Letter of Intent
Estimated Amount to be requested from the CSF: 
Letter of Intent: 

Think global, act local”:

A Celebration of the Diversity and Unity of the World


With the current political climate steering us away from environmental and social justice, now is the time to take action. The UW Sustainability Action Network (SAN), in partnership with Earth Club, Arts & Entertainment (A&E), EcoReps, UW Hip Hop Student Association (HHSA), UW Sustainability and other partners, plans to bring a new level of student leadership and vision to the annual Earth Day celebration. This year’s Earth Day Festival will bring people together through performance, art, food, and activism in an immersive celebration of the unique identities and unity of the world. This festival will be a demonstration of sustainability in action both in its production and in its message. By showcasing the environmental and social initiatives on campus and demonstrating the intersectionality therein, we will provide a live example of the sustainability movement that is happening on campus.

We request $125,000 for this Festival to support national and local performers and speakers, commissioned art installations, professional staging equipment, marketing materials, locally-sourced food ingredients, and sustainable event infrastructure (to include solar power system, compostable materials, water stations, bio-toilets, and more). By combining the vision and leadership of some of UW’s most active and prominent student leaders with the resources and support of the UW, we hope to curate an unprecedented celebration of sustainability, diversity, and unity this coming Earth Day.

Environmental Impact:

This event will communicate and embody sustainable ideologies through the implementation of various media, inspirational performances, sustainable waste disposal, local food sourcing, and the use of renewable energy.

The Festival will feature food from around the world, prepared by an array cultural RSOs. Our organizing partners will provide RSOs with locally-sourced ingredients and supply compostable utensils. In addition, food waste will be diverted to local food banks or homeless shelters. These elements will be made possible through partnerships with campus organizations such as Real Food Challenge and Pairing UW Food Waste With Non-Profit Agencies in Need.

We intend to produce a 100% carbon-neutral event by using a solar-powered stage and providing CSF-funded biogas food carts to the food vendors. Compost and recycling bins will be onsite. There will be water stations and complimentary reusable water bottles to encourage reduction of disposable bottles.

Student Leadership & Involvement:

The Earth Day Festival will be 100% student-lead with the support of select faculty. The UW Sustainability Action Network will coordinate the collaborative leadership of its partners to showcase the growing sustainability movement at the University of Washington. The Festival will feature social justice in conjunction with environmental justice, unlocking vast opportunities for student groups in each area to showcase their work.

The festival’s many components (ie. Logistics, Programming, Food, Art Curation, Marketing, etc) will also provide specific opportunities for student leaders to drive these departments. The UW SAN Council is prepared and equipped to facilitate this process with the help of its key partners and faculty advisors. 

Education, Outreach, & Behavior Change:

SAN is already developing a year-long marketing plan, drawing connections between the initiatives and events of its partners, and building toward the Earth Day celebration throughout the school year. The diverse mix of student involvement, through organizing, performing, exhibiting, or otherwise, will generate a vast draw that reaches throughout the campus.

The planning committee plans to create a compelling brand and story for the festival that wraps key environmental and social issues of today into a collective call-to-action. By creating an event that showcases student advancement of the world that we wish to create, the Earth Day Festival will appeal to audiences beyond the environmental community. To generate the scale of interest and impact that we are envisioning, we will book one nationally-known performer and one nationally-known speaker, both of whom embody the story that we wish to tell with the Earth Day Festival.

Part of the proposed budget is designated to the marketing plan, which will include physical materials such as posters and flyers, as well as social media marketing, and video and graphic content.

Feasibility, Accountability, & Sustainability:

The planning committee currently consists of members of SAN, HHSA, EcoReps, and UWS, all of which bring extensive event-planning expertise. SAN is a coalition of campus organizations focused on environmental and social sustainability, which will serve as key collaborators that bring diverse perspectives to the event. The committee is also developing a partnership with UW Arts & Entertainment and ASUW. Throughout the planning process, the committee will develop key metrics and performance indicators to quantify the sustainability of the event.

The Earth Day Celebration is an annual event which has been primarily planned by UWS for the last several years. In addition, EcoReps has historically provided extensive support in planning this and other sustainability events on campus. The student leaders from these entities will easily secure infrastructure such as tables or tents, while providing prior knowledge as to the permits and permissions required for the event to take place. Faculty advisors in the CCCE, UWS, A&E, and ASUW will provide guidance and mentorship in navigating UW procedures.

The partnership with A&E will allow for professional stage production and programming. Their extensive experience organizing large-scale concerts on campus that feature national talent will be essential in making this year’s Earth Day celebration a historical event. The industry connections A&E holds with performers, speakers, and the channels for hiring them will also be essential in booking the necessary talent.

Contact Info:

Sky Stahl: stahls@uw.edu (509) 260-1105

Alex Urasaki: aurasaki@uw.edu (310) 567-4671

Contact Information
Primary Contact First & Last Name: 
Sky Stahl
Full Proposal
This will display after the CSF committee has reviewed and approved your LOI, and after you have received the link to edit your application.
Executive Summary: 

The realities of growing inequality, political stalemate, and climate disruption just scratch the surface of global issues we face today. It is clear that the current system doesn’t work for the vast majority of people on the planet, and we need to work toward something better. Elected officials across the globe are operating on agendas rooted in fear that divide us rather than unite us. In these increasingly polarized times, there is a dire need to build connectivity and solidarity in our local communities.

In order to address sustainable and equitable solutions, barriers between the way we view our environment, society, government, and economy must be challenged. The University of Washington builds outstanding opportunities for students through world-class academic departments and an impressive array of organizations that engage students’ varying interests; however, there are few mechanisms that facilitate lasting interdisciplinary connection and collaboration within the UW community.  While campus events like sporting events, artistic performances, lifestyle events, and talks create significant cultural value, there is a largely untapped opportunity to produce an event that brings together many of these elements, while facilitating discussion, exploration, and networking in pursuit of a more sustainable future.

For the past year, the UW Sustainability Action Network (UW SAN) has been building a collaborative campus network that engages and empowers diverse perspectives to drive collective action. UW SAN is comprised of an administrative team and an executive council representing eight student organizations. The campus-wide Earth Day event has emerged as an opportunity to showcase and expand this growing network by igniting awareness, engagement, and action beyond the same few who are typically involved in the sustainability conversation. This showcase will combine arts and performance with exhibits and activities in a “festival” type model to accomplish this widespread engagement.

UW SAN, in partnership with the UW Sustainability Office, has been developing an enhanced model of the annual Earth Day celebration to take place on the HUB Lawn. This event will feature student and local performances, PNW change-makers, sustainability projects, and campus organizations to demonstrate the power of intersectional collaboration and the current local efforts to achieve this. Arts and performance have an unparalleled ability to resonate with diverse audiences. By curating a program centered around those features, the UW SAN and its partner organizations hope to generate widespread student interest. The event will be a platform to further develop this growing network by providing opportunities for RSOs and and individuals to participate in the sustainability movement.

We are asking CSF to contribute $11,700 to this event to support performance and speaker honorariums as well as marketing materials. In order to build a world that puts people, communities and the planet first, we need to imagine what’s possible. We invite you to help us build an event that explores the realignment of our environment, society, government, and economy so that we can begin to envision those systems working better for the people and the planet.

Total amount requested from the CSF: 
$11 700
This funding request is a: 
If this is a loan, what is the estimated payback period?: 
Talent estimates are based on previous experience and conversations with faculty.
CATEGORYITEMCOSTFunding Source: CSF / otherNotes
Staging3000CSFQuote from Pyramid Staging
Sound2900CSFQuote from Morgan Sound
Labor Variance400otherAllowance in case of schedule change
30x30 tent1,200otherQuote from Cort Party Rentals
Banners/signage1,500otherStage backdrop, hanging banners. Based on estimate from previous experience
Performers1300CSFApprox. 5 Performers @ Approx. $100-$500 each
Speakers700CSFApprox. 5 keynote speakers @ Approx. $100-$200 each
Visual artists800CSFBudget to pay for materials and commissions
Video1500CSFQuote from local videographers
Social Media300otherSponsored posts
Photography300other2 photographers @ rate from previous Earth Day
10% Contingency1500CSFIn case of unexpected costs. To be returned if unused.
Fire Permit400other
Non-CSF Sources: 
Total expected from other funding sources: $5,250
ASUW Special Appropriations3000Pending
GPSS Special Appropriations750Pending
GPSS Diversity500Pending
College of the Environment1000Pending
Bridges CenterTBD(funds pledged, amount undetermined)
Project Completion Total: 
$16 700
Sustainability Impact: 
Energy Use
Living Systems and Biodiversity
Environmental Justice
Sustainability Challenge: 

The societal and environmental struggles that our world faces are systematically intertwined in a downward spiral, necessitating far-reaching interdisciplinary and intercultural synergies to find impactful solutions. Above all else, Earth Day should seek to rebuild and rebalance our relationship with the natural world, and in doing so we must consider our predominant societal and economic habits as a global culture to drive real progress towards that goal. The unsustainable values that hurt our natural world (competition, consumption, marginalization, etc.) are hurting our local and global sense of community as well; lasting sustainability is not just about saving the trees. It is about rebalancing our relationships with each other and choosing to cooperate rather than conflict.

This concept is highlighted by the fact that the less-privileged communities of the world often see the most drastic effects of environmental injustices, such as the indigenous people of the Amazon. Residents of urban ghettos have more pressing issues to worry about than recycling. Refugees fleeing violent regimes need a roof over their heads. Environmental champions around the world are beginning to realize that it’s hard to talk about sustainability without talking about equity.

To build this inclusive movement, we must identify shared values that transcend our differences and work together to create a world that embodies those values. Although the UW has already made great strides towards sustainability, there is a need to address a lack of engagement and awareness of the interdisciplinary nature of sustainability in the larger student body.

Our goal for the 2018 Earth Day event is thus to promote a holistic understanding of sustainability in the UW community that recognizes not only the value of protecting the natural environment, but the need for social, political, and economic justice. Our keynote speakers will speak on a variety of issues and draw connections between them. They will inspire hope by offering steps that we can all take in the direction that we want to go. Poets of diverse cultural backgrounds will communicate these ideas by sharing their stories. Murals will depict the challenges we face and the solidarity that is required to overcome them. Exhibits will showcase the efforts that are currently being made on campus to address these issues and provide opportunities for students to get involved. Problems will be addressed, but will be coupled with solutions that we can work towards regardless of our race, gender, identity, income, or age.

Our goal is to foster mutual understanding and intrigue amongst one another in a way that has never been done before on campus. The event will spark conversation and encourage a re-evaluation of how our thoughts, global perceptions, and everyday actions can work towards being more socially, politically, economically, and environmentally sustainable. Students will also be able to explore ways in which the UW is already making strides towards sustainability and how they individually can get involved in this campus movement.

Explain how the impacts will be measured: 

The Earth Day event will serve as a case study for measuring the effectiveness of the Sustainability Action Network. We hope to multiply existing sustainability efforts by making new connections between silos and exposing traditionally unaffiliated students to new ideas and opportunities. The event will be our first large-scale attempt to manifest this goal in a tangible setting. We plan to measure our impact in the following ways:

  • Attendance
  • Participation in interactive/collaborative art installations
  • Number of collaborating organizations (how many different sectors / disciplines)
  • Number of exhibiting organizations (how many different sectors / disciplines)
  • Photo documentation
  • Responses to on-site surveys that ask questions such as:
    • What does sustainability mean to you?
    • What did you learn that you didn’t know before?
    • Who do you plan on sharing this with?
    • What did you come to this event to see? What surprised you?

While not yet solidified, we are also working with several individuals and organizations to include the following components subject to additional commitments and funding:

  • Total waste-diversion (in alignment with the UW Climate Action Plan)
  • Sustainable food initiative
    • Campus / local vendors
    • Use of bio-gas food cart (if complete)
    • Locally-sourced ingredients
    • Compostable materials
  • Solar-power
    • Stage
    • Food vendors as needed
    • Other exhibits as needed


Education & Outreach: 

The marketing and branding component of the Earth Day celebration will be one of the most important tools in generating student interest and attendance. The Sustainability Action Network’s marketing committee will develop and implement strategies and content in pursuit of that goal. This strategy will be outlined and solidified in the remainder of Winter Quarter, to be launched at the start of Spring Quarter.

The proposed budget includes allocations for marketing materials, including video development and social media promotion. The marketing committee is currently working with several videographers to explore the possibilities of an engaging video to build excitement for the event. The team is exploring ways to create an artistic visual representation of SAN’s campus-wide vision. The video would have two versions: one for use before the event that specifically includes event details, and a second one that does not include the event details to serve as an ongoing marketing asset for SAN.

Arrangements have been made with UW Sustainability to plug Earth Day materials into official university channels and to supplement design support with their staff. UW Sustainability’s pre-existing Earth Day designs and marketing tools will be valuable assets for the marketing strategy and provide a framework from which the student marketing team can build.

Stakeholders and supporters of this event include a broad mix of departments and communities, generating widespread interest across campus and providing multiple channels for marketing efforts. We hope that by developing an engaging, diverse, and locally-focused program, UW students, faculty, and staff will be encouraged to attend the Earth Day event and subsequently support SAN’s network-building project. CSF’s sponsorship of this event will be an opportunity to demonstrate their critical role in this growing network.

Our education goals include:

  • Spreading understanding of a more intersectional definition of sustainability
  • Fostering connections between the various disciplines (art, music, environmental science, social justice, etc.) geared towards sustainable efforts in the environment, economy, society, and government
  • Raising awareness for existing local efforts to achieve this more sustainable community
  • Display and educate students on how they can get involved through UW, the community, or with personal initiatives

As an “Earth Day” celebration, the program should represent a vast array of culture and craft. Criteria for our selection of speakers and performers include:

  • Local emphasis
  • Representing diverse communities and cultures
  • Speaking to the intersections of sustainability


Local speakers we are currently reaching out to include:

Nikkita Oliver - Seattle attorney, social justice activist, and prior mayor candidate


Pramila Jaypal - Seattle Congresswoman


Ksharma Sawant - Seattle City Council


Sarra Tekola - Seattle Social Justice Activist


Lisa Graumlich - Dean College of Environment

Ana Marie Cauce - UW President


Student Performers we are considering:

UW Steel Band https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5V0_r7aaSLM

UW Bollywood Dancers https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_TleeG5Hq1U

TAIKO  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lWqUZSodp3I

RETRO https://www.instagram.com/retro_uw/?hl=en

Polynesian Island dancers https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8ofK08iy73k


Local performers we are considering:

Paris Alexa https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sDSjXJjWW2c

Otieno Terry https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4GRxyDS0k1A

Honcho Poncho https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U9b--8oplnM

Essam https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nfVQsiz4fP0&feature=youtu.be 

DON https://soundcloud.com/donofseattle/this-one-goes-out-to-the?in=donofseattle/sets/thanks-for-all-the-help-1


Based on our current partnerships, specific reach communities include:

  • Environmental: Through collaborations with EcoReps, Earth Club, SAGE, and the College of the Environment.
  • Social Justice: Through active student involvement from WashPIRG and contributions from RETRO
  • Government/policy: Through active student involvement from within the Jackson School of International Studies
  • Economics: Through an exhibit from Active Market Readers, sharing the sustainability component of their quarterly market reports
  • Arts & Culture: Through partnerships with the Hip Hop Student Association and ASUW Arts & Entertainment. Collaborations within the Art & Design, Music, and DXARTS departments, as well as Cornish College of the Arts.
Student Involvement: 

The Earth Day event will be primarily organized and implemented by a team of student leaders. This team currently includes a 9-student planning committee and 8-student marketing team. Student volunteers will have the opportunity to be part of a large-scale event encompassing a cross-campus social movement through planning, outreach, marketing, accounting, and day-of set up of the event.

Partner organization EcoReps has committed to providing their team of 5-20 service learners for marketing and day-of-event support. SAN’s council organizations will provide additional volunteer support. We plan to further extend this volunteer network as need arises throughout the development of the program. Examples of potential opportunities for additional student involvement include illustration, design, and food programs. Outreach strategies include digital communication such as email and social media, presentations in classrooms and student organization meetings, and invitations to Earth Day event planning meetings.

The event’s programming itself will consist of diverse representation from artistic, advocacy, and sustainability focused RSOs. These student organizations will use their platforms on campus to spread the word to their communities. Tabling and performances by social justice-focused UW and community groups, culturally and environmentally-oriented interactive art, and environmental outreach through groups like WashPIRG will provide students with a wide array of opportunities to get involved. The range of perspectives and narratives will create an empowering space for students to explore the ways that their unique expertise and passions fit into the sustainability conversation.

Student coordinators will develop relationships with participating RSOs to ensure a clear understanding of the SAN mission. These partnerships will enable RSOs to effectively integrate into the program and hold valuable conversations with event patrons. They will be able to communicate their role in the sustainability movement and connect students with the many available campus resources (ie. involvement in projects, access to funding, etc).

List of project team and sub-teams

UW SAN Admin Team:

This team is the central coordinating body of UW SAN that will monitor the progress of the event throughout its development and execution. This team is dedicated to building an intersectional campus sustainability network and will be continually exploring strategies for plugging that network into the programming of the Earth Day event.

Scott Davis - Graduate in Urban Horticulture: Project Manager

Sky Stahl - Undergraduate in Business & Communications: Director of Events

Zoe Shadan - Undergraduate in Political Science & Communications: Director of Council

Sasha Jenkins - Undergraduate in International Studies: Director of Partnerships

Dutton Crowley - Undergraduate in History: Intern

Lance Bennett - Faculty in Political Science & Communications: Advisor


UW SAN Executive Council:

The SAN Executive Council is comprised of representatives from eight campus groups, dedicating its assemblage to SAN’s vision, mission, and values which will subsequently guide the conception of this year’s Earth Day event. Each of the council members are involved in different aspects of Earth Day, including event planning, marketing, and developing engaging exhibits with their RSOs. Throughout the planning process, the council will gather to share progress, discuss developments within the network, and brainstorm strategies for driving further student power into the event. Represented organizations currently include: EcoReps, WashPIRG, Students Association for Green Environment, UW Sustainability, Hip Hop Student Association, Net Impact, and CSF.


Earth Day Planning Committee:

Responsible for most aspects of the event planning including budgeting, fundraising, production and booking.

Sky Stahl - UW SAN: Event Coordinator

Zoe Shadan - UW SAN: Assistant Event Coordinator

Qifei Xu - Capitol Hill Block Party: Event Planner

Alexis Neumann - DXARTS: Art Curator

Sasha Jenkins - JSIS: Outreach & Exhibit Coordinator

Alex Urasaki - EcoReps: Outreach & Volunteer-Coordinator

Jasmine Leung - Earth Club: Outreach & Volunteer-Coordinator

Anneke Mulders - Foster School of Business: Accountant & Budget Manager

Ian Rose - CSF: Project Development


UW SAN Marketing Team:

This team is responsible for promoting the event and designing the marketing campaign. They will also design the branding of the event, so it exhibits the vision of holistic sustainability and leaves a strong and lasting impact.

Julian Stickley - UW SAN: Design Director

Kat Kavanagh - Net Impact: Brand Strategist

Wole Akinlosotu - HHSA: Content & Storytelling Strategist

Jen Louie - Net Impact: Strategist

Racquel West - WashPIRG: Campus Outreach & Storytelling Strategist

Keoni Moore - Design School: Graphic Design

Qifei Xu - Capitol Hill Block Party: Community Engagement & Analytics


UW Sustainability Office:

UW Sustainability will be the office that UW SAN and its teams work with most closely. This is a valuable partnership as it will help to maintain the successful model of Earth Day that has been put on by the UW Sustainability Office in the past while also providing the opportunity for UW SAN to increase student involvement and ideas for meaningful expansion of the event. SAN and UWS have made the following plan for working together:  

  • Weekly meetings to check progress. Each party will prepare a weekly memo summarizing the prior weeks’ developments.
  • SAN to handle programming
  • SAN to monitor accounts and make sure that program is in-line with budget
  • Toren Elste to interface with university stakeholders and external vendors
  • Daimun Eklund to integrate with student marketing committee by providing previous marketing timelines and assets, as well as plugging Earth Day marketing materials into official UW channels.
  • UWS to administer budgets
  • UWS to provide guidance throughout the project.
  • SAN and UWS to hold each other accountable for keeping up with timeline
Please see theUW Sustainability Section in Student Involvement to see the roles that we have outlined with them.
TaskTimeframeEstimated Completion Date
Obtain FundingJan-FebFeb 28
Secure VenueJan-FebFeb 28
Establish Floor PlanJan-FebFeb 28
Initial Graphic / PosterFeb - MarchMarch 1
Equipment RentalsFeb-MarchMarch 15
Programming / BookingJan - MarchMarch 15
Video DevelopmentMarch - AprilApril 1
Website goes liveMarchMarch 26
Final Graphics & Marketing MaterialsMarch - AprilApril 1
Volunteer CoordinationMarch - AprilApril 1
Exhibitor CoordinationFeb - AprilApril 1
Production MeetingsMarch - AprilApril 7
Marketing CampaignMarch - AprilApril 20
Amount Awarded: 
Potential Funding Reductions: 
This budget would allow us to achieve all the goals we have set for this event plus a small amount more. With this budget we will be able to showcase performances and speakers on a professional stage, provide an effective space for partner organizations to exhibit their work, cover costs of visual and interactive art installations, and develop compelling marketing materials. If we do not receive enough funding to pursue this budget we have three areas where we can make cuts. These areas are: Marketing Video - if not enough funding is received, we can cut from the $1,500 video budget. This is not an essential piece of the production, but would add significant value in building excitement for the event / network and providing opportunities for artists to contribute their talents. Banners - in our budget for banners we included banners for the exhibiting tables of the event and a $1,000 reusable stage backdrop; if not enough funding is received, we can cut $1,000 for the stage backdrop Stage Production Labor Variance - we have included a labor variance in our stage production budget in case we have changes in our schedule that require increasing the labor costs of the staging and sound staff; if these changes are not required we will save the whole $400 for the labor variance. These possible reductions to our budget total $2,900, which reduces our budget of $15,200 by almost 20%. Having a budget of $15,200 and these three substantial reducible items gives us some room in the budget in case something we had not accounted for arises. If further cuts are needed, we will downsize the stage production. The current estimates are based on quotes from vendors recommended by ASUW. This price bracket is the minimum for a professional stage. Further downsizing would return the stage production to a similar scale of previous Earth Day events.
Project Longevity: 

Our goal is for this event to be pursued annually as a project that successfully engages students in a unique, empowering, and inclusive environment. The project should continually be improved in its ability to provide avenues for various campus organizations to contribute and be showcased. Because it so uniquely and appropriately aligns with the university’s values of sustainability and diversity, the evolution of this event should become a valuable asset to the university and the student body. This discussion of longevity involves two key aspects: future funding and administrative responsibility.

The contributing parties look to CSF’s 2018 contribution to this event as a “kickstarter” to launch this new vision. SAN is working closely with UWS and CSF staff to secure funding from other sources in future years. We plan to reach out to community organizations such as Whole Foods, PCC, Skanska Construction, City Arts, the Bullitt Center, and others that are are invested in sustainability. One idea is to set a goal this year to secure enough community sponsorships to match CSF’s contribution. This would provide a starting budget for the 2019 event. The student planning committee is currently developing materials to supplement this outreach.

UW Sustainability is hoping to reduce their responsibility for the Earth Day event over the coming years. As the event is based upon campus-wide collaboration, it may make sense for a range of academic departments to take on cooperative, administrative roles. With that aim, we are exploring ways for UWS to “pass the torch” through discussion with several stakeholders, including SAN, UW Sustainability, College of the Environment, the Center for Communications and Civic Engagement, and the Communications Department. These details are to be further discussed in the coming months.

Project status: