Conservation leader brings national experience and perspective to regional redwood forest protection
Apr. 14, 2016 — The Board of Directors of California’s oldest land trust, Sempervirens Fund, has appointed Sara Barth as its new Executive Director. Ms. Barth leads the 116-year-old land trust in protecting and caring for the redwood forests of the Santa Cruz Mountains – a mission the organization continues since its initial protection of lands that became Big Basin Redwoods State Park.
Barth brings to Sempervirens Fund a strong record of conservation innovations and accomplishments, extensive experience in organizational leadership, and political savvy. She comes from a leadership role with The Wilderness Society where she spent twelve years working to protect our nation’s wildlands, including successfully preserving over 1 million acres of land in California and she just wrapped up a major climate adaptation project.
“Sara’s experience operating both at the national policy level and in place-based land protection efforts around the country, as well as her deep knowledge of land conservation here in California will bring our work to a new level,” said Fred Keeley, Sempervirens Fund Board President.
Barth is hitting the ground running with the organization on a number of major projects, including Castle Rock State Park’s new entrance with modern facilities on the verge of construction on property purchased by Sempervirens Fund. Restoration and public-access planning are well underway at the 8,500-acre San Vicente Redwoods property co-owned by the organization. And the campaign to secure national monument status for Cotoni-Coast Dairies in Davenport as a new unit of the California Coastal National Monument is picking up steam.
“After working on projects around the country, it’s a real pleasure to now focus on the iconic and globally significant redwood forests in my backyard,” said Barth. “These forests provide so many benefits – a home for wildlife, clean air and water, recreation and inspiration, and I’m impressed by Sempervirens Fund’s enduring effectiveness in protecting them. I see us continuing to make a critical conservation impact here while creating models that can be replicated elsewhere.”
Barth oversaw regional conservation programs at The Wilderness Society, working around the country as well as serving as a member of the national leadership team. She previously worked on conservation efforts for World Wildlife Fund and National Wildlife Federation, and was an environmental advisor to U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer in Washington, D.C., working on a broad range of natural resource issues in California and nationally.
Barth holds a master’s degree in environmental science from the University of Michigan’s School of Natural Resources and the Environment and an undergraduate degree in biopsychology from the University of Pennsylvania. She lives in Pleasanton with her husband and two children.
Sempervirens Fund’s mission is to complete the Great Park, a connected redwood forest ecosystem in the Santa Cruz Mountains.