• Green City Force was awarded two 2018 Service Year Awards from the Service Year Alliance. The first, for Excellence in Employer Engagement, and the second, for Transcending Outcomes for Opportunity Youth.
  • Green City Force received an Exceptional Service Award from the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) for its NY Residential Existing Homes Program, in recognition of our work on EmPowerNY.
  • Green City Force was named among the Citi Foundation’s prestigious Community Progress Makers for the second time, in recognition of our program’s disruptive, systems-change focused approach.
  • Corps Center of Excellence, a subsidiary of The Corps Network – the national association of Service and Conservation Corps, granted Accreditation to Green City Force following a rigorous review process.




  • GCF selected as a member of the Citibank US Foundation’s Community Progress Makers Fund in May. The cohort includes 40 organizations working in six cities across the country working to create economic opportunity.
  • GCF Urban Agriculture Director Jennifer Tirado introduced environmental activist Majora Carter at the Food + Enterprise Summit in April, flanked by members of the Urban Farm Corps.
  • GCF awarded a three-year grant of $750,000 from The New York Community Trust for the NYCHA Urban Agriculture Initiative in February.
  • GCF one of four partnerships selected for second cohort of JobsFirstNYC’s Young Adult Sectoral Employment Project (YASEP). For the YASEP, GCF partnered with the for Energy Affordability, Con Edison, L+M Development Partners, Inc., C+C Management, and NYCHA’s Office of Resident Economic Empowerment and Sustainability to focus on the sector of sustainable buildings as a subset of green jobs.
  • GCF presented at The Corps Network Annual Conference in Washington DC in February. Executive Director Lisbeth Shepherd led a panel discussion on the Next Generation of Urban Conservation and Community Leaders, featuring panelists Katie Adamson of YMCA of the USA, Denise Fairchild of Emerald Cities Collaborative and Mustafa Ali of the Environmental Protection Agency. Senior Program Office Dennis Acevdeo gave a presentation on empowering youth of color in corps.
  • Green City Force was honored to receive the 2016 Community Impact Competition Project of the Year award at the 43rd annual the New York Housing Conference (NYHC), themed Keys to Opportunity. The award recognizes projects and programs “making a difference in neighborhoods across New York State.”


  • GCF awarded a $35,000 youth justice grant from the Brooklyn Community Foundation as part of the inaugural cohort of their Invest in Youth Grant Program. The initiative aims to empower Brooklyn’s vulnerable youth.
  • GCF’s Senior Director of Programs, Dennis Acevedo, and Executive Director, Lisbeth Shepherd, delivered the keynote address at the 2015 SUNY Sustainability Conference, held at Stony Brook University.
  • GCF AmeriCorps Member Mark Guzman featured on the Front Page of El Diario Neuva York in an article covering the City Council’s ‘A Greener NYC’ Initiative;
  • Green City Force hosted New York City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, Council Member Donovan Richards and Council Environmental Protection Chair Costa Constantinides on September 28th for a press conference announcing the recipients of over $1 million in funding to support the Council’s FY 16 “A Greener NYC” initiative;
  • GCF Corps Members featured in REV4NY Exchange video released in September. The video highlights how the community of Red Hook is planning for a more resilient energy future post-Sandy.
  • GCF selected to serve as the primary nonprofit partner for the NYCHA Urban Agriculture Initiative (UAI), a program of the Mayor d Blasio’s Building Healthy Communities initiative. The UAI will result in the construction of five new urban farms at NYCHA public housing developments over three years.
  • GCF alum Ashley White invited to participate in a panel discussion on environmental activism in New York City at the Museum of the City of New York in April, alongside staff from WeACT for Environmental Justice and Enterprise Community Partners.
  • Executive Director Lisbeth Shepherd featured by Hearts on Fire as their “Visionary of the Week” in their May 18th newsletter.
  • GCF’s Urban Farm Corps one of several conservation corps nationwide selected in April for Project Build, a project of KEEN Utility and The Wilderness Society to raise awareness for the 21st Century Conservation Service Corps.
  • GCF honored with a 2015 Environmental Champion Award by the Environmental Protection Agency, Region 2 on April 24th. The Environmental Champion Award is the EPA’s highest honor. GCF was one of 25 organizations or individuals from New York recognized for protecting the environment.
  • GCF graduate Shanee Lucas featured at press conference on April 9th announcing the launch of the nation’s largest public housing energy savings plan. Shanee delivered remarks alongside NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio, US Department of Housing & Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Julian Castro, New York City Housing Authority Chair Shola Olatoye and other key city and state officials.
  • GCF presented with a Certificate of Recognition by Mayor de Blasio during the 2015 Mayors Day of Recognition for National Service on April 7, 2015. The certificate recognizes our “efforts to encourage volunteerism and improve our city.”


  • In March, Corps Member Abdu Rodney was featured in the first of the Brooklyn Community Foundation’s Brooklyn Insights Stories, following his and another Corps Members’ participation in a young adult round table discussion on challenges facing urban young adults.
  • GCF honored by Council Member Donovan Richards, Chair of the Environmental Protection Committee, and Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito at the New York City Council’s “A Greener NYC” event on September 30th at City Hall. The Proclamation presented to GCF at the event states “Whereas few organizations have been as essential to the growth and collective well-being of our citizens, or have made environmental service to our City a matter of priority, as Green City Force”.
  • GCF chosen as a 2014 Advocates Award honoree by Environmental Advocates of New York  for our work to combat climate change by training young adults for green jobs, alongside Stuart Bernstein of Goldman Sachs and New York Times journalist Andrew Revkin.
  • Senior Program Director Dennis Acevedo awarded the New York City Employment and Training Coalition’s Bonnie Potter Workforce Staff Award, which recognizes a front-line staff member who enhances the field of workforce development in New York City.
  • Executive Director Lisbeth Shepherd was one of seven women chosen as a New Profit Accelerator Entrepreneur in October. The goal of the one-year Accelerator program is to “accelerate the potential of extraordinary female social entrepreneurs and the impact of their organizations.”


  • GCF distinguished by Mayor Bloomberg as the “Most Innovative Nonprofit in NYC.”  
  • GCF in partnership with NYCHA and Added Value launches the Red Hook Urban Farm; a 1.1 acre farm in the center of Red Hook Houses West, first of its kind in the city! 
  • GCF Winter 2013 Corps Member addresses National Service Summit at the Aspen Institute. Watch and read his remarks.
  • In September, GCF Executive Director Lisbeth Shepherd was recognized at the White House as a Youth Jobs+ Champion for Change addressing youth unemployment. GCF was one of  only nine organizations selected nationally.
  • In November, Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter launched a citywide corps inspired by and modeled on GCF—PowerCorpsPHL—which pairs sustainability, workforce development and national service.


  • July 2012: GCF wins $1.5 million award from NY State Commission on National and Community Service to double number of Corps Members served.
  • In July 2012, GCF hailed as “National service at its best,” by Asim Mishra, Acting Chief of Staff, Corporation for National and Community Service.
  • In April 2012, Van Jones features GCF on stage at the NYC Green Festival: “These are the real heroes… Green City Force is connecting those who most need work with the work that most needs to be done.” Watch the video.
  • GCF is chosen by NYC Green Festival attendees as the winner of the Ford Community Green Grant.
  • Corps Members receive a standing ovation at the first New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) Sustainability Conference
  • GCF is chosen as one of four resident engagement case studies at the Pratt Center’s “Managing Lean and Green” workshop, for our work educating NYCHA tenants about energy efficiency.
  • GCF featured in “Grown in Brooklyn” photo exhibit in the Atlantic Avenue subway complex. 


  • The Corps Network national awards: Project of the Year (2011) for Youth Leaders in Service for Corps Members’ role in leading volunteers as part of the NYC °CoolRoofs campaign, “Corps Members of the Year” for Maurice Davis (2012). 
  • GCF is featured in the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal for opening Planters Grove, a sustainable park located on public housing property on the Lower East Side.
  • At the Planter’s Grove opening, U.S. Congresswoman Nydia Velazquez lauds GCF and announces legislation that would create a Civic Justice Corps. “We’ve seen firsthand how initiatives like GCF enable young people to support their communities, while preparing them for productive careers.” 
  • Executive Director Lisbeth Shepherd named a Draper Richards Kaplan Fellow. 
  • GCF recognized at Clinton Global Initiative America 2011, as a promising job creation strategy. President Clinton remarked, “How much does it cost…to put all these young people to work, giving them a path to job training, giving them a path into a community college, giving them a path into a decent livelihood? This is a huge deal. You can do this in every city in America.” 
  • President Clinton follows up his endorsement at CGI with a mention of GCF in his most recent book, Back to Work.   
  • GCF featured on a panel at the NYCETC annual conference as one of the New York City Housing Authority’s most successful training partnerships


  • GCF receives The Corps Network’s national Youth as Community Leaders Award, selected out of hundreds of submissions from around the country, for Corps Members’ role in leading volunteers as part of the NYC ˚CoolRoofs campaign. 
  • Mayor Bloomberg acknowledges Green City Force when coating the millionth square foot of rooftop in the NYC O Cool Roofs campaign in October
  • President Clinton cites GCF’s commitment to create a model Clean Energy Corps on the Daily Show with Jon Stewart, in conjunction with the 2010 Clinton Global Initiative. 
  • GCF 2010 pilot in partnership with Community Environmental Center yields 70% retention and 100% placement; GCF partners on NYC Cool Roofs pilot with NYC Service and the NYC Department of Buildings; GCF selected by The Corps Network as recipient of AmeriCorps slots through their Clean Energy Service Corps initiative.


  • GCF is selected as a member of Blue Ridge Foundation’s New York portfolio
  • GCF becomes a member of the Campaign for Tomorrow’s Workforce and JobsFirst NYC


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