If you engaged with the local chapter of the Sierra Club at any point in the last three years, you probably came across conservation manager Jess Dervin-Ackerman. Fiercely engaged, powerfully persuasive, and boundlessly energetic, Jess has been one of the chapter’s greatest assets. Jess seems to know everyone, and she earns the admiration and respect of everyone she meets.
In her three-year tenure here Jess has done an almost super-human amount of good. Here are just a few of her proudest accomplishments:
- Launching an incredible, diverse, multi-sector campaign against coal exports through Oakland which has garnered over 14,000 petition signatures and engaged 2,000 individuals
- Meaningfully engaging the Sierra Club in frontline fights against refineries and the Wes Pac oil terminal proposed in Pittsburg
- Growing the movement for Community Choice clean energy in the Bay Area — CleanPowerSF is just a few months away from launching and the East Bay Clean Power Alliance is moving full speed ahead with an Alameda County program scheduled to launch in 2017!
- Bringing recycling workers and environmental activists together to advocate for higher wages and more stringent zero waste policies, and expanding composting services to all Oakland residents
- Coming together with social justice organizations and labor unions to elect progressive champions to local, regional, and state offices
- Mentoring over 25 interns, many of whom have gone off to be involved in activism, politics, and furthering our causes through academia and research
Now Jess is, in her words, “taking a sabbatical to take care of myself so that I can continue to do this important work of fighting for climate justice for the long haul,” and “to have an incredible adventure with my partner who has supported me and my work at the Sierra Club.”
Jess has a message of thanks and a special appeal to “the inspiring community of activists” she has worked with at the Sierra Club:
“I’ve worked hard to advance environmental, social, and racial justice causes locally with the Bay Chapter and I would love nothing more than to see that good work continue in my absence.
Please consider making a gift in my honor to the Bay Chapter to support their grassroots campaigns to protect our air, land and water, advance a just transition to a clean energy economy, and encourage folks to get out and enjoy the beautiful natural places of the Bay Area. I will come back, and when I do I want to continue to work on climate issues. I believe it helps everyone involved to have the Sierra Club well-positioned and well-resourced to support and drive local fights for a better, more just, and more sustainable world.
Thank you to everyone for your support, encouragement, bravery, creativity and partnership over these 3 years. Probably my greatest personal accomplishment was creating so many amazing relationships with activists, organizers, elected officials, and many more folks that now engage with the Sierra Club and that I hope to work with for years to come.”
It’s been an honor to work with you, Jess. We will miss your energy, warmth, and passion. Enjoy your next adventure!