbol, an image of the globe, and a lush green field with multi-colored flowers growing under a bright blue sky.

While reducing and reusing are more self-explanatory, recycling is confusing. Delve deeper into the differences between what is “recyclable” and what you can actually place into the single-stream bin and you will find both students and adults puzzled. To help increase residential recycling rates and help residents understand what is and is not recyclable in the city, Austin Resource Recovery is running the Austin Recycles Games challenge.

Preserving a Preserve

By Monica Lopez Magee, Director of Development and Communications

In urban areas like Austin where green space is becoming more and more limited sits a 47 acre preserve of undeveloped land. It is not just any land, it is a unique wetland ecosystem along the Colorado River basin within the heart of Austin. Due to its location downstream of Lady Bird Lake, the preserve serves as the kidneys of Austin where all trash running off of local creeks and Lady Bird Lake accumulate. When I first came upon the area in 2011, it had become a dumping grounds and was overgrown with invasive species and poison ivy.

LoneStar Logos – A Sign of Community

By Monica Lopez Magee, Director of Development and Communications

It’s a bird. It’s a plane. It’s an Adopt-a-Street sign. You’ve spotted them around town. Bright green, announcing not a direction nor a traffic signal, but a volunteer commitment to keep Austin beautiful. Behind every sign is a group of volunteers – neighbors, coworkers, classmates – who dedicate themselves to cleaning that section of street four times a year.

CTA’s Commitment to Clean and Green

By Lily Nguyen, Fund Development Intern

Austin is highly urbanized, yet abundant with natural spaces. The Barton Creek Greenbelt, located just 10 minutes from downtown, is a prime example of an outdoor oasis in the heart of the city. The greenbelt spans over 800 acres of lush greenery, limestone cliffs, and flowing water for a majority of the year. On any day, visitors can be seen hiking, kayaking, rock climbing, and swimming in and along Barton Creek.

In it to win it, Eastside Memorial hopes to help District 3 improve its recycling rates

By Ilya Shmulenson, Director of Programs

Eastside Memorial High School is tucked in the northeast portion of city council district 3. The district, represented by Council Member Renteria, is currently in fourth place in the Austin Recycles Games. The challenge is a four-month competition initiated by Austin Resource Recovery as a way of increasing residential recycling rates and helping residents understand what is and is not recyclable in the city.

Advocate for Williamson Creek – Richard Maness, Individual Achievement Award Winner

By Erin Cord, Beautification Programs Coordinator

Name the service event – Adopt-a-Creek workdays, Lake Travis Underwater Cleanup, or Clean Lady Bird Lake and Richard Maness is not only participating but leading the workday. The kind of volunteer you keep on speed dial due to his willingness to always step in and lead. At a given project, you can find Richard inspiring others as he shares his love and knowledge of the outdoors. Richard has lived in Austin for most of his life. He remembers his love of nature starting at a young age playing in Little Walnut Creek by Dottie Jordan Rec Center.

Act Locally, Think Globally: Q&A with Gracywoods Neighborhood Association’s Bill Glass

ustin is kept beautiful by the many community volunteers who are dedicated to protecting its natural environment. Gracywoods Neighborhood Association is taking the lead in these efforts, earning them recognition as a Keep Austin Beautiful 30th Annual Award Winner. A map of the North Star Greenbelt Gracywoods Neighborhood is located north of Braker Lane and bordered by…