Friends of Ballona Wetlands presented awards for environmental and cultural achievements during the group’s second annual Moonlight on the Marsh recognition dinner Saturday, July 24th.

Accepting the awards were:

Mary Lou Crockett and Marcello Cruz, Westchester/Playa del Rey Historical Society, for compilation of local history;

Danny Glieberman, Falcon Water Free Technology vice president, for promotion of a water-free urinal;

Elsa Lopez, Audubon Center at Debs Park executive director, and Chuck Davis and Glennis Briggs of EHDD Architecture, for outreach to underserved communities and for the center’s design; and

Jacob Lipa, Psomas president, for his contribution to the freshwater marsh on the Ballona Wetlands.

Ruth Lansford, Friends of Ballona Wetlands president, said the Historical Society serves as the primary source of information about the community’s colorful past.

One of the Historical Society’s major projects is creating oral histories of longtime residents of the community.

At the recognition dinner, Cruz presented Lansford with the first copy of a just-completed oral history on Mary Thomson, a local artist, author and Ballona Wetlands supporter who recently died.

Friends of Ballona Wetlands is currently creating a Discovery Center in cooperation with Loyola Marymount University, Playa Vista, Ballona Wetlands Foundation, Gabrielino/Tongva Native American tribe and other stakeholders.

The Discovery Center will be a scientific and cultural museum built on 1.8 acres east of Lincoln Boulevard, north of the West-chester Bluffs.

The mission of the Friends of Ballona Wetlands is to preserve, protect and restore what the group considers to be the last major coastal wetlands in Los Angeles County.

Historical Society information, (310) 216-5947.

Friends of Ballona Wetlands information, (310) 821-7695 and