The history of Sustainable Warwick begins in the formation of Community 2000, a community-based 501(c)3 organization that began in 1993, when a group of Warwick Citizens organized a “grass roots visioning process” for the town. Hundreds of townspeople came to the initial meetings to brainstorm and share their ideas for addressing the question of what their community could be. The process culminated with a “Vision Fair,” at which task-force subcommittees were formed to address a broad range of concerns, such as open space and environment, sustainability at the local level, agriculture, community outreach and education, and the arts.
That consensus led to a Warwick Master Plan and the Purchase of Development Rights (PDR) and Community Preservation Fund campaigns that would see Warwick residents vote to raise their own taxes twice in order to preserve almost 4,000 acres of prime open space throughout the town.
It was from this process of grass-roots organizing that Sustainable Warwick was formed in 2006. SW has carried forward the task of preserving and sustaining Warwick’s environment by starting a series of community initiatives.
Led in the early years by Bob McGrath and the guiding spirit of the late Seymour Gordon, SW was chaired until 2019 by Geoff Howard. Today its Steering Committee continues the ongoing mission to educate and activate Warwick – individually, collectively, and municipally – to issues that touch on the sustainability of the community and region.