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Friends of the San Dieguito
River Valley
The Board of Directors of the San Dieguito River Park Joint Powers Authority announced the selection of Kevin McKernan as its new Executive Director. 

Press release: May 20, 2015.  Mr. McKernan has over six years of experience as Executive Officer of two State conservancies, and as a Program Director with the Conservation Lands Foundation.  He has also served as an Environmental Director and Planner for two Native American tribes.  Mr. McKernan’s most recent position is as the Executive Officer of the San Diego River Conservancy.  His new responsibilities with San Dieguito River Park include directing the operations of the JPA, including managing eleven employees involved in planning, constructing, and maintaining the trails, habitat and improvements within the park.  Mr. McKernan will start work in his new position on June 29.

Board Chairperson Don Mosier commented that “the San Dieguito River Park is pleased to select Kevin McKernan for this leadership role.  We believe Kevin will continue the great progress being made by the park.  He brings a strong background in conservation management and outdoor recreation, and a real passion for and commitment to his profession.”  Mr. McKernan assumes a position previously held for 16 years by Richard Bobertz, who recently retired.

The San Dieguito River Park Joint Powers Authority manages over 55 miles of habitat and trails for hikers, bicyclists, and equestrians that stretch from Volcan Mountain in northeast San Diego County to its ocean outlet at the beach in Del Mar.  Over 70 miles of trails exist within the park, of which the primary feature is the Coast to Crest Trail.  The San Dieguito River Park is a joint powers agency between the Cities of Del Mar, Escondido, Poway, San Diego, and Solana Beach, and the County of San Diego.  The long term mission of the JPA is to finish the planning and construction of the Coast to Crest Trail from Del Mar to Julian, of which two thirds is already complete and available for public use. 


San Dieguito River Watershed

San Dieguito River Watershed.  Courtesy JPA

From the mountains to the sea, the 55-mile-long San Dieguito River originates at Volcan Mountain in the Cleveland National Forest.  From there, it meanders through Lake Sutherland, San Pasqual Valley, Lake Hodges, the Del Dios Gorge and the San Dieguito Lagoon to the river’s mouth in Del Mar.  The river and its major tributaries flow through sensitive natural habitats, including oak/pine woodlands, sage scrub, and coastal wetlands, creating a network of critical wildlife habitats.

Our Mission 


Established in 1986 as a non-profit, and supported by a network of members and affiliates, the Friends of the San Dieguito River Valley promotes and supports conservation, restoration, preservation and enhancement of the natural scenic, ecological and open-space resources of the San Dieguito River Valley through advocacy, study, monitoring, and education.



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