Chris Kelly

California State Director


Chris KellyChris has led the protection of more than 150,000 acres of forest land in Northern California through projects that pioneered the non-profit ownership of working forests, the use of low-interest public financing to achieve ambitious forest conservation, and water quality enhancement.  He has negotiated numerous carbon offset sale contracts with corporations such as the Disney Company, Pacific Gas and Electric and Morgan Stanley. Currently, Chris serves as Chairman of the Board of Directors for the Marin Agricultural Land Trust, the nation’s first agricultural land trust. In addition, he is a  frequent presenter at seminars and conferences on matters related to forest conservation and ecosystem services-based project financing.

Prior to joining The Conservation Fund, Chris worked with a number of land conservation organizations on the development and implementation of their land conservation programs, including The Nature Conservancy, Yosemite Fund, Mendocino Land Trust and the Elkhorn Slough Foundation. He also practiced business, real estate, and land use law with Cooley, Godward and Bingham McCutchen in San Francisco. 

Chris holds a J.D. from the University of California at Davis, and an A.B. in Philosophy from the University of California at Berkeley.

Contact:  ckelly@conservationfund.org  415-927-2123

Featured Projects

Garcia River Forest

Garcia River Forest

Some of America’s favorite forests are the redwoods along California’s north coast, known for its raw beauty and rich...
Buckeye Forest

Buckeye Forest

More than a decade ago, the Fund set out to reassemble what was once a single forested property stretching...
Big River And Salmon Creek Forests

Big River And Salmon Creek Forests

Although Northern California’s coastal forests have long supported abundant wildlife and a thriving economy—nearly 40 percent of the value...

More Projects

North Coast Reference Documents

North Coast Reference Documents

2014 Reports   2014 North Coast Policy DigestThe 2014 Policy Digest provides a summary of The Conservation Fund’s North Coast California...
Usal Redwood Forest

Usal Redwood Forest

Almost twice the size of San Francisco, the 50,000-acre Usal Redwood Forest, in Mendocino County, is a classic sweep...
Restoring A Forest - And Home For The Coastal Tailed Frog

Restoring A Forest - And Home For The Coastal Tailed Frog

When The Conservation Fund purchased the 24,000-acre Garcia River Forest in the heart of Northern California’s redwood country in...
North Coast Forest Conservation Initiative

North Coast Forest Conservation Initiative

America’s favorite forests include the redwoods along California’s North Coast. The redwood region is known for its raw beauty...
Gualala River Forest

Gualala River Forest

Next door to our Garcia River Forest, the 14,000-acre Gualala River Forest shares its remarkable canopy of redwoods and...
Educational Tall Ship in San Francisco

Educational Tall Ship in San Francisco

The Conservation Fund supports efforts to protect places where children can get outdoors and learn about nature. Often those...