Awards & Scholarships

ES Program Awards & Scholarship Winners

Each year the Environmental Studies Program acknowledges a number of students, alumni, and community members for their achievements. A list of the most current years winners is available below. Click on an individual award title below to view a description and list of recipients. You can also download your own copy of the ES Program's 2016 Commencement Reception and Awards Program here (.pdf).

25th Anniversary Award Recipients - 1995

ES Program Awards:

  • Outstanding Senior of the Year (view)
  • Outstanding Service by a Senior(s) (view)
  • Outstanding Academic Achievement (view)
  • Distinction in the Major (view)
  • Outstanding ES Alumnus of the Year (view)
  • Outstanding ES Senior Thesis Award (view)
  • Community Service Award (view)
  • Research Enhancement Award (view)
  • Steven Manley Memorial Lecture (view)

ES Scholarship Winners:

  • Charles Decker Memorial Scholarship (view)
  • Barker Scholarship (view)
  • Tom Rogers Scholarship (view)
  • McGinnes Environmental Law & Advocacy Scholarship (view)

2017 ES Program Awards

• Download the ES Program's 2016 Commencement Reception and Award Ceremony Program here (.pdf)

2017 Outstanding Senior of the Year (view past recipients)

This Program award is given to one (possibly two) students who have accomplished excellence within the Environmental Studies Major and the University. In addition to obtaining an outstanding overall Grade Point Average (GPA), a student worthy of this distinction must have also demonstrated a high level of extra curricular service, both within the University and the community.


2017 Outstanding Service by ES Seniors (view past recipients)
This award is given to ES students who have demonstrated exemplary environmental service within the Environmental Studies Program, the University community, and/or the community at large. Winners must have demonstrated a continued service to project(s), issues, or organizations related to environmental causes.


2017 Outstanding Academic Achievement
Award is given in recognition of those 2017 graduating seniors who have an outstanding overall minimum cumulative GPA of 3.5.


2017 Distinction in the Major  
Awarded to graduating seniors who have an outstanding minimum cumulative GPA of 3.5 and have completed a Senior Honors Thesis of exceptional quality. This distinction is recognized on their official UCSB diploma and transcript.



2016 ES Program's Community Service Award (view past recipients)

Congresswoman Lois Capps has been a resident of Santa Barbara, California since 1963 and represents the state’s beautiful Central Coast. She was sworn in as a Member of the 105th Congress on March 17, 1998, succeeding her late husband, former University of California, Santa Barbara professor, Congressman Walter H. Capps. 

Capps serves on the Committee on Energy and Commerce. She sits on the Health, Energy & Power, and Environment & the Economy subcommittees. From these posts, Capps focuses on Medicare reform, the nursing shortage, cancer, mental health, energy policy, and the protection of our air and water. She also serves on the Natural Resources Committee and sits on the Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources, Subcommittee on Federal Lands. Her focus on this committee is on energy production, fisheries and wildlife, public lands, oceans, and Native Americans. Mrs. Capps is currently the co-chair of the Sustainable Energy and Environment Coalition and is an honorary Vice-Chair of the LGBT Equality Caucus. 

Congresswoman Capps has been at the forefront of efforts to protect the environment. She has led efforts to prevent new oil and gas drilling off our coast and on the public’s lands and protect consumers from shouldering the financial burden of cleaning up water pollution in their water supplies.


2016 ES Program's Outstanding Alumnus of the Year (view past recipients)

Darcy L. Aston, Class of 1981 (1959 - 2014)  Darcy’s family members, Bryce Aston and Ronald Pembleton accepted the award on her behalf.
It is no exaggeration to say that Darcy was a force of nature. Her passion for conserving our Earth’s resources came through in her personal, professional, and community life. She was also a force for community here in Santa Barbara; in Petaluma, her home of the last nine years; and in the Bay Area. She leaves behind a lasting legacy of environmental protection and water resource conservation.

A dedicated environmentalist from a young age, Darcy pursued a major in environmental studies at UCSB, followed by several years as a naturalist at Sequoia National Park in the Sierra Nevada. Darcy went on to develop a career educating the community on ways to put sustainability and conservation principles into daily practice. Darcy worked for the Isla Vista Recreation & Park District and the Goleta Water District in water conservation during the peak of our last serious drought. She eventually joined the County of Santa Barbara, expanding and implementing its water conservation and Project Clean Water programs. She educated the public on complex water-quality problems and helped find effective and practical solutions we all could take part in. Darcy also led community outreach on pollution prevention, developed classroom curricula on the water cycle, led watershed and creek restoration efforts, and developed educational signage for area beaches. She created Creek Week, the Sustainable Landscaping Fair, the Sustainable Garden in Santa Maria, and the widely respected and replicated Green Gardener Program, which promotes resource-efficient and pollution-prevention landscape-maintenance practices. Her contribution to this community was significant.

2017 Steven Manley Memorial Lectures (view past recipients)

Established in Memory of Steven Manley (1958 - 1979).  While working for his second summer as a firefighter with the California Division of Forestry, Steve Manley and three other firefighters lost their lives on August 15, 1979, battling a brush wildfire near Santa Maria. He was a 21-year old Environmental Studies Major in his third year at UCSB at the time. Steve Manley was an active proponent of the protection, conservation and planned use of the environmental landscape. It was his field of study and way of life. His summer firefighting job was directly related to his desire to learn by doing in the protection of the land. He had a lifelong interest in the outdoors, the sea and physical activity. This lecture series is a celebration of his life. 

2017 Featured Speaker: Dr. Charles Lester, Speaker, Lecturer, and former Director of the California Coastal Commission.

2017 ES Scholarship Winners

2017 Charles Decker Memorial Scholarship (view past recipients)

The Matthew Charles Decker Scholarship was established in the loving memory of Matthew Charles Decker, an Environmental Studies undergraduate major at UCSB, who suffered a fatal skiing accident in March of 1995 during his junior year at UCSB. Matthew was an honors scholar whose love and commitment to the environment was an inspiration to all who knew him. He completed a wildlife study program in the Fall of 1994 during which he interacted with wolves, bears and the astonishing beauty of nature. This educational experience left him in awe of our Mother Earth and instilled in him a resounding commitment to work on behalf of the environment.

Amy Tam

2017 Tom Rogers Scholarship (view past recipients)

The Tom Rogers Scholarship (Fund) at the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB), was established in late 1999 to honor Tom Rogers, a role model for civic and environmental leadership. Among the many achievements of Tom Rogers are his service on the Santa Barbara City Council and County Board of Supervisors up through 1994. As a civil servant, he voiced and voted for sound environmental planning and progressive policies for long-term community benefits. The Fund provides for annual scholarship(s) to be awarded to one or several students who are majors in the Environmental Studies Program at UCSB. Selection of scholarship recipients is based on their personal efforts that embody the ideals of civic responsibility and environmental stewardship exemplified by Tom Rogers in his career.


2017 Coeta Barker Scholarship (view past recipients)
Made possible by the generosity of the Coeta and Donald Barker Foundation.  The Environmental Studies Program awards Barker Scholarships annually to assist students who enroll in unpaid Environmental Studies Program Internships. The purpose of this scholarship is to lessen the financial burden on students so that they may pursue an unpaid internship and gain valuable hands-on learning experience in the environmental field of their choice.

Heather Weiss

2017 McGinnes Environmental Law & Advocacy Scholarship (view past recipients)
Established in the name of retired ES faculty member, Marc McGinnes, in recognition of his decades of service to the Environmental Studies Program, UCSB, and the community in the fields of environmental advocacy, protection, law and leadership.  The award recognizes a graduating senior with outstanding academic achievement and has a demonstrated passion and aptitude for environmental law and advocacy.


Past ES Program Award Winners

    Outstanding Senior
2016   Emily A. McCord & Marina L. Varano
2015   Amelia J. Duvall & Emilie W. Wood
2014   Nicole Hauser & Dana Hoffenberg
2013   Sean O. Calvin
2012   Abigail M. Wolff
2011   Jennifer Verhines
2010   Nicholas Allen & Violetta Muselli
2009   Heather Berry & Joel Armin-Holland
2008   Melinda Anne Clark
2007   Constanza Rampini
2006   Alisha A. Dahlstrom & Kelley M. Neumann
2005   Noelle C. Boucquey & Tyler Durchslag-Richardson
2004   Joel S. Degner
2003   Adam R. Brandt & Maggie E. Gosselin
2002   Rachel M. Grossman & M. Craig Revell
2001   Courtney A. Estes
2000   Devon A. Straitiff
1999   Matthew R. Burris & Jessica A. Scheeter
1998   Nichole K. Camozzi
1997   Jennie A. Buchanan & Shawna M. Simpson
1996   Shawn S. Herwick
1995   Giancarlo L. Cetrulo
1994   Larry S. Spears
1993   Allison T. Pontius
1992   Karen M. Kraus & Kaitlin R. Gaffney
1991   Robyn M. Spencer
1990   Lynette Collins & Sarah Bretz
1989   Teresa A. Fritzsche
1988   Mary Bean
1987   Robert B. Carnachan & Lorene C. Flaming
1986   Sabine Graf & Megan L. O'Donnell
1985   Robin E. Alper & Nancy J. Gribble
1984   Robin Rene Roe
1983   Thomas A. Starrs
1982   Jean C. Schumann
1977   Susan L. Van Atta


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    Outstanding Alumnus   Community Service
2016     Darcy L. Aston   Congresswoman Lois Capps
2015     Tamara "TJ" DiCaprio   WYP- Wilderness Youth Project
2014     Stephen J. Stanley   Paul Relis
2013     Greg Mohr   Paul Wack
2012     Tim Olson   Community Env. Council, SB, CA
2011     Merrilee Fellows   Darlene Chirman
2010     Meghan Conklin   Environmental Affairs Board, UCSB Assoc. Students 
2009     Susan Black Anderson   Hillary Hauser
2008     Stephen Oliva   Michael Lunsford
2007     Susan Becker   Linda Krop
2006     Karen L. Feeney & Michael P. Feeney   Vie Obern & George Obern
2005     Thomas J. Starrs   Louise Boucher
2004     Karen Kraus & Kaitlin Gaffney   Naomi Schwartz
2003     Howard J. Wenger   Wayne R. Ferrin, Jr.
2002     None selected   Ada Babine
2001     Brian Baird   Robert H. Sollen
2000     Susan Van Atta   Selma Rubin
1999     Carla Frisk   Sue Higman
1998     Eric Zimmerman   Lee Moldaver
1997     Debra Callahan   Jean K. Schuyler
1996     Robert Wilkinson   Bill Wallace
1995     Brian Trautwein   Tom Rogers & Patagonia, Inc.

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  Outstanding Service by ES Seniors
Mackenzie F. Forgey, Jessica J. Foster, Nicole S. Jenkins, Kristyn A. Payne, Amanda J. Shoemaker
2015   Samuel G. Breyfogle, Katelyn M. Freeze, Allyson J. Gaarder, Kristen Herrera, Lauren P. Menzer, Paulina P. Pevzner, Melissa S. Steritz, Kristin D. Van Der Kar
2014   Lauren M. Barnum, Marissa Bills, Carl R. Greenfield, Karen E. Housel, Ashley M. Koide, Kori T. Lay, Chellsee D. Lee, Noelle A. Steele, Brittany Tse
2013   Erica K. Aguilera, Ashley A. Audycki, Jason R. Dale, Kyle B. Fischler, Molly K. Gordon, Alyssa B. Hall, Andrea Nunez, Olivier J. Sinoncelli, Katherine M. Wilkins, Emily L. Williams
Jeffrey A. Brydon, Cristina J. Cook, Allyson E. Gialketsis, Matthew C. Gilliland, Philip M. Jankoski, Ryland C. King, Kiyome A. Okikawa, Rachel L. Saputo, Colin A.Twohig
Andrew K. Chang, Stephanie M. Gaffney, James O. Hawkins, Michael-Donovan Maccarone, Tiffany R. Mayville, Catherine M. Murillo-Barrick, Islay S. Nicklin, Kevin G. Vielbaum
2010   Ingrid R.M. Avison, Bushra M. Bataineh, Clayton H. Carlson, Michael H. Hewitt, Kaela M. Jorgenson, Corie N. Radka, Simone N. Steger
Grace A. Bueti, Christina A. Elles, Eli M. Krispi, Maile P. Smith, Jill A. Tiegs 
2008   Sarah Bresko, Kristen Gravelle,  Maia Kazaks, Ryan Kintz, Nina Salvador, Juliette Wigley
Kristina F. Boyer, Frankie Lorraine Burton, Amy Jae Sun Lee, Thomas George Minter

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Past ES Scholarship Winners

    Charles Decker   Tom Rogers 
2016   Maya V. Normandi   Charlotte Sedlock
2015   Emma L. Glass   Marie E. Laule & Garrison Yang
2014   John M. Calforda   Morgan R. Tusa
2013   Tanner B. Yould   Riley H. Leonard
2012   Alexandra E. Kovalick   Kelsey M. Eaton
2011   Alexandra Yang   Katie Kasatkina
2010   Terra Weeks   Ryland King
2009   Alison Morrow   Nicholas C. Allen
2008   None selected   James Mrohs & Christina Elles
2007   Amber Conway   Sarah K. Lang
2006   Nina Salvador   Casey Duncan
2005   Trevor Blythe   Alisha Dahlstrom 
2004   Tyler Richardson   Alisha Dahlstrom 
2003   Adam Garcia   Noelle Boucquey
2002   Jennifer Gremer   Sara Aminzadeh
2001   Andrew Brown   Michael Craig Revell & Tarek Maassarani
2000   None selected    
1999   Zachary B. Baker    
1998   Robin Hull    
1997   John K. Gill    
1996   Jenna Endres    

Marc McGinnes

Coeta Barker

2016 William C. Shepherd & 
Princepreet S. Singh
Conor T. Grimes & 
Cynthia Ibarra
2015 Kian C. Pakdel Claire M. Jacobs
2014 Matthew W. Buggert Meagan R. Hanna
2013 Julia V. Mascari Chellsee D. Lee
2012 Elise M. O'Dea Kristen D. Avila
2011 Christine Tabacco Matt Rindermann
2010 Travis J. Miller Cailean Kilroy & Logan McCoy
2009 Joel Armin-Hoiland Madeline Ward & Brandon Wicks
2008 Jill Jaffe Stephanie Timm & Jenna Driscoll
2007 Alexis R. Hamilton Julie L. Powell & Coryl N. Dolfin
2006 Ashley Jones Sarah D. Pellkofer & Chandler Briggs
2005 Kirstyn Werner Steven J. Rodger & Emily Murphy
2004   Edward France
2003   Alisha Dahlstrom
2002   Sara Aminzadeh, Laura Dell'Olio & Ellen Salvador
2001   Victoria Minnich, Alyssa Nieto & Ada J. Otter
2000   Kolmilata Majumdar, Jayme Timberlake &
Amy Trester
1999   Meghan M. Conklin & Misty M. Gonzales

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Past Manley Memorial Lectures

2017   Charles Lester, Speaker, Lecturer, and former Director of the California Coastal Commission
2016   Charles Fishman, Author & Speaker, NY Times Bestsellers: "The Walmart Effect" and "A Curious Mind".
2015   Julia Marton-Levere, former Director General IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature), Author, Lecturer
2014   Olivier De Schutter, Professor, Univ. of Louvain, Brussels and UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food
2013   Paul Greenberg, Author & Speaker, NY Times Bestseller: Four Fish: the Future of the Last Wild Food
2012   Jay Gulledge, Sr. Scientist & Director for Science & Impacts, Center for Climate & Energy Solutions
2011   Daniel P. Schrag, Director, Harvard University Center for the Environment
2010   Deb Callahan, President, The H. John Heinz III Center for Science, Economics & the Environment
2009   Richard Harris, Science Correspondent, National Public Radio (NPR)
2008   James P. Kennett, Professor Emeritus, Dept. of Earth Science, UC Santa Barbara
2007   John W. Day, Jr., Distinguished Prof. Emeritus, Dept. of Oceanography & Coastal Sciences, Louisiana State Univ.
2006   Robert Glennon, Morris K. Udall Prof. of Law & Public Policy, Rogers College of Law, Univerity of Arizona
2005   Christopher Flaviin, President, Worldwatch Institute
2004   Norman C. Ellstrand, Professor, Dept. of Botany & Plant Sciences, University of California, Riverside
2003   Harriet Ritvo, Arthur J. Conner Professor of History, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
2002   Tundi Agardy, Director, Sound Seas, Washington, D.C.
2001   Cynthia Moss, Director, Amboseli Elephant Research Project, Nairobi, Kenya
2000   No Steven Manley Memorial Lecture this year
1999   Catherine Koshland, Professor, School of Public Health, UC Berkeley
1998   Mike Davis, Lecturer & Author, Los Angeles, California
1997   The Right Honourable Kim Campbell, Past Canadian Prime Minister
1996   Thomas Dunne, Professor, School of Environmental Science & Management, UC Santa Barbara
1995   William D. Ruckelshaus, Chairman & CEO, Browning--Ferris Industries, Houston, TX
1994   Herbert Bormann, Professor Emeritus, Yale School of Forestry, Yale University
1993   Bonnie J. McCay, Professor, Human Ecology / Anthropolgy, Rutgers University
1992   H. Patricia Hynes, Dept. of Urban Studies and Planning, Massachussetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
1991   Dr. Arthur Rosenfeld, Lawrence Berkeley Laboratories, UC Berkeley
1990   Dr. Sherwood Rowland, Department of Chemistry, UC Irvine
1989   Ramachandra Guha, Institute of Economic Growth, New Delhi, India
1988   Russell Peterson, President Emeritus, National Audubon Society
1987   Garrett Hardin, Human Ecology, UC Santa Barbara, CA
1986   Edith Brown Weiss, Professor Emeritus, Professor Law Center, Georgetown University
1985   Dr. David Morris, Executive Dir., Center for Local Self-Reliance, Washington, D.C.
James Pissot, President, Utah Audubon Society & Co-Founder, Utah Wilderness Association
1984   Professors Thayer Scudder - Dept.of Anthropology, CA Institute of Technology
James Anderson, Dept. of Anthropology, UC Berkeley
Steven R. Gliessman, Dept. of Ecology, UC Santa Cruz
1983   Professors Thomas C. Jorling, Director - Center for Environmental Studies, Williams College
Stanley Dundon, Department of Philosophy, CA Polytechnic State University
1982   Sally Ann Ranney, Founder & President - American Wilderness Alliance
1981   Dr. Thomas Lovejoy, Vice President - World Wildlife Fund

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