The Sierra Nevada Conservancy family lost one of our own on April 26 when Marji Feliz passed away after a short battle with pancreatic cancer.
Marji was one of the SNC’s first employees and actually volunteered to help the SNC organize itself even before becoming an employee. She performed several roles at the SNC during her 10 years as an employee, including developing grant guidelines, organizing workshops, overseeing the Great Sierra River Cleanup, developing our fund development program, and assisting with the strategic plan. Marji approached each role with the same sense of organization — she was a great project manager, letting no one escape their responsibilities — and was a master of the English language. Marji left the SNC last year when her husband Joe received a promotion and they moved to Marin County.
When spending time with Marji you learned a couple of things quickly. She had a great sense of humor, specializing in sarcasm and taking facial expressions to an art form, and it was Marji with a J, never a G. You only needed to misspell it once and you would never do it again!
She and Joe loved traveling and exploring new places, particularly the outdoors, led by Marji’s sense of adventure and curiosity. They loved to travel via Joe’s motorcycle, together seeing and enjoying all the sights. True to form, Joe was by Marji’s side throughout her most recent, unwelcome journey. Their bond was unmistakable and admirable, and fortunately they didn’t wait for “someday” to see and do what interested them.
In addition to her official duties at the SNC, Marji introduced us to the annual Peeps’ battles in the break room microwave. Who knew melting marshmallow figures could bring so much joy? She was a founding member of the “Vesapalitas,” joining two of her co-workers on journeys near and far on their trusted Vespas.
We are saddened deeply by Marji’s passing, but we are fortunate to have spent so much time with her here at the SNC. She was a kind and compassionate person, and while her passing occurred way too soon, she lived life to its fullest. We appreciate her many contributions to the organization and we will always remember her unmistakable, infectious laugh! When Marji laughed, the whole office knew it.
Farewell Marji, we love you and miss you.