Sustain the Rock Awards

The Sustain the Rock Awards recognize businesses, non-profits, individuals and departments/employees of the City of Little Rock who have made significant contributions to a more sustainable Little Rock. They contribute to a more sustainable city by embracing and promoting an approach to business and daily living that balances environmental responsibility, economic prosperity, and social equity. 


Qualifications: Nominees must live or have their principle place of business in the City of Little Rock. Self-nominations are accepted. Past winners do not qualify. To see all past winners click our winner’s list below. 

Selection Process: The Little Rock Sustainability Commission serves as the selection committee. Winners will be notified at the end of April 2024 and receive their awards in May 2024 at the annual award event.

Nomination Procedure: This nomination form will reopen in January 2025. Fill out and submit the online form to the City of Little Rock Sustainability Office. If you have any questions or issues submitting your form, please call our office at 501-371-4586.


The Sustain the Rock Award was designed and produced by Little Rock sculptor Michael Warrick, a 2020 Arkansas Arts Council Living Treasure.




2024 Sustain the Rock Award Winners

Kate Spontak
, Individual

Lauren Dixon, Individual 

Little Rock Chapter of the National Dunbar Horace Mann Alumni Association, Nonprofit Organization

Ne'Nita Doniell Clayborn, Pettaway Neighborhood Association

Rachel Tanner with Dee Brown Library, Nonprofit Organization

Shelby Thompson, Educator




Kate Spontak with Central Arkansas Master Naturalists

Kate Spontak with Central Arkansas Master Naturalists

National Dunbar Horace Mann Alumni Association - LR Chapter

Rachel Tanner with Dee Brown Library

Lauren Dixon with Sierra Club and Little Rock Women For Good

Ne'Nita D. Clayborn with Pettaway Neighborhood Association

Shelby Thompson with Pinnacle View Middle School


Kate Spontak has loved trees her entire life! She is a Central Arkansas Master Naturalist, a Master Gardener, and the leader of the CAMN Tree Replacement Project which provides locally grown, native trees for Little Rock residents who suffered loss in last year's tornado. Kate recruited over 100 volunteers to grow tree saplings to distribute and plant this fall, educating residents on tree placement, watering, and long-term care. Her efforts will provide numerous benefits to the community for years to come, including energy savings to homeowners, stormwater reduction, carbon sequestration, shade and beauty.


Lauren Dixon is a leader in environmental education, social justice, and community empowerment. She recognizes that social and environmental concerns are inseparable, and serves the Little Rock community as Vice Chair for the Central Arkansas Sierra Club, a board member for the Central Arkansas Harm Reduction Project, a board member of the Pulaski County Court-Appointed Advocates, and the Leader of Development and Engagement for the nonprofit organization Little Rock Women For Good. 


The Little Rock Chapter of the National Dunbar Horace Mann Alumni Association exists to focus on an important part of Little Rock's history. That history includes the many black children who were educated through the segregated educational system in Little Rock and went on to achieve successful careers in many fields across the world. The Little Rock Nine were products of both Dunbar and Horace Mann Schools. Each year, the NDHMAA provides $2,000 in scholarships to 3 students that attend a historically Black college or university in Arkansas. They work to ensure that these stories are not forgotten, and to remind the community of the value and importance of education.


Ne'Nita Doniell Clayborn is a wonderful leader and catalyst for creating community in the Pettaway neighborhood. She has facilitated workshops for local food opportunities and honing gardening skills, and organized a traffic calming and crosswalk project to demonstrate how to make public infrastructure safer for walking and biking. To encourage neighbors to be more civically engaged and active in the community, Ne'Nita makes connections and keeps her neighborhood informed of events and news around town with weekly newsletters and monthly in-person neighborhood meetings.


Rachel Tanner has made sustainability accessible to all at the Dee Brown Library. She has hosted cooking programs using local produce, designed arts & crafts projects with recyclables, and educated the public on the litter issue in our waterways. Rachel implemented and oversees the Tool Library and the Repair Cafe. Free to the community, it's a space for residents to meet up and repair household items for continued use, which saves valuable natural and financial resources. The Tool Library has a bicycle repair station outside of the building for anyone to use at any time.


Shelby Thompson teaches sustainable agriculture through the EAST program at Pinnacle View Middle School - the first EAST program in the Little Rock School District to focus on urban agriculture. Shelby and her students were awarded the 2022 Arkansas School Garden of the Year award in its very first year! As a student-driven program, PVMS EAST projects have included solar-powered electric chicken fencing, hydroponics and vermiculture bins, composting and container gardening, pollinator beds, herb beds, wind power, and more. The students of PVMS EAST hope to develop a permaculture campus, where the school cafeteria might be supplemented with the food grown on campus, where school power might be generated by the wind and sun, and where the well-being of the school's students and staff will be a healthy journey promoted through this EAST Agriculture program.