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Welcome James, our new South Sacramento NeighborWoods Coordinator!

By James Saetern

September 14, 2017

Hello, my name is James Saetern, and I’m excited to be the new South Sacramento NeighborWoods Coordinator for the Sacramento Tree Foundation!

As a South Sacramento resident, this position was a perfect fit for me when I was looking to leave government service and return back the non-profit world. I have been a South Sacramento resident for over 25 years and consider myself a native. I attended both elementary and middle school in the area. In addition, I worked with non-profit community-based organizations serving Southeast Asian families and children in South Sacramento. My experience -- along with SacTree’s mission to build healthy, livable communities in the Sacramento region by growing the best urban forest in the nation -- made accepting this position a no-brainer.

What really solidified my decision to join SacTree is the South Sacramento NeighborWoods initiative to empower and support a neighborhood’s collective desire to improve their community through tree planting and care activities. I want to be part of an initiative that will bring beautiful, tree-lined streets, shaded parks and schools, and full-canopied back and front yards to the South Sacramento neighborhoods. With the help of our neighbors, highly dedicated and knowledgeable staff, and a vision, I truly believe we can make South Sacramento a healthy and livable community again.

My educational background includes studies in social science at Sacramento City College and business administration at California State University Sacramento (Sac State). I went back to Sac State to earn a Master's Degree in Recreation Administration in 2012. I focused my research for my Master's thesis around leisure and recreational opportunities for non-English speaking persons because of the lack of services for this population.

Speaking of leisure, I love to fish and spend my time on the California Delta chasing trophy large mouth and striped bass. Fishing is a multifaceted hobby for me. I like to take the factory fishing reels and tune and modify them to be faster, lighter, and just cooler looking. Furthermore, I like to reclaim old furniture wood and carve my own lures. (And, yes, they actually catch fish.) I also enjoy taking my nephews to local parks in South Sacramento neighborhoods. I recently picked up cycling. You can catch me riding up and down South Sacramento and the American River bike trail.

I’m excited to be part of the SacTree team and excited to get out in the community and work with all its neighborhoods and organizations on building an urban forest in South Sacramento. Please don’t hesitate to email me at james@sactree.com with questions about our South Sacramento NeighborWoods initiative. I would love to hear your thoughts.