The Benefits of Trees in the Community


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An Oakland-based business executive, Neill Sullivan is the founder and president of SMC and REO Homes in California. A graduate of the University of California, Berkeley, Neill Sullivan is also an active member of his community. In addition to founding a local community center, Mr. Sullivan is engaged in efforts that range from enhancing financial literacy to helping the environment.

These environmental-improvement efforts have included funding to plant hundreds of trees in West Oakland. According to the Ecology Global Network, trees benefit communities by improving the quality of air and water, providing energy savings, and even providing social benefits. Some examples of how trees can help communities include:

Filtering pollutants in the air, such as carbon monoxide and sulfur dioxides

Reducing topsoil erosion and lowering the amount of water communities must manage during storms

Reducing the reliance on air conditioning for homeowners with trees in their yards

Speeding healing time for medical patients and increasing relaxation and overall well being


SMC East Bay Funds Playworks Program at Prescott Elementary School


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Neill Sullivan leads as president of Sullivan Management Company, LLC; SMC East Bay; and REO Homes, LLC. Committed to improving the West Oakland, California, community, Neill Sullivan has made significant charitable contributions, including a $10,000 donation in conjunction with the team at SMC East Bay to support Prescott Elementary School’s Playworks program.

Prescott Elementary School was chosen to take part in the Playworks program, which revolutionizes school recess by building an environment in which all children feel included, actively participate in activities, and develop social skills. The progress made on the playground extends to the classroom, helping to reduce conflict and stress.

By donating $10,000 to the Prescott Elementary School’s Playworks program, Sullivan and the SMC East Bay team got the school started on the way to reaching its fundraising goal of $32,000. With the initial donation, Coach Adam was able to successfully begin the Playworks program at Prescott Elementary School and help improve the lives of youth in West Oakland.