Environmental justice champion Diane Takvorian, whose organization has helped empower low-income residents seeking a healthy and sustainable quality of life for their neighborhoods, is the KPBS and the National Conflict Resolution Center’sCommunity Hero for environmental sustainability, KPBS reported.
Takvorian is the executive director of the Environmental Health Coalition, which she helped found in 1980. The coalition’s focus is environmental social justice, defined by the notion that everyone deserves a safe place to live, work and play, said Takvorian, who has been drawn to civil rights issues since her youth.
Takvorian credits her passion for social justice to her own family’s travails that stretch back to the early 1900s. Her grandparents survived the Armenian Genocide in 1915 and came to the United States two years later. Takvorian and her parents lived in Pasadena, where she says she experienced some discrimination because of her ethnic background