By Chris Khoury
As a founding member of the Conservancy in 1986, Dave Kreitzer joined with other passionate community members in developing an incredibly ambitious effort to protect the entire San Dieguito River Valley. This audacious vision, promoted by Dave, has resonated and inspired so many. In his decades long enthusiastic, effective, and critical support for the mission of the Conservancy, he served in many different roles, including Active and Advisory Board member of the SDRVC, member of the Citizens Advocacy Committee of the River Park, and ongoing ambassador at every opportunity. As a highly respected community leader, his support helped the Conservancy develop the early political support necessary for its great success. He recruited many others to volunteer, including his son, Gary, who also served on the Conservancy Board as a real estate attorney and who was instrumental in completing a number of land acquisitions.
On a personal note, Dave was an important mentor to me. As a second generation Conservancy supporter, Dave, and others of the first generation supporters, inspired me with his kindness, dedication, and persistence. The success of the Conservancy has resulted not only from its vision, but also the welcoming camaraderie of its many supporters. Dave helped set the tone.
In May of 2009, I joined hundreds of others to honor Dave at the opening of the David Kreitzer Lake Hodges Bicycle Pedestrian Bridge. Since then, every time I cross the bridge, I very fondly recall Dave’s many contributions. Like his bridge, Dave was a unique architectural wonder that connected communities and will continue to impact future generations. To paraphrase the words of Jonas Salk, Dave truly succeeded in becoming a good ancestor.
Dr. Chris Khoury is a member of San Dieguito River Valley Conservancy’s Advisory Board.