by KELLEY GUSICH | photos by Soul of Photography

Passion for the Outdoors

faces_shapiro3Peter Shapiro and his wife of 37 years, Kathy Sage, have lived in Rancho Santa Fe since 2008. Peter’s life before that – raised and educated in New York, serving our country as an Army major during the Vietnam era – means he has traveled and experienced much. He and Kathy are avid hikers and have trekked all over the world. “When we moved to The Crosby,” he shared, “we were very excited to learn that the Coast to Crest Trail paralleled the community and that the Conservancy played a significant part in habitat and trail development.”

The San Dieguito River Valley Conservancy (SDRVC) piqued Peter’s interest. Upon retiring from his career as a human resources executive and consultant, he was inspired to volunteer and help the SDRVC in the Santa Fe Trail and Del Dios Gorge, removing invasive plants and replacing them with native species. After a while, the conservation manager approached him and asked if he wanted to accomplish even more by joining the board. “As a retiree,” Peter said, “I was looking for something to express my passion for the outdoors and in particular the area within which I lived and so I agreed.” He then completed the Exploring Our Sense of Place program, an eight-week seminar following the River Valley’s path from mountain to sea, giving him an even greater appreciation of the watershed and what it has to offer.


Name: Peter M. Shapiro
Community: The Crosby at Rancho Santa Fe
Family: Wife – Kathleen B. Sage
Hobbies: Hiking, golf, cycling, theater, travel
Favorite Local Spots: Pacifica Del Mar, Cucina Enoteca, Coast to Crest Trail, Rams Hill in Borrego Springs

faces_shapiro1Since he began with SDRVC, Peter has filled the roles of chairman of the Nature and Culture Committee, the Acquisitions and Trails Committee, and as a recruiter helping find the executive director of the conservancy, Trish Boaz. He’s currently on the Donor Development and Finance Committees, and his committee and recruitment work led him to be offered the board presidency. He sees his recruitment of Trish as well as success in raising the visibility of the Conservancy throughout the community as his greatest volunteer accomplishments. His biggest wish is for the SDRVC to complete the Coast to Crest Trail. Volunteers are always needed, and there are many ways to do it. “It’s very healthy to volunteer,” Peter said, “especially in the great outdoors of the San Dieguito River Watershed.”

Peter Shapiro is very thankful to be a member of this organization. “It’s an honor to be president and to continue the fine work of the founders, ensuring the preservation of the San Dieguito River Valley Watershed and supporting the River Park.”

Group: San Dieguito River Valley Conservancy
Mission: To preserve, protect, and share the natural and cultural resources of the San Dieguito River Valley through collaborative efforts to acquire lands, complete trails, restore habitats, establish educational programs, create interpretive centers, encourage recreation, and mobilize public support.