by KELLEY GUSICH | photos by Soul of Photography

Preserve & Protect

faces_worthington1Encinitas resident Paul Worthington credits his parents for fostering in him an appreciation and love for the natural world. They moved to Rancho Santa Fe in the 1950’s, where Paul spent many hours outdoors. He explains, “As a family we spent many summers in Idaho visiting relatives. This is where I gained an even deeper appreciation for nature, the outdoors, and hiking, fishing, and camping.” Paul began selling real estate in 1980, then opened his own office on the coast in 1990.

His mission as a Realtor – helping people with their goals – coincides with another aspect of Paul’s life: service to nature and our goals to protect it. He’s been a board member of the San Elijo Lagoon Conservancy for nearly a decade, a nonprofit land trust for the San Elijo Ecological Reserve. He also served as secretary from 2010 to 2014. “As a board member, I have the unique opportunity to work with community leaders on our team to advance conservation and education initiatives for the Conservancy.” While San Elijo Reserve is protected, Paul and his community will always need to keep saving its land and water and bringing children to the outdoors. “I want our youth to grow up loving nature and to join us on our watch.”

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Name: Paul Worthington
Community: Grew up in Rancho Santa Fe; lives in Encinitas
Volunteer Affiliation: San Elijo Lagoon Conservancy
Profession: Realtor, Sea Coast Exclusive Properties
Hobbies: Avid sports enthusiast, birding, running and hiking, and love to travel
Favorite Local Spot: Walking any of the many trails here


faces_worthington2Paul sees the greatest threat to our diversity of life as loss of habitat. That’s what makes SELC unique as a nonprofit land trust, with their collaboration in acquiring additional lands, expanding habitats for native species. “The Conservancy is member-supported,” Paul shared, “and we are grateful for all the grants and awards that fund our science-based youth curricula and all-ages special events and tours. Knowing that my volunteerism is bringing nature and community together makes me smile.”

“I wish that everyone who has hiked the lagoon trails or simply enjoyed solace in nature would become a member of San Elijo Lagoon Conservancy,” Paul said. “With increased support and membership we could do even more – bring more children on field trips, enhance more habitat, and reach out to everyone about the value of cleaner air, lands, and waters so important to us all.” The Conservancy’s 30-year Celebration, Birds of a Feather, will be Oct. 7 at Lomas Santa Fe Country Club. Paul shared, “It’s one of North County’s celebrated events benefiting nature.” Visit www.sanelijo.org/volunteer for ways to join the movement.


Group: San Elijo Lagoon Conservancy
Mission: Now in its 30th year, the Conservancy is the nonprofit land trust for San Elijo Lagoon Ecological Reserve. Its vision is a world where biodiversity is preserved and people act to protect nature and embrace it as central to a healthy community.
Website: www.sanelijo.org/30years