PLATINUM2022

See Turtles

Protecting sea turtles through conservation travel, support for nesting beaches, and education

portland, OR   |  www.seeturtles.org

Mission

Our mission is to protect endangered turtles through turtle conservation and volunteer tours, fundraising for key nesting beaches through Billion Baby Turtles, and educational programs in the US and Latin America.

Ruling year info

2017

President

Mr Brad Nahill

Main address

5605 SE Rural St

portland, OR 97206 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

81-4325149

NTEE code info

Wildlife Preservation/Protection (D30)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Blog

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Six of the seven species of sea turtles around the world are threatened or endangered due to poaching of their eggs, meat, and shells, climate change, unsustainable coastal development and tourism, and other threats. Many organizations at important nesting and foraging sites around the world lack access to volunteers, funds, and other resources needed to patrol nesting beaches, educate local communities, and grow their programs. SEE Turtles aims to provide support to important turtle conservation programs around the world through funding for nesting beach conservation and outreach programs, generating income and volunteer support for conservation efforts and local communities through our trips, supporting local efforts to reduce plastic waste in sea turtle habitats, raising awareness about these animals through Sea Turtle Week, and providing scholarships for disadvantaged communities and community leaders to advance their careers.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Billion Baby Turtles

SEE Turtles raises funds for turtle hatchling conservation from individuals, school fundraisers, green businesses, and commissions from our sea turtle tours. The funds are used to cover the costs of hiring local residents to patrol turtle nesting beaches and protecting the turtles and their nests.

Population(s) Served
Adults

Too Rare To Wear is a coalition of conservation organizations and tour operators collaborating to end the demand for turtleshell products.

Population(s) Served
Adults

Our conservation tours give travelers the opportunity to volunteer with conservation programs while benefitting community-based organizations and coastal communities.

Population(s) Served
Adults

We work with schools in the US and Latin America to educate students about sea turtles and the threats they face.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth

SEE Turtles has been educating people about the threat of plastic waste since our founding in 2008.

Our campaign focuses on the following activities:

1. Working with conservation organizations around the world to reduce plastic in sea turtle habitats. We are raising funds to support new projects by sea turtle conservation organizations that reduce plastic waste and recycle that waste into products that can be sold to support local communities and conservation efforts.

2. Advocating for less plastic use. Recycling and upcycling can only take us so far, to truly clean the oceans, we need to stop the flow of plastic in our economy. Through our social media, email newsletters, website and through Travelers Against Plastic, we will encourage people to reduce plastic at home while advocating for governments and businesses to take strong actions to reduce the creation of plastic in the first place.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Children and youth

Since 2019, SEE Turtles has coordinated the worldwide community of sea turtle organizations and researchers during Sea Turtle Week to educate the public and celebrate all things sea turtles. The week spans World Oceans Day (June 8th) to World Sea Turtle Day (June 16th), with each day in between highlighting a different species and the primary threats that sea turtles face. More than 170 sea turtle and environmental organization in 45 countries participate as partners in Sea Turtle Week each year.

Population(s) Served

SEE Turtles is committed to promoting diversity and inclusivity in sea turtle conservation and research community. That is why we have launched our Sea Turtle Inclusivity Fund to help support deserving students to complete field work with sea turtles to advance their careers and to provide support for residents of communities where sea turtle conservation programs are based to complete studies or gain employment in sea turtle conservation.

Population(s) Served
Pacific Islanders
Multiracial people
People of African descent
People of Southeast Asian descent
People of Caribbean descent

Where we work

Awards

Changemakers Award 2019

World Travel & Tourism Council

Affiliations & memberships

World Travel & Tourism Council 2019

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Total number of fields trips

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Sea Turtle Conservation Tours

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Context Notes

We generally run 5-10 trips per year but 2020 and 2021 were impacted by the global pandemic.

Number of released animals

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Billion Baby Turtles

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

These are the number of sea turtle hatchlings released at important turtle nesting beaches around the world due to our financial support.

Number of accolades/recognition received from third-party organizations

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Other - describing something else

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Context Notes

In 2019, we were awarded: -The Changemakers Award from the World Travel & Tourism Council -The Skal Sustainable Travel Award -The Presidents Award from the International Sea Turtle Society

Number of participants who gain employment

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Billion Baby Turtles

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

We started tracking jobs supported from our Billion Baby Turtles program in 2022 but we estimate roughly 100 jobs in 2021.

Total pounds of debris collected

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Sea Turtles & Plastic

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

We launched our Sea Turtles & Plastic program in late 2021 and supported three programs that collect and recycle plastic from turtle nesting beaches. We expect the numbers to grow dramatically in 2022

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

SEE Turtles aims to help community-based sea turtle conservation organizations address threats to these species, including poaching, the turtleshell trade, plastic pollution, and more.

Our goals include:
-Our conservation tours aim to provide volunteer and financial support for field research and conservation programs while benefitting local communities.
-Billion Baby Turtles has an ultimate goal of saving a billion turtle hatchlings at important nesting beaches by providing financial support to local organizations to hire local residents to patrol nesting beaches, keeping poachers and predators at bay.
-Our Too Rare To Wear program has the goal of reducing demand for turtleshell products through the tourism industry that is the primary threat to hawksbill sea turtles.
-Our Sea Turtles & Plastic campaign aims to help travelers reduce plastic pollution while traveling and to support local efforts to reduce plastic in turtle habitats and convert that waste into products that support conservation efforts and local residents.
-Our Sea Turtle Inclusivity Funds aims to elevate emerging leaders in the sea turtle community from coastal communities by funding new positions in the conservation field or supporting their studies.
-Our Sea Turtle Week campaign aims to bring together the sea turtle community to raise awareness about these animals and the threats they face and inspire action to support their recovery.

Our primary strategy is to support community-based turtle conservation organizations through all of our programs.

-Through our tours, we benefit conservation by both paying for services from our conservation partners and generating donations for every traveler, in addition to our travelers volunteering with tasks related to conservation and research.
-Billion Baby Turtles raises funds from sponsors, individuals, schools, our online store, and our conservation trips to provide grants to nesting beach conservation programs. These grants allow partners to hire local residents to patrol nesting beaches and purchase equipment.
-For Too Rare To Wear, our strategy is to build a coalition of tourism companies and conservation organizations to educate travelers that go to destinations where turtleshell is a major issue and provide funds and resources for these partners to do outreach. We also build tools to address the trade including our groundbreaking SEE Shell App which uses machine learning to identify tortoiseshell products.
-Our Sea Turtles & Plastic campaign funds efforts by local communities to clean up plastic waste on nesting beaches and in the water and investing in infrastructure to recycle that waste into useful products, which can be sold to support conservation efforts and local residents. We also manage the Travelers Against Plastic campaign that encourages travelers and others to reduce plastic consumption.

SEE Turtles was founded in 2008 and over that time, we have developed dozens of partnerships that help us reach our goals. Our relationships are key to extending our reach beyond our organization and around the world. We have extensive relationships in both the turtle conservation community, working with more than 200 partners around the world on our various programs. Our co-founders Dr. Wallace J. Nichols and President Brad Nahill have both worked in this field for more than 20 years, working on various kinds of conservation programs and developing extensive contacts. We also have on our board of directors Hector Barrios-Garrido and Jose Urteaga from Venezuela and Nicaragua (respectively), who are both recognized leaders in the sea turtle community.

Our President Brad Nahill also has a background in the ecotourism field, which has been critical in drawing support and participation from the industry for SEE Turtles programs. For our conservation tours, we partner with local organizations and tour operators to offer trips to eight countries in Latin America and the Caribbean, benefitting twelve conservation programs.

With our Billion Baby Turtles program, we have supported more than 50 organizations working in 20+ countries to benefit nesting beach conservation efforts. These funds come from a group of donors, sponsors, and schools that we have built over the years to provide a steady stream of grants to our partners. This program and our Inclusivity Fund are led by Dr. Adriana Cortes, an experienced and respected turtle specialist who is based in Oaxaca, Mexico.

Our communications and Sea Turtle Week campaign are managed by Bethany Holtz, who holds a Master's degree from St. Joseph's University and experience in environmental education as well as field work in New Jersey and the US Virgin Islands.

SEE Turtles has helped move sea turtle conservation efforts forward around the world:

-We have generated more than $1 million for turtle conservation and local communities through our tours and other programs. In addition, our 1,500 travelers to date have completed more than 5,000 work shifts at 15 turtle projects around Latin America.

-For Billion Baby Turtles, we have helped save nearly 10 million hatchlings at more than 50 beaches in more than 20 countries around the world, providing nearly $1 million in grants since 2013. In 2022, we helped save more than 3 million hatchlings and supported more than 130 jobs in coastal communities.

-Too Rare To Wear has formed a coalition of more than 150 tourism companies and conservation organizations and has reached more than 10 million people with our outreach efforts. We launched the SEE Shell App, the first mobile app that addresses the illegal wildlife trade by using artificial intelligence to recognize these products with photos. We also published the first global and regional reports on this trade in 2018 (Latin America) and 2020 (global).

-Our collaboration with Fundacion Tortugas del Mar in Colombia has helped to reduce the trade in Cartagena by more than 80% (one of the top sites for sales in the region in our 2017 report). We have provide funding, resources, and technical support for their work since 2017 and have helped them expand their program to other communities, and funded workshops for government officials and teachers.

-Our Sea Turtles & Plastic campaign has supported 7 programs in 6 countries that are cleaning thousands of lbs of plastic waste and recycling it into useful products. In addition, we funded an additional 8 beach cleanup efforts in six countries that will clean an estimated 350,000 lbs of waste in 2023.

-Our Sea Turtle Inclusivity Fund has provided more than $10,000 in scholarships to seven emerging conservation leaders from Costa Rica, Brazil, Venezuela, Panama, Indonesia, and the Papua New Guinea.

-Our Sea Turtle Week campaign reaches 8-12 million people per year on social media with more than 170 participating around the world.

-Our educational programs have reached more than 10,000 students across the US and Latin America and we provide free resources for teachers including lesson plans, educational videos, and more.

Financials

See Turtles
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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See Turtles

Board of directors
as of 12/09/2022
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Mr. Brad Nahill

SEE Turtles

Term: 2017 - 2019

Cristina Garcia

Travel For Wildlife

Jose Urteaga

Stanford University

Maureen Cunningham

Environmental Advocates of New York

Sheridan Samando

Reefs to Rockies

Hector Garrido

Grupo Tortuguero del Golfo de Venezuela

Dan Berman

Berman Memorial Fund

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? No
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? No
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? No

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 8/16/2021

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Male, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Decline to state
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

 

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

Equity strategies

Last updated: 08/16/2021

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

Data
  • We employ non-traditional ways of gathering feedback on programs and trainings, which may include interviews, roundtables, and external reviews with/by community stakeholders.
Policies and processes
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We have community representation at the board level, either on the board itself or through a community advisory board.
  • We engage everyone, from the board to staff levels of the organization, in race equity work and ensure that individuals understand their roles in creating culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.