Catalina Island News

Catalina Island Conservancy Names New Director of Conservation

Catalina Island Conservancy

The Catalina Island Conservancy today announced the appointment of a new director of conservation, Frank Galea, who has 30 years of conservation experience as a wildlife biologist in Northern California. In his new position, Galea will supervise the Conservancy’s conservation staff and programs to help the nonprofit organization fulfill its mission of protecting and restoring Catalina Island.

“We are extremely pleased to have Frank join our team,” said Tony Budrovich, Conservancy president and CEO. “His extensive background in biological consulting and his demonstrated expertise in conservation will help ensure the Conservancy continues to restore and protect the Island’s natural habitats and species.”

Galea founded Galea Wildlife Consulting (GWC) in 1989 to advise a wide variety of companies, tribes and land owners. He is a Certified Wildlife Biologist® and an expert in habitat assessments, habitat conservation plans and human/wildlife contact. His past projects included surveying for mountain goats in Alaska and mitigating threats to endangered species.  As a member of the Del Norte County Fish and Game Commission, he advised a county Board of Supervisors on drafting state legislation regarding fish and game issues.

He also worked with Redwood Sciences Laboratory to study, track and use location mapping in the recovery efforts for the Northern Spotted owl. Additionally, he worked for the U.S. Forest Service to relocate elk from private to public properties. He has completed 21 specialized training certifications in his field and has hired and trained staff on wildlife protection and conservation programs.

Galea grew up in Orange County and said he first visited the Island as a teen. He still remembers how excited he was to take his first tour of the wildlands. Since then, he has flown, sailed and boated to Catalina, all with friends and family to enjoy the Island.

“I am very excited to have the opportunity to work with the Conservancy,” Galea said. “I was very attracted to the Conservancy’s mission of being a responsible steward of its lands through a balance of conservation, education and recreation. I believe my experience managing a very broad spectrum of conservation and wildlife management issues gives me the skills to make a significant contribution to helping the Conservancy fulfill its mission.”

Galea has 30 years of conservation experience and holds a bachelor’s degree in zoology, as well as a master’s degree in natural resources and wildlife management. Galea plans to live on Catalina with his family.

About the Conservancy
Formed in 1972, the Catalina Island Conservancy is one of California's oldest land trusts. Its mission is to be a responsible steward of its lands through a balance of conservation, education and recreation. Through its ongoing efforts, the Conservancy protects the magnificent natural and cultural heritage of Santa Catalina Island, stewarding approximately 42,000 acres of land and more than 60 miles of rugged shoreline. It provides an airport and 50 miles of biking and nearly 150 miles of hiking opportunities within its road and trail system. The Conservancy conducts educational outreach through two nature centers, its Wrigley Memorial & Botanic Garden and guided experiences in the Island’s rugged interior. Twenty miles from the mainland, the Island is a treasure trove of historical and archaeological sites. It also contains numerous rare and endangered animals and plants. The Island is home to 60 species – and counting – that are found only on Catalina. For additional information, please visit our website.