Support Great Basin Institute in Serving Public Lands in the West



FOUNDED in 1998

Co-founded in 1998 by two PhD students, Jerry Keir and Sanjay Pyare, at the University of Nevada, the Institute began as a field studies program to mobilize University faculty, students, and volunteers in applied science and direct service to support national parks, forests, open spaces and public lands. Since then, for over two decades, GBI has supported over 7,000 conservationist serving hundreds of projects to realize positive environmental change across the western US. GBI has raised over 165MM for research, education, and service, making impactful contributions to serving the public and our public lands.  GBI is based out of Reno, Nevada, with Satellite offices in Las Vegas, Nevada and South Lake Tahoe, CA. GBI is the recipient of the 2015 USFS’s “Regional Forester Award,” the Nevada Governor’s Points of Light Award in 2005 and was named “Outstanding Non-government Organization” by Environmental Leadership in 2001.

We achieve our mission through
the following programs:

Nevada Conservation Corps

A 21st Century Service Corps, Nevada Conservation Corps harnesses the energy and idealism of volunteers and youth to serve public lands and communities. Since 1999, as a federally funded AmeriCorps program, the NCC provides valuable resource management services in the form of restoration crews and conservation internships, while providing professional development for youth, veterans and others seeking careers in conservation and land management.

Research Associate Program

The Institute’s Research Associate Program recruits qualified professionals—college graduates, graduate students, and experienced professionals—to design and implement field-based environmental management programs and projects. Research Associates provide technical assistance, research, analysis and data to support the conservation and management of natural and cultural resource in the West.

Taylor & Galena Creek Visitor Centers, Tallac Historic Site

The Great Basin Institute enhances community engagement through our Interpretive Association at the Galena Creek Visitors Center, Taylor Creek Visitor Center, and the Tallac Historic Site, facilities jointly managed USDA Forest Service and at Galena, with Washoe County. GBI offers community activities and events, field studies for schools, and day and residential outdoor education programs for students and the visiting public.

International Conservation Volunteer Exchange & Field Studies

The International Conservation Volunteer Exchange is a volunteer and internship program for international participants who wish to collaborate on natural resource projects and accredited course work on public lands throughout the American West and abroad. The program offers opportunities to serve on teams or individually on publicly managed lands, from mangrove inventories in Costa Rica to wildlife monitoring at Lake Tahoe.


Great Basin Institute, through its Research Associate program, Nevada Conservation Corps, International Volunteers, and field studies, has employed thousands of capable and enthusiastic individuals. Many of these individuals have gone on to apply this enthusiasm and the skills developed while with GBI to careers and public service beyond the Institute. GBI alumni inspire with their commitment to environmental and cultural values, their technical knowledge and skills, and their adaptability and perseverance. Here we celebrate those alumni who have contributed to the success of GBI and to the preservation of our natural resources.


With the experience and expertise developed while working at GBI, our alumni often continue to play an important part of GBI’s promotion of education and professional development. We invite you to join us in these efforts. Become involved in continuing GBI’s ongoing mission to develop future conservation leaders:

  • Recommend GBI to your friends.
  • Partner with GBI in bringing new partner into the fold.
  • Join with fellow alumni to promote the organization as a resource for those starting out in the field of conservation.
  • Provide volunteer career support and serve as a mentor.
  • Consider re-upping for another tour with GBI.


GBI’s personnel have always been at the heart of our operations, whether working as Research Associates, Nevada Conservation Corps crew members, student volunteers, or administrative staff. A key component of the Institute’s mission is to contribute to the professional development of our employees. Many continue on to careers in land management and other areas of environmental policy. And in addition to the contribution made while working for GBI, many continue to contribute to our successful engagement with cultural and ecological sustainability through generous donations. If you’d like to help us in our mission, please consider a donating today.


The Great Basin Institute prides itself not only on undertaken effective conservation projects, but also on providing a foundation on which new and established professionals can continue to build their careers in conservation, land management, public service, and other occupations. As part of our effort to build a community of alumni and current employees, we’d like to hear from you about your time working for GBI, as well as your ventures beyond the Institute.

  • What kind of work did you do for GBI?
  • What were the most interesting, exciting, or fulfilling experiences of your tenure with GBI?
  • What activities have you been engaged in, professionally or  personally, since moving on from GBI?
  • How have skills or personal connections developed during your time with  GBI served you later professional or personal undertakings?


The GBI Alumni Facebook Group is a great place to connect with fellow GBI alumni. The Group exists as a place to share stories, photos, and personal updates. Additionally, it’s a place to post news items, promote events information, and discuss conservation, public service, and related environmental issues.