Who We Are

Who We Are

Our History

Our History

In 1970, the Sierra Club engaged four San Jose State University ecology professors, including Dr. H. Thomas Harvey, to assess the impact of Sierra Club wilderness excursions on the habitats of California’s High Sierra and parts of Yosemite National Park. It was one of the first studies of its kind in the United States. These ecologists went on to found H. T. Harvey & Associates as an outlet to conduct this and other research, as well as to provide consulting services.

With the passage of a series of environmental laws in the early 1970s, demand for ecological consulting services grew considerably, as did our services and expertise. Comprising nearly 20 associates who were professors in their fields, plus field biologists, our firm completed hundreds of projects for government agencies, private companies, and nonprofit organizations, and opened an office in the San Joaquin Valley. Our company’s scientific expertise informed California’s approach to impact assessment, mitigation planning, and conservation, an influence that continues today.

Standard-setting projects during this 20-year period included:

  • Preparing some of the first biological sections of environmental impact reports under the California Environmental Quality Act
  • Conducting early wetland delineations under the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Clean Water Act Section 404 program
  • Helping develop the California Wildlife Habitat Relationships program for the California Department of Fish and Wildlife
  • Describing the wetlands of the Pacific Coast for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
  • Designing the first tidal restoration projects in San Francisco Bay, leading to five decades of such projects

In 1990, Ron Duke took over as president from the late Dr. Harvey. Since that time, we have deepened our expertise by adding senior experts in restoration ecology, ornithology, botany, wetlands ecology, mammalogy, herpetology, fisheries ecology, and landscape architecture. Today the company includes nine principals and nearly 100 ecologists and landscape architects in six offices in California and Hawai‘i, covering an extensive range of biological subdisciplines relevant to ecological consulting.

In work as diverse as developing and running a bird and bat fatality monitoring program in a remote location, conducting research on penguins in the Antarctic, and evaluating the impacts of tidal energy projects on the marine environment, our staff maintains a singular dedication to excellence in science and the innovative roots of our founding.

 “We create ecologically sound solutions to our clients’ complex natural resource challenges.”