Benefits of Urban Tree Planting

Urban Tree Planting pic

Urban Tree Planting

A graduate of the University of California, Berkeley, Neill Sullivan manages SMC, LLC, and REO Homes, LLC, the latter of which specializes in the restoration of vintage houses. Through his position with both companies, Neill Sullivan has played an active role in beautifying West Oakland by planting hundreds of trees.

A 2012 report compiled by an environmental group in Indianapolis highlighted the numerous benefits of planting trees in urban areas. Aside from improving air quality and reducing carbon dioxide, the benefits of urban planting range from energy saving to community building.

Referencing a University of Illinois study, the report notes that urban areas with a high volume of trees have fewer and less-violent crimes than those without. Ultimately, the greener the neighborhood, the lower the crime rate. Separate studies showed that trees not only reduce noise pollution in neighborhoods, but also have relaxing qualities and numerous healing powers. For instance, the presence of trees outside a home can reduce UV-B exposure by about 50 percent, limiting the possibility of skin cancer.


The Benefits of Trees in the Community


Trees pic


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


Playworks pic


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.

What is the Sullivan Community Space?

Neill Sullivan - West Oakland Community-Focused Head of REO Homes

Neill Sullivan

Neill Sullivan is an entrepreneur and philanthropist that currently serves as the founder and president of REO Homes in Oakland. Outside of his professional work, Neill Sullivan is engaged in numerous charitable ventures, which includes promoting financial literacy and hosting free martial arts classes at the Sullivan Community Space.

Martial arts classes are just one of the many benefits of the Sullivan Community Space. Founded by Mr. Sullivan to serve the west Oakland community, the Sullivan Community Space offers free space for community members to meet and engage in recreational activities. The space maintains a particular focus on serving area youth.

To date, the primary use of the Sullivan Community Space has been to provide martial arts classes for local children. Martial arts benefits include improved health, discipline, and self-confidence among others. Classes are held on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays, and each class is designed for specific age groups. These groups include six to eight year olds, nine to 12 year olds, six to 12 year olds, and those 13 and older. The space is located at 1671 8th Street in Oakland, California. For additional information, visit