The Evanston Environmental Association is happy to report that 2011 was an exceedingly active year. A few of the highlights follow:

• Community Research and Promotion.  Working with a talented, highly motivated group of Northwestern University students called Students Consulting for Non-profit Organizations, the EEA conducted the first-ever scientific survey of environmental knowledge, opinions and practices of Evanston residents. Results from this community-wide research project have helped the Board and the Ecology Center plan for the future. Members of the Board also partnered with Ecology Center staff to create a promotional campaign designed to support the Ecology Center’s outreach programs to schools.

• Programs. The EEA developed a proposal with the City of Evanston’s Office of Sustainability and the Initiative for Sustainability and Energy at Northwestern for the creation and funding of a groundbreaking new initiative – the Evanston Sustainability Academy. The EEA Board, in partnership with the City of Evanston and the staff of the Ecology Center, also produced and presented the fifth Annual Evanston Green Living Festival, which attracted more that 1,000 visitors and 100 exhibitors.

• Online Initiatives. The EEA Board initiated a number of key online initiatives in 2011, designed to more easily facilitate various forms of online financial transactions for our uses and to promote the ideas, programs and events supported by the EEA and the Ecology Center, including implementing PayPal payment capabilities for online donations and various types of fees. We also started weekly email blasts to promote and inform recipients about the Center’s programs.

• Financial Initiatives. In response to a request from the City Manager, and in light of the serious budgetary crisis facing the City of Evanston, the Board created
a multi-year financial and capital plan designed to make the Evanston Ecology Center a self-sustaining community service by the end of 2013. The Board
will be meeting with the City Manager in early 2012 to refine the overall plan and then submit the plan to the City Council for approval in March.

• Governance. The EEA Board elected new Board Officers – Karen Taira as board secretary, Dave Cook as board treasurer, Rick Nelson as vice president, and Fred Schneider as president – and initiated an active board development process, with the goal of expanding the EEA board to its maximum of 15 members. Two new board members have already been added, Kasey Przybysz and Laurence Audenaerd.

Overall, it is safe to say that the EEA had a busy, productive 2011. The association cannot, however, rest on any  past accomplishments, since 2012 promises to be an even busier and more challenging year.

Mr. Schneider is the president of the Evanston Environmental Association. The complete report for 2011 is available at www.evanstonenvironment.org.

Mr. Schneider is the president of the Evanston Environmental Association. The complete report for 2011 is available at www.evanstonenvironment.org.