Nuestra Tierra Conservation Project
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Nuestras Voces

06 - From ABQ to the Bay, Perspectives from Federal Land Managers

It’s #LatinoConservationWeek! To celebrate, we’re featuring two stories and two perspectives from two Latino federal land managers from Albuquerque and San Francisco.

Part of the way that federal land management agencies can better reflect the diversity, stories, and culture of all of the people of this nation is by hiring people of color to lead their planning, management and outreach efforts. The Next 100 Coalition included this request as part of its draft Presidential Memorandum issued by President Barack Obama in 2017.

In this episode, Francisco Valenzuela and Miguel Marquez illustrate why this ask was dead on. As the director of recreation tourism, heritage, and wilderness resources for the U.S. Forest Service Region 3, Francisco spent his career on efforts working to change the way that national forests engage with Latinx youth and communities, and talks about his findings from analyzing the racial gap in outdoor recreation on national Forests.

Miguel, also known as the bearded ranger, is a former National Park Service guide and now a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services Urban Refuge Ranger in San Francisco. Miguel has spent his career in federal land management engaging underserved youth, exploring new ways to get young people involved in conservation and outdoor recreation, and tells us about his stories working in places like Washington, D.C., and Hot Springs, Arkansas.

Francisco Valenzuela

Director of Recreation, Heritage, and Wilderness Resources, U.S. Forest Service R3



Miguel Marquez

Urban Refuge Ranger, Don Edwards Urban Wildlife Refuge, USFWS


Website: Don Edwards San Francisco Bay

Instagram: @mggy1

Gabe Vasquez