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.
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 we near NPCA’s centennial in 2019, they’ll 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
More about the Southwest region
Read more about Volunteer: Weed Pull at Arches
Partner Events Volunteer: Weed Pull at Arches Join NPS in their ongoing efforts to remove invasive weeds at this iconic park.
Read more about Kick off National Park Week at Rocky
Regional Events Kick off National Park Week at Rocky We are lucky to have Rocky Mountain National Park so close to home. Every time I visit I'm thankful for the dedicated National Park Service (NPS) staff protecting this incredible landscape and that it’s here for all of us to enjoy.
Read more about Visit NPCA during Grand Canyon’s Earth Day
Regional Events Visit NPCA during Grand Canyon’s Earth Day What better place is there to celebrate Earth Day than at Grand Canyon National Park?! The park’s “Green Team” has invited park protectors and sustainability advocates to celebrate Earth Day at the park. Earth Day, which occurs during National Park Week, is a fee-free day at Grand Canyon National Park so come visit NPCA and all the informative booths while spending a lovely day at the South Rim.
Read more about New Mexico Delegation Repeats Call for Protection from Oil and Gas Development Around Chaco Culture National Historical Park
Press Release New Mexico Delegation Repeats Call for Protection from Oil and Gas Development Around Chaco Culture National Historical Park Senators Heinrich and Udall, along with Representatives Lujan, Haaland, and Torres Small introduce legislation to withdraw lands considered for oil and gas development near New Mexico park
The national parks are a treasure of immeasurable value, but beyond the beauty and diversity of life they foster, they help us connect with the beauty of nature and remind us why it is important to preserve our environment. — Ovi Sofariu
Read more about What is going to happen to national parks in the next century?
Magazine Article What is going to happen to national parks in the next century? We asked a handful of writers, activists, scholars and conservationists about their hopes, dreams and fears about the National Park System. Here’s what they had to say.
Read more about 2019 Climate Ride Events
NPCA@100 2019 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 Where to See Waterfalls This Season
Blog Post Where to See Waterfalls This Season Early spring is one of the best times of the year to see waterfalls, and these 10 picture-perfect parks are great bets for a natural rush.
Read more about BLM Defers Oil and Gas Lease Sales in New Mexico, Temporarily Protecting Chaco Culture National Historical Park
Press Release BLM Defers Oil and Gas Lease Sales in New Mexico, Temporarily Protecting Chaco Culture National Historical Park National Parks Conservation Association celebrates temporary victory for public lands near New Mexico National Park, still concerned about overall leasing processes and lack of public input.
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 10 National Park Cameos in Movies
Blog Post 10 National Park Cameos in Movies Check out — or revisit — these 10 films where parks played a starring role.
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 Trump Administration Rollback Could Hurt These 10 Parks
Blog Post Trump Administration Rollback Could Hurt These 10 Parks Revisions to the Clean Water Rule could have real, on-the-ground consequences for hundreds of national park sites — including these 10.
Read more about The Census Taker
Magazine Article The Census Taker Alex Mintzer has been counting ant colonies at Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument for more than 30 years.
Read more about West Coast Communications Manager
Staff and Media Personnel Matt Abele Matt joined NPCA in November 2018 as the West Coast Communications Manager. He currently manages media outreach and communications for the Northwest and Southwest regions, along with NPCA's national energy initiatives.
Read more about The 12 Most-Visited Winter Parks
Blog Post The 12 Most-Visited Winter Parks National park sites can provide an ideal adventure or an escape from the cold during the winter months.
Read more about Parks Group Files Brief in Support of Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument
Press Release Parks Group Files Brief in Support of Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument Through our amicus brief, we urge the courts to hold the government accountable for putting our public lands, including our national parks, in harm’s way.
Read more about 10 Scenic National Park Drives
Blog Post 10 Scenic National Park Drives These 10 parks offer incredible views of some of America's most beautiful places with plenty of opportunities to get out and explore along the way.
Read more about Explore Utah (NPCA Exclsuive)
Trip Explore Utah (NPCA Exclsuive) This special NPCA exclusive trip offers two incredible hiking journeys through the impressive national parks and monuments of Utah. Experience a behind-the-scenes look at how your support has made it possible for NPCA to defend Utah's most valuable places. This journey will be guided by NPCA park experts and local naturalists.
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 Administrative, Outreach, and Engagement Coordinator
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 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 How to Host a Park Volunteer Event
Fact Sheet How to Host a Park Volunteer Event Hosting a park volunteer event is an empowering act that flexes your leadership skills, helps our parks and engages new people. Learn how with this step-by-step guide.
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 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 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 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 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 Southwest Energy Senior Program Manager
Staff Jerry Otero Jerry is the Energy Program Manager in our Southwest region.
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 Senior Program Manager 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.
Read more about Best Available Retrofit Technology at the Cholla Power Plant
Letter Best Available Retrofit Technology at the Cholla Power Plant On behalf of National Parks Conservation Association and Sierra Club, Earthjustice respectfully submits the following comments regarding the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality’s (ADEQ) proposed Best Available Retrofit Technology (BART) “reassessment” for the Cholla Power Plant.
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 Monument ›
- Wupatki National Monument ›
- Yucca House National Monument ›
- Zion National Park ›