Inspiring, educating, and connecting leaders to create a model of sustainable community.


A world that is environmentally sustainable, socially equitable, and economically prosperous.

How we achieve our mission

  • We research, provide education about, and promote the implementation of sustainable policies and practices.
  • Our Leadership for a Sustainable Future program provides community members with the knowledge and skills needed to implement these policies and practices successfully.
  • We encourage our network of fellows – graduates of our leadership program – to conduct and disseminate policy research that advances ideas and policy solutions consistent with our vision.
  • Our leadership program informs and furthers these research projects, and the Institute engages professional policy researchers/experts to help review and direct research as appropriate and needed.

Our geographic scope is the North Bay region, with most of our current work occurring in Sonoma County. We provide inspiration and support to local business, environmental, labor, and other NGO leaders; policy makers; and other members of the community interested in making a difference.

We are unique in that we are the only local organization offering our network of Fellows and community members the research and education that promote environmental sustainability, social equity, and economic prosperity. We distinguish our leadership training from other programs by offering applied leadership skills training combined with education on the latest in sustainable policies and practices.

We fund our activities primarily through individual donations; grants from local and regional foundations; sponsorships from local businesses; and purchase of our research reports. The balance of our funding is earned income from educational program fees. We endeavor to be leaders in developing creative and sustainable funding sources.

Our Values

  • Equity – We believe that all in our community hold resources and knowledge that are valuable and meaningful to shape our future. All people in our community should have the opportunity to thrive.
  • Environment – We believe that the North Bay region is home to a rich and beautiful environment, which must be protected and celebrated.
  • Economy – We believe that a local economy that supports and favors local business, agriculture, workers, and commerce is necessary for a prosperous community.
  • Sustainability – We recognize that there is an inherent tension among competing priorities and resources that must be managed to ensure the long-term viability and health of our community.
  • Partnership & Collaboration – We value and recognize the importance of partnerships and collaboration, which are necessary to achieve our vision of a more sustainable, equitable, and economically prosperous community.
  • Policy Research – We recognize the need for practical research that reveals the benefits of sustainable policies and supports action to implement them locally.
  • Action – We recognize the fundamental necessity of education and action to achieve our vision of a more sustainable, equitable, and prosperous community.