Jane Rau

McDowell Sonoran Conservancy

Ruthie Carll, Nominator

“In this hectic world we have created, we have to have someplace to go to find release.”

Jane is one of the most important figures in the historic movement to preserve thousands of acres of Sonoran Desert in the McDowell Mountains. Through her activism and unending enthusiasm for the conservation of Arizona’s open space, these acres of urban land will not be developed. Now, at 86, she still continues to champion and labor on behalf of this living treasure as volunteer Director Emeritus of the McDowell Sonoran Conservancy, an organization she co-founded, that has helped create the largest urban preserve in the country. For 20 years, Jane’s leadership and continuous support has influenced public officials, community opinion, and the private sector to establish the preserve. Each year, she donates 660 hours as director and trail crewmember.