About Us

Sustainable Conservation helps California thrive by uniting people to solve the toughest challenges facing our land, air, and water.

We bring together business, landowners and government to steward the resources that we all depend on in ways that make economic sense. Because we know that common ground is California’s most important resource.

Too Often, Conflict Overshadows Common Ground When Solving Environmental Problems

Since 1993, Sustainable Conservation has built a track record of uniting people with different interests for conservation success. By listening deeply and honoring all perspectives, we locate common ground on which to forge a better path forward for our Golden State.

California thrives when we all work together.

Our Approach
  • We focus on problems that have not yet been adequately addressed and where our collaborative approach can make a difference.
  • We test strategies on the ground and scale those that have proven successful for maximum impact.
  • We craft solutions that benefit the environment and the economy.

Milestones

  • Sustainable Conservation logo

    Founded - 1993

    What if protecting the environment was good for business?

  • Waste to Watts

    Turning cow waste into renewable energy

  • Brake Pad Partnership

    Copper-free brakes to benefit clean water, fish

  • Clean-Air Farming

    Low-impact farming practices to cut air pollution

  • Accelerating Restoration

    Habitat restoration gets boost from new law

  • Planting Right

    America's largest plant retailers help Californians PlantRight

  • Clean Water on Dairies

    Putting worms to work at California dairies

  • Recharging Groundwater

    Alliance forms to restore groundwater in Calif.

Our People

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    Ladi Asgill

    Senior Project Manager
  • aulbach_susanna_2016-website_srgb

    Susanna Aulbach

    Grants and Contracts Administrator
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    Ashley Boren

    Executive Director
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    John Cardoza

    Project Manager
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    Robyn Carliss

    Director of Creative Services
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    Joseph Choperena

    Senior Project Manager
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    Amanda Dyson

    Donor Relations and Events Coordinator
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    Stephanie Falzone

    Project Manager
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    Ryan Flaherty

    Director of Business Partnerships
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    Katie Haldeman

    Regulatory Research Analyst
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    Christa Harader

    Grant Writer
  • Martha Henderson

    Martha Henderson

    Director of Development
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    Alex Karolyi

    Marketing & Communications Director
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    Leah Katz Ahmadi

    Senior Development Manager
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    Christina Kohler

    Project Associate
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    Eric Lee

    Science Research Analyst
  • lew_jane_2016-website_srgb

    Jane Lew

    Staff Accountant
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    Erika Lovejoy

    Associate Director of Restoration
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    Kelli McCune

    Senior Project Manager
  • merryweather_jan_2016-website_srgb

    Jan Merryweather

    Senior Project Manager
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    Rachael Monosson

    Grant Writer
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    Dr. Daniel Mountjoy

    Director of Resource Stewardship
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    Teresa Parker

    Director of Foundation and Corporate Relations
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    Cristina Reis de Araujo

    Controller
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    Erik Schmidt

    Senior Conservation Strategist
  • sergio_pamela_2016-website_srgb

    Pamela Sergio

    Director of HR and Administration
  • sheeran_susan_2016-website_srgb

    Susan Sheeran

    Development & Communications Associate
  • stapleton_lee_2016-website_srgb

    Lee Stapleton

    Executive Assistant
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    J. Stacey Sullivan

    Policy Director
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    Bill Taylor

    Office Coordinator

Board of Directors

Our experienced Board of Directors and Advisory Board members hail from those stakeholder groups Sustainable Conservation partners with daily to drive our conservation mission – industry, government, farming and the nonprofit sector. This unique composition offers diverse perspectives for developing the most effective solutions to California’s most pressing environmental problems.

  • Chris Buchbinder

    Portfolio Manager and Senior Vice President, Capital Group Companies
  • Charles Ahlem

    Owner, Charles Ahlem Ranch and Hilmar Cheese Company
  • Laura Beaudin

    Partner, Bain & Company
  • Kim Delfino

    California Program Director, Defenders of Wildlife
  • Daniel M. Dooley

    Principal, New Current Water and Land, LLC.
  • Charlene Harvey

    Civic Leader
  • Jennifer Hernandez

    Partner, Holland & Knight
  • Peter Kareiva

    Director, UCLA Institute of the Environment and Sustainability
  • Chip Koch, Secretary

    Principal Land Consultant, Safety, Health and Environment, Pacific Gas and Electric Company
  • Steve McCormick

    Co-Founder, Earth Genome Project
  • Adán Ortega, Jr.

    President, Ortega Strategies Group
  • Tina Quinn

    Co-Founder, Sustainable Conservation, Personal and Small Business Coach
  • Cindy Starrett

    Partner, Latham & Watkins
  • Mark Valentine, Treasurer

  • Stuart Woolf

    President and Chief Executive Officer

Advisory Board

  • Adrienne Alvord

    Director of California and Western States, Union of Concerned Scientists
  • David Anderson

    Attorney at Law, Land Conservation Consultant
  • Paul Betancourt

    Managing Partner, VF Farms
  • Frank Boren

    Co-Founder, Sustainable Conservation, Docent, Point Lobos State Park
  • Don Bransford

    Owner, Bransford Farms
  • Frank Casey

    Ecosystem Services Theme Lead for the Center for Science, Decisions, and Resource Management, United States Geological Survey
  • Ralph Cavanagh

    Senior Attorney and Co-Director of Natural Resources Defense Council's Energy Program, Visiting Professor of Law, Stanford University and UC Berkeley
  • Gretchen Daily

    Bing Professor of Environmental Science and Director of the Center for Conservation Biology, Stanford University
  • John Dawson

    Co-Founder, Zentek Technology
  • Dan Emmett

    Co-Founder, Douglas, Emmett and Company, Board Chairman, Douglas Emmett, Inc.
  • Bob Epstein

    Co-Founder, E2
  • Steve Gross

    Vice President of State Relations, Wine Institute
  • Charlene Harvey

    Community Leader
  • Laura Hattendorf

    Co-Founder, Former Executive Director, Sustainable Conservation, Portfolio Director, Mulago Foundation
  • Winston Hickox

    Partner, California Strategies, LLC
  • Kristine Johnson

    Director, Kingfisher Foundation
  • Rich Kelley

    Principal, Search Fund Partners
  • Bob Kirkwood

    Director of Government and Education Affairs, Hewlett-Packard Company (Retired)
  • Cindy Hunter Lang

    Director of Business Development for Brazil, Urban Innovation Exchange
  • Sally Liu

    The Nature Conservancy
  • Jerry Meral

    Director of the California Water Program, Natural Heritage Institute
  • Richard Morrison

    Senior Vice President, Bank of America (Retired)
  • Jeff Mount

    Senior Fellow, Public Policy Institute of California, Water Policy Center
  • Rebecca Patton

    Chief Operating Officer, The Nature Conservancy
  • Wendy Pulling

    Director of Conservation Programs, The Nature Conservancy, California
  • Karen Ross

    Secretary, California Department of Food and Agriculture
  • Greg Rosston

    Deputy Director and Senior Research Fellow, Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research (SIEPR); Director, Public Policy Program, Stanford University
  • Sam Schuchat

    Executive Officer, California State Coastal Conservancy
  • Rebecca Shaw

    Senior Vice President and Chief Scientist, World Wildlife Fund
  • Russell Siegelman

    Educator, Investor, Philanthropist
  • Lester Snow

    Executive Director, California Water Foundation
  • Barton "Buzz" Thompson, Jr.

    Perry L. McCarty Director, Woods Institute for the Environment, Stanford University
  • Tony Turkovich

    Farmer/Proprietor, Turkovich Family Wines
  • Allison Harvey Turner

    Program Director, S. D. Bechtel, Jr. Foundation
  • Stanley Van Vleck

    Partner and Chairman, Downey Brand
  • Paul Wenger

    President, California Farm Bureau Federation

San Joaquin Valley Regional Committee

  • Charles Ahlem

    Owner, Charles Ahlem Ranch and Hilmar Cheese Company
  • Paul Betancourt

    VF Farms and Sustainable Conservation Advisory Board Member
  • John Bidart

    Bidart Dairy, LLC/California Bioenergy, LLC
  • Philip Bowles

    Bowles Farming Company
  • Emmy Cattani

    Cattani Farming
  • Greg Coleman

    E. & J. Gallo Winery
  • John Diener

    Red Rock Ranch
  • Dan Dooley, Co-Chair

    Principal, New Current Water and Land, LLC/Sustainable Conservation Board Member
  • Michael Frantz

    Frantz Wholesale Nursery
  • Dino Giacomazzi

    Giacomazzi Dairy
  • Joseph MacIlvaine

    Paramount Farming Company
  • Soapy Mulholland

    Sequoia Riverlands Trust
  • Chuck Nichols

    Nichols Farm
  • David Orth

    Partner, New Current Water and Land, LLC
  • David Villarino-Gonzalez

    Farmworker Institute of Education and Leadership Development
  • Kathy Wood McLaughlin

    TKM Consulting, Inc./Tulare Basin Wildlife Partners
  • Stuart Woolf

    Woolf Farming

Featured in

Our work has been featured in these and many other local, state, and national media.

  • National Geographic

  • CNBC

  • Los Angeles Times logo

    Los Angeles Times

  • NPR

  • San Jose Mercury News

  • Grist

  • Wired

  • Stanford Social Innovation Review

  • The Sacramento Bee

Awards

Sustainable Conservation has received numerous awards from both public and private institutions.

  • Farmer Technical Support Innovator Award honoring Ladi Asgill, Senior Project Manager, 2016

  • UC Davis Bradford Rominger Agricultural Sustainability Leadership Award honoring Dr. Daniel Mountjoy, Director of Resource Stewardship, 2016

  • James Irvine Foundation Leadership Award, 2007

  • Governor's Environmental and Economic Leadership Award, 2004

  • US EPA (Region 9) Outstanding Achievement Award, 2004

  • California Council Environmental and Economic Balance - Edmund G. 'Pat' Brown Award, 2003

Sustainable Conservation crew working in the field

Working with Us

Sustainable Conservation is fortunate to have talented, dedicated staff who are committed to collaboration both internally and externally. We care about what we do, and we care about each other. Our size affords staff an opportunity to see the direct impact of their work, and our culture encourages continuous learning while providing opportunities for professional development. We work hard while providing flexible schedules, telecommuting, generous paid holidays and other benefits that support well-being.

Contact Us

Partners & Supporters

A sample of the diverse private, public, and non-profit partners who make Sustainable Conservation's work possible.

Private Sector

  • Akebono Brake Corporation
  • Biofiltro USA Inc.
  • Coca-Cola
  • General Mills
  • Lowe's
  • MillerCoors
  • Orchard Supply Hardware
  • Pacific Gas & Electric Company
  • The Home Depot

Government

  • Association of California Water Agencies
  • California Air Resources Board
  • California Coastal Commission
  • California Department of Conservation
  • California Department of Fish and Game
  • California Department of Food and Agriculture
  • California Environmental Protection Agency
  • California Natural Resources Agency
  • California State Coastal Conservancy
  • California State Parks Department
  • California State Water Resources Control Board
  • National Marine Fisheries Service
  • National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
  • National Resources Conservation Service
  • Regional Water Resources Control Board
  • San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District
  • U.S. Department of Agriculture
  • US Department of Agriculture, Natural Resources Conservation Service
  • U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 9
  • U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
  • U.S. Forest Service

Farming/Agriculture

  • AgFlex
  • Ag Innovations
  • Almond Board of California
  • Altman Plants
  • AmericanHort
  • American Farmland Trust
  • Ball Horticultural
  • California Ag Solutions
  • California Agricultural Systems Institute
  • California Association of Nurseries and Garden Centers
  • California Dairy Campaign
  • California Dairy Quality Assurance Program
  • California Farm Bureau Federation
  • Center for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Technologies
  • Charles Ahlem Ranch
  • Coalition for Clean Air
  • Dairy Cares
  • Driscoll’s
  • Fiscalini Farms
  • Great Valley Center
  • Hilarides Dairy, Inc.
  • Horticultural Research Institute
  • Joseph Gallo Farms
  • Lodi Winegrape Commission
  • Milk Producers Council
  • Monrovia Growers
  • Netafim, USA
  • Western Growers
  • Western United Dairymen 

Academic

  • University of California, Davis
  • UC Davis, Agricultural Sustainability Institute
  • UC Davis, Arboretum
  • UC Davis, California Center for Urban Horticulture
  • UC Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources
  • UC Master Gardener Program
  • University of California Cooperative Extension
  • University of California Conservation Tillage Workgroup
  • California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo
  • California State University, Stanislaus
  • California State University, Fresno

Non-profit

  • American Society of Landscape Architects - Northern California Chapter
  • Association of Professional Landscape Designers, California Chapter
  • Audubon California
  • Bay Friendly Landscape & Gardening Coalition
  • Cachuma Resource Conservation District
  • CalCAN
  • California Association of Resource Conservation Districts
  • California Council of Land Trusts
  • California Invasive Plant Council
  • California Native Plant Society
  • California Roundtable on Agriculture and the Environment
  • California Trout
  • California Water Foundation
  • Ceres
  • Defenders of Wildlife
  • Earth Genome
  • Environmental Defense Fund
  • Heal the Bay
  • Los Angeles Waterkeeper
  • Point Blue Conservation Science
  • Public Policy Institute of California
  • San Diego Coastkeeper
  • Sand County Foundation
  • Santa Barbara Channelkeeper
  • South Coast Habitat Restoration
  • The Nature Conservancy
  • Trout Unlimited

Finances & Accountability

Charity Navigator 4 star badgeSustainable Conservation consistently receives top honors from the country’s premier charity evaluator, Charity Navigator, for our financial strength, excellent governance, and ability to maximize the impact of donations.

In addition to our history of high marks from independent evaluators like Charity Navigator, we strive to improve our effectiveness and efficiency by:

  • Diversifying our funding sources
  • Making strategic investments to grow our reserves
  • Utilizing state-of-the-art accounting systems and best practices
  • Coordinating independent financial audits, which we do voluntarily
Foundation Grants 2541442
Individual Contributions 1917136
Government Grants 306957
Other 71910
Total Support and Revenue 4837445
Program 3415577
Fundraising 515601
General and Administrative 835759
Total Expenses 4766937
Net Assets Beginning of Year 6201079
Net Assets End of Year 6271587
Change in Assets 70508

Financial Statements

Sustainable Conservation is committed to openly sharing financial information.

Your privacy is important to us. Read our privacy policy. Sustainable Conservation does not sell or trade our donors’ personal information with other entities. Sustainable Conservation has been designated a 501(c)3 Non-Profit Corporation by the United States Internal Revenue Service. Your contribution is tax-deductible as a charitable contribution.