Sustainable San Mateo County Announces 2018 Award Recipients


Sustainable San Mateo County (SSMC) will honor California State Senator Jerry Hill, Joseph Fullerton of the San Mateo County Community College District, Peninsula Clean Energy, Proterra, Youth United for Community Action and Design Tech High School at SSMC’s 19th Annual Awards Dinner on Thursday, March 29, for their contributions to sustainability in San Mateo County.

San Mateo County Supervisor Carole Groom will emcee the evening program, which will take place on March 29 at 5:30 p.m. in the Bayview Dining Room at the College of San Mateo, 1700 W. Hillsdale Blvd., San Mateo. The evening will feature a networking hour, silent auction, three-course dinner and professional videos of each awardee produced by The Riekes Center.

The annual SSMC awards are designed to raise awareness of sustainability in the community and inspire others to take action. Tickets are available at, with early bird pricing through February 28.

Sustainability Awards will be awarded to these four recipients:

    Individual Category – Joseph Fullerton, Energy and Sustainability Manager for the San Mateo County Community College District, for contributing to the district’s sustainability initiatives and helping to create state and national sustainability programs. Among his accomplishments are installation of the county’s largest ground mount solar array, the implementation of an advanced energy monitoring system across three college campuses, and the creation of a fellowship program that prepares the next generation of sustainably minded facility management leaders.
    Government Category – Peninsula Clean Energy, San Mateo County’s community choice energy program, for offsetting 680 million pounds of greenhouse gas emissions while offering county customers lower electric rates, saving them $17 million during its first year of operation. The program ensures low and stable rates while investing in local energy programs such as energy storage, electric vehicle charging stations and community solar photovoltaic systems.
    Large Business Category – Proterra, for designing and manufacturing zero-emission, heavy-duty buses that deliver clean, quiet transportation. The Burlingame-based company has sold more than 500 vehicles to 64 municipal, university, airport, federal and commercial transit agencies in 29 states. Proterra estimates that its American-made electric buses have offset 14.4 million pounds of carbon emissions. The company set a world record last September with a bus that traveled 1,101 miles on a single battery charge.
    Nonprofit Category – Youth United for Community Action (YUCA), for developing and supporting a core group of young people in East Palo Alto who address social and environmental justice issues, including affordable housing, education, climate change, water justice and climate resiliency. Founded in 1994, YUCA is one of the longest active community-based organizations in the county.

The Green Building Award, sponsored by SSMC and the American Institute of Architects of San Mateo County, will be presented to Design Tech High School at Oracle​for its sustainable design targeted to achieve LEED Gold certification. It’s the first high school located on a tech company’s campus, providing new learning and recreational opportunities for students, teachers, Oracle employees and the community. It was designed by DES Architects + Engineers and built by XL Construction.

The Ruth Peterson Award, established in memory of SSMC’s founder, will be presented to state Senator Jerry Hill in recognition of his leadership on sustainability issues throughout his nearly 30 years of public service. Senator Hill was at the forefront of the successful local effort to preserve open space. He is a strong advocate for access and preservation of our precious coast, encouraged community choice energy procurement, and authored critical legislation to safeguard water and air.

Sponsors of the Event

SSMC is grateful to these sponsors for their generosity: Lyngso Garden Materials, Sand Hill Foundation, Recology San Mateo County, South San Francisco Scavenger, Community Bank of the Bay, Kaiser Permanente, SamTrans and The Riekes Center.

About Sustainable San Mateo County

Sustainable San Mateo County is a nonprofit public benefit corporation dedicated to its mission of stimulating community action on economic, environmental and social issues. For more information, visit