Ross Turner


President, CEO and Co-founder of Guided Discoveries

"Kristi and I are passionate about the programs of Guided Discoveries and know that the experience makes a positive difference in their lives of the students, campers, and staff.  We have dedicated ourselves to developing and operating these programs and still enjoy visiting and living at our camps.  We see the rewards of our efforts in the faces and laughter of the children every day.  We are pleased that so many people have been touched by our programs (more than 1 million) and we are very proud of our former staff and the impact they are making in their communities as teachers, professors, researchers, aquarium and science center professionals, lawyers, physicians, business leaders, actors, and as parents."

As an educational entrepreneur, Ross is dedicated to creating unique and fun educational programs for children. Ross is the Co-founder, President and CEO for Guided Discoveries and its family of programs.

Born and raised in Temple City, California, Ross's love of the sciences was inspired by his sixth-grade teacher and encouraged by his parents, who allowed him to build a lab in their garage.

With a bachelor's degree in science from Brigham Young University, Ross taught high school biology and coached football. It was his experience as a teacher and coach that led to the idea of the Catalina Island Marine Institute and Guided Discoveries.  In 1976 he and his wife, Kristi, and a small group of friends, founded Guided Discoveries.

Operating Guided Discoveries has provided Ross the opportunity to develop a variety of skills, including nonprofit management, facility operations, facility redevelopment, program development and faculty relations. He has also been involved with professional and community organizations. He is the past president of the Western Association of Independent Camps. He has been a board member on several organizations, including Western Association of Independent Camp, Foothill Country Day School and the Catalina Island Hospital.

Together, Ross and Kristi have worked tirelessly for the development and operation of the organization they founded and the children they have served.

Contact Ross at or 909.625.6194