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August 03, 2011

Vote Today for COX Conserves Hero Nominee and WiLDCOAST Volunteer Irene Barajas!

Voting ends on Friday August 5th, so please vote today!
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Irene Barajas and Girl Scout Troop 5912 in the Otay Valley Regional Park

VOTE HERE for WiLDCOAST super volunteer IRENE BARAJAS! Anyone, anywhere in the world, can cast their vote by August 5th.

See Irene's moving COX Environmental Hero video HERE.

Cox Communications, in partnership with The Trust for Public Land (TPL), have announced their finalists for San Diego’s third annual Cox Conserves Heroes program. Sponsored locally by Think Blue San Diego, the program invites the San Diego community to nominate adults and youth who volunteer their time for environmental and community causes.

Girl Scout Leader Irene Barajas of San Ysidro, a WiLDCOAST volunteer who leads a troop of 60 Girl Scouts, was selected as one of six finalists. This honor makes her eligible to receive up to $10,000 in prize money to be donated to the environmental organization of her choice. Irene has decided that if she wins, the award will be donated to WiLDCOAST. The funds will be dedicated to community and volunteer based environmental restoration projects and environmental education programs in the Otay Valley Regional Park.

“Irene has been dedicated to working with her Troop 5912 and WiLDCOAST to clean up and restore wildlife habitat in the Otay Valley Regional Park (OVRP). We’re so excited that Irene was chosen as a Cox Conserves Heroes finalist and we couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate her hard work and her commitment to her Girl Scouts and the environment,” said A.J. Schneller, WiLDCOAST’s OVRP Conservation Program Manager.

COX selected Irene for her outstanding efforts in fostering pro-environmental consciousness. Irene, her Girl Scout troop, and their parents have coordinated and facilitated over 65 conservation-oriented volunteer projects to restore and rehabilitate the Otay River Valley. The troop has weeded, planted, watered and cultivated a love for the park and the ecological restoration projects there. Irene sees these projects as key to nurturing an environmental consciousness in girls who otherwise lead very urban lives.

“We’re very proud of Troop 5912’s leadership in enhancing Otay Valley Regional Park,” said Jo Dee C. Jacob, CEO of Girl Scouts San Diego. “Irene leads the largest of our council’s 2,300 troops and one of the most active. Since her first volunteer experience with Girl Scouts in the 1980s, she has helped hundreds of girls to discover themselves, connect with each other, and take action to make the world a better place.

Cox Communications and TPL launched the Cox Conserves Heroes program to inspire more people to take an active role in neighborhood conservation, while also providing financial support to local environmental nonprofits. From July 18 through August 5, the public can vote for the finalists HERE!

On August 19th, the winners will be recognized during an on-field ceremony at the San Diego Padres game at PETCO Park. The Cox Conserves Heroes will then award a total of $35,000 to the environmental nonprofits of their choice.