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Planet Main
In This Section
PDF July/August 2006
e-mail June 30, 2006
e-mail April 28, 2006


Sewage 101
States Take Lead on Mercury, Global Warming
I Want My MPG
Postcard from Puerto Rico
The Birdman of Baghdad
Advocate for Safe Weapons Disposal Honored
Stop I-3
Family Planning Key to Sustainable Future
Sierra Club Insider
Who We Are
Ken Smokoska
Larry and Vicki Patton
Claudia Hilligoss


Moral Challenge, Tough Choices
Offshore Drilling Moratorium Threatened
Cool Cities Guide
Saving the Au Sable
Native Peoples, Club Unite
Sierra Club Insider
Who We Are
Tom Libby
Marty Peale
Yochi Zakai
Search for a Story
Back Issues

The Planet

Quick Six, Spreading the Word, and a Fond Farewell

"6 in 2006": ?Before last November, says South Carolina Chapter Membership Chair Erika Hartwig (pictured at right above, with Patti Carson, Erica Langenbahn, and Lori Castille), no formal membership committee had met in five years. But when the former chapter activist returned from Washington, D.C., to her native Columbia to attend graduate school last fall, she was quickly recruited as membership chair. “I’d heard about Sierra Club & Beer in Atlanta,” she says, “so I decided to duplicate that in Columbia.” At the first event she recruited two people to her committee; at the next, she added four more. The committee has set a goal of doubling chapter membership this year, establishing a “6 in 2006” campaign asking every member to recruit six new members. A link on the chapter Web site makes signing up for the campaign easy. Plus, each chapter leader has been tasked with recruiting 26 new members in 2006. “Most have already reached half their goal,” Hartwig enthuses.

The second phase of the campaign was to update the chapter Web site and create a “membership corner” for current and potential members to learn more about the chapter. “We’re making it a priority to attract younger and more diverse members,” Hartwig says. The reinvigorated committee has tabled at boat races, a St. Patrick’s Day celebration, a sportsmen’s exposition, a book festival, and numerous events at the University of South Carolina. They’ve also organized a Sierra Singles event, a whitewater rafting trip, wine tastings, “naturalist” hikes, and public education events. Hartwig says the efforts have paid off with a substantial boost in new members.

Earth Day Sampler: In Bellevue, Washington, Club activists went door-to-door offering incentives to use compact fluorescent bulbs (the “1,000 Light Bulb Challenge”) and asking residents to sign a postcard asking the mayor to make Bellevue a Cool City. In New York City, Club members gathered with clergy from various faiths at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine for a Greening the Religious Community event, where they collected signed postcards thanking Mayor Bloomberg for joining Cool Cities and urging him to take action. In Washington, D.C., more than 100 Club volunteers turned out for an Anacostia River cleanup at three sites in the District and Maryland. In Baton Rouge, the Environmental Conservation Organization at Louisiana State University celebrated an Alternative Earth Day (pictured here) with a Frisbee tournament and live music; Club activists joined student leaders in gathering petitions for Bus Rapid Transit and cypress forest protection. In Winston-Salem, North Carolina, Foothill Group activists celebrated the fruits of their lobbying when the city council ditched a plan to buy 25 conventional pickup trucks and 15 sedans and instead announced they would purchase three hybrid vehicles, adopt a fuel-efficiency policy, and put on hold any further sedan purchases.

In Memoriam: Maxine McCloskey: ?Maxine McCloskey, wife of former Club Executive Director Michael McCloskey, died on April 14. She was 78. Born in Portland, Oregon, McCloskey became an internationally recognized environmental champion. Widowed just a year after obtaining a Master of Arts from Reed College in 1963, she established the Clyde R. Johnson Award for Excellence in Chemistry at Portland State University. Following her marriage to Mike McCloskey, she taught political science and U.S. history at Merritt College in Oakland, California.

An early environmental advocate, primarily for whales, wildlife, and their habitats, she established the Whale Center in Oakland in the 1970s, helped pass the 1982 moratorium on commercial whaling as a U.S. delegate to the International Whaling Commission, and was instrumental in designating the Point Reyes/Farallones National Marine Sanctuary off the coast of San Francisco. Active in planning Sierra Club Wilderness Conferences and the centennial celebration in 1992, she also promoted the organization’s oral history program. In 1995 she was awarded the William E. Colby Award, the highest award for service to the Club.

Tom Valtin



South Carolina members photo by Aaron Myers; Louisiana photo of student holding Earth by Jeff Dubinsky

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