Diversity and Equity in our Parks

Black Lives Matter to Stewards

Dear fellow Stewards,

As we absorb both the horrors and hopes of the present moment, Stewards of the Coast and Redwoods stands in solidarity with Black Lives Matter. We are committed to confronting the systemic racism that has created unjust conditions in public spaces, including parks, where Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC) too often find themselves at personal risk just by being out of doors. And we must never lose sight of the fact that so many of our parks came into existence by stripping indigenous peoples of their connections to the land.

We recognize that we can no longer operate as we have in the past and that working toward racial justice must be integral to Stewards’ future in restoring and protecting our California State Parks. We are committed to creating and implementing a plan to improve our outreach efforts and park access in order to move closer to realizing Stewards’ vision of serving as ‘the link between people and their parks.’ And we look forward to engaging BIPOC in developing community-led approaches that create new models for park stewardship programs.

Stewards commits to serving as an advocate for equity of access and inclusion in our parks. We will join with the California State Parks Foundation, California’s Natural Resources Agency, and our State Park partners to advance policies that promote access and keep our parks safe and welcoming for BIPOC and marginalized communities.

We also commit to staying in touch with you as we continue to listen and to learn, keeping you informed of our efforts and welcoming your input as we move ahead to support BIPOC at this critical juncture in the history of our country and of our public lands. Stewards is grateful for your ongoing support during this time when safety and health have become irrevocably intertwined in confronting the multiple pandemics affecting us individually and as a nation.

Stewards of the Coast and Redwoods


Diversity and Equity Vision

Our vision is to foster a welcoming environment in our programs that reflects and celebrates the diversity of our community by upholding values that promote the understanding of the intersectionality of access and history of parks. That is, to practice cultural mindfulness in all interactions, to strive for more opportunities for BIPOC, people with disabilities, and LGBTQIA+ youth and adults to gain access to programs and the outdoors, and to strive for BIPOC representation within leadership and instructor roles.

 DEI Committee Updates 

  • A new DEI Stakeholder Committee (50% BIPOC) has been formed to advise Stewards on our journey of learning and working towards systemwide organizational change that involves both Stewards and our partner California State Parks.  
  • All staff and many board members are enrolled in a 7-week online DEI Certification program through the University of Southern Florida. 
  • We are working on replacing all burned signage in our parks with signs in English and Spanish.
  • We are funded by Hydro Flask's Parks for All program and Parks California to welcome the Sonoma County Youth Ecology Crops, a diverse group of young adults, to work with us on fire recovery and climate resilience projects in our parks this summer and fall. 
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