WestWord Rust 20th Logo 2011
Sonoran Institute Newsletter

Winter 2013   

Maria Baier photo 2012
Note from the Chief Executive Officer





I am thrilled and honored to write to you as the Sonoran Institute's new chief executive. For the past 19 years, my career has focused on land and natural resource issues in Arizona, so I have had the pleasure of collaborating with Luther and following the Institute's work since its early days. When the opportunity came to lead an organization that I respect so much and whose ideals align so closely with my own, I jumped at it. After all, this job only seems to open up once every two decades!  


Over the last month, I have begun visiting Institute employees and offices across the West and in Mexico. My goal is to listen and learn, and to test and sharpen the ideas I have about the Institute's future.


Initial impressions? Our employees are amazing people doing amazing work. The passion and dedication of our all-star staff is truly awe inspiring. Our projects are rich and meaningful, our funders are committed, and the exceptional people serving on our board would be the envy of any large entity, public or private. And, if you want to see how far a nonprofit dollar can be stretched and how dramatic conservation work can be, visit our Colorado River Delta restoration areas. Witnessing the transformation taking place there -one lovingly nurtured cottonwood seedling at a time-was a life-changing experience for me.  


There is still much to learn, but the more I know about the Institute, the more one thing becomes absolutely clear: the torch that Luther passed to me is fully ablaze and burning bright.  


Thank you for supporting us and for being a partner in the vital work we do. I look forward to learning from you as well and finding new ways for you to engage with the Sonoran Institute.  



Maria's Signature  

Maria Baier 
Chief Executive Officer



A Gift to Honor     

Rowene Aguirre-Medina's favorite memory of her father was him scooping the soil in his hands."You could see his love of the land." 



A Father's Gift - Aguirre Donate Now 2012 Donate Now Button

Take Action to Save the CO River Delta 


Join our efforts to save the magnificent Delta by helping us buy water for life in the region. 


Delta Plan of Action Cover 2011

Community Builders Summit Jan. 30 - 31 


Join us in Bozeman, Montana to learn how communities can position themselves for success in a changing world. 


Planning Strategies for Land Trusts  


Recent article explores new ideas and strategies to ensure successful state trust land organizations and initiatives.  



Land Trust Article Cover - Susan Culp 2012

Montana GAP Grant Winners   


Four Gallatin County nonprofit groups will share $25,000 for creative conservation-related project work.   





Renewable energy projects face challenges. We like the exchange of new ideas and info. for more green energy.  



Wind turbines tab - WestWord

Remember to Gift  


A reminder to make your contribution to the Sonoran Institute today! You can donate online. Thank you for your continued support. 



Agreement Boosts Delta Project


The US and Mexico signed a major new agreement in late 2012 to increase water flows to the Colorado River Delta. 



Colorado River Delta - June 2011

Choices Video


We explore why choices Choicesmatter when it comes to building thriving communities in today's economy.


New Report 

Evaluating SunZia  


The proposed SunZia transmission line is dependent on its ability to export renewable energy from New Mexico.



Sunzia Report Cover image 2013
State Trust Lands Website Launched


Check out our new web-based informational resource on State Trust Lands in the West.



Federal Tribal STL Lands in the West

Looking for inspiration and ideas using the most successful community plans in the West?



SCOTie banner tab WestWord
Read the Sonoran Institute Annual Report
2011 AR Cover lowres


New Thinking for the New Economic Reality   


Over 20 years ago, we established the Sonoran Institute with the conviction that meaningful change most often happens at the local level, and that conservation is a key component not only of our local quality of life, but also of local prosperity. Our collaborative and inclusive approach to conservation has never been more relevant.



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