We are local activists dedicated to the preservation and conservation of the fragile biodiversity of Costa Rica. We do this by providing environmental education and empowering local communities, especially women, girls and boys.

What we do

We use education to address and promote the involvement and call to action of local communities. We support governmental and non-governmental entities in the search for sustainable, balanced and equitable development for them. Our focus is local, but our impact is global.

Our mission

We strive to protect Costa Rica’s natural heritage for future generations, through its sustainable development, by promoting education and community empowerment, the strengthening of protected wildlife areas and the promotion of tourism.

Our Programs

The Corcovado Foundation currently has four main areas of work in the Osa Peninsula:

   

EDUCATION

ENVIRONMENTAL

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TOURISM

SUSTAINABLE

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SUPPORT TO

NATIONAL PARKS

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SEA TURTLES

CONSERVATION

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Importance of the Osa Peninsula

The Osa Peninsula in Costa Rica is one of the most biologically intense places on the planet. In the region there are between twenty-five and thirty different ecosystems; It is also home to an amazing variety of plant and animal species, many endangered. It has one of the most important populations of large threatened mammals in Central America, among which are predators such as jaguars and pumas.

The region is also home to many endemic species of birds and trees. From the harpy eagle, which was believed extinct since 1989, specimens have been discovered in the Corcovado National Park; and for humpback whales there are, in this place, important areas of childbirth in the waters that surround Isla del Caño and the Golfo Dulce.


OUR TEAM

Founding members

Steven Lill Coit – Expresident of the Board of Directors

American citizen, originally from Chicago. He has lived in Costa Rica for more than 30 years. He created the Corcovado Foundation many years ago in memory of his friend Lon Willing Ramsey Junior, who was an environmentalist.

Steven owns the Casa Corcovado Jungle Lodge hotel, a luxury hotel on the Osa Peninsula that implements environmentally friendly policies to lessen its impact on the environment.

Vinicio Zamora Chaves – Legal Advisor

I have known Steven Lill for many years. His interest in the conservation and protection of nature, create in him the idea of projecting this area, which infected me. Being a Lawyer with the same interests for Mother Nature, we decided to create a Foundation that had as its primary objective the protection and conservation of Corcovado National Park and other protected areas of our country, as well as raising awareness of this, to communities and visitors.

Thus, on February 6, 1992 – almost thirty years ago – we gave life to the “Corcovado-Lon Willing Ramsey Junior Foundation,” a name chosen by Steven, in honor of his great friend and who had a special sensitivity towards that beautiful national park.

“Since that date, I have had the honor to worked, hand in hand with Steven to achieve the conservation efforts we dreamed on.  Today, that dream is a reality. Thanks to the members, the collaborators, the volunteers, and the team that works for the foundation, this organization now has great achievements. I feel very proud to belong to this Institution.”

Personal

Alejandra Monge – Executive Director

Alejandra was born in San José, Costa Rica, and is passionate about nature. In the mid-nineties, she collaborated with the Ministry of Tourism and other experts, to design the first version of the Sustainable Tourism Certificate. She has been working in the promotion of sustainable tourism and the conservation of natural resources for three decades.

Since 2001, she has held the position of director executive of the Corcovado Foundation. Under her leadership, the foundation has grown exponentially, becoming a reference for financial transparency, programmatic efficiency, and environmental and social commitment. With the support of a team of committed young people, the Corcovado Foundation has managed and implemented countless projects and programs for sustainable development, education environmental, sustainable tourism promotion, and community-based tourism in the Southern Region of Costa Rica. Additionally, she has led a series of planning projects and strengthening the management for more than 22 protected areas throughout the entire country.

Since 2001, she has held the position of director executive of the Corcovado Foundation. Under her leadership, the foundation has grown exponentially, becoming a reference for financial transparency, programmatic efficiency, and environmental and social commitment. With the support of a team of committed young people, the Corcovado Foundation has managed and implemented countless projects and programs for sustainable development, education environmental, sustainable tourism promotion, and community-based tourism in the Southern Region of Costa Rica. Additionally, she has led a series of planning projects and strengthening the management for more than 22 protected areas throughout the entire country.

In 2018, Alejandra was distinguished by the German television network Deutsche Welle as one of the 40 women in Latin America who are transforming the region, for their tireless work in pursuit of social development and conservation of natural resources in the country

She has a baccalaureate in tourism and a master’s degree from the University of Costa Rica in Business Administration with a specialization in marketing. She has participated in numerous training related to environmental protection and justice, leadership, and community development, among others. Alejandra also gives talks about climate change, conservation of tropical forests, and sustainable tourism and in schools and colleges in Costa Rica and the United States. Alejandra is currently pursuing a master’s degree in natural resources management

Francisco Delgado – Projects Director

Francisco Delgado Mena was born in San José, Costa Rica. Being an entrepreneur, broadcaster and radio host, he joined the Corcovado Foundation in 2006.  Francisco studied Business Administration at the Catholic University and later a Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing from the American University – UAM. In 2015 he took a course in Project Management for Development by InterAmerican Bank

During his time in the organization, he has participated in several workshops and seminars on Corporate Social Responsibility, Sustainable Tourism, and Entrepreneurship. Thanks to this, he has had the opportunity to get involved in these issues.  Currently, he is part of the team that offers talks on how to reduce the impact on the environment.

Within the organization has been responsible for supporting the Within the organization has been responsible for supporting the direction of projects, as well as marketing activities, social networks, and public relations. Due to his excellent performance, he has been in charge of supporting the executive director in the general administration of the organization.

At the end of 2018, Francisco was nominated by the environmental affairs office of the Embassy of the United States to participate in the International Visitors Program in the topic “Administration of Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs). ”  There, he had the opportunity to expand his knowledge and share experiences with other NGOs from the United States and different parts of the world.

Francisco is great at team playing and is constantly learning. He loves his family, music, and nature.

Zoraida Tenorio – Project assistant | Rural Community Tourism Volunteer Program Coordinator

Zoraida joined the Corcovado Foundation in January 2010. She collaborates in the implementation and administration of all the projects and programs of the organization. For the support she had in the projects implemented in the buffer zone of La Amistad International Park, since October of 2018 she was given the opportunity to take charge of the implementation of a volunteer program of TRC (Rural Community Tourism) which includes the enterprises located in that area.

In 2016-2017, she attended a technician in business administration and in human resources. Besides, during her career in the organization, she has participated in different marketing training and fundraising campaigns. She is in charge of taking care of our members, volunteers, donors, and collaborators.

Zoraida enjoys every day of her work, because she knows that she is making a huge difference in conservation and is aware that her generation will inherit this beautiful natural wealth that characterizes Costa Rica.

Helena Pita – Environmental Education Program Director

Helena obtained her degree in Biology, with a specialization in Ecology, from the Universidad Autnoma de Madrid in 2011. She was certified as an Environmental Educator in 2012 by the environmental association Grefa, and worked at the Asociación Conservacionista Gaia por la Conservación de la Naturaleza. Helena worked with Loggerhead sea turtles in Cape Verde in 2008 with the association Natura 2000, and was a Research Assistant at the Foundations Sea Turtle Conservation Program in 2012. Since then she has worked as a Coordinator for the Foundations Environmental Education Program.

Mayra Cano – Local Promoter

Mayra is a local community leader that has engaged in multiple challenges to help her community and protect the environment. She started working with the Corcovado Foundation in October 2011. Since then, she has been very active, representing the foundation among the communities and communicating community priorities and need to the foundation. She works together with Alvaro, teaching environmental education in Drake Bay. She also helps the foundation in organizing activities within the local communities.

Aida García Solá – Sea Turtle Conservation Program Coordinator

Aida loves the sea, sunsets, and all of that great blue. Since she was a child, she always knew that her vocation was to be a marine biologist, but she never imagined that she would make her job her passion.

She graduated in Marine Biology in 2006 from the University of Alicante and obtained a Masters in Marine Management from the University of Barcelona in 2008. She spent several years working with sea turtles in several recovery centers, including Barcelona, Granada, Greece, Australia, where her fascination with them began.

She arrived at the turtle project of the Corcovado Foundation as a research assistant in 2013, and she had never imagined what it was like to see and be in front of a turtle while she was nesting and watch the babies reach the sea. Still, it was and is one of the best things that she has never seen. Since then, she continues to work with them since 2016. She is the project coordinator, which she considers a significant challenge.

She enjoys every day what she does, and she is thankful to do it. She is grateful to be able to transmit her passion and madness to all the volunteers and tourists who come to collaborate with us and to be able to contribute to conservation.

Helena Ramírez Cervera – Sea Turtle Conservation Program Coordinator at Playa Rincón

Born in Barcelona in 1994, Helena always had a great passion for nature. Since she was a little girl, she went sailing with her father, which prompted in her a great interest in the marine environment of the Catalan Mediterranean coast.  When she had to decide which career to choose, she had no doubts: environmental biology would be the best option to approach the unknown nature of the entire planet. Once finished this unforgettable stage of her life, she decided to venture to study the tropical areas, studying a master’s degree in biodiversity and conservation in these environments.  This led her to come to Costa Rica, where she got to know its diverse habitats and its impressive biodiversity. Thanks to this opportunity, she was able to collaborate in several projects that work for the conservation of sea turtles, even completing her Master’s Thesis with data from them.

Helena now participates in the sea turtles project of the foundation, ready to continue fighting for the conservation of the marine environment.

Mariel Vega Rojas – Digital Marketing

Mariel loves animals and nature, she has always been involved in organizations or activities for the welfare of animals.

She studied Public Relations at the Universidad Latina de Costa Rica and has a degree in Marketing Communication, in 2018 she specialized in Digital Marketing.

She worked for 5 years in advertising, developing advertising campaigns for different brands such as Pastas Roma, Frontera, Riunite, Unibe, etc. She also has experience in corporate communication management, content creation, and digital strategy for social networks.

Her work in the foundation began in 2018 as part of the communication and fundraising team. She coordinates digital communication, making visible the efforts and work of the foundation and managing relations with allies.

Estela Villalta Chavarría – Legal Advisor

Estela is passionate about people, nature, and outdoor activities.

She studied Public Relations and her Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing Communication. She has worked in the area of marketing, digital marketing, and corporate social responsibility. She was the coordinator of the Marketing and Communications Department of Santa Paula University, the head of Brand of the American University, and an Executive of BAC Credomatic digital channels. 

She is also a lawyer and has worked on labor, corporate, and environmental law.  During her time at the Corcovado Foundation, she has been a contributor in the area of communication, fundraising, and legal advice.

Ana Margarita Suárez – Accounting assistant

Ana Margarita has been working for our organization since September 2005.  Ana Margarita is an accountant with several additional accounting, labor law and taxation, and other training 

Ana Margarita has managed, with transparency and efficiency, more than 100 different projects in Osa and the country.

She loves numbers and enjoys doing her job, with the awareness that she is making a difference in the protection of the natural resources of the Osa Peninsula.

Shirley Quirós S. – Office Assistant

Shirley joined the Foundation in July 2015. She collaborates in the implementation and administration of all projects.  She is also in charge of quoting and acquiring all the supplies and materials, both for the foundation and for the projects.At the same time, she provides help in accounting, electronic invoicing, accounting entry, file, payments, etc.

Motivational phrase: “The only way to do a great job is to love what you do” – Steve Jobs.

Board of Directors

Bill MacLachlan

William MacLachlan assumed the presidency of the Corcovado Foundation in January 2020. He is a Director, Past Chairman, and Institutional Portfolio Manager at Mawer Investment Management Ltd., which he joined in 1993. Earned an Honours Bachelor of Arts degree from Carleton University and is a Chartered Financial Analyst charter holder with investment experience since 1977.

He was a Senator of the Calgary Zoo and is a past President of Aspen Family and Community Services. Mr. Is a member of the Rotary Club of Calgary South, a member of the Honourable Guard of the Museum of the Regiments, and a volunteer Sergeant of the 78th Fraser Highlanders.

He is a regular commentator on investment issues for CBC NewsWorld, CBC Radio, and BNN (Business News Network). He has contributed to the National Post, The Globe and Mail, the Calgary Herald, and other media. He has also written on ethical investing for the Institute of Corporate Directors. He has been a speaker for the Canadian Investor Relations Institute, the Strategy Institute, and the Institute of Corporate Direct.

Bradd Johnson

Bradd is an American citizen native of Rhode Island, who has lived in Costa Rica since 1980. He felt in love with Costa Rica since he first arrived here.  He loved its friendly people and its luscious forest.

He found a remote spot to develop his project and that’s when he purchased Aguila de Osa Hotel, and successfully run it since then. He has been known for his involvement in community activities, especially supporting the local health clinic and the school.

Bradd was key in activating the Corcovado Foundation in 1998 when loggers were devastating the Golfo Dulce Forestry Reserve. He then reached out to Steven Lill, founder of the Corcovado Foundation, and his neighbor the late Michael Kalmbach and asked them to join forces behind the Corcovado Foundation to stop this horrible activity and they did. Since then Bradd has been a key member of this organization, supporting its efforts on an ongoing basis.

Jim Damalas

“Looking back now, I was a Hollywood producer who fortunately escaped the frantic pace of Hollywood back in 1992. I soon became convinced that this tiny democratic oasis, with so many diverse tropical climate zones, and more biodiversity compared to all of North America combined, was the answer to my search for my own salvation.

I began my second career as a part time resident, commuting between cultures while pursuing my dream. That dream was to build a boutique hotel practicing sustainable hospitality, starting with a few rooms in 1993, and ended up taking me back to the very same destination where I first pitched my tent to camp on a beach that was to become the world famous National Park of Manuel Antonio. All that eventually led to creating Greentique Hotels.

It now has been 20 years of sharing our unique boutique brands of Costa Rican hospitality. It has evolved from the 7 hours it took on a 4×4 journey of pot filled dirt roads and flat tires to a super paved highway that now takes us just 2.5 hours to get to the resort at Si Como No from the capital of San Jose. Lots of progress has come to Costa Rica’s infrastructure, and though it’s had its costs on the simple pace I discovered back in the seventies, the country still remains committed to sustainable development.”

Elmer Uva Beita

Elmer is a merchant in Sierpe de Osa. He serves as president of the Development Association, secretary of the Board of Education, president of the Sierpe District Council and is a member of the Osa Municipal Council.

Elmer is an active member of the community and key member of our organization.

Miguel Madrigal

Don Miguel is the Minister of Environment advisor, and he has worked with this entity for over 30 years,  his career as an environmental official protecting the country’s environment, is well known in the country.

Advisory Committee

Terri Peterson

Terri Peterson has spent the major part of her working life educating others in one aspect of conservation or another.

After obtaining a B.A. in Zoology from California State University at Fullerton, she began a 17 year career in the animal zoo business which gave Terri the opportunity to hone her environmental education skills and focus her efforts on bringing the natural world closer to individuals and providing motivation to embrace a conservation ethic.

After leaving the zoo world, Terri worked for 12 years in the recycling and waste field for Douglas County, Oregon. As the waste reduction manager, Terri was charged with bringing recycling to the populace by developing, implementing and monitoring programs to advance recycling.

Today Terri makes her home on the remote Osa Peninsula in Costa Rica and continues to live, practice, and share her conservation ethic along with her husband, Gary, 6 dogs and a 42 acre primary rainforest. Although Terri had hopes of retirement, she’s busier than ever and currently involved in their new business; an organic technologies effort making and selling compost, worm bins, and compost tea. In addition, Terri and Gary manage four nearby fincas for foreign owners and Terri plans and leads custom tours of Costa Rica.

Bill Callejas

A graduate of The University of the Pacific with a BA in Political Science, Bill began his marketing career at Procter & Gamble, then moved to the ad agency side in New York and Los Angeles. His career as a brand strategist and as a creative director includes marketing and production projects for dozens of global brands in technology, automotive, aerospace, hospitality, and other categories. Bill is the founding partner of Dauntless Creative, which serves a global client base from offices in Dallas and Los Angeles. In addition to working with The Corcovado Foundation, Bill is the strategic advisor to the Kidsbridge Tolerance Museum in Ewing, New Jersey, and volunteers creative and production support for the National Charity League and the American Cancer Society in Dallas. His relationship with Costa Rica now spans some 30 years.

Gerlinda Anna Maria Scheepsma

Anna directed her own consultancy company in Holland, specialized in documentary information automation and management for over 10 years before coming to Costa Rica in 1994, first, as a well-deserved travel adventure in Central America. Falling in love with Costa Rica she decided to stay in the country and to develop projects for students in ecotourism and conservation.  Falling in love with her Dutch husband Luuc Van Wezel, they developed together Hotel Restaurant Villas Gaia in the South of Costa Rica. She has been managing the hotel and restaurant as a sustainable enterprise obtaining the Certification for Sustainable Tourism from the Costarican Institute for Tourism (ICT). Anna studied project management at the University for International Cooperation in San Jose. Independently she worked for a Dutch consultancy company in several development projects in Central and South America.  Anna has over 20 years of experience in sustainable tourism and became a strong leader in the theme of community development and rural tourism, working closely with the Corcovado Foundation.

Michelle Long

Michelle is an accomplished social entrepreneur who helps nonprofits, collaboratives, and government agencies increase their social impact through discovering their intentional voice. Her specialties are organizational strategy development, fund/resource development, community engagement, and workshop facilitation. Ms. Long’s vision and thought leadership in the nonprofit and philanthropic communities have been recognized nationally and locally, evidenced by her acceptance into multiple leadership programs and nomination for numerous awards.

As founder and CEO of NP Voice, Ms. Long coaches organizations in planning and visioning to reach the next level of performance. Prior to founding NP Voice, she worked with several large and small nonprofits, the State of Georgia, and in the corporate world. Michelle earned a Master of Public Policy (MPP) with a concentration in Organizational Effectiveness and Sustainability from Georgia State University; a Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Sociology from the University of Houston, completing post-baccalaureate work in communications and social work and also a Master of Business Administration (MBA) with a concentration in Marketing. Michelle was awarded the 2012-2013 Legislative Fellowship Award from Georgia State University, where she studied performance-based budgeting through the lens of strategic planning and program evaluation. She also participated in a study abroad program in Mexico where she studied Latin American politics and Spanish.

A United States resident, Michelle lives in Brookhaven, Georgia with her husband, Chris, three children – Ryan, Lindsay, and Graham, two dogs – Cam and Betsey, kitten Tilly, two turtles – Meany Greenie and Sweet Brownie, and a lot of fish.

Rayna J. Levin

Rayna originally comes from Virginia where she graduated James Madison University with a degree in Biology and worked as a landscape designer for 8 years designing and installing eco-friendly landscapes with an emphasis in native plants. Before moving to Costa Rica in 2005, she designed and helped to build Liberty Park in central Harrisonburg, Virginia, served as Vice President on the Friends of Blacks Run Greenway committee, was an active participant in the community heading up flower and tree planting programs, beautifying of the downtown area of Harrisonburg and in stream bank restoration together with the local forestry service. Now having lived in Costa Rica since 2005, she is once again active in her local community and has been involved helping the Corcovado Foundation since 2008 and is currently serving as Vice President to the Sierpe de Osa tourism board, CETURS. She also owns and operates 2 local businesses: MuchaCostaRica Travel Agency and Sierpe Outfitters tour company and is in the process of starting a new business manufacturing and selling attractive and reusable bags that will last a long time as Eco Bolsas Costa Rica. Her passion for conservation and nature resonates in her daily actions and her passion for the pure life here in Costa Rica.

Ann Becker

Ann has directed her own consultancy company for over 35 years. Working with non-profit organizations and government agencies, she has guided her clients in project management, organizational development, effective management of meetings and strategic consulting.

Recently, inspired by her own traveling adventures, Ann has combined her love for Costa Rica with her business experience. Since 2006, she has visited Costa Rica over 25 times and leads annual adventure expeditions for women in February and a Spanish-learning and cultural immersion excursions in April. In addition, Anna loves international travel with her husband, learning Spanish, enjoying bird watching and family outings to support the “Chicago Cubs”. Finally she is working hard to improve her Pilates movements.

Visite nuestra página patrocinadores y conozca algunos de los maravillosos contribuyentes que hacen posible el desarrollo de nuestros programas de voluntariado y la labor de conservación.

Donate to our causes

Your donation can be tax deductible in Costa Rica / USA / Canada / UK

Corcovado National Park Rescue Project!
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Creating the Environmental Leaders of the New Mil
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Sea Turtle Conservation & Environmental Education
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Osa Community Support Fund
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Amigos of Costa Rica
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International Conservation Fund of Canada
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Fundación Corcovado

Moravia

San José

2297-3013

info@corcovadofoundation.org