Mission Trails Regional Park Foundation

In partnership with the City of San Diego, to preserve and protect the natural environment of Mission Trails Regional Park and to provide and promote educational and recreational opportunities.

Mission Trails Regional Park Foundation was formed in 1988 as a 501(c)(3) non-profit public benefit corporation. It was created to provide fund-raising and special programs for the park.

It is governed by a Board of Directors, in accordance with the State approved Articles of Incorporation and Bylaws.

Officers of the Board are President, Vice President and Secretary/Treasurer.

The public purposes of the Foundation are to preserve, improve, develop and maintain the park and to foster public appreciation and understanding of Mission Trails Regional Park.

Michael R. Pent, Jean Hatton and Dorothy Leonard were the founding members of the Foundation. Mike Pent was president from 1988 to 1998. He also served as chair of the Mission Trails Regional Park Citizens’ Advisory Committee (CAC) and as a member of the Mission Trails Task Force.

Jean Hatton served as vice president of the Foundation and the Santee representative to the Citizens’ Advisory Committee until her death in May 1999.

Dorothy Leonard has served as Secretary/Treasurer since the Foundation’s creation and is the current chair of the CAC and represents the CAC on the Task Force.

In 1991, the City and Foundation entered into an agreement regarding their relationship and establishing a process to govern the use of public funds (which may be provided to the Foundation by the City) and to review and approve the Foundation’s annual work program.

This work program has included: soliciting funds (private donations, grants), publicizing the park (newsletter, brochures), maintaining a gift shop, sponsoring programs (tree planting, photo contest, volunteer recognition), purchasing supplies and equipment, funding construction projects, hiring staff assistance, and coordinating activities with City staff.

The first joint endeavor of the City and Foundation was construction of the Visitor and Interpretive Center. Funding for this project included $1.2 million from the Tierrasanta Norte Development Agreement, which the City forwarded to the Foundation; two $900,000 state grants obtained by the Foundation for the project; income for the antenna facilities atop Cowles Mountain (which the City Council and County Board of Supervisors have designated to support capital improvements in the park); and funds paid by the State for use of park land for storage of dirt during construction of SR 52.

The City of San Diego Park and Recreation Department and the Foundation have entered into an Agreement for the purpose of authorizing the Foundation’s use of park facilities. Foundation activities approved in the Agreement include the operation of a gift shop, which features items related to the park and history of the area, including items handcrafted by the Kumeyaay. All profits from the gift shop and other fund raising activities are used to benefit the park.

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