March 25, 2019, Santa Barbara, CA – Gaviota Coast Conservancy (GCC) is proud to announce that it has hired environmentalist Doug Kern to serve as the organization’s first executive director. Doug will begin his position May 1st, 2019.

The GCC Board of Directors has just completed an extensive search to find the right leader to help grow the organization’s capacity and advance its mission of protecting and preserving the unique and precious Gaviota Coast in Santa Barbara County.

As Director of Conservation for the Mendocino Land Trust, Doug successfully completed over a dozen endangered Coho salmon recovery projects. He helped conserve old growth redwoods and agricultural lands through conservation easements and managed Land Trust properties to improve public access. His climate change work includes establishing the first public electric vehicle charging station network in Mendocino County. 

Prior to his five years at the Mendocino Land Trust, Doug served as Executive Director of the Urban Watershed Project in the Presidio of San Francisco for sixteen years. Doug also led the Presidio Restoration Advisory Board, where he organized citizen input and restored natural stream ecosystems from contaminated lands. 

Doug received his undergraduate degree from UC Berkeley in geophysics and later returned to school to earn an MBA from Cornell University. He is a trained mediator with experience resolving complex, multi-party land use issues.

“Doug brings extensive skills, experience and knowledge to our organization that will allow Gaviota Coast Conservancy to strategically pursue the preservation opportunities that are developing on the Coast. He is collaborative and energetic. We are thrilled to have engaged his service,” stated Steve Forsell, Gaviota Coast Conservancy President.

“I look forward to working with all of the GCC’s many partners and the community to protect our coastal heritage for the benefit of the plants, the critters, the local residents and future generations,” affirmed Doug.

Gaviota Coast Conservancy welcomes Doug to our community and cause with great excitement, to begin this important new phase for Gaviota Coast Conservancy.


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