MTRP Foundation

Mission Statement

In partnership with the City of San Diego, preserve and protect the natural environment of Mission Trails Regional Park and provide and promote educational and recreational opportunities.

About the Mission Trails Regional Park Foundation

The Mission Trails Regional Park (MTRP) Foundation was formed in 1988 as a 501(c)(3) non- profit organization to preserve, improve, develop, and maintain the park and to foster public appreciation and understanding of Mission Trails. The organization was founded by Jean Hatton, Dorothy Leonard, and Michael R. Pent. The Foundation is governed by a Board of Directors in accordance with the State approved Articles of Incorporation and Bylaws and has paid staff led by the Foundation’s Executive Director.

In 1991, the City of San Diego and MTRP Foundation entered into an agreement regarding their relationship which included the approval of the Foundation’s annual work program. Regular MTRP Foundation activities reflected in the work program include soliciting funds (private donations, grants), publicizing the park, maintaining a gift shop, sponsoring programs such as the park’s annual Arbor Day, hiring and maintaining MTRP Foundation staff, purchasing supplies and equipment for Foundation and City use, funding exhibits, films, and construction projects, and coordinating activities with City staff.

The Mission Trails Regional Park Visitor and Interpretive Center

The first joint endeavor of the City and MTRP Foundation was construction of the Visitor and Interpretive Center, which opened in 1995. The MTRP Foundation secured millions in funding for the project, more than half of what was needed. The resulting design, with its soaring architecture, stunning views and spacious amenities now serves as an ambassador and gateway to the park. Each year,
more than 10,000 San Diego County school children begin their exploration of the park from the Visitor Center, and these field trips to MTRP have become a much-looked-forward-to rite of passage for many of the region’s elementary students.

East Fortuna Field Station

In February 2020, members of the MTRP community gathered for the ribbon cutting ceremony of the new 5,000-square-foot ranger station in the East Fortuna Staging Area. A major entry to the Fortuna area of the park, the completion of this long-awaited facility was funded by the City of San Diego and the Mission Trails Regional Park Foundation. This important park investment gives rangers improved resources and a state-of-the-art facility to better protect the park and engage with park visitors.

Mission Trails Regional Park Foundation

Board of Directors
President – B. Lane MacKenzie
Vice President – Cynthia Cornelius
Secretary – Lauren Krase
Treasurer – Brian Wright

Randall Christison, Esq.
Bruce Folkmann
Fred Kramer
Ruth Gautereaux
Todd Linke
Katy McDonald
Neil Mohr
J. Carlton Morse II, CFP
Adrianna O’Donnell, CFRE
Betty Ogilvie

Honorary Directors

Nancy Acevedo
Deputy Director, Parks and Recreation Department, Retired
Past Vice President MTRP Foundation

Dorothy Leonard
Chair, MTRP Citizens’ Advisory Committee
Past Secretary/Treasurer MTRP Foundation
Park Founder

Joseph C. Morse
Past President MTRP Foundation

Hon. Dick Murphy
Mayor, City of San Diego, Retired
Superior Court Judge, Retired
Vice Chair, MTRP Citizens’ Advisory Committee

Michael R. Pent
Past Chair MTRP Citizens’ Advisory Committee
Past President MTRP Foundation
Park Founder

Jennifer Morrissey, Executive Director (
Heidi Bates, Educator*
Lola Castro, Gift Shop Sales Associate*
Taylor Crowley, Communications and Operations Assistant (
Janet Gavaldon, Operations Manager (
Kindra Hixon, Stewardship Manager (
Robin Kendall, Educator*
Beryl Lewis, Development Manager (
Alissa Lustgarten, Lead Educator (
Iris Thompson, Educator*

*Indicates part-time position

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