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Board of Directors

We are governed by a dedicated, dynamic group of environmentalists, historians, and community leaders.

Ginny Stearns, President

Ginny is an environmental artist and project director of the the Conservancy’s efforts to develop and maintain wildlife support plantings in the harbor’s Huffaker Park over 15 years. Her plans for the Huffaker Gardens, featuring bird and butterfly focus areas and interpretive signage, are scheduled to be part of the soon-to-be renovated  shoreline park. Stearns’s design for bird perch piles in the creek waters will offer both safe perching sites for aquatic birds and opportunities for creek visitors to view them. She has also worked with student groups learning about Mission Creek wildlife. Most recently she developed a project with the San Francisco Friends School where second graders create signs that enliven the park and educate the public about local wildlife and creek history.   ​

Toby Levine

Toby has been a dedicated member of the Mission Creek Conservancy since long before she moved to Mission Bay in 2007.  During her more than 35 years on the Conservancy’s board, Toby has served as President and supported several Conservancy projects.  In addition to her work with the Conservancy, Toby has extensive community leadership experience. She served on the Rincon Point-South Beach Redevelopment Advisory Committee, including as the Vice President from 1986 to 1991. Toby joined the Central Waterfront Advisory Group in 2000 and continues to serve.  Toby is a retired Teacher and Principal with the San Francisco Unified School District.

Carmen Mendieta

Carmen demonstrates her love of the ocean and its inhabitants by learning from fellow board members, participating in the stewardship of Mission Creek, and sharing the abundance that has graced her life. Some of those life gifts have come from working with elders in the nonprofit sector and other teachings were gained through service as a volunteer in many grassroots endeavors.

Chris Carlsson

Chris Carlsson is the co-director of Shaping San Francisco, curates the digital archive of San Francisco history at, and helped produce the 2nd edition of "Vanished Waters: San Francisco's Mission Bay." He is a daily bicyclist and pedestrian and decade-long ecological activist.

Ruth Gravanis

Ruth Gravanis is a long-time environmental advocate, with a particular interest in protecting and restoring local biodiversity.  A former member of the San Francisco Commission on the Environment, she has also been active in numerous groups including the Audubon Society, Save SF Bay Association, the Campaign to Save CA Wetlands, Sustainable Watersheds Alliance, and the Treasure Islands Wetlands Project.  Ruth sees the Mission Creek Conservancy as an effective force for the restoration of aquatic and shoreline habitat for the benefit of wildlife and people.

Sarah Bertram

Sarah lives on Mission Creek with her husband and two young children.  She is a leader within the floating home community. Sarah has a deep appreciation for the Conservancy’s environmental restoration. She spent nearly a decade working promote solar power policies across the country to accelerate the transition to renewable energy.  She is passionate about building upon the Conservancy’s track record of chronicling and sharing Mission Creek’s history - the longest standing community in Mission Bay - with its new neighbors.  In neighboring Dogpatch, Sarah serves on the board of her kids' preschool, Friends of Potrero Nursery School, which is located in a portion of the historic I.M. Scott building, the oldest public school building in San Francisco.

Philip DeAndrade

Philip DeAndrade is a long-time board member, community leader, and friend of Mission Creek.  For the past decade, he has served as President for Mission Creek Harbor. Philip also supports Mission Bay by serving on the University of California’s Community Advisory Group.  Philip started Goat Hill Pizza on Potrero Hill more than forty years ago and has overseen its expansion to multiple sites in San Francisco.

Bob Isaacson, in memoriam
Bob lived on Mission Creek from 1979 to 2022.  In 1983, he founded the Conservancy and served its President until 2020.  He was a civil engineer who worked for the San Francisco Redevelopment Agency for about thirty years.  Bob always brought both a cooperative spirit and a commitment to Mission Creek’s ecosystem to his engagement with the various development interests who have transformed Mission Creek and Mission Bay over the last forty years.  Bob was the driving force behind the Conservancy’s written publications and instrumental in the steady environmental revival of Mission Creek.
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