Anthony Sanchez sees himself as an individual who has a vision and a calling to do his part to make the world a better place and bring more peace into the world: peace with oneself, peace with others and peace with nature. His personal upbringing in New York City didn’t provide him with the access and benefits that nature provides. At the age of 13, he got into trouble and was sent to a Catholic institution in upstate New York. There for the first time, he experienced the things rural residents take for granted, like skating on a frozen pond, riding horses, and hiking through the woods. The importance of his first experience with the outdoors was that it led him to say “yes” the next time. So many young people of color today growing up in similar low-income urban environments are also disengaged with the natural world and need that first experience that builds their awareness of and connection to nature.
Anthony co-founded Eagle Eye Institute in 1991 and was the volunteer Executive Director until 2003. This has been a tremendously rewarding endeavor for him as he has brought together diverse people that wouldn’t otherwise have worked together for the benefit of youth. Adults often say they feel they are getting more from their experience with the youth than they are giving the youth.