Viable Solutions

Infrastructure for the 21st century

21st Century Infrastructure logoI'm delighted to welcome you to my corner of the TreePeople universe and site. It's been thirty-eight years since I started this "project" we now call TreePeople. I'm boggled how it's grown up, and amazed and grateful for the continued outpouring of support and partnership from individuals, businesses, agencies and non-profits that has fueled our achievements.

TreePeople started by planting smog-resistant seedlings in local forests. We wanted to help our forests recover from air pollution from the city and from devastating fires. But after several years of planting, we realized our work was essentially putting band-aids on damage that started in the city. To really heal the forests, we needed people in the city to care more deeply. To do that, we engaged them in planting trees in their neighborhoods.

After decades of this work, people know us as tree planters. So they often are surprised and sometimes disturbed to learn that TreePeople has gone very deeply into water and infrastructure issues. Sometimes they even say we have the wrong name! I respectfully disagree.

But it's a fair question. Why have we made this leap into infrastructure?



People often ask me: Where do you get your energy and optimism?

Dreaming our way towards a better future

Dreamers in Dream City At the Autry National Center for the American West, a current exhibit features photographs from a just-published book, Dreamers in Dream City, by Harry Brant Chandler. I am one of the featured "dreamers" of Los Angeles in the book and exhibit, included for my work as an activist in transforming our city.

It's a great honor, but much more importantly, it's a reminder that L.A is a city is built on dreams.  But not just ones from the past. We can and are remaking this city today.

It's easy to think that we're all going to hell in a hand-basket, but I believe it is through dreaming -- conscious and shared dreaming -- that we can find our way forward.  

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