Christi Veleta was one of the City of Jacksonville’s most devoted employees for over 30 years. During her tenure she displayed the highest levels of professionalism in her work with the Environmental Protection Board. A common thread throughout her career was a passionate focus on a better quality of life for all the residents of Duval County through environmental education, awareness, and action. She provided unparalleled community service and continuously displayed outstanding initiative.
The Environmental Protection Board established the Christi P. Veleta Environmental Award in recognition of her more than two decades of meritorious service to the people of Duval County, commitment to environmental issues and her devoted protection and preservation of our natural resources. The award recognizes an individual who has exhibited, over a long-term, environmental stewardship, displayed superior environmental initiative, and consistently promotes environmental education and outreach.
Past Winners include:
2010 – Christi P. Veleta
2011 – Mark Middlebrook
2012 - Kevin Songer
2013 - Ron Littlepage
2014 - Dr. Quinton White
2015 - Felicia Boyd
2016 - Lucy Cortese
2017 Christi P. Veleta Environmental Award
The 2017 award was presented to Sarah Boren
during the EPB-UNF Environmental Symposium held at the UNF University Center on October 4, 2017.
For more than a decade has relentlessly educated individuals, policy-makers, community leaders, and industry professionals about green building practices and benefits. She started volunteering for USGBC in 2006, quickly becoming a member of the local Board, and eventually was appointed as the Region's first Executive Director. Upon the merging of the seven USGBC Regions in Florida in 2015, she was selected as USGBC Florida's Director of Policy and Programs. Sarah's tireless efforts in advocacy and programming have been key to helping achieve a sustainable Florida through awareness, education and market transformation initiatives. She has been directly responsible for creating inspirational, impactful undertakings here in Jacksonville and throughout Florida that stir volunteers' and communities' passions for environmental and social programs. Sarah "birthed" and/or was principally involved with the inception of:
- The Green Carpet Film Series, bringing environmental and sustainable education to a wide audience through eco-films.
- The Sustainability Officers Roundtable, USGBC Northeast Florida’s forum for sustainability professionals to collaborate, share best practices, impart lessons learned, and stay up to date on the latest information and resources in the profession. Participants manage the internal and external sustainability performance of businesses, governments, institutional or nonprofit organizations, and finally
- LiveSMART (Sustainable Materials and Resources Trailer), a Jacksonville-based mobile education trailer with a strong focus on green-building and sustainability-living education. More than 30,000 people a year have toured this "green home on wheels" exhibit, which has visited large events, schools, businesses campuses, and sporting events in Duval County.
Sarah accepted the award from
Christi Veleta and Dr. Lucinda Sonnenberg, Chair of the Environmental Protection Board.