Board of Directors
Amy Rosenstein, President
Amy became interested in the environment of Ballona Creek after frequent bicycle rides along the bike path to the beach. Although it’s a functioning flood channel, she wondered why the experience could not be more pleasant, as in some other communities. She has a strong interest in bringing nature back to the Creek. She believes that if everyone pitches in a little, a lot can get done. Amy is a practicing architect who has lived in Culver City for over 15 years, thus continuing BCR’s tradition of having architects as presidents.
Sandrine Cassidy Schmitt, Vice President
Sandrine Cassidy Schmitt is a Sustainability Specialist working directly with cities, businesses, non-profits and schools to create and implement programs in waste reduction, recycling maximization, energy and water conservation, pollution control and green purchasing.
Sandrine’s philosophy has always been to help bring positive change in very concrete ways. She created a sustainable reusable bag company and advocated for the plastic bag ban in Los Angeles County. She is an active board member of Ballona Creek Renaissance, responsible for the regular creek clean up events and community outreach.
Helping improve our functional relationship with our environment is not just a professional mission for Sandrine, it is a personal passion.
Deborah Gregory, Secretary
Deborah Gregory grew up with a creek in her back yard and now lives on the Sepulveda Channel, which feeds into the Ballona Creek. She has many fond memories of hours spent enjoying the water and is proud to be a part of BCR to help spread the word about this great natural resource right in the middle of our large metropolis.
Deborah is the Director of Design and partner at DIGBAR, an Interior Design and Architecture firm in Del Rey, which incorporates art and sustainability into its projects.
Rich Hibbs, Treasurer
Rich has been a Certified Public Accountant since 1987, past chair of the Culver City Chamber of Commerce, currently involved in numerous non profit boards. Voted Culver City’s Best Accountant by the Culver City News readers poll in 2009, and again in 2010. Avid coach and referee for AYSO Region 19 (Culver City/Mar Vista/Palms). Proud parent of two children in the Culver City School District (son in El Marino and daughter at the Culver City High School). As a board member of the Ballona Lagoon Marine Preserve, Rich was involved in the development of the walking path and interpretative signage at the Lagoon, which was featured in an article in our April 2010 newsletter. His website is www.RichHibbsCPA.com
Bobbi Gold, Board Member
Bobbi is one of the founding members of BCR, dating back to a meeting in December, 1994. She has been a boardmember ever since, serving in various capacities. She comes from a background of computer programming in the aerospace industry and later in commercial computer applications. Her involvement in Ballona Creek arises from her enjoyment of running and riding her bike along the creek.
Lucy Blake-Elahi, Arts Committee Chair
Lucy Blake-Elahi is a visual artist. She paints and draws, and has done public art pieces in Culver City. Her work includes the equatorial sundial in Culver City Park and two murals along Ballona Creek. She is also an artist-in-residence of the County of Los Angeles.
A long-time resident of Culver City, Irene taught in the Los Angeles Unified School District for more than 30 years. She is a member of several environmental groups and is dedicated to safeguarding our environment.
Chair, former Culver City Arts Committee; Blair Hills Association Board member (founding member); Artist and art patron; Member, Temple Akiba choir; Member, Ballona Creek Watershed Task Force; Community activist.
A Midwestern transplant to Culver City, David always loved the outdoors and exercise, and upon finding the Ballona Creek Bike Path, recognized it as a hidden treasure in Los Angeles. By day, David is a marketing professional in the game and entertainment industry, with expertise in Brand, Digital, CRM, and Social Media Marketing.
Michele joins our advisory council with a long history of volunteering and working for local environmental organizations. Michele is also an avid bicyclist and interested in improving the creek and watershed bikeways.
Steven is a Certified Financial Planner and Tax Preparer in West Los Angeles, providing tax preparation and Quickbooks accounting services for individuals, small businesses, real estate investors, and non-profits. A past President of the Culver City Garden Club, in 2003 he and his wildflower “guerrilla garden” on the side of the Santa Monica freeway were featured in an article in the Los Angeles Times. He previously served as a board member and Treasurer of the So. Robertson Neighborhood Council, and was on its Land Use and Green Team Committees.
Shea became a Ballona Creek lover in 2004 when she moved a few doors down from it in Mid-City Los Angeles. Soon after she became the Mid-City Neighborhood Council’s inaugural “Ballona Creek Revitalization Project” Chair and thus began her now long-time support of BCR. A resident of Culver City since 2011 and still in close proximity to the Ballona Creek, she is an avid bicyclist and especially cherishes the bike path along the precious waterway. Shea is also a Sustainability Planning and Policy Professional and the Chief Executive Strategist of Balanced Approach Strategic Sustainability Services. She was the inaugural Director/Manager of Culver City Unified School District’s Sustainability Program, and is currently developing a Sustainable Business Certification Program for the City of Culver City, among other related projects.
Bob retired in 1995 after 30 years on the faculty of California State University, Los Angeles. Since 1996, he served as Secretary to the Culver City Parks & Service Foundation.
Blake Hottle is a freelance documentary cameraman with a love of nature and photography. His credits include work for 60 Minutes, Nova, Frontline, CNBC Long Form Documentaries, and BCR’s own introductory video. He believes that incremental improvements to the Ballona Creek ecosystem will one day lead to a better creek and estuary for both people and wildlife.
Jim Lamm, President Emeritus
BCR’s President 1998-2014. Architect with broad experience on multifaceted, multi-agency planning, design, and construction projects; Culver City Planning Commission Member (2001-2002 Chair); Ballona Creek Watershed Task Force (Co-Chair); Elder, Teacher and Choir Member at St. John’s Presbyterian Church; Former Peace Corps Volunteer in Iran; enjoys hands-on service projects, writing, arts, diverse cultures, peacemaking, and working on behalf of community and environment; father of two grown children.
Dino Parks is a Director of Photography and camera operator for motion pictures and television. His professional credits include Lone Survivor, Dreamgirls, and Friday Night Lights. Dino has been a member of the Culver City Bicycle Coalition since its formation, and played an active role in the creation of the first Culver City Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plan in 2009.
Erick Perez, graduate and former president of Culver City High School – Ballona Creek Renaissance Club, is now attending UC Berkeley. He is committed to preserving the local ecosystem and serves to encourage his peers to get more involved in their community. “In a time where the internet traps the minds of our youth, I feel it is crucial for people to realize the importance of civic duty.” If he’s not volunteering his time on the weekend, he usually has his head stuck in a book. He hopes to work as a physician in the future.
Professional Background: Engineer/Attorney Community Involvement: Past President, Culver City Homeowners Association; Past President, Culver-Marina Bar Association. “I am concerned about the environment, aesthetics and watershed issues.”
Author and photographer of Beyond the Beach Blanket, A Field Guide to Southern California Wildlife, Marina has lived in Culver City for over 20 years. She grew up in northern California, just steps from Monterey’s Fisherman’s Wharf, has lived near the beach in Carmel, Coronado, San Diego, San Francisco and Los Angeles, and has been a dedicated beach bum from the time she could walk. A graduate of USC School of Cinema-Television, Marina’s wildlife photographs have appeared in Windstar Wildlife Institute publications and All-creatures.org, among others. She is also a member of the Speaker’s Bureau of Heal the Bay, and a dedicated birdwatcher who writes for the magazine Birding Business.
David is a practicing attorney advocating on behalf of consumers in Car Dealer Fraud, Lemon Law and Identity Theft cases and is a former Director of the Culver Marina Bar Association. David has also coached baseball for Culver City High School’s Winter Program and for Venice High School. He frequently runs and bikes on the Ballona Creek Bike Path and comes to BCR with a special interest in water use and conservation.