Audubon California (San Francisco, CA)


  • Name:Gaylon Parsons
  • Title:Director of Strategic Partnerships

Organization Address

  • Organization Name:Audubon California
  • Address:220 Montgomery Street Suite 1000
    San Francisco, CA 94104-3402
    United States

Organization Phone

  • Main phone:415-644-4605

Organization Web

User Email


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  • Mission:
  • The Audubon Center at Debs Park is an environmental education and conservation center for the communities of Northeast Los Angeles and citywide established in 2003. Through an innovative public/private partnership with the City of Los Angeles, Audubon leases a 17-acre site on the northern edge of Debs Park and built a center which is a LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Platinum certified green building. Our mission is to inspire people to experience, understand and care for the local natural world by providing nature-based programs to engage low-income and underserved urban families in the outdoors, and making environmental issues relevant to their lives.

    The Audubon Center at Debs Park is a program of the National Audubon Society’s Audubon California field office. Audubon’s mission is to conserve and restore natural ecosystems, focusing on birds, other wildlife and their habitats for the benefit of humanity and the earth’s biological diversity.

  • Overview:
  • Audubon California, on behalf of the Audubon Center at Debs Park, respectfully requests a $5,000 grant for support of core programs for underserved youth in northeast Los Angeles. We believe our programs align with the interests of the Lawrence Foundation and look forward to partnering with you to protect the wildlife of urban Los Angeles and expose children to the wonders of the outdoors.

    Among the Center’s goals are to deliver dynamic, standards-based educational programs that teach scientific principles in an applied environment to youth and to increase the quality of life in the low-income neighborhoods surrounding the park by encouraging healthy outdoor activity and community involvement in preserving safe open spaces. Activities include providing an attractive and welcoming center for the community, providing a comprehensive suite of programs for the public, showcasing green building and environmental sustainability, and restoring and stewarding Debs Park.

    Annually we serve 16,500 people including 2,400 low-income urban youth through direct programming and drop-in visits to the Center. Most visitors come from surrounding communities of northeast Los Angeles. Over 70% of the target area residents are Latino and 80% speak a language other than English. Nearly 40,000 children under the age of eighteen live within two miles of the Center, of whom 31% live in poverty (US Census Data). Demographics of the children served last year through this direct programming is approximately 75% Latino, 15% Caucasian, 5% Asian/Pacific Islander, and 4% African American. Most program participants come from the surrounding neighborhoods in northeast Los Angeles.

  • History:
  • National Audubon Society is one of the nation’s oldest conservation organizations, founded in 1905. Audubon California, the state field office of National Audubon Society, was founded in 1997, and works to enact our mission in the Golden State. The Audubon Center at Debs Park is a program of Audubon California, established in 2003.

    The establishment of the Audubon Center at Debs Park was an investment in people and place and a major accomplishment in itself. Working closely with community advocates, civic leaders, and Los Angeles city staff, Audubon helped develop a comprehensive plan for Debs Park. Unanimously adopted by the City Council in 2001, the plan set aside two-thirds of the 282-acre Debs Park as urban wilderness. Audubon and the City entered into a public/private partnership and Audubon then built a new environmental education center, opening to the public in 2003.
    The Center is a cutting-edge green building that is a model of sustainable architecture. It was certified as the nation's first LEED Platinum building by the U.S. Green Building Council, the nation's leading authority on sustainable building practices. The 5,023 square-foot building is the first in Los Angeles to be entirely powered by on-site solar systems - functioning entirely "off the grid." The building also uses significantly less water than a conventional building of its size. Visitors to the Center have opportunities to learn about the building’s green features and the importance of conserving energy and water. Visitors can also enjoy the Children’s Woodland Area (CWA), a three-quarter acre natural playground with rocks, trees, playhouse, benches, footbridge, and reflecting pool. A lending library with field guides, binoculars, strollers, art supplies, and backpacks is available to help families enjoy and explore this 300-acre open space in northeast Los Angeles. The Center also serves as the jumping off point for a wide variety of educational and community programming. Now in its second decade of serving the community, the Center has become a unique gathering place for environmental education and engagement in conservation action.
    In 2014, the Audubon Center at Debs Park completed a strategic planning process that aligned with strategic and business planning completed at state and national levels of Audubon. This plan reconfirmed that the Audubon Center at Debs Park serves as a hub for Audubon’s efforts in Los Angeles with direction to share the Center’s programs and approaches more broadly, reaching a broader audience, while continuing to be the community asset it has grown to be under Audubon’s leadership. Our plan called for deepening our engagement in diverse communities, partnering more closely on program delivery, and focusing on the long-term sustainability of the Center. Support from the Lawrence Foundation will help us continue programming and grow volunteers engaged at the Center.

  • Year established:2003
  • Endowment:Unknown


  • Executive / Trustee board size:20
  • Advisory board size:10
  • Staff size:3


  • Organization type:Grantseeker
  • Country of registration:United States
  • Tax Determination Letter:Received Determination Letter
  • IRS Section:501(c)(3)
  • IRS Subsection:None
  • Tax ID: