News Releases

Hispanic Access Foundation Welcomes New Hispanic Access Foundation Welcomes New
08 April 2024

Hispanic Access Foundation Welcomes New Conservation Director

Category: News Releases

Hispanic Access is thrilled to announce the addition of Melissa Morris as the new Conservation Director, who will shape the program’s vision, lead the program team, and steer the program toward becoming a model of excellence in the conservation and environmental space.

Morris has extensive experience spanning over eight years within the conservation sector, focusing on issues such as plastic pollution and offshore drilling across federal, state, and local jurisdictions. She has actively pursued advocacy efforts, engaging with legislative bodies to garner support for pivotal measures, including co-sponsoring legislation. Furthermore, she created ordinances to eliminate single-use plastics in southern California.

“Latinos are heavily underrepresented in the field of conservation,” said Morris. “It brings great pride to help represent and empower them to ensure more equity. The protection of nature is engrained in Latino culture; I want to leverage that so current and future generations can enjoy nature’s marvels.”

In the role of Conservation Director, Morris will establish the vision and framework for the conservation program, oversee the conservation program team, and establish consistent communications with Hispanic Access teams to ensure cross-communications of activities, leverage thought leadership, and support the program’s success. She will lead the engagement of community members not traditionally engaged in conservation, lead the execution of existing conservation programs and initiatives, serve as the main point of contact for funders, and expand programs.

“With Melissa on board, we will be able to have a greater positive impact on our environment and its impact on Latino communities,” said Maite Arce, president and CEO of Hispanic Access. “She has the expertise in the conservation field and is familiar with the conservation challenges and opportunities for Latinos.”

Previously, Melissa established a non-profit organization dedicated to facilitating the engagement of San Diego active-duty military personnel in ocean conservation initiatives. Complementing her organizational endeavors, she has served as a science communicator for diverse non-profit organizations and private enterprises, amplifying awareness of the imperative to combat plastic pollution and promote sustainable seafood practices.

Morris holds a Master of Science degree in advanced studies in Marine Biodiversity and Conservation from Scripps Institution of Oceanography and a Bachelor of Science in Communications from the University of Miami.

MANO Project
is an initiative of Hispanic 
Access Foundation.

P: (202) 640-4342