McDowell Sonoran Conservancy Names Parsons Field Institute in Honor of $600,000 Grant from The Bob & Renee Parsons Foundation.
The McDowell Sonoran Conservancy has officially branded its research facility, The Parsons Field Institute, in honor of a $600,000 grant from The Bob & Renee Parsons Foundation. The Conservancy partners with scientists and volunteers to conduct research that builds best practices for long-term resource management, contributes to the broader scientific knowledge of natural areas and creates educational opportunities.
“As Scottsdale residents, Bob and I value the breathtaking views and public access of the McDowell Sonoran Preserve, and we want to help ensure it is sustained for future generations,” said businesswoman and philanthropist Renee Parsons.
Nestled in the mountains of North Scottsdale, the McDowell Sonoran Preserve encompasses more than 30,000 acres of land with nearly 170 miles of trails. In addition to its work to understand and preserve this territory, the field institute is helping spearhead a regional, open space conservation strategy. The grant from The Bob & Renee Parsons Foundation will support the field office for three years, allowing the Conservancy to further its scientific efforts to:
- Assess the impact of urban stressors and climate change on the Preserve
- Improve best management practices in ecological restoration and control of invasive non-native plant species for the Sonoran Desert and other arid lands
“We are grateful to Bob and Renee Parsons for their ongoing support of our goal to become the leader in urban preserve management and be long-time stewards of the McDowell Sonoran Preserve,” said Justin Owen, executive director of the McDowell Sonoran Conservancy. “Funding for The Parsons Field Institute will allow us to deepen our research and expand community programs in the areas of education, advocacy and access.”
Bob and Renee Parsons have been longtime supporters of the McDowell Sonoran Conservancy and through The Bob & Renee Parsons Foundation have granted more than $800,000 to the Conservancy over the past six years. The recent grant will also support marketing efforts to enrich the Conservancy’s brand and elevate community awareness. Additionally, BIG YAM, The Parsons Agency – a full service advertising firm owned by Bob Parsons – is donating $100,000 of pro-bono work to develop a comprehensive marketing strategy and brand assets for the Conservancy.
“I’ve always said that Arizona is one of the last great states for business, and it is undeniably a beautiful place to live,” said American businessman and philanthropist Bob Parsons. “We believe in maintaining a balance between development and preservation, which is why we support the McDowell Sonoran Conservancy and the work being done to protect and promote our state’s natural resources.”
A nonprofit organization, the McDowell Sonoran Conservancy relies on more than 650 steward volunteers that provide time and expertise to help residents and visitors experience, enjoy and learn from the Sonoran Desert. To learn more visit mcdowellsonoran.org or follow @mcdowellsonoranconservancy on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter.