16 Aug Press Release: FoLAR to honor Assemblymembers Wendy Carrillo and Laura Friedman as River Champions at this year’s Noche del Rio Gala
Subject: FoLAR to honor Assemblymembers Wendy Carrillo and Laura Friedman as River Champions at this year’s Noche del Rio Gala
For immediate release — additional questions and comments please contact Michael Atkins 323.223.0585 with Friends of the Los Angeles River (FoLAR)
Los Angeles, CA — Friends of the Los Angeles River are hosting their annual fundraising gala to celebrate another year in the River Movement on September 13th, 2018 at the LA River Center and Gardens.
FoLAR will honor two female leaders in the fight for a healthy local environment, California State Assemblymembers Wendy Carrillo and Laura Friedman, for their leadership on environmental issues and commitment to the revitalization of the Los Angeles River.
Carrillo, elected to represent Assembly District 51 in 2017, has been an advocate for environmental justice throughout her career in broadcast media, labor organizing, and now as an elected official. In her first term, Assemblymember Carrillo introduced two bills to increase access to outdoor experiences. AB2614 requires the Natural Resources Agency to track availability of outdoor experiences for disadvantaged youth and establishes a grant program to increase access in the pursuit of overall health and well-being. AB2615 requires California Department of Transportation to partner with public agencies to maximize safe and convenient multi-modal access to federal, state, regional, and local parks.
Friedman, who represents Assembly District 43, has long been recognized as a steadfast advocate for the environment, equality, and the arts and is deeply familiar with the issues facing the River. After serving seven years on the Glendale City Council, including a term as the Mayor of Glendale, Friedman was elected to the California State Assembly in 2016. During her first term, Laura secured $20 million in funding for the completion of the Glendale Riverwalk Project, and authored a package of bills to establish landmark water efficiency standards, strengthen environmental sustainability, and improve access to transportation alternatives.
The Noche del Rio Gala event will be held at the LA River Center and Gardens on Sept 13th, starting at 6pm. The event will begin with a cocktail reception before attendees enjoy a gourmet meal prepared by LA Kitchen, folkloric free jazz music by the Sam Gendel Trio, and a unique program honoring this year’s River Champions.
The Noches del Rio event is made possible by the generous support of Metabolic Studio and Toyota Financial Services. Tickets are available now through FoLAR at folar.org/nochedelrio
FoLAR Executive Director Marissa Christiansen commented:
On behalf of Friends of the LA River, we are thrilled to honor these excellent female leaders as River Champions this year. Both Assemblymembers Carrillo and Friedman have demonstrated a deep commitment to addressing environmental issues and advocating for urgently needed public access to benefit members of our River community. With more than half of all Angelenos living beyond walking distance to open space or a park, the ecological restoration of the River stands as a transcendental opportunity for us to resolve park inequity and a legacy of neglect along the River. With River Champions representing two vital districts along the LA River, the River’s future is bright. We look forward to celebrating and honoring these women at our Noche del Rio Gala.
Assemblymember Wendy Carrillo commented:
I am humbled and honored to be recognized by Friends of the LA River as River Champion at this year’s Noche del Rio Gala. The River is a vital part of the 51st Assembly District and surrounds the areas where many people live, work and learn. It creates limitless opportunities for people across Los Angeles to enjoy all that it has to offer, but there’s still a bold future ahead for the River. As Assemblymember and member of the Water, Wildlife and Parks committee, I am committed to enhancing and expanding access to open and green spaces across California.
Assemblymember Laura Friedman commented:
I’m incredibly proud to have my work honored by such an extraordinary organization. Friends of the LA River has led the way on restoring, preserving, and defending our river for decades and I’m happy to join them in our shared effort to ensure that the LA River can be enjoyed by communities across the region and generations to come.
Friends of the Los Angeles River is a 501c3 nonprofit whose mission since 1986 has been to ensure a publicly accessible and ecologically sustainable Los Angeles River by inspiring River stewardship through community engagement, education, advocacy, and thought leadership. FOLAR is a leading powerful force guiding policy and connecting communities to the River, nationally respected as a leader in urban river revitalization with a membership of 35,000.