Eagle Valley Middle School student Lucas Valdez receives a Golden Pinecone Sustainability Youth Leadership Award in Reno on April 13.
Lucas Valdez, 14-year-old eighth grader at Eagle Valley Middle School, was a winner of GreenUP!’s Golden Pinecone Sustainability Youth Leadership Award. He was given the award in Reno on April 13.
Valdez was nominated and recognized for being an active advocate for a clean community and watershed with a project to clean up the Carson River during the 2022-23 school year. He organized students and staff to engage in trash cleanups around campus and nearby waterways, green spaces and parks to improve downstream water quality in the Carson River.
The Golden Pinecone Awards celebration has been a legacy event run for more than 30 years by several Reno environmental organizations. The event that was started in 1988 by Tod Bedrosian, Bob Fulkerson, Glenn Miller and Bob Loux to bring the environmental community together as friends and initially to get the community excited about stopping the dump of nuclear waste in Nevada. The pinecone awards were handmade out of plywood, an ironic twist on formal award ceremonies to honor environmental achievements of the past year.
In 2012, greenUP! partnered with Nevada Econet to co-host the legacy Golden Pinecone Awards, and greenUP! carried on the tradition in 2013. In 2016, greenUP! worked with GREENevada to bring back the Golden Pinecone Awards to recognize deserving individuals and organizations for their good environmental stewardship. The awards recognize individuals and organizations for their efforts to make our community environmentally healthy and safe, and to promote sustainable living practices. Since the first award was issued in 1988, more than 150 people have been recognized.