About Fire Safe Santa Cruz County

Fire Safe Santa Cruz County (FSSCC) was formed in September 2016 as a nonprofit corporation, 501(c)(3), in the state of California through collaboration between local fire safe councils, CAL FIRE, local government, water districts, non-profit organizations, industry, and the Resource Conservation District of Santa Cruz County (RCD). FSSCC is overseen by a Board of Directors. The RCD temporarily serves as the group’s fiscal and administrative sponsor, while we build capacity.

Our Mission

The purpose of Fire Safe Santa Cruz County (FSSCC) is to educate and mobilize the people of Santa Cruz County to protect their lives, homes, community, and environment from wildfire. 


Two-thirds of Santa Cruz County is considered Wildland Urban Interface (WUI), putting a large percentage of our population, housing, economy, wildlife, and environment at risk from catastrophic fire.

Valuable Programs We Provide:

  • Helping the public learn to live with fire in Santa Cruz County
  • Disseminating guidelines for preparing our homes to resist wildfires (home hardening)
  • Disseminating guidelines for reducing fuels around our homes and neighborhoods
  • Assistance to neighbors wanting to form Firewise Communities and work collaboratively to make their homes and neighborhoods more resilient to wildland fires
  • Educational public presentations on wildfire resilience strategies (examples include Residential Insurance Cancelations and Home Hardening Strategies)
  • In conjunction with our partners, provide response to individual homeowner requests for assistance, such as chipping programs

End Results

To embrace proactive steps we can all take to make our homes, our neighborhoods, our communities, and our County more resilient to wildfires through education, home hardening, strategic fuel reduction, and community collaboration.

Meet the Fire Safe Santa Council of Cruz County Board Members

Executive Committee:

 Primary Affiliation
 Term End Date
 President  Joe Christy
 President, Fire Safe Council of Bonny Doon
 June 2024
 Vice President
 vacant  June 2024
 Treasurer  Cindy Weigelt
 State Farm Agent, Firewise Member
 Patty Ciesla  Wildfire Resilience Program Manager, OR3, County of Santa Cruz
 June 2024
 Advisor  Lisa Lurie  Resource Conservation District of Santa Cruz County
 June 2024


Board Members:

 Name   Primary Affiliation  Term End Date
 Chris Berry
 City of Santa Cruz Water Department
 June 2024
 Carly Blanchard
 San Lorenzo Valley Water District
 June 2024
 Patty Ciesla
 Office of Response, Recovery, and Resilience
 June 2024
 Robert Gray
 Felton Fire Department  June 2023
 Liz Kroft
 Sol Property Advisors
 June 2024
 Bob Loveland
 City of Santa Cruz, Planning Department
 June 2024
 Lynn Sestak
 Santa Cruz County Firewise Coordinator
 June 2023
 Tim Shields  City of Santa Cruz Fire Department  June 2023
 Felix Sorrentino  PG&E, Vegetation Management  June 2023
 Ashley Weil  California State Parks  June 2024
 Julie Wuest
 CERT Trainer, Concerned Citizen
 June 2024
 Abby Young  Firewise Coordinator, Concerned Citizen  June 2023


Board Support:

Sophia Sholtz
Administrative Coordinator

Ilana King
Concerned Resident and Financial Advisor

Organization Documents

pdfArticles of Incorporation

pdfFSCSCC Bylaws

pdfFederal Tax Exemption

pdfStrategic Plan Approved 1/20/2022

Copyright © 2023 Fire Safe Council of Santa Cruz County. All Rights Reserved.