Making a difference for the next 50!
This year Point Blue celebrates a milestone anniversary: 50 years of conservation science for a healthy planet! As we reflect on all we’ve achieved and look ahead to the next 50 years, we pause to thank you, our members, partners, and community leaders. Together, we’re building an incredible legacy of world-class scientific research and innovative, climate-smart conservation solutions.
This year Point Blue celebrates a milestone anniversary: 50 years of conservation science for a healthy planet! As we reflect on all we’ve achieved and look ahead to the next 50 years, we pause to thank you, our members, partners, and community leaders. Together, we’re building an incredible legacy of world-class scientific research and innovative, climate-smart conservation solutions. We are deeply grateful for your loyal support!
Because of your commitment to our scientific, nature-based approach to conservation, Point Blue and our partners have been able to protect and enhance our natural world for five decades and counting:
• We’ve helped establish three national marine sanctuaries and an International Biosphere Preserve,
• We’ve pioneered community-based watershed restoration and management programs that reduce the adverse effects of human activity and forge stronger connections between people and nature,
• We’ve helped protect marine mammals by working to end gill net fishing and launching programs like Whale Alert to identify whale hotspots and prevent ship strikes,
• Along with our partners, we’ve protected vital habitat for shorebirds by helping 226 rice growers secure over $10 million in Farm Bill funds to implement bird-friendly practices on 112, 500 acres on California ricelands,
• And, since 1965, more than 1,500 interns from 22 countries have completed Point Blue’s renowned conservation science training programs, with 80% going on to careers in conservation!
These are but a small sampling of what we’ve accomplished together since 1965, and—thanks in large part to your support—the list continues to grow.
While we’re proud of our conservation successes, much work remains to be done. This occasion for celebration falls at a critical time for the future health of our planet. Our decades-long studies of environmental change show that the effects of climate change are continuing to escalate. We have heard your call to protect birds, other wildlife and ecosystems, and we’re leveraging our vast scientific data and expertise to help guide important conservation actions in California and beyond.
I hope you will join us in celebrating all that you have helped make possible during our last 50 years, and help us get to work on our next 50! Please consider making a gift that will carry forward our efforts to understand changes in nature over time and develop innovative, nature-based solutions to human-driven impacts on our planet. Point Blue’s continued ability to guide effective conservation depends on the partnerships and commitments of our scientists, partner organizations, communities, and people like you.
I am enormously grateful to all who have helped us reach this landmark year. I know that, together, we will continue to find solutions to sustain vibrant wildlife and human populations for the next 50 years and beyond!
Ellie M. Cohen
President and CEO
Your generosity supports the innovative work of Geoff Geupel, director of Point Blue’s Emerging Partnerships and Programs. As Geoff puts it, “I came to Point Blue as an intern in 1980, looking for an opportunity to live and breathe birds in the natural world.”
Since that beginning 35 years ago, Geoff has identified and developed conservation opportunities from the grazing lands of the Central Valley to the desert southwest. And Geoff is training the next generation of conservation scientists along the way. The vibrant intern program that launched Geoff’s career continues to be a unique opportunity for promising young conservationists to study birds and other indicators of nature’s health. Since Point Blue’s founding we have graduated over 1500 interns and launched hundreds of careers in conservation science!
Your giving makes the work of Tom Gardali, Pacific Coast and Central Valley Group Director, possible. Drawn to the life of a field biologist, Tom’s career at Point Blue also began with an internship at the Palomarin Field Station.
“I recognized the importance of ecological restoration to repair our damaged environment, and championed it as a key area of study for Point Blue. We’ve demonstrated that the success of a restoration can be measured by how birds respond.”
Tom has also led efforts to design climate-smart restoration projects that are more resilient to the impacts of a changing climate and weather extremes. Your gift helps support climate-smart restorations!
Jaime Jahncke, director of our California Current Group, began his conservation career in his native Peru. Jaime brings international perspective to Point Blue’s work in Marine Sciences. “I came to Point Blue in 1999 as a volunteer on Southeast Farallon Island, just before I began my doctorate work at UC Irvine.”
Jaime returned to Point Blue to launch a new area of research on ocean food webs, through observing krill, whales and seabirds. The multi-year data sets from this project catalyzed the development of the Whale Alert-West Coast partnership, which engages citizen scientists to reduce whale strikes in the busy shipping lanes off California’s coast. Jaime has also developed new partnerships with NOAA National Marine Sanctuaries and several universities, informing climate adaptation and marine zoning to protect wildlife and human benefits.
Melissa Pitkin, our Education and Outreach Group Director, first came to Point Blue as a third grader on a field trip to observe bird banding at the Palomarin Field Station. A college ornithology class visit brought Melissa back in 1997. Soon after she joined Point Blue as an intern. Melissa and her team of educators now engage more than 3,000 student scientists annually in the field and classroom. Melissa leads our award-winning STRAW program: Students and Teachers Restoring a Watershed.
These efforts inspire young conservation scientists to tackle the challenges of climate change and other environmental threats. Your generosity will help students and teachers make a difference!
Thanks to your support, Point Blue Principal Scientist Gary Page has become a world-renowned expert on the behavior, ecology, and conservation of shorebirds and their habitats.
Under Gary’s leadership, we are working with federal and state agencies to restore Snowy Plover populations in the Monterey Bay area by protecting their sensitive coastal dune environment from human disturbance, development, sea-level rise and other threats.
Gary has also launched wetlands programs, organized the first coast-wide and interior surveys of breeding Snowy Plovers in California, and led early efforts to model the effects of oil spills on birds in the waters of the
Gulf of the Farallones.
Ryan Burnett, director of our Sierra Nevada Group, joined Point Blue in 1997 as an intern in the then fledgling San Francisco Bay Tidal Marsh project.
“I met a former Palomarin intern while I was tagging sea turtles in Costa Rica. She put me in touch with Geoff Geupel, and the rest is history!”
Ryan is proud of his award winning collaborations with Point Blue partners. “We have restored hundreds of acres, from riparian habitats to aspen and meadow restoration in the Sierra Nevada.”
In recent years, Ryan has helped make significant strides to reduce the negative impacts of salvage logging on our forest ecosystem. This important work will ensure more climate-resilient landscapes
into the future.
Point Blue Conservation Science's Federal Tax ID: 94-1594250