Tejon RancH Conservancy eNews February 2019


By President and CEO Bob Reid

The world of conservation is ever changing, always challenging, and filled with potential. The Tejon Ranch Conservancy has witnessed all of this…and knows changes are indeed, inevitable. I will be retiring from my role as President and CEO, confident in the progress of the past three and a half years, as well as in the organization’s 10-year history. It takes allies to make conservation of this magnitude possible, and we’ve had many through the years.

Top photo and photo at left by Laura Pavliscak

The landmark 2008 Ranch-Wide Agreement (RWA) was a historic achievement, creating the Conservancy and placing 240,000 ecologically significant acres into conservation—in itself, a pretty remarkable accomplishment. Due to circumstances that no one could have anticipated, and beyond anyone’s control, the economic collapse and recession that same year impacted the future flow of funding intended to support the Conservancy beyond 2021. By far, this remains the Conservancy’s biggest challenge and one we are all hopeful will be met. The Conservancy board has been working diligently to identify the best pathway forward, keenly aware of the importance of the historic RWA.

In order to preserve resources to address this financial challenge, the Conservancy Board of Directors has had to make several difficult decisions. This includes moving forward with a smaller staff by not filling vacant positions (President and CEO, Conservation Communications Manager, Public Access Manager, as well as the Stewardship Manager position vacated in August). The Conservancy is hopeful these moves will help it prepare for the future and support its core mission of advancing conservation values here at Tejon Ranch.

Photo by Charles Noble

The Conservancy will proceed under the capable direction of Conservation Science Director C. Ellery Mayence, Ph.D., and supported by Operations Director Tim Bulone, Biologist Mitchell Coleman, Administrative Coordinator Susan Chaney, Education Coordinator Paula Harvey, and Public Access Assistant Reema Hammad.

Challenges certainly remain, but the Tejon Ranch Conservancy is very fortunate to have so many friends and advocates, and with your continued support and understanding, it will weather the changes, meet these challenges, and seize its potential.

So with great respect and appreciation, I’ll say one last time: See you on the Ranch!

Bob Reid

President and CEO

Photo by Mitchell Coleman


By Conservation Science Director C. Ellery Mayence

Photo by Laura Pavliscak

Hello, wildflower enthusiasts! With the recent precipitation, and more in the forecast for early February, we appear to be on track, hopefully, for a promising 2019 wildflower season. In the weeks to come, as we get a better handle on when and where the best blooms are likely to be found, we’ll begin scheduling public wildflower viewing events. Please stay tuned to our website calendar, Facebook page, and future editions of this newsletter for more information.

Photo by Mitchell Coleman


Good news, our year-end challenge is growing, with nearly $25,000 raised so far.

And now some great news…our challenge donor has increased her gift by $10,000 to $60,000, and lowered our matching amount by $10,000 to $40,000.

WOW…that’s pretty amazing, but we need to keep going to meet the February 12 deadline! So please help the Conservancy MEET ITS MATCH and raise just another $15,000.


Let’s work together to use this gem of nature, the Tejon Ranch, for students to discover, to explore, and to learn.

Students from the Integrated Science class from Frazier Mountain High School at Tejon Ranch.

The Tejon Ranch Conservancy is a 501c3 non-profit organization and all gifts are tax deductible to the full extent allowed by law. If you've already given, thank you!

Photo at left: Students from the Bren School study use of drones in environmental work.

Photo by Mitchell Coleman


Ben Teton

After five years of rewarding work with the Conservancy, Ben Teton is leaving us to pursue a new conservation venture. Ben started as a Wildlife Biologist and evolved to Conservation Communications Manager. He established an extensive wildlife camera network on the Ranch, led the USDA APHIS wild pig study that put Tejon on the map in terms of modern animal tracking and identification, and provided hours of great wildlife video enjoyed by thousands of fans on social media and in this monthly ENews. The culmination of this effort was Ben’s work on the recently released short video, “I Am Tejon,” a soon-to-be-launched website, and creating the last several issues of ENews.

Ben had great dedication to the Conservancy, its amazing wildlife and terrain, and the science it all supported, as well as to the importance of wildlife conservation worldwide. We wish Ben well and thank him for being such an important part of the Conservancy.

Chris Fabbro

We’d also like to thank Chris Fabbro for helping to build up the Public Access program at Tejon, opening up old relationships and building new ones with numerous agencies and groups including California Conservation Corps (pictured here), Hungry Valley and Fort Tejon State Parks, F.I.E.L.D. Institute, Volunteer Vacations and the U.S. Forest Service, to name a few.

Public Access events became more creative, diverse, and frequent during his tenure as Public Access/Education Manager. The education program was also greatly expanded and, working with Education Coordinator Paula Harvey, outreach to schools grew significantly, as did the number of visitors eager to visit the Ranch.

Chris would be the first to say it couldn’t have happened without volunteers, and he brought his experience working with hundreds of volunteers at Angeles National Forest to Tejon, building an expanded docent program with trained naturalists eager to share their knowledge, led by Chris’ enthusiasm and gusto for the great outdoors, and for Tejon Ranch. We wish Chris well and thank him for helping to share the Conservancy with the public.

Photo by A. Jones


Left to right: Muted swans; Paula Harvey and Bill Lydecker; David Leslie and Bill Lydecker birding at Findhorn Bay.

During an extended stay in Forres, Scotland, Education Coordinator Paula Harvey visited longtime Conservancy volunteer Bill Lydecker who currently lives in Scotland. He arranged for a birding tour with David Leslie of Aberdeenshire Bird Tours. “Every bird I saw was new,” says Paula. “My favorites included pintail ducks and muted swans. There were many, many more, including curlews, pheasants, rooks, wood pigeons, black-backed gulls, herring gulls, wigeons, buzzards, kestrels (oh, I already knew that one!), and on and on, and on.”

Photo by A. Jones


By Administrative Coordinator Susan Chaney

With each new year comes the task of filing alphabetically the copies of our thank-you letters to donors and members. I finished putting 2018’s letters in order on January 10. You might think this would be boring, almost drudgery. But I find it inspiring.

As I sort through the giant stack of thank-you letters, I see donations as small as $25, lots of memberships at $50 each, higher level memberships, donations from Board members, staff members, and their families, and the letter to our benefactress who challenged our supporters in 2017 so we could get a new, big van, and again in 2018 to fund TEJON TEACHES. I also see copies of cash receipts from tours of individuals and checks from organizations whose members have visited to bird or to explore the amazing botany of the Ranch.

We send letters all over California, from our neighboring community, Pine Mountain Club up in Los Padres National Forest, to the Bay Area, to Bakersfield, to San Diego, and to many, many towns and cities in between. I also see some that traveled to Montana, Idaho and other states.

I am not quite stunned, but perhaps, awed, by the fact that all these people, and Audubon societies and other nonprofits, support the work we do at the Tejon Ranch Conservancy. Every one of them punched in their credit card numbers online or pulled out a checkbook to keep our programs vital, interesting and available.

Yes, awe. That’s the right word.

Photo by Mitchell Coleman

Click here to support the Tejon Ranch Conservancy


(661) 248-2400


Thank you!

Tejon Ranch Conservancy E-News produced by co-editors Tim Bulone and Susan Chaney. If you'd like to contribute to E-News please let us know.

Created By
Tim Bulone

Report Abuse

If you feel that this video content violates the Adobe Terms of Use, you may report this content by filling out this quick form.

To report a copyright violation, please follow the DMCA section in the Terms of Use.