Feel small amidst the towering, red-rocked cliffs of Zion, be amazed at the lip of the gaping Grand Canyon, or contemplate the ingenuity of the ancestral Pueblo people at Chaco Canyon. These experiences are at your fingertips in America’s Southwest, a region of exquisite beauty as well as stark contrast. You can travel from the peaks of the Rocky Mountains to the vast expanse of the Sonoran desert in this region that also memorializes and protects the stories, sacred sites, and unique heritage of indigenous cultures. Preserving the diverse, culturally-rich, and spectacular parks of Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, and Utah is the priority of NPCA’s Southwest Regional Office and associated field offices.
The Southwest team works avidly with a varied and complex set of stakeholders to champion the region’s national parks. The area’s booming population poses threats to parks through increased tourism and recreation, heightened development pressure, and expanded energy infrastructure. Addressing oil and gas activities, which impact the air quality, viewsheds and night skies of magnificent parks like Arches and Mesa Verde, is one of the priorities of the Southwest office. Another focus for the team is the protection of sites like Canyonlands from the massive, coal-fired power plants that churn out both power and pollution. The staff of the Southwest raise awareness of the impacts that climate change and extreme drought are having on the Colorado River system and the parks and people that depend on this critical waterway. They also work to rally opposition to two ill-conceived developments near the rim of the Grand Canyon, one of the world’s most iconic parks.
NPCA’s Southwest Regional Office prepares a field report twice a year that focuses on the parks and people of this special part of the country. We also highlight some of…See more ›
In addition to their current work, the Southwest team collaborates with parks and communities on innovative remedies to their traffic congestion issues and fights recent attempts to limit public involvement in park-adjacent oil and gas development. As NPCA celebrates its centennial in 2019, they seek to reinforce community relationships and endeavor to engage a broader base of park supporters.
New Mexico's Rock Art
Visit New Mexico's Petroglyph National Monument for a rare opportunity to see centuries-old art emblazoned on the volcanic rocks of this arid landscape. Carved by Native Americans and early Spanish settlers, these enduring images tell a unique story.
Field Offices in the Southwest Region
- 738 N. Fifth Avenue Suite 222 Tucson, AZ 85705
- 850 Grand Avenue Grand Junction, CO 81501
- PO Box 537 Arroyo Hondo, NM 87513
- 1855 Gaylord St., Ste. 504 Denver, CO 80206
More about the Southwest region
Read more about 2020 Climate Ride Events
climate ride 2020 Climate Ride Events Join the movement and bike, hike or run for our national parks at one of this year's Climate Ride events.
Read more about These 10 National Parks Wouldn’t Exist Without Women
Blog Post These 10 National Parks Wouldn’t Exist Without Women From Joshua Tree to Great Sand Dunes, these 10 special places are protected today thanks to their female champions.
Read more about Amache: An American Story That Must be Told
Blog Post Amache: An American Story That Must be Told An interview with Mitch Homma, whose family members were incarcerated at Amache during World War II simply because of their Japanese ancestry.
Read more about Utahans Urge EPA to Reject Plan to Pollute Southwest National Parks
Press Release Utahans Urge EPA to Reject Plan to Pollute Southwest National Parks EPA seeks to approve weak Utah Haze Plan that threatens parks and communities.
They are areas that help preserve the natural beauty of the United States. — Grace
Read more about House Approves 1.3 Million Acres of Wilderness, Adds Over 1,000 Miles into the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System
Press Release House Approves 1.3 Million Acres of Wilderness, Adds Over 1,000 Miles into the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System Lands package includes an expansion to Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area, over 600,000 acres of new wilderness in Colorado and expanded waterway and wilderness protections near Olympic National Park
Read more about Amache Deserves to Become a National Park Site
Fact Sheet Amache Deserves to Become a National Park Site Our parks have the power to fill in the gaps of our history that are deliberately or carelessly forgotten. What happened to the people incarcerated at Amache is an American story that must not be forgotten. It's a story of failure by the U.S. government to protect its own citizens. And it's a story that remains relevant to how America treats its immigrant communities.
Read more about Plaintiff Organizations in Bears Ears And Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument Cases Denounce Administration’s Final Management Plans
Press Release Plaintiff Organizations in Bears Ears And Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument Cases Denounce Administration’s Final Management Plans Management Plans Ignore Tribes, Courts and the Public
Read more about Love Is in the Parks
Blog Post Love Is in the Parks 5 NPCA staff members share their national park love stories.
Read more about The National Park Site That Was Almost Blown Up
Blog Post The National Park Site That Was Almost Blown Up It was an explosion that created Sunset Crater in northern Arizona. Another proposed explosion almost led to its demise.
Read more about Polluted Parks: Trump Administration Moves to Approve Weak Utah Haze Plan, Threatening Parks and Communities
Press Release Polluted Parks: Trump Administration Moves to Approve Weak Utah Haze Plan, Threatening Parks and Communities Plan would allow state coal-fired power plants to continue polluting the air we breathe, increasing hazy skies in Utah’s treasured national parks.
Read more about Urban Stargazing: See More of the Universe at Night
Blog Post Urban Stargazing: See More of the Universe at Night Longer nights and clearer skies during winter make it an ideal season for stargazing, but most Americans live in light-polluted areas where the stars are difficult to see. Fortunately, some national parks feature darker skies near major urban areas.
Read more about Permanent Uranium Ban for the Grand Canyon Introduced in the Senate
Press Release Permanent Uranium Ban for the Grand Canyon Introduced in the Senate Senate legislation would permanently ban new uranium mining on nearly one million acres within and near the Grand Canyon.
Read more about Southwest Regional Office Field Reports
Report Southwest Regional Office Field Reports NPCA’s Southwest Regional Office prepares a field report twice a year that focuses on the parks and people of this special part of the country. We also highlight some of the very complex and challenging threats our parks face.
Read more about Laws Waived for Border Wall Construction
Resource Laws Waived for Border Wall Construction The Department of Homeland Security is waiving the following laws to build proposed sections of border wall in Arizona and California near national park lands.
Read more about Director, Energy and Landscape Conservation
Staff Matthew Kirby Matt has spent the last decade running campaigns to protect the public lands he loves. Currently he oversees NPCA's work to protect parks and the landscapes that surround them from energy development.
Read more about Colorado Program Manager
Staff Tracy Coppola Tracy Coppola is based in Denver and serves as the Colorado Program Manager for the Southwest Regional Office. She is proud to have the opportunity to celebrate her state's incredible parks and advocates.
Read more about Ozone Fact Sheet
Fact Sheet Ozone Fact Sheet Ozone threatens the health of park visitors and contributes to the disease and death of park species such as the black cherry tree in the East and aspen and ponderosa pine in the West. National park ecosystems across the country are already showing damage from ground-level ozone pollution.
Read more about 10 Ways to Be a Park Advocate
Resource 10 Ways to Be a Park Advocate Want to be an advocate for parks, but don't know where to start?
Read more about Outreach and Engagement Manager
Staff Cassidy Jones Born and raised in Utah, Cassidy comes to NPCA with an inborn interest in parks, public lands, and political-cultural conflict.
Read more about Sonoran Desert Mystique
Land Based Trip Sonoran Desert Mystique The Sonoran Desert holds mesmerizing contrasts—driven by the most interesting paradox of all: The Sonoran is our hottest North American desert, while it is also our wettest. Light but consistent rains in winter and spring foster more diversity than in perhaps any other desert in the world, from cactus to cottonwoods to cougars.
Read more about NPCA's position on visitor management strategies at Zion National Park.
Comment NPCA's position on visitor management strategies at Zion National Park. Download a PDF of NPCA's scoping comments on NPS visitor management strategies.
Read more about Oil, Gas Leasing Threatens 7 Western National Parks
Report Oil, Gas Leasing Threatens 7 Western National Parks New report details dangers of development near park lands
Read more about Planning 2.0 Protects Park Landscapes
Fact Sheet Planning 2.0 Protects Park Landscapes The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is tasked with managing millions of acres of public lands in the West. In order to ensure they are exercising good stewardship and balancing their dual mandate for managing public lands, each BLM Field Office is required by law to complete a Resource Management Plan (RMP).
Read more about Hiking Utah's Parklands
Land Based Trip Hiking Utah's Parklands This active hiking journey will take you to five of Utah's National Parks including Arches, Canyonlands, Capitol Reef, Bryce, and Zion with adventures each day into the heart of each park.
Read more about Youthworks in the Parks
Video Youthworks in the Parks An innovative partnership is connecting urban youth with public lands
Read more about Protecting Sensitive Resources near Mesa Verde National Park
Resource Protecting Sensitive Resources near Mesa Verde National Park The serene, semi-arid landscape of the Four Corners region of southwestern Colorado once housed an early Native American civilization of ancestral Puebloan people. These ancient inhabitants left behind remnants of their culture that tell the story of a complex society that existed here for hundreds of years.
Read more about Protecting Sensitive Resources near Mesa Verde National Park
StoryMap Protecting Sensitive Resources near Mesa Verde National Park NPCA and our partners at FracTracker invite you to explore this interactive map documenting some of the wildlife habitat, scenic views, recreational opportunities, and cultural sites that deserve protection under the Master Leasing Plan.
Read more about Southwest Regional Director
Staff Ernie Atencio Ernie Atencio fell in love with parks and wild places at a young age and has spent most of his career working in and for those places.
Read more about Puebloan Mystery: Mesa Verde, Chaco Canyon, and Canyon de Chelly
Land Based Trip Puebloan Mystery: Mesa Verde, Chaco Canyon, and Canyon de Chelly Venture into the Four Corners region of Colorado, Arizona, New Mexico, and Utah as we journey through the history and mystery of the Ancestral Puebloans.
Read more about Classic Canyon Medley
Land Based Trip Classic Canyon Medley With Grand Canyon and Zion anchoring this journey with full days to hike and explore at each along with a float on the Colorado River and a visit to the Cameron Trading Post this tour is a true medley of the area.
Read more about Grand Canyon Winter and New Year Trips
Land Based Trip Grand Canyon Winter and New Year Trips Put time in perspective by ringing in the New Year on the Grand Canyon’s South Rim—millions of years in the making. Spend a couple days in the red-rock wonderland of Sedona, with a jeep tour and a spectacular night of stargazing.
Read more about Associate Director, Southwest Region
Staff Erika Pollard Erika is a Senior Program Manager in the Southwest region. She focuses primarily on issues concerning the national parks in Utah.
Read more about Associate Director, Southwest Region
Staff Cory MacNulty Cory’s focus as associate director in the Southwest region is primarily on issues concerning the national parks in Utah.
Read more about Arizona Senior Program Manager
Staff Kevin Dahl Kevin Dahl works as Arizona's Senior Program Manager in the Southwest region. He focuses on issues concerning Arizona's national parks, including such well-known places as Grand Canyon, Petrified Forest, and Saguaro.
Read more about Director, Communications
Staff and Media Personnel Kati Schmidt Kati Schmidt is based in Oakland, CA, and leads media outreach and communications for the Pacific, Northwest, Northern Rockies, Alaska, and Southwest regions, along with NPCA's national wildlife initiatives.
Explore Our Parks
- Arches National Park ›
- Aztec Ruins National Monument ›
- Bandelier National Monument ›
- Bent's Old Fort National Historic Site ›
- Black Canyon Of The Gunnison National Park ›
- Bryce Canyon National Park ›
- Canyon De Chelly National Monument ›
- Canyonlands National Park ›
- Capitol Reef National Park ›
- Capulin Volcano National Monument ›
- Carlsbad Caverns National Park ›
- Casa Grande Ruins National Monument ›
- Cedar Breaks National Monument ›
- Chaco Culture National Historical Park ›
- Chiricahua National Monument ›
- Colorado National Monument ›
- Coronado National Memorial ›
- Curecanti National Recreation Area ›
- Dinosaur National Monument ›
- El Malpais National Monument ›
- El Morro National Monument ›
- Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument ›
- Fort Bowie National Historic Site ›
- Fort Union National Monument ›
- Gila Cliff Dwellings National Monument ›
- Glen Canyon National Recreation Area ›
- Golden Spike National Historical Park ›
- Grand Canyon National Park ›
- Great Sand Dunes National Park & Preserve ›
- Hohokam Pima National Monument ›
- Hovenweep National Monument ›
- Hubbell Trading Post National Historic Site ›
- Manhattan Project National Historical Park ›
- Mesa Verde National Park ›
- Montezuma Castle National Monument ›
- Mormon Pioneer National Historic Trail ›
- Natural Bridges National Monument ›
- Navajo National Monument ›
- Old Spanish National Historic Trail ›
- Oregon National Historic Trail ›
- Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument ›
- Pecos National Historical Park ›
- Petrified Forest National Park ›
- Petroglyph National Monument ›
- Pipe Spring National Monument ›
- Pony Express National Historic Trail ›
- Rainbow Bridge National Monument ›
- Rocky Mountain National Park ›
- Saguaro National Park ›
- Salinas Pueblo Missions National Monument ›
- Sand Creek Massacre National Historic Site ›
- Santa Fe National Historic Trail ›
- Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument ›
- Timpanogos Cave National Monument ›
- Tonto National Monument ›
- Tumacacori National Historical Park ›
- Tuzigoot National Monument ›
- Valles Caldera National Preserve ›
- Walnut Canyon National Monument ›
- White Sands National Park ›
- Wupatki National Monument ›
- Yucca House National Monument ›
- Zion National Park ›