Executive Committee

Peter A. Andersen
Peter A. AndersenChair, Executive Committee
Peter A. Andersen (PhD, Florida State University, 1975) is professor emeritus in the School of Communication at San Diego State University. He has been a member of the Sierra Club for over 40 years. In the 1990’s he served three terms as chair of the San Diego Chapter Political Committee. In the late 1990’s and early 2000’s he served two terms on the San Diego Chapter Executive Committee.

He was the head of the committee and lead plaintiff in the fight against the Jackson Drive extension that would have bisected Mission Trails Park. He successfully stopped the Jamul Quarry in California, prevented the flooding of Canaan Valley in West Virginia, and led the fight to preserve the Volo Bog in Illinois. In this time of political turmoil it is more important than ever that activists resists the destruction of the local and global environment. He is willing to serve to restore this wonderful chapter to full status and facilitate the important work we need to do.

George Courser
George CourserExecutive Committee Member
George Courser is a 4th generation San Diegan, with his children and grand-kids living in the County. His 45-year working career was in the supermarket industry, employed by Safeway and Ralphs in all capacities from clerks’ helper to Store Director in both chains. George currently serves as the Chair of the Chapter’s Conservation Committee.

Over the years George has been involved in major projects in the Southland including the recently resolved Gregory Canyon Landfill, the Sunrise Powerlink, ballot Measures A & B and innumerable smaller projects. His preference is assist residents who are facing major general plan amendments to be successful in protecting their homes and communities.

His career brought him familiarity with all of Southern California and an appreciation of our natural resources and amazing biological diversity. His interests and activism were spurred by San Diego County’s failure to exert the California Environmental Quality Act standards or regulatory control over several projects in the North County.

Krista Davidson
Krista DavidsonExecutive Committee Member
Krista is a second-generation San Diegan and grew up hiking and camping throughout California, which sparked a lifelong appreciation for the environment and drive to protect it for future generations. She studied Environmental Studies with a Law & Public Policy focus at the University of Southern California and interned with the Sierra Club’s Responsible Trade division in Washington D.C. While in school, she was a founding member of the school’s Campus Climate Challenge and worked with the University’s leadership to replace their fleet with hybrid vehicles and author its Baseline Sustainability Report.

She has a Master’s in Public Administration and a certificate in Public Policy, and currently works as a public finance project manager. She serves on the chapter’s Political Committee and volunteers for Inspiring Connections Outdoors. In her free time, she loves to garden, grill, and hike with her dogs and husband.

Brian Elliott
Brian ElliottExecutive Committee Member
Growing up in the Pacific Northwest laid the foundation for Brian’s two passions in life, protecting nature and spending as much time outdoors as possible. To be a successful advocate, Brian recognized early on the critical role science must play in decision-making. This led him to study biology, chemistry and political science at the University of Portland. The thrill of Washington, DC brought him out to the East Coast and eventually up to Philadelphia where he received a Masters in Environmental Policy from the University of Pennsylvania.

Since arriving in San Diego, Brian has been an active member with Sierra Club and the greater environmental community as a volunteer and professionally, focusing on energy, water and climate policy matters.

Brian and his wife Sheila, a biomedical researcher, are avid trail runners that spend their weekends exploring everywhere from the desert floor to top of Cuyamaca Peak.

Doug Grover
Doug GroverExecutive Committee Member, North County Group
David Hogan
David HoganExecutive Committee Member
Amanda Mascia
Amanda MasciaExecutive Committee Member
Born and raised in rural Pennsylvania on the shores of Tamarack Lake, Amanda (Curry) Mascia has known from childhood that her happiest days are spent in nature. Her upbringing has cemented her belief that we as a society, need nature. Amanda knows that we can’t simply sit back and love nature- because our natural world is under unprecedented attack. It is Amanda’s belief that protecting our natural environment is our greatest duty and our highest calling.

With a BA in Communications from Penn State University, Amanda is an experienced marketing and communications professional who has worked in some of the biggest and brightest advertising agencies as an Account Manager. Amanda has also worked on small start-ups, various political campaigns, and she has an Emmy Award for her healthy kids’ cooking show, The Good Food Factory.

Amanda also thrives as a grassroots community organizer who has worked on several successful campaigns and environmental issues in San Diego and elsewhere.

Amanda is a joyful and unifying communicator with a can-do attitude, boundless enthusiasm, and a lifelong passion for environmental activism.

Amanda can be found hiking in her backyard, surfing North County, camping in the Eastern Sierra, and working to get things done at various political and environmental meetings around San Diego. Amanda would love to work with YOU on environmental issues that you and your community care about.

Sally Prendergast
Sally PrendergastExecutive Committee Member, North County Coastal Group
Fred Rogers
Fred RogersExecutive Committee Member
A native San Diegan, Fred is a graduate of UCSD with degrees in both Political Science and History. Since graduating from college he has worked for several technology companies as a Technical Writer and Technical Documentation Specialist for the past 17 years.

Fred has been active with the county Democratic Party for over the past 12 years and has held various Executive Board positions including serving as Vice Chair of the party from 2009 to 2012. Currently he is serving his fourth term as the elected
representative for the 78th Assembly District to the Executive Board of the California Democratic Party. He is the cofounder of the San Diego County Democrats for Environmental Action which is the only Democratic Club in Southern California dedicated to advancing environmental issues.

An active Sierra Club member since 2002, Fred has been serving on the Political
Committee for the chapter since 2013. He is a strong believer in building strong
coalitions among like-minded allies in achieving environmental goals. He welcomes the current challenges the chapter is facing at this time, and looks forward assisting the chapter during this critical time.

Staff

Richard Miller
Richard MillerChapter Director
Mr. Miller has been an employee of the San Diego Chapter since 2009 when he became the Development and Communications Coordinator developing and implementing the Chapter fundraising programs. He holds Certificates in Fund Raising for Small Nonprofits and Fund Raising Management from The Fund Raising School at The Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University. In 2017 Mr Miller advanced to Development Associate and in May 2018 aws appointed Chapter Director. Mr. Miller is often the first point of contact for the Chapter, responsible for Chapter administration, programing,membership relations and office administration.

Mr. Miller’s previous volunteer experience includes service on the Executive Committee’s for Sierra Club San Diego and Sierra Club California where he served as Chair for both organizations. Mr. Miller has also served on National Sierra Club committees, including as Chair of the National Nominating Committee for the Sierra Club Board of Directors.

Martha 'Marty' Marquez
Martha 'Marty' MarquezAdministrative Assistant
A new hire in December 2017 and a San Diego native, Marty has an extensive background as an administrative assistant in various fields, most recently as a property manager. She earned her bachelor’s degree in Accounting from National University 2013 online program while working full time. She also maintains a small business doing billing, taxes, and is a notary.

In the past 3 years, she began hiking well known trails in San Diego, followed by the Grand Canyon and Yosemite for the first time, it was love at first sight. This past President weekend 2018, she visited Sedona for the first time and did a couple of hikes with friends. Her only regret is that hiking was never introduced to her as a kid.

She has traveled to Machu Piccho in 2015, France 2001, South Africa 2001 for pleasure, and to Guadalajara, Mexico for family. Pacific Beach has been her home for the past 11 years and it is where the bay, beach, community, and outdoor activities thrive in this beautiful vacation destination. Her travels and home inspire her to do more to protect the beauty, people, and animals from any threat harmful to our wellbeing. With the current White House administration, destiny was calling when she heard and applied for the position, leading her on the path of activism.

Kyle Rentschler
Kyle RentschlerCommunity Organizer
Kyle Rentschler joins Sierra Club San Diego after extensive volunteering at several conservation and wildlife rehabilitation non-profits including Climate Action Campaign, the Audubon Society, the San Diego Zoo, and three wildlife rehabilitation centers. After earning his doctorate working on ethics and virtual realities at New York University, he is excited to return to the natural world and take his volunteering to the next level.

As the Conservation Organizer, Kyle will be primarily working on SANDAC (San Diego Activist Citizens), a targeted volunteer campaign advocating for increased public transit investment at SANDAG.

Steering Committee Goals

The Sierra Club Board of Directors on February 21, 2014 established the following goals for the Sierra Club San Diego Steering Committee and other Club leaders working with members of the Chapter:

  1. Rebuild Sierra Club functions in San Diego and Imperial counties and transition to a well-functioning, effective member-elected San Diego Chapter volunteer leadership. This will include establishing new group norms to build trust among volunteer leaders, maintaining intellectual honesty and respectful dialogue, addressing disagreements constructively, and establishing a governance structure that engages people in work that advances the Club’s mission.
  1. Provide support to improve Chapter volunteer leadership and management capacity to engage in addressing potential problems before they evolve into conflicts and constructively resolve disagreements.
  1. Build the capacity of the San Diego groups, sections and committees to engage members and supporters in meaningful ways to advance Club goals.
  1. Build a mutually beneficial relationship with the national Sierra Club.
  1. Maintain the core functions of the Chapter: advancing the Club’s mission (conservation, litigation, and political), providing service to members, supporters and the public, building local resources, and complying with policies and standards.
  1. Ensure compliance with applicable Club policies and requirements.

Chapter Chairs Over the Years

  • Ivy Foster 1948-1949
  • Jerry Zagorites 1950-1951
  • Lucius W. “Skip” Johnson 1952-1953
  • Virginia Gilloon 1954
  • Glen Conklin 1955
  • Welton Grosdidier 1956
  • Lucille Peterson 1957-1958
  • Bill Thomas 1959
  • Aubrey Wendling 1960-1961
  • Gilbert Parker 1962
  • Harriet Allen 1963
  • Carl Swedelius 1964
  • Howard Allen 1965-1966
  • Nicholas Keough 1967
  • William Phillips, jr 1968
  • Carl Swedelius (repeat) 1969
  • Dick Rypinski 1970
  • Fred Axe 1971-1972
  • Peter Nelson 1973-1974
  • Susan Turnbach 1975
  • Jim Harrison 1976
  • Cam Murray 1977
  • Elizabeth Meyer 1978-1979
  • Lyndelle Fairlie 1980
  • Walter Konopka 1981
  • Bob Hartman 1982-1983
  • Emily Durbin 1984-1985
  • Ruth Duemler 1986
  • Linda Michael 1987
  • Geoffrey Smith 1988-1989
  • Rob Langsdorf 1989-1991
  • Julie Hocking 1991-1992
  • Rosemary Leigh 1993
  • Barry Hite 1994-1995
  • Lori Saldana 1996-1997
  • Larry Klaasen 1997
  • Carolyn Chase 1998
  • Eric Bowlby 1999-2000
  • Brad Buffett 2000
  • Ellen Shively 2001-2002
  • Richard Miller 2003-2005
  • Joe Zechman 2006-2007
  • Richard Miller (repeat) 2008-2009
  • Joe Zechman (repeat) 2009
  • Carolyn Chase (repeat) 2010-2011
  • John Stump 2012
  • Lori Saldaña (repeat) 2013
  • Kara Liederman 2013
  • Dave Grubb 2014
  • Debbie Hecht 2014-2015
  • Davin Widgerow 2016
  • Ruben Arizmendi 2016-Present