Green LA Coalition staff and consultants bring vision, expertise and a wealth of environmental and environmental justice experience to the city’s greening movement.

Stephanie Taylor
Stephanie Taylor, Interim Executive Director, has worked in community development for over 20 years as an advocate for livable cities and community empowerment. Her environmental advocacy began when she co-founded the Verde Coalition in 1999 which created the Los Angeles Neighborhood Land Trust. Stephanie worked as a policy advocate, community organizer and planner for several non-profit organizations in Los Angeles including: SCANPH, New Economics for Women, Coalition LA and Central City Neighborhood Partners (CCNP). While at CCNP she led a Community-Driven Transportation Plan for Westlake, which was awarded a 2008 American Planning Association National Planning Excellence Award.

Before her move to LA in 1997, Stephanie worked for the City of Boston’s Department of Neighborhood Development. She has a Master’s Degree in City Planning from Boston University.

Shalimar Zabanal
Shalimar grew up on a Hawaiian island, smack dab in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, surrounded by beautiful mountains and the cleanest water. Upon moving to “the big city” of Los Angeles, Shalimar realized how easy it had been to take Mother Earth for granted, and since then has personally pledged to protect Her.

As the Communications and Program Associate of Green LA Coalition, Shalimar’s daily responsibilities include communication and public awareness outreach to members via emails/newsletters/social networking, meeting/event planning, and other general office administrative tasks. Please contact Shalimar with any website questions and or concerns.

Shalimar received her bachelor’s degree in Communication Studies, with a minor in Asian Pacific American Studies, from Loyola Marymount University. If you’re lucky, you’ll bump into Shalimar as she walks around Venice (most likely hunting down food trucks).

Holly Harper, Architect
Holly Harper is Green LA’s Boyle Heights Living Streets Initiative Coordinator. Holly was trained as an architect locally, but really focused on the landscape of public space from early on. While still at SCI-Arc, she became intrigued by what makes this place a place- its native plants, the amounts and cycles of rainfall and patterns of air movement-and also with how the watercourses align with the railroads and other movement paths, or the best of them anyway…since they all follow the paths of least resistance. Re-inserting ecological function into the city, through infiltrating more run-off into the ground once again, rehabilitating plant communities and somehow tying these elements into the movement and perceptions of people became her obsession.

In her work with North East Trees, she had the opportunity to realize some of these ideas into projects such as the Oros Green Street, built with the City of LA’s Bureau of Street Services. With the Boyle Heights Living Streets Initiative, she looks forward to expanding on these types of water-quality enhancing projects to incorporate more benefits for more people. Los Angeles should be a paradise for those of us walking and bicycling, but we are not there yet!

Martha Matsuoka
Martha Matsuoka staffs Green LA’s Port Work Group. Matsuoka is an Assistant Professor at Occidental College (Class of ’83) where she focuses her teaching and research on issues such as metropolitan regionalism, sustainable community development, social movements, and environmental justice. Her first book, This Could Be the Start of Something Big: Regional Equity and America’s Metropolitan Future, co- authored with Manuel Pastor and Chris Benner, was published by Cornell University Press in 2009.

Martha has worked with a wide range of NGOs the Environmental Justice Fund, and the Earth Island Institute, and was a founding member of the National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum and the Asian Pacific Environmental Network. Prior to coming to Occidental, she taught at UCLA (where she was a Perloff and Switzer Fellow) and at UC Berkeley.