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The Environment Ventura website is maintained and contributed to by a number of local activists. Each one of us has experience and expertise in a number of areas, from ecology to government, and social services to transportation. We have specialties in water management, wildlife, rivers, and development.

Robert Chianese, Ph.D.

Bob retired as Professor of English from CSU Northridge after 40 years, teaching literature and the environment for his last 20 years there. He taught at CSUN's Ventura campus and helped hire the first faclty at Cal State Channel Islands. He specializes in the connections among the Sciences and the Humanities and is a columnist for American Scientist magazine. As a past president of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, Pacific Division, he offers yearly symposia on art, literature, and the environment.


As a local activist, he focuses on water, historical and habitat preservation, and advocates against over-development. He headed the Sustainbility Council of Ventura County for many years and was editor and writer for the Ventura Hillside Conservancy newsletter. He publishes poems and photographs on theses topics. His personal website is, where a number of his photographs, publications and essays can be found.

Daniel Cormode

Dan Cormode holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering from the University of California at Los Angeles.  He has 54 years of experience performing engineering and logistics analysis in support Navy weapon systems and over 15 years of experience serving as Chair of the Planning & Development Committee of the East Ventura Community Council.  He develops reports on planning, development, environmental and sustainability issues related to community planning.

Diane Underhill

Diane is a local business woman and owner of 1585 Thompson Antiques. She heads the Ventura Citizens for Hillside Preservation organization, and advocates for preserving open space and protecting local habitats for plants and wildlife as well as for non-destructive human recreation and enjoyment. Born and raised in Ventura, she knows that special places like Ventura deserve to have its environment and its quality of life protected. She has a Bachelor of Arts degree in both Design and English from Stanford University.


She has long been engaged in the local community. She is presently active on the following boards: President of the Ventura Citizens for Hillside Preservation; Chair of the Friends of the Ventura River Coalition; Voting Member of the Ventura River Watershed Council; the Ventura High School Alumni Foundation and advisory member of Citizens for Responsible Oil and Gas.

Guest Commentators
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