Jim Branham, Executive Officer of the Sierra Nevada Conservancy and Izzy Martin, CEO of the Sierra Fund to appear at the SYRCL film festival this weekend

Nevada City, CA —

The Wild & Scenic Environmental Film Festival – presented by Patagonia- will run from January 13th-15th, 2006 in Nevada City, CA. The event is a production of–and a fundraiser for–the South Yuba River Citizens League (SYRCL), a community-based nonprofit organization committed to the protection, preservation and restoration of the Yuba watershed. Now in its fourth season, the film festival will feature 80 environmental and outdoor adventure films in five venues in the charming Sierra foothill town of Nevada City. It\'s the largest festival of its kind on the West Coast.

Jim Branham, selected as the Executive Officer of the Sierra Nevada Conservancy in October 2005, will appear at the Wild and Scenic Environmental Film Festival on Saturday, January 14th in a session entitled, “The Range of Light in Focus.” Before being named the first director of the Sierra Nevada Conservancy, Branham served as Undersecretary for the California Environmental Protection Agency.

Branham will appear at the Nevada Theatre at 9:30am as part of a panel discussion on the state of the Sierra Nevada bioregion and the progress of the Sierra Nevada Conservancy. He will be joined by Elizabeth “Izzy” Martin, the CEO of the Sierra Fund based in Nevada City and Steve Frisch, Vice-President of Programs for the Sierra Business Council located in Truckee. The panel will be moderated by influential Sierra Nevada advocate Shawn Garvey. The panel discussion will follow the screening of the feature-length film, Ansel Adams, nominated for an Emmy Award in 2002 for Best Documentary Film.

The Sierra Nevada Conservancy was created in the summer of 2004 with the passage of AB 2600. The location for the headquarters for this new agency is likely to be determined in the coming months. Nevada City is one of several Sierra foothill towns under consideration for hosting the Conservancy.

“Our film festival has always featured our home mountain range, the Sierra Nevada. With recent developments in the formation of the historic Sierra Nevada Conservancy, we wanted to create a session that would introduce local residents to the man who will be leading the Conservancy in its first years,” says Kathy Dotson, director of the film festival.

“We’re very pleased that Mr. Branham has agreed to participate in the festival. It provides an opportunity for focused dialogue with residents of our community, and I expect that we’ll leave him impressed with the dedication and passion that SYRCL supporters have for our slice of the Sierra,” adds Jason Rainey, executive director of SYRCL.

For tickets and additional information on the film festival, visit: www.wildandscenicfilmfestival.org or www.yubariver.org, or call the SYRCL office at (530) 265-5961.