ECORP is pleased to announce that Mari Quillman has taken the reigns as the Chairperson of the Desert Tortoise Council (Council). The mission of the Council is to assure the perpetual survival of viable populations of desert tortoises throughout their historical range, with a focus on the Gopherus tortoise species in the southwestern United States and northwestern Mexico.
Ms. Quillman joined the Board of the Council in 2013 and filled the Membership Coordinator position in 2014. In 2021, she took the Chairperson-elect position and in February of 2022, at the end of the Council’s Annual Symposium, she took over the Chairperson position. She will hold the position for two years and will focus on the business of the Council, which includes providing research grants, conducting training workshops, commenting on environmental documents for projects affecting tortoises and their habitats, conducting outreach, and planning for the annual symposia. Ms. Quillman’s mission for the Council in the next two years includes addressing the threats associated with illegal marijuana grow farms to tortoises and their habitats throughout the Mojave Desert. She and the Council will work closely with other non-profits, concerned groups, counties, regulatory agencies, and law enforcement to eliminate the grow farms and to determine how to restore the damage to tortoise habitat.