Carlos Castillo, Senior Conservation Specialist for the Mexico Program, advocates for the establishment of new protected areas in northwest Mexico and for the improvement of their management. As a biologist with vast experience in public management, he also helps identify wildlife corridors in Mexico, advises our public policy work, and supports the implementation of alternative land conservation mechanisms such as easements, leases, and Environmental Services Payments.
Carlos studied biology at Universidad Autónoma de Guadalajara and in 1986 landed his first job working with reptiles and mammals at the Centro Ecológico de Sonora in Hermosillo. His passion for understanding animal behavior carried him to the El Pinacate region to study the behavior ecology of the Sonoran pronghorn, listed in both Mexico and the U.S. as an endangered subspecies. Because of his 10 years of experience working in the Pinacate y Gran Desierto region, he was selected to develop the studies necessary for the designation of the El Pinacate y Gran Desierto de Altar Biosphere Reserve, where he also served as director for eight years. Carlos then went on to serve as the Northwest Regional Director for the National Commission for Protected Areas (CONANP) of Mexico’s Ministry of the Environment and Natural Resources, supervising protected areas in the states of Baja California, Baja California Sur, Sonora, Sinaloa, and Nayarit. He then became Northwest and Upper Gulf of California and Colorado River Delta Regional Director, supervising protected areas in Sonora and Sinaloa.
Carlos lives in Hermosillo, Mexico and enjoys painting, playing piano, cycling, exercising, and hiking in nature.