Peak & Prairie

Rocky Mountain Chapter's
Online Newsletter
February / March 1998



Volunteer Opportunities Abound!
by Michael C. Gizzi, Grassroots Editor

I would like to take a moment to introduce myself as the new Grassroots editor for Peak and Prairie. My name is Michael Gizzi and I am a political science professor at Mesa State College in Grand Junction. I am an active member of the Uncompaghre Group. Recently, I decided that I wanted to become more involved with the Club, so when I read in the December issue that there was a need for Peak and Prairie editors, I decided to help out. As the new Grassroots editor, I want to let you know about some exciting developments for this section of the newsletter. Beginning with the April/May issue, Grassroots will be expanding to include reports on grassroots activism occurring statewide in the many groups and chapter committees, in addition to volunteer opportunities. Look for these changes in April.

There are always a wide range of grassroots volunteer opportunities for members of the Rocky Mountain Chapter. As a member organization, we rely on YOU our loyal members to help accomplish the goals of the chapter. It is what being a member of the club is about. No matter how much time you have to spare, the Club can certainly use your help. It is people like you who care about the environment that are the heart and soul of this Club. As a volunteer myself, I get a great sense of satisfaction out of helping the Club as best I can.

There are currently a few areas where there is a pressing need for assistance. In particular, the annual retreat coordinator, Melanie Guerra, (303) 715-1838, can use lots of assistance with the retreat including retreat meals coordinator and retreat workshop coordinator.

Several committee chair positions are also currently vacant. These include the elections chair, group vitality chair, and agriculture chair. If you think you could help in one of these positions, call the chapter office at (303) 861-8819 or mail in the coupon.

A few other groups also need help. The Hazardous Waste Committee has recently been reformed, and is looking for volunteers. Gay and Lesbian Sierrans are also looking for some help with their newsletter, outing leaders, and outreach. If you think you can help, fill out the coupon or call the chapter office.

We now have a new volunteer coordinator. Diane Neumann, (303) 904-9700, email, will coordinate giving volunteer leaders lists of names of people interested in their activities. She will organize the Club's volunteer opportunities, and she will make sure that your interest in helping out gets to the right person when you mail in the volunteer coupon!



Inner City Outings
Volunteer trip leaders needed. ICO takes disadvantaged youth from the city into the wilderness and provides some environmental education. Some of these kids may grow up to be conservationists. ICO also needs someone to lay out a one-page newsletter for the kids four times a year. Call Kathryn Sharpe at (303) 512-89331 or Kurt Aronow at (303) 661-9307.

Toxics & Forest Volunteers
The chapter conservation committee needs people with a strong and enduring interest in toxic substances and National Forest management issues to be resource persons and/or participate on a volunteer committee. Toxics and National Forest issues have become particularly complex, but they also have aspects that any lay person can appreciate. For example, everyone understands that living downwind from a chemical plant may pose a health hazard, and most people resonate, from a purely esthetic point of view, with the values of a healthy forest.

A committee person should have some grasp of the complexities of the issue area and a strong desire to learn more, but an equal or greater desire to educate the Club membership and the public and help empower people to influence government or private decisions. To discuss either position, contact Chapter Conservation Chair Kirk Cunningham at (303) 939-8519 or at

Wildlife Committee
If animals are your thing, consider working with Sierra Club's wildlife committee. There are a wide variety of wildlife issues around the state that would benefit from your involvement. Just fill out the coupon at the end of this section or call Karen Wharton at (303) 642-3117.

Population Partisans
One area of our planet that is not overpopulated is the population committee. A big part of what they do is public education. Whatever your cause, it's a lost cause without population control. To find out how you can help, mail in the coupon at the end of this section or call Fred Elbel at (303) 220-7499.

Outings Organizers
If you love hikes, socializing and organizing, please consider working with the outings program. You can organize hikes on the local or state level, from simple afternoon hikes around town to lengthy overnights out-of-state. We especially need help at the state level. If you are interested in learning more, just fill out the coupon or call Diane Neumann (303) 904-9700, email

Colorado Wilderness
There are no shortage of opportunities to help the wilderness areas close to home. There are always areas under consideration for wilderness. In addition, every wilderness area must be managed to maintain its wilderness characteristics. Just fill out the coupon and call either co-chair of the wilderness committee Jean Smith (303) 388-3378 or Mark Pearson (970) 259-6181.

Computer Compatriots
The computer committee needs help refurbishing and lending its many donated computers (obsolescent but not obsolete). To help, just fill out the coupon or call Diane Neumann (303) 904-9700, email

Legal Eagles
If you read the paper or listen to the news, you probably know that the Sierra Club frequently uses the legal system to protect the environment. No matter what part of the state you are in, if you have any legal skills, you can help out. Whether you're an attorney, a typist, a court reporter or an activist with special knowledge about a legal-environmental issue, we can use your help. To get involved in this essential area, just mail in the coupon, or to find out more contact Shari Ulery (303) 221-4240.

Open Space Organizers
The new urban parks and open space committee has plenty of space for new volunteers. We are working on the City of Denver's plans for a new park just east of Stapleton Airport. The park was created by a legal settlement initiated by other Sierra Club volunteers. To get involved, just clip out the coupon or give a call to Bob Bers at (303) 369-3981.

Energy Activists
The chapter energy committee seeks volunteers. The committee focuses on energy conservation, alternative sources of energy and the environmental impact of energy, including electricity production, home and business use and transportation. To get involved, call Linda Berti, our Energy Chair at (303) 220-7499 or fill out the coupon.

Farm Fanatics
The agriculture committee has a wide range of concerns and needs a wide range of volunteers. Everyone from farmers to consumers are invited to participate. Members from the Poudre Canyon Group are especially needed! You don't have to know about every issue or participate in every event. To find out more, fill out the coupon or call John Wade at (303) 762-0537.

Backdrop Boosters
The Front Range Mountain Backdrop Project is a five-county cooperative effort to identify critical parcels of land along the Front Range foothills for future open space preservation. Volunteer action groups are forming in Boulder, Larimer, Jefferson, El Paso and Douglas counties. You can become involved in preserving our metropolitan vistas by filling out the coupon or call Sherri Valentine at (303) 670-4883.

Mining Monitors
The mining committee focuses on new mining proposals, proposed changes in state regulations by the Mined Land Reclamation Board, pollution from existing and abandoned mines and federal mining law reform. We need volunteers from around the state to watchdog mines for compliance with federal and state laws and to visit BLM and Forest Service offices to get information on new mining proposals. Volunteers will also help spearhead efforts to reform the federal Mining Law of 1872 by educating activists on the status of reform legislation. Just use the clip-out coupon or call Jeff Berman (303) 546-6523.

Pesticide Pessimists
The pesticides committee provides information and assistance in dealing with the unintended toxic consequences of the "battle of the bugs." To become involved with the committee's work, talk with our Pesticide Chair Angela Medbery at (303) 433-2608 or mail in the coupon.

Lifestyle Committee
The lifestyle / education committee focuses on the individual's ability to create lifestyle changes that support a sustainable and environmentally sound future. The committee is working hard to show people how easy it is to make changes that benefit the health of the planet. To learn more about how you can become involved with the committee's work, or to find out more about the next meeting call committee Chair Jan Oen at (303) 320-4895 or fill out the coupon.

Party Animals
Just before you receive each issue of Peak & Prairie, a rowdy bunch of trusty volunteers gets together and has a party--a mailing party. This is where all 12,000 Peak & Prairies are labeled, sorted, bundled and prepared for the post office. It's a great way to meet new people, have fun and do your part for Colorado's environment. Fill out the coupon below or call Angela Medbery at (303) 433-2608.

Office Aides
If you prefer to volunteer during the day, the Sierra Club chapter office in Denver can use you. The office is open from 8 to 4 and has an incredible variety of opportunities from which to choose. Managing the phones, computer tasks, membership and volunteer coordination are just a few. There's a lot of work involved in keeping 14,000 members happy, and new volunteers are always needed. Call our office during weekday business hours (303) 861-8819 to talk with Mary about the opportunities there.

Newsletter Mania
Getting Peak & Prairie out to all our members is quite an accomplishment. It's actually a multitude of various tasks, from writing articles to loading pickup trucks. Peak & Prairie is a great place to volunteer. There are plenty of opportunities to use your skills (or learn new ones). Best of all, most tasks require just a couple of hours every two months. Call Fran Baxter at (303) 238-8817 or fill out the coupon.

Photo Fanatics
If you are ever on a Sierra Club hike (past, present or future) or participate in trail maintenance or even an interesting public meeting or a group or committee meeting and have pictures (black & white or color), please let us use them in Peak & Prairie. Just send them to the Sierra Club office,
1410 Grant Street #B-205, Denver, CO 80203, Attn: Photo Editor. Please include a description of the hike or event, photo, participants and date, as well as instructions about returning the photo.

Water Resources Committee
The chapter water resources committee deals with local, state and regional water resource issues. To volunteer, fill out the coupon below or contact Steve Glazer at P.O. Box 459, Crested Butte, CO 81224; phone: (970) 349-6646, when in Denver: (303) 757-2303; or email




No matter how much time or experience you have, you can make a difference to the future of Mother Earth. Start by filling out and mailing in this coupon. Another volunteer will contact you about how you can help out according to your schedule and interests.

___Peak & Prairie editor, layout or calendar editor (circle one)
___Toxics Issues ___ National Forest Issues
___Colorado Wilderness ___Wildlife Committee
___Population Committee ___Open Space Volunteers
___Backdrop Boosters ___Pesticide Committee
___Volunteer Coordinator ___Water Resources Committee
___Peak & Prairie staff ___Office Help
___Mailing Parties ___Mining Committee
___Legal Aid ___Inner City Outings
___Lifestyle Committee ___Energy Activists
___Agriculture Committee ___Photo Fanatics
___Computer Committee ___Outing Organizers
___ Hazardous Waste ___ Gay and Lesbian Sierrans




Phone: _____________________(home) __________________(work)

E-mail address _______________________________

Mail to: It's Easy to be Green Sierra Club
1410 Grant Street #B-205, Denver, CO 80203