Undergraduate Alumni: Seth Cothrun, '00

May 31, 2017


three people in front of plane during sunset
From left to right: Seth Cothrun; Jenn Vervier, Director of Strategy and Sustainability, New Belgium Brewing; and Dr. Francisco Zamora, Director of Colorado River Delta Program at the Sonoran Institute


Seth Cothrun is the Senior Director of Marketing and Development for the Sonoran Institute, a Tucson-based non-profit organization that focuses on the preservation of natural resources of the western U.S. and Mexico. A native of the Sonoran Desert, he graduated in 2000 with a B.A. in Anthropology and Latin American History from the University of Arizona. He also holds a M.A. from the University of Chicago in Anthropology and Latin American Studies.

As the Senior Director of Marketing and Development, Seth is responsible for the Sonoran Institute’s brand and marketing strategies as well as leading the development strategies that support the mission of the Sonoran Institute. He joined the Sonoran Institute in 2013 to build the organization’s corporate partnership program. Prior to joining the Sonoran Institute, he spent almost seven years managing business development and marketing initiatives throughout the Americas in the institutional asset management arena, working with some of the largest public and private funds in the world. Prior to the financial industry, he spent several years as a project, then program, manager in the U.S. Forest Service throughout the West, in addition to serving nationally on Type 1 Incident Management and Burned Area Emergency Rehabilitation teams tasked with managing high complexity wildland fire incidents and post-fire effects. He has also lived and worked in México as a photographer.

When asked what specifically he took with him from his undergraduate degree in Anthropology, he said:

I especially learned how to write, a skill that anyone can benefit from and on which I depend every day in my job. The four-field approach in Anthropology also taught me how to think critically and look at issues holistically and from multiple viewpoints when making a business or strategic decision. My Anthropology training and my experience living in Mexico have helped me understand various aspects of the culture of a country that is integral to the mission of the Sonoran Institute.