Desirée Cruz has a degree in biology from the University of Guayaquil and a degree in linguistics and literature from the Technical University of Loja. She has been involved with tourism and management of natural protected areas since 1987, the year she began guiding in the Galápagos National Park. She later worked for the Galápagos National Park Service (1997-2000) and served as coordinator of a Inter-American Development Bank/World Wildlife Fund-run project that promoted environmental best practices in small tourism businesses in Galápagos (2010-2012).
During her time with the Galápagos National Park Service she witnessed firsthand the damage introduced animals and plants were causing to native and endemic wildlife. She worked closely with the launching of the Isabela Project, which sought to restore Marchena, Pinta, Santiago, and Isabela Islands to their pristine states. All of those islands are now free of large introduced vertebrates like goats, pigs, and donkeys. She was also a member of the taskforce responsible for establishing the Galápagos Marine Reserve.
She believes in ecotourism and sustainability, and she can attest to the great job the Galápagos National Park Service has been doing in the conservation—a job that would not be possible without the support of local communities. She would like everyone, Galápagos locals and guests, to be able to learn from the beauty and wisdom of nature—and she believes there’s no better place to do that than the Galapagos Islands!
Besides guiding, she works as a professional technical writer.
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