All Posts

Announcing the New Chief of External Affairs

E-News, Publications

November 2023

We would like to extend a warm welcome to Kirsten Peterson Johansen who has joined the Conservancy’s executive team as Chief of External Affairs. Working closely with President and CEO Whitney Latorre and the executive team, Johansen will lead and inspire an integrated team, engage with devoted, generous board members, and partner with scientists and educators. In this role, Johansen will be leading development, membership, marketing, communications, campaigns, and special events. She most recently served as Assistant Dean of the USC School of Architecture, for Advancement, and previously held leadership roles at the Phoenix Art Museum, National Park Foundation (philanthropic arm of the National Park Service), Smithsonian Institution, and the National Trust for Historic Preservation. She is excited to join the Catalina Island Conservancy team and help promote its mission of education, conservation, and recreation.



Invasive Monoculture to Thriving Ecosystem

Three sections along Stage Road are getting a refresh! From invasive monoculture to thriving native ecosystem, this multiyear process is coming along with a little help from our friends. You may have noticed Conservation Corps of Long Beach working hard along the roadways the last several months. After Cal FIRE funded removal of sections of aggressive flax-leaf broom (Genista linifolia), Conservation Corps has been laying jute cloth to help with erosion control. Without additional intervention, these slopes would revert to being covered by the invasive shrub.Because of the persistent nature of Genista linifolia, more site preparation will take place in the coming months before planting native species next fall. We have identified this area as an opportunity to potentially start with flora that are not high on the menu for invasive herbivores, such as lemonade berry (Rhus integrifolia), black sage (Salvia mellifera), sticky monkey flower (Diplacus puniceus), and more island chaparral. This will increase biodiversity, prevent erosion, reduce threat of fire, and beautify the landscape. See the full list of Catalina Island’s native plants by clicking the link below.



Community Festival

We value our Catalina community! The Conservancy got into the autumn spirit this October, participating in City of Avalon’s Fall Carnival to support Avalon Schools and local nonprofits. The community enjoyed carnival-inspired games, food, live music, and a beach-side pumpkin patch. At the Catalina Island Conservancy booth, locals and visitors could work with our education department to make holiday ornaments out of pinecones. Creations included owls, foxes, spiders, jack o’lanterns, and bats. We hope everyone enjoys the cozy fall season. For more upcoming events and activities visit the link below.



The Art of Conservation

Each year, artists pack up their palettes and head to Catalina Island, translating meaningful conservation work into impactful art pieces. These works are showcased at the Catalina Island Conservancy: The Wild Side Art Show & Sale. This year’s show brought together artists and those who love Catalina to support the vital conservation, education, and recreation programs of the Conservancy. Prior to the show, those who registered previewed works in a virtual brochure and watched artist videos with descriptions of their works. Supporters purchased dozens of paintings, with proceeds helping promote the resilience of Catalina Island. Miss the show? There is still time to bring a piece of Catalina home. Select pieces are available online through November 3.



This E-News article was originally released to our subscribers via our email newsletter. If you would like to receive articles like this one, directly to your inbox, sign up below!