Director, Center for Science & Public Policy (joined TNC 1997)
As Director of the Conservancy’s new Center for Science & Public Policy, Rob is studying the relationship among urban growth, future water supplies, and climate change, and continues to focus on bringing the right minds and collaborators together to ensure science helps inform important public policy issues that impact people and nature.
Rob joined The Nature Conservancy in 1997 to lead bi-national conservation planning efforts for the Sonoran Desert and Apache Highlands ecoregions. As Science Director, Rob spearheaded partnerships with the U.S. Forest Service, Department of Defense, Bureau of Land Management, AZ Game & Fish Dept., AZ Dept. of Transportation, and other public and private partners to develop studies that address ecological management of our lands and waters. These collaborative efforts resulted in new regional assessments with contemporary information on the status of grasslands, forests, freshwater systems, and endangered species. As a member of Pima County’s Sonoran Desert Conservation Plan Steering Committee, Rob developed the habitat protection priorities for Pima County’s 2004 bond initiative where voters approved $174 million for conservation acquisitions.
Rob was trained as an avian ecologist. Prior to joining TNC he was an endangered species biologist for the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service and a research scientist for the Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology and U.S. Forest Service’s Rocky Mountain Experiment Station. Rob currently serves as a member of Pima County’s Conservation Acquisition Commission assisting the County in the implementation of the Sonoran Desert Conservation Plan.
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