Genaro Ruiz brings more than 25 years of government and nonprofit experience to his leadership of the Nina Mason Pulliam Rio Salado Audubon Center. Before joining Audubon Southwest, Ruiz was Chicanos Por La Causa, Inc.’s community center manager in Phoenix. Previously, he worked for the Parks & Recreation Department of Kansas City, Missouri as community center director and district community center manager. In addition to working for various nonprofit organizations, he worked for two elected officials: he was the Senior Advisor for Community and Intergovernmental Affairs for Kansas City Mayor Sly James and the Community Affairs Liaison for Congressman Emanuel Cleaver II. Mr. Ruiz has always considered himself a public servant.
Ruiz’s vision for the Nina Mason Pulliam Rio Salado Audubon Center is a nature center and bird sanctuary for the whole family to experience and enjoy. He plans to expand the Center’s environmental educational programs for children, particularly students in Title 1 schools. He also plans to offer youth and adult service-learning projects that encourage Valley residents to protect and restore Arizona’s natural habitats for birds and other wildlife. Located at 3131 S. Central Ave. on the light rail extension, the Center serves as a gateway to the nature restoration area along the Rio Salado. Center visitors have observed more than 220 bird species in the Rio Salado Habitat Restoration Area.
In addition, Ruiz envisions the Center as a hub of activity for neighbors in South Phoenix. He looks forward to hosting community gatherings, cultural events, educational presentations, group meetings, birding and nature walks and other outreach programs at the Center. He invites local community involvement in reimagining the future of the Nina Mason Pulliam Rio Salado Audubon Center, informing the Center’s programming for all ages and supporting the conservation mission of National Audubon Society in the Southwest.