CEO/executive director Sigrid Wright and Santa Barbara City College Foundation CEO and event auctioneer Geoff Green.

Gail Arnold

CEO/executive director Sigrid Wright and Santa Barbara City College Foundation CEO and event auctioneer Geoff Green.

Community Environmental Council Celebrates with Green Gala

Guests Enjoy Merry Evening at The Lark and Learn About CEC’s Work

On Friday, September 30, more than 250 supporters of the Community Environmental Council (CEC) celebrated at its Green Gala at The Lark. For this “eco-chic” event, the parking lot was brilliantly transformed into a “Green and Beautiful” party venue. Illuminated by a multitude of small lights crisscrossing overhead, the area was accented with moss and other greenery and fun hanging tissue paper bowls. Lovely young girls adorned in white dresses, green eye shadow, and green corsages and crowns greeted guests, while servers offered green Moscow mules and farm-fresh, decadent hors-d’oeuvres. Green paper mustaches on wooden sticks afforded cool photo-ops.

Emcees KEYT’s John Palminteri and 103.3 The Vibe’s Spencer Fischer set the tone for this celebratory evening with their enthusiastic spirit and witty dialogue. Event chair Laura McGlothlin and honorary chair Neil Dipaola warmly welcomed the supporters. Board president Laura Capps and CEO/executive director Sigrid Wright highlighted some of CEC’s important work going back to the 1970s, when the CEC lead the charge here questioning disposable, one-time use products and building the first recycling centers. Recognizing the danger posed by throwing hazardous waste in the trash, CEC sited and ran the first household hazardous waste collection facility in the state.

Geoff Green rallied the crowd for a live auction and paddle raise by reminding the supporters of CEC’s critically important work. The three-course menu, featuring Central Coast Jidori chicken and toasted farro and quinoa tabbouleh, reflected CEC’s Eat Local Initiative and The Lark’s commitment to locally-sourced food. In keeping with CEC’s ethic, 90% of waste from the event was diverted through recycling, reuse or composting.

CEC believes that climate change in the moral issue of our time, and is thus focused on creating systemic change in energy, transportation and food systems. It’s five initiatives for a cleaner, healthier future are: Drive Less, Go Solar, Eat Local, Ditch Plastic, and Choose Electric. It is in the forefront in Santa Barbara on all of these matters.

For more information about CEC, go to

By Gail Arnold

CEC Board and CEO/Executive director (L to R): board president Laura Burton Capps, Jeff Carmody, Catherine Brozowski, Karl Hutterer, CEO/executive director Sigrid Wright, Jordan benShea, Adam Green, Meg West, John Steed, and Chris Hahn.

By Gail Arnold

Board president Laura Burton Capps and CEO/executive director Sigrid Wright.

By Gail Arnold

KEYT’s John Palminteri gets into the “Green Gala” spirit.

By Gail Arnold

Event honorary chair Neil Dipaola and event chair Laura McGlothlin.

By Gail Arnold

State Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson and County Supervisor candidate Joan Hartmann.

By Gail Arnold

Guests enjoy the reception before dinner.

By Gail Arnold

Event volunteers Jen-li Barry, Charli Hunter, Haley Carrere, and Maile Congdon.

By Gail Arnold

CEO/executive director Sigrid Wright and Santa Barbara City College Foundation CEO and event auctioneer Geoff Green.

By Gail Arnold

Emcees 103.3 The Vibe’s Spencer Fischer and KEYT’s John Palminteri.

By Gail Arnold

Guests enjoy the program.

By Gail Arnold

Gloria and John McManus, County Supervisor and U.S Congressional candidate Salud Carbajal, and Santa Barbara City College Foundation CEO and event auctioneer Geoff Green.

By Gail Arnold

Board members Karl Hutterer, Meg West, and John Steed.

By Gail Arnold

Board and staff members introduce short videos.

To submit a comment on this article, email or visit our Facebook page. To submit information to a reporter, email

Be succinct, constructive, and relevant to the story. Leaving a comment means you agree to our Discussion Guidelines. We like civilized discourse. We don't like spam, lying, profanity, harassment or personal attacks.

comments powered by Disqus
event calendar sponsored by:

Santa Barbara County Search and Rescue Returns from Camp Fire

Volunteer team looked for human remains in Paradise.

N-Word Gets SBCC Staffer Placed on Leave

Students contend racial tension common on campus.

City of Santa Barbara Hires New Fire Chief

Eric Nickel comes from Palo Alto and has big shoes to fill.

Santa Barbara Bus Agency Sets Early Zero-Emission Goal

Joins six other California transit groups to be greenhouse-gas free by 2030.

Utility Giant Sued over Woolsey Fire

SoCal Edison faces lawsuits from fire victims and investors.