County of Marin - News Releases - IPM Achievement Awards

For Immediate Release
April 24, 2017

Supervisors to Honor Pest Management Stalwarts

Pablo Rosales and the late Ann Spake dedicated to limiting pesticide use

San Rafael, CA – Two Marin County environmental champions are being bestowed a rare honor by Marin County Board of Supervisors and the Integrated Pest Management Commission because of their dedication to responsible pest management within the County.

Headshot photos of Ann Spake and Pablo MoralesAnn Spake and Pablo Rosales

The late Ann Spake, a longtime member of the local Sierra Club chapter and a former Marin County Health Commissioner, and Pablo Rosales, the maintenance supervisor at the McInnis Park Golf Center in San Rafael, will be honored with the Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Achievement Awards during the April 28 meeting of the IPM Commission.

Spake, a Mill Valley resident who died of cancer in February 2017, was a recent recipient of a lifetime award by the Marin County IPM Commission for "Honoring Marin leaders of integrated pest management practices, resulting in a healthier population and environment.”

In her letter to nominate Spake, Marin County IPM Commissioner Jean O’Leary said Spake completed vast amounts of research about pesticide and herbicide use in Marin and advocated passionately to reduce their use in public lands. “Ann has been an inspiration for many of us, devoting her time to come to our commission meetings and sharing her research with sound science,” O’Leary wrote.

Rosales was responsible for bringing the McInnis golf center into compliance with the County’s IPM ordinance and policy, something that nominator Chris Chamberlain of Marin County Parks described as a “challenging task” because of the maintenance of sensitive turf. Rosales incorporated non-chemical alternatives such as aerating, overseeding and fertilizing with compost tea.

“He reached outside the conventional pesticides box to explore viable opportunities that not only comply with the ordinance but exceed those requirements,” Chamberlain wrote. “… He also opened up his maintenance yard to a group of concerned citizens who were eager to hear more about his approach to IPM practices.”

The County’s IPM program uses best practices and science to protect the health of the public and the environment, to help manage County-maintained sites, minimize loss due to pests, and reduce pesticide use. Of the 147 parks and County facilities maintained under the County’s IPM Ordinance (ranging from traffic medians to roads to regional parks and pathways to the Marin County Civic Center), 126 were managed without the use of pesticides in 2016.

Each year volunteers from the Marin community donate thousands of hours of labor to physically remove invasive vegetation such as French broom, scotch broom, thistles, fennel, and non-native plants from County properties. Anyone interested in joining or forming a volunteer group should contact Kirk Schroeder or 415-473-3778. More volunteering opportunities may be found on Parks’ volunteering webpage.


Chris Chamberlain
Assistant Director
Marin County Parks

Marin Civic Center
Suite 260
San Rafael, CA 94903
(415) 473-5085
Email: Chris Chamberlain