About Us

About Us

We are a non-profit organization formed in 1974 to promote the welfare of the desert tortoise (Gopherus agassizii) in its native wild state. Organizational members share a deep concern for the continued preservation of the tortoise and its habitat in the southwestern deserts.

Our Mission

The Desert Tortoise Preserve Committee is dedicated to the recovery and conservation of the Desert Tortoise (Gopherus agassizii) and other rare and endangered species inhabiting the Mojave and western Sonoran deserts.

We accomplish our mission through
  • Land Acquisition & Stewardship: acquiring, protecting, and restoring lands to support recovery of the desert tortoise, Mojave ground squirrel, burrowing owl and other flora and fauna.
  • Education: increasing awareness and understanding of desert tortoises, their natural habitat, and human activities impacting their populations.
  • Research: promoting studies of the biology, ecology, and natural history of the desert tortoise and other species.
  • Collaboration: working with our members and donors, State and Federal government agencies, and community stakeholders to support the recovery and restoration of desert tortoises and the ecosystem in which they inhabit.

Who We Are

Our organization is composed of our Board of Directors, Preserve Manager, dedicated members and volunteers.

Board of Directors

Our dedicated volunteer Board of Directors includes biologists, entrepreneurs, geographers, and educators including two founding members of the DTPC.

  • Ron Berger, President (2019-2020)
  • Rachel Woodard, Vice President & Secretary (2019-2022)
  • Laura Stockton, Treasurer (2017- 2020)
  • Dr. Kristin Berry, Board Member (2017-2020)
  • Greg Lathrop, Board Member (2017-2020)
  • Larry Nelson, Board Member (2018-2021)
  • Kathryn Buescher Simon (2020-2021)


Preserve Manager & Conservation Coordinator

  • Austin Hulbert

Executive Administrator

  • Sophia Osho


Our members and volunteers are the foundation of our organization. Our wonderful supporters contribute to the organization through land monitoring, stewardship activities including our bi-annual work parties, and community outreach events. They offer financial support through annual membership dues and donations.

Group shot from our spring 2018 work party. Volunteers are pictured with invasive species they successfully removed.

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