Sustainable Walnut Creek

Who We Are

Sustainable Walnut Creek is an organization founded in 2012 to promote sustainable living and environmental stewardship in Walnut Creek, California.

Our mission is to educate and empower the local community to adopt sustainable practices and reduce their impact on the environment. We organize events, workshops, and educational programs to raise awareness about sustainable living, climate change, and environmental issues.

We also collaborate with local businesses, organizations, and government agencies to promote sustainable practices and create a more resilient and sustainable community.

Robert Joe
Bob Joe’s green journey gathered momentum in the 90’s when Bob and Lily Joe constructed their retirement house, “Ecohouse Walnut Creek”  World’s first two story steel and straw-bale residence, built on Feng Shui principals with sustainable materials and technologies.

Bob, a  LEED AP and certified sustainable building advisor is a founding member of SWC and SCOCO, a Climate Reality Corps Fellow (Belleview, WA, 2017), member ECA (Elders Climate Action),  past member of USGBC NCC’S Diablo East Bay Branch, past member of Contra Costa County and City of San Ramon’s Green Residential Advisory Task Force, past “Green Talk” columnist for DVCCA (Diablo Valley Chinese Cultural Association).

Know more about Bob’s Ecohouse:

“We’re not doing enough and need to do so much more.  We owe it to our grand kids, future generations and all living things!”   

Marsha C. Golangco
Marsha Cheung Golangco, a Sustainable Green Building Advisor,
Environmental Feng Shui Expert, Author, Speaker and Circular
Economic Consultant, is a longtime community leader. Her mission is to promote peace & harmony and create a sustainable world that works for all. Committed to a lifetime contribution to Humanity, Marsha proactively participates in the ongoing sustainable green movement in Environment, Equity and Economy. She continues to develop a local to global collaboration through her business and community advocacy. As a former Human Relations Commissioner, she sees herself as a bridge, connecting her Asian American heritage to all communities.

Marsha actively participates in a diversity of community groups, currently serving as APAPA’s Bay Area Region President. She is a co-founder of Sustainable Contra Costa County and Sustainable Walnut Creek. Marsha received numerous awards including the API Leader of the Year in California 16th Assembly District for her community work, the President’s Award of the Year of the Building Industry Association for her dedication to the advancement of professional women in the building industry, and also an Honorable Mention Martin Luther King Jr. Humanitarian Award of the Year for her numerous humanity contributions. Marsha holds a B.S. degree in Biology from Santa Clara University, CA, and an M.A. degree in Economics from California State University in San Francisco. She has completed a Ph.D. academic program in Environmental Science from the University of the Philippines.

“Creating a sustainable world isn’t just a lofty goal, it’s a necessary step towards securing a better future for ourselves and the generations to come. By bringing Sustainable Design and Systems to communities around the world, we can pave the way towards a more equitable and environmentally-friendly future.”

Laura Patch
Laura is a digital product manager at the Sierra Club, where she helps implement tools for climate activists. Laura has worked in the political power of digital space and on the importance of diverse voices in that arena for most of her career.

As an expert in digital accessibility, she trains others and consults on projects to improve the accessibility of digital products so everyone can participate in the environmental movement.

She ran for Walnut Creek City Council in 2023, serves as the secretary for the Diablo Valley Democratic Club and the Contra Costa Young Democrats, and is an active member in the Community Clean-up Crew and Sustainable Walnut Creek.

“Our actions today will shape the world we pass on to future generations. By advocating for climate action and promoting sustainable practices, we can make a positive impact on the planet and create a more just and equitable world for all.”

Cedprofilepic2014Cedric C. Cheng
Cedric C. Cheng has extensive experience in graphic arts began in 1996 when he co-founded LINC Designs which later became Cedric Cheng Design.  He also served as a senior graphic designer for many local print shops in Walnut Creek, Dublin, Lafayette and Pleasant Hill and continues to consult with them to this day.  His range of clients include non-profits, small businesses, marketing, public relations and political campaigns.

Mr. Cheng is a graduate from San Francisco State University. He has served on numerous non-profits boards and volunteering for different causes ranging from environmental issues, the Asian American community as well as in public affairs.  Mr. Cheng current serves on the Concord Pavilion Community Outreach Committee since being appointed by the Concord City Council in February 2019.

“Sustainability is not just about the environment, it’s about creating a more equitable and just world for all. It’s about acknowledging the interconnectedness of our global community and working together towards a common goal of a better future.”

Nadine Hammer
Nadine is a versatile and accomplished strategic change lead with expertise in organizational design and change management. Her passion for people coupled with my experience in systems thinking means she can address complex, persistent problems and opportunities effectively.

Colleagues and internal customers value her vision and empathetic communication as she influences and implements successful outcomes across industries and cultures.

“Every small action we take towards sustainability can create a ripple effect that leads to a more significant impact. Let’s make every decision count and work towards a healthier, more sustainable planet.”

Eva Tardif-Sanchez
Eva Tardif-Sanchez is an inspiring leader in the realm of sustainability, focusing her efforts on optimizing processes and advancing environmentally responsible solutions within multiple industries.

With a background in project management, health and safety, and environmental conservation, Eva has a knack for tackling complex challenges, turning them into opportunities for sustainable growth.

“Transforming the world begins with transforming processes; sustainability isn’t a separate agenda, it’s the core of innovation itself.”

Diego Dotta Couto

Diego is an entrepreneur and advocates for social change. He is the co-founder of Youper, a mental health company. With a passion for positively impacting the world, Diego has also dedicated much of his time to volunteering for various projects that aim to empower local communities, promote political transparency, and support sustainability.

Diego has been committed to developing innovative solutions that enhance people’s lives throughout his career. He has used his extensive technology and digital marketing knowledge to help companies and organizations connect meaningfully with their audiences. His expertise in these areas has been critical to the success of his ventures, which have received recognition for their creativity, impact, and social responsibility.

“Preserving our planet is not a choice, it’s a responsibility. We owe it to ourselves and future generations to prioritize sustainability and take meaningful action towards a more eco-friendly future.”

BobSimmonsBob Simmons
Bob was an attorney for the U.S. Department of Agriculture before retiring in 2004. Bob served on the Parks, Recreation and Open Space and the Planning Commissions for the City of Walnut Creek, and served on the City Council from 2008 through 2016. In addition to being a founder of SWC, Bob is currently Chair of the Walnut Creek Watershed Council, and is Vice-President of the Orinda Hiking Club. Bob is an avid hiker, traveler and gardener, and is also a Contra Costa Master Gardener.

“Gardening and hiking have taught me that we are not just visitors on this planet, we are part of it. It is our duty to preserve the natural beauty around us, to protect and enhance it for future generations to come.”

Sheila Hill
Sheila Hill is a Founding Member of Sustainable Contra Costa (SCOCO) and a true Bay Area native, having lived, worked and played here her whole life. She is a Contra Costa County Master Gardener and most recently served as the Development Manager at the Gardens at Heather Farm in Walnut Creek, where she enjoyed volunteering and then working for many years to cultivate environmental awareness with children as well as fundraising to support those important programs. Sheila works with students, parents, teachers and administrators countywide to support and promote sustainability on their campuses and in their communities through her Sustainable Schools program. Collaborating with other local nonprofit organizations has always been a priority and current projects include working with Wellness City Challenge to improve the food in schools – while incorporating other facets of sustainability such as waste reduction, green cleaning, and schools gardens.

Tina King Neuhausel
Tina has spent the last 16 years of her professional life helping to advance smart, efficient technologies and managing programs that educate and inspire people to make their homes, businesses, and communities more sustainable. Tina co-founded and has run Sustainable Contra Costa since 2008. She was Education & Outreach Director for Sustainable San Mateo County (2006-2010) and consulted with governments and businesses on renewable energy projects and policies, and sustainable building and business practices as Owner of Next Generation Energy Network (2004-2007). Tina served as Policy Aide to Santa Clara County Supervisor Jim Beall [currently State Senator] focusing on energy, workforce development, transportation, and land-use issues and created the Santa Clara County Fuel Cell Advancement Initiative. Tina has eight years executive management experience in the hotel industry. She received her MPA degree from San Francisco State University.

Alexandra Bunik
Alexandra is currently a junior majoring in Production and Design at Contra Costa School of Performing Arts. She is engaged in her school and local community as a Student Leader and Co-Chair of Sustainable Walnut Creek.

Alexandra is committed to creating sustainable practices that will preserve the environment and is thrilled to be the first youth member of Sustainable Walnut Creek. Alexandra is currently contributing to the EcoArt project that ties together her passion for nature and her love of art. She is excited for Sustainability Week, a week-long series of events promoting and celebrating sustainability, and hopes to see you all there!

In her free time, you might find her in the pool, painting, or designing sound and lighting for her school’s shows.

Art Coon
As the head of Miller Starr Regalia’s Sustainable Development Practice Group, Art Coon guides clients through a broad range of real property, land use and environmental matters. Art is a co-founder of Sustainable Walnut Creek.

Art has distinguished himself as a litigator at the trial and appellate levels of both federal and state courts, including an appearance as counsel of record before the U.S. Supreme Court. His areas of expertise include land use, environmental law, the law of public agencies, extraordinary writs, and the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). Art also counsels and advocates for clients who have matters in front of administrative bodies.

Art is a LEED Accredited Professional and has published and presented extensively. He has written dozens of articles for law reviews, legal periodicals, and other publications. Art received a J.D. from the University of California, Davis School of Law in 1986, Art was awarded the Order of the Coif, served as a Law Review editor, was a member of the Trial Practice Honors Board, and received American Jurisprudence Awards in Conflict of Laws and Commercial Paper. He earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of Southern California in 1982.

Shirley-McGrathShirley McGrath
Shirley was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Colombia, speaks Spanish and has a particular fondness for the Latin culture.  After returning to the States from South America, she did social work in Camden, NJ.  She then headed to Puerto Rico with her husband to train Peace Corps Volunteers.  To return to the U.S. they flew to Panama and drove 8000 miles with a new baby through Central America and Mexico to Portland, OR.  In 1971 they chose the Bay Area as their home and became involved in Creative Initiative Foundation.  They bought a house in Mexico in 2000 and enjoy very much their relationships with the Mexican people. When it became obvious that Climate Change was the most important issue of our time, Shirley joined Elders Climate Action in 2015 and helped found the Northern California Chapter.  She works on a national and local level to raise awareness and engage with elders to confront the climate crisis.


Barbara Safran (In Memoriam)
Barbara Safran was committed to helping others create a world that her grandchildren and someday her great grandchildren can enjoy. A sustainable Walnut Creek is one step in that endeavor.

Barbara had 8 grandchildren, loves to sing, do photography, and spent time with her family and friends. Barbara’s passion was facilitating others to be the best they can be and through that discovering that she got to be the best she can be as well. She believed that part of being the best we can be was being aware of how we best used our valuable resources.